We’ve all been there: you’re hungry and want something delicious and nutritious, but you have no idea what to make. So many recipes we create and share online are quick and easy—they’re the perfect thing when you need something fast to eat in between classes or meetings or whatever else your day might throw at you. But sometimes, it’s nice to slow down and enjoy some food that takes a bit longer. If this sounds familiar, don’t worry! We’ve got ten delicious food prep recipes that take just one night (or morning) of prep time before they’re ready for serving. So, take a break from those five-minute meals; these dishes will be worth it!
Granola is a perfect snack to make and store, making it one of our favorite food prep recipes. Make your granola for a quick breakfast, or eat it as an afternoon pick-me-up. It’s so easy to make, too! Here is what you will need:
- 1 cup of oats
- 1/2 cup of nuts (walnuts are great) or seeds (pumpkin seeds are my favorite)
- 1/2 cup of dried fruit (raisins or dried cranberries are delicious)
To make the granola, put all ingredients in a large bowl. Mix well and bake at 250 degrees for about 30 minutes or until lightly browned on top. Store in an airtight container for up to one month if not eaten sooner!
Chia Seed Pudding
One of the most popular food prep recipes lately includes Chia seeds. Chia seeds are rich in fiber, protein, and omega-3 fatty acids. They can help you stay full longer than many other foods. They’re also a good source of calcium, magnesium, and antioxidants that help fight off free radicals that can damage cells. If you have trouble digesting calcium supplements due to stomach issues or lack of enzymes, chia seeds may be for you!
Chia seeds are gluten-free (which means they’re safe for those with Celiac disease), but they contain small amounts of trypsin inhibitors — this means they could potentially interfere with the absorption of some nutrients if eaten in large quantities over time.
Overnight oats are a great way to start your day. They’re easy to make, can be customized with a wide range of ingredients, and are sure to keep you full for hours. The three main ingredients are oats, milk or plant-based alternatives (e.g., almond milk), and fruit. Oats are full of fiber and protein: one serving has 7 grams of fiber and 5 grams of protein! These nutrients help you feel fuller longer than cereals with no nutritional value other than quick energy sources (not to mention all that sugar). You don’t even need any cooking skills. Throw everything into a jar or container at night before bedtime so it can soak up the liquid overnight while you sleep!
Easy Homemade Bread
- 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 1/4 teaspoons salt
- 1 teaspoon sugar (optional)
- 3 tablespoons melted butter, plus extra to brush on top of the loaf before baking
In a large bowl, mix the flour, salt, and sugar. Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients and add your melted butter. Stir with a wooden spoon until it forms a stiff dough ball that clears the sides of the bowl by about an inch or two. Add more flour if needed, but keep in mind that you should be able to knead this without adding too much extra flour once you’ve mixed everything into one cohesive blob of doughy goodness.
Divide your dough into two equal pieces (or three if you’re making rolls), and shape each piece into tight balls using floured hands or some pasta machine attachment if available. Then roll out each piece on parchment paper sprinkled with cornmeal until it’s about 12″ long and 4″ wide—or whatever size makes sense for what kind of bread you’d like! If using a pizza stone, place parchment paper over the stone with rolled-out dough, side down, so it doesn’t stick. Bake at 400°F for 10 minutes, then rotate 180 degrees every 8 minutes until golden brown all around (20–25 minutes total). If not using a pizza stone: wrap both pans tightly in foil, then bake at 400°F for 25 minutes.
Chances are, you already know that chili is one of the greatest food prep recipes. You don’t have to cook like a chef to make it in large batches, which means you can make a big batch of chili and then freeze it for later use.
Chili is also an excellent meal to have on hand in the freezer—the kind of thing that will warm up your belly when you need something fast but still feel like you’re eating something richly fulfilling and delicious.
A classic turkey chili recipe is a wonderful addition to any home cook’s collection because it’s hearty, simple to make, and versatile! The best part is that once you’ve got this basic recipe down pat (which won’t take long), you’ll never have trouble coming up with new twists on it whenever inspiration strikes—if not right away, then certainly after some practice!
This salad dressing recipe is a classic and can be prepared in just 15 minutes. It’s incredibly versatile; the vinaigrette makes a delicious dipping sauce for vegetables or roasted chicken wings. If you want to use it as a salad dressing instead of as an accompaniment, add minced herbs (such as parsley or basil) and thinly sliced vegetables (such as bell peppers) to the bowl with your greens before tossing it with the dressing. And if you’re looking for something even simpler yet still flavorful? Try adding some lemon zest and juice straight into your oil-and-vinegar mixture!
You’ll need the following:
- A food processor or blender
- 1 egg yolk (save the white for another recipe!)
- 2 tablespoons of lemon juice, white wine vinegar, or rice vinegar
- 1/2 teaspoon salt (optional)
- Put all ingredients in a mixing bowl. Mix until smooth and creamy. The mixture will start thickening after about a minute, so be sure you have all your ingredients ready beforehand! If it seems too thick, add more oil, one tablespoon at a time, until you get the right consistency.
- Enjoy on sandwiches or with meat dishes! It’s also tasty on potatoes and vegetables—remember to use sparingly because mayonnaise is high in fat content!
Lemon Pepper Dressing
This simple lemon pepper dressing is the perfect accompaniment to your favorite greens. It’s also great as a dip for vegetables, shrimp, and more.
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 tablespoon olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste (optional)
(Optional) garlic, shallots, or red pepper flakes can be added for extra flavor
Honey Balsamic Dressing
This dressing has only four ingredients: olive oil, balsamic vinegar, honey, and salt. You can use this dressing in salads or on vegetables. The combination of honey and balsamic vinegar makes for a sweet yet tangy flavor that will make you want to eat more than your fair share of salad!
This recipe makes about 1 cup of Honey Balsamic Dressing which should last up to 3 days in the fridge before it starts tasting extra-virgin (that’s a joke).
Chimichurri is a bright, zesty sauce that’s essential to Argentinian cuisine. It pairs perfectly with everything from steak to salmon. Learn how to make chimichurri sauce and use it in your recipes today!
Chimichurri Sauce Ingredients:
1/2 cup chopped parsley
3 tablespoons fresh oregano or 1 1/2 teaspoons dried oregano leaves
1 clove garlic, chopped finely or pressed through a garlic press (optional)
1 tablespoon onion powder (optional) 1 teaspoon salt for every 3 cups of liquid; more if desired; adjust for taste at the end of the mixing process.
We hope that this quick list of food prep recipes will help you save some time during these busy days without compromising on the quality of the things you eat!