Meal-Prep Plans for Every Kind of Lifestyle

By: Victoria Seaver, M.S., R.D., Digital Meal Plan Editor

Meal prep helps you cut down the total time you spend in the kitchen throughout the week and makes eating healthy and sticking with your diet simple and easy.

Whether you're a seasoned meal-prepper or are just getting started, these easy-to-follow plans make it super easy to prep ahead. Meal-prepping is great for many reasons. For one, it helps you stick to healthy eating, which can be especially important if you're trying to lose weight or follow a specific diet, like a low-carb or vegan diet. It can also help you stick to your budget. By making multiple meals out of a few base ingredients and following one of our budget-friendly prep plans, you're sure to spend less. And while meal-prepping does take some commitment, the time you spend up front prepping is less than what you'd collectively spend prepping meals before or after busy workdays. Most of our meal plans set you up to get the prep done in 30 minutes to an hour, so the time commitment is relatively minimal, when it's all said and done.

Related: Meal Planning 101 (for all your meal-planning needs!)

The meal-prep plans below cover a range of diets and lifestyle needs (like how to meal-prep a week of healthy Mediterranean lunches or how to feed your family for the week for $100) and include plans with recipes for breakfast, lunch, dinner and more. Scroll through to find the plan that will work best for you.

Meal-Prep Plans for Every Kind of Lifestyle

See our healthy meal-prep plans below and find the plan (or plans) you want to try this week. And don't miss our recommendations for the best meal-prep containers for packing up your meals.

1. Low-Carb Meal-Prep Lunches

containers of zucchini noodles with bolognese sauce

This plan walks you through the steps for building a healthy low-carb lunch and also includes delicious recipe ideas, like the pictured Zucchini Noodles with Quick Turkey Bolognese Sauce.

2. Meal-Prep Breakfasts to Lose Weight

plate of mini quiche cups

Look for the meal-prep notes under the recipes to see how you can make them ahead of time for the upcoming busy week, or freeze and save them for down the road. While not every single recipe in this article can be meal-prepped, most of them can, like these mouthwatering Tomato-Parmesan Mini Quiches.

3. High-Protein Meal-Prep Lunches

High Protein Shrimp Edamame Bowl

These high-protein lunches are great for anyone looking for a satisfying midday meal, and especially for people trying to lose weight. If you're eating fewer calories for weight loss, adding in extra protein to your meals helps to keep you feeling fuller for longer. All of the healthy lunches in this plan (like these colorful Spicy Slaw Bowls with Shrimp & Edamame) have over 14 grams of filling protein.

4. Cheap, Healthy Meal Plan to Feed a Family for $100 for the Week

various groceries on a table

Here's how to shop for a week's worth of family meals and snacks (breakfast, lunch and dinner included!) for $100—seriously, $100. You'll find helpful low-cost meal-planning tips and tricks for keeping your grocery bill in check, plus a sample meal plan for the week with a printable grocery list to help you get all your shopping done with ease.

5. Mediterranean Meal-Prep Lunches

pan of roasted veggies

The Mediterranean diet is one of the world's healthiest (and easiest) ways to eat, with an emphasis on fresh fruits and veggies, lean protein, whole grains and healthy fats (from foods like olive oil, salmon, nuts and seeds). This prep plan walks you through four super-simple base recipes that come together to create delicious Mediterranean-style lunches for the workweek. An added bonus—this one has a printable shopping list!

6. Vegan Meal-Prep Lunches

citrus lime tofu salad in a bowl

In this easy lunch meal-prep plan, we walk you through five super-simple vegan base recipes that come together to create delicious vegan lunches for the week that almost look too beautiful to eat. This Citrus Lime Tofu Salad is just one of the eye-catching recipes in the plan. What's nice about this plan is that you have a different lunch recipe for each day, so if you're the kind of person who can't eat the same thing all week long, this plan offers variety in the form of salads, grain bowls and wraps. Plus, it has a printable shopping list, which makes it even easier to execute the prep for the week!

7. How to Meal-Prep a Week of Healthy Family Dinners on Sunday

cutting board with chopped veggies, chopped chicken, and plastic storage bag - a meal prep scene

The basic premise of this plan is to do some prep on Sunday when you have a chunk of time to get into the kitchen to ease the weeknight chaos. For example: Whip up some yummy homemade dressing to use all week long, build a simple veggie-heavy casserole or prep the components of an easy soup (like the prep we're doing above to get things ready for the Slow-Cooker Pasta e Fagioli Soup Freezer Pack). Then for the rest of the week, when 6 p.m. comes along, we can be sitting pretty! All that's left to do is pop that casserole in the oven or serve that already-cooked slow-cooker meal and you have yourself a hands-off weeknight dinner.

8. Meal-Prep Shortcuts for Healthy Lunches

Vegan Superfood Buddha Bowls

This genius plan uses healthy convenience items, like pretrimmed green beans, cooked chicken sausage, canned beans and jarred pesto, to make prep super fast and simple. Follow the formula to make healthy 20-minutes lunches on your own and be sure to try the three delicious recipe examples at the bottom of the page (like the Vegan Superfood Buddha Bowls).

9. Healthy Meal-Prep Egg Breakfasts

sheet-pan eggs with spinach and ham

We all deserve a round of applause for making it out of the house most mornings with lunches packed, clean clothes on and no important papers or after-school activity gear forgotten. Breakfast tends to get the short straw in this equation but these high-protein make-ahead egg breakfasts are perfect for those busy mornings. Recipes like this crowd-pleasing Sheet-Pan Eggs with Spinach & Ham can be made ahead of time on a Saturday or Sunday to be eaten for the upcoming week or frozen for quick and easy breakfasts down the road.

10. Budget Meal-Prep Lunches

chopped cobb salad

By planning out meals for the week, you'll be less likely to resort to expensive takeout or last-minute trips to the grocery store where you inevitably buy something you already have at home in the pantry. Here we've come up with an affordable, healthy and yummy lunch menu for the week on a budget of just $20. With some planning ahead and a little bit of prep work on Sunday afternoon, you'll be pleasantly surprised just how far $20 can get you. This plan is nice because it offers five different recipe ideas that can be made from the base recipes, so you can choose to make just a few or all five for some variety during the workweek. The delicious recipes in this plan, like this Chopped Cobb Salad, can also double as easy dinners.

Watch: How to Meal Prep for a Week of Vegan Lunches

Don't Miss!

A Beginner's Guide to Meal Prep
Easy 1,200 Calorie Meal-Prep Plan for Weight Loss
See All of Our Healthy Meal-Prep Recipes
Meal-Prep Plan for Diabetes: 1,500 Calories
30 Days of Healthy Meal Prep
A Sunday Meal Prep Plan For When You Only Have 30 Minutes