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To meal prep or not to meal prep, that is the question...

By AJ Fusco, Correspondent | September 01, 2020 | NATIONAL

Story No. 072020107

Meal prepping is pretty popular these days, but if you are not familiar with the term, let me break it down for you. To meal prep is basically preparing a meal, or portion of a meal, ahead of time. Most of it’s popularity is rooted in the fitness community, where it allows time for working out instead of cooking. But this doesn’t mean it should be solely used by someone who works out regularly. Prepping meals ahead of time has tremendous benefits, some being more obvious than others.

First and foremost, is time. By preparing your breakfast, lunch or dinners ahead of time, it makes eating at work, in between meetings and extracurricular activities much easier. In today's world, we are busier than ever before and getting a proper homemade meal in is becoming harder and harder. Meal preps are most often prepared and packaged so that they are “grab and go”. Essentially, you open the fridge, grab a container and off you go with a delicious meal. The most popular way of meal prepping is to pick a day, like a Sunday, and dedicate that day prepping all your meals for the week. Besides time, portion control is another benefit. It allows you the opportunity to control exactly how much you will eat that day. This is beneficial to anyone trying to live a healthier lifestyle. You can tailor the portion sizes to your likings much easier than if you were to order takeout. The other less obvious benefit is that it usually leads to better, healthier choices. If you meal prep healthier foods, you are more likely to grab those when you are hungry, rather than opening the bag of chips or cookies. It “forces” you to make better decisions, just based off of convenience and availability.

Meal prepping is not difficult, but there is one thing that can make it harder to stick to…mundane meals! When the term “meal prep” gets brought up in conversation, it is often associated with the same foods. Grilled chicken, brown rice and a steamed vegetable are probably the most common ingredients found in meal prep. But this doesn’t have to be the case. Change your ingredients often to prevent yourself from getting bored. Use a variety of spices, sauces and condiments to keep things interesting. And don’t forget about breakfast, which is often overlooked. It is the meal that sets you up for success for the rest of the day. These egg “muffins” are the perfect meal prep, they are very portable, can be tailored to your liking and pack a nutritious punch in a small bite. They are the perfect way to get into meal prepping!

Caprese Egg Muffin
Yields 6 egg muffins

Ingredients:
4 Eggs, scrambled
1 Cup Cherry Tomatoes
1 Cup Shredded Mozzarella
¼ Cup Packed Fresh Basil Leaves, sliced thin
EVOO
Salt

Procedure:

-Preheat oven to 350°F

-In a small skillet over medium heat, add a few glugs of EVOO

-When the oil is shimmering, add the cherry tomatoes and cover. Carefully shake the pan often. Cook until tomatoes just start to burst open. Season with a pinch of salt. Set aside

-Spray muffin tin with cooking spray to make removal easier

-Pour enough egg to come up about ¾ of the way in each muffin mold

-Top with tomatoes, basil leaves and mozzarella

-Bake for 20-25 minutes or until cooked through

-Garnish with extra basil

*Will keep in the fridge for up to 1 week

This article is a direct street report from our correspondent and has not been edited by the 1st Responder newsroom.