Meal-prepping must-haves and other things to consider

There are many reasons people choose to meal prep, and saving time is perhaps the most common. However, to make the most of your time and energy, it’s crucial that you also have the right tools.

Meal-prepping can save you a ton of time during your workweek since you get your cutting, cooking or other prep work out of the way. Along with saving time, many find that they can save money when meal-prepping. Additionally, any person eating clean this year knows that meal-prepping is essential to maximizing nutrition.

No matter why you plan to start meal-prepping, it’s worth investing in suitable instruments for the job.

Shop this article: Dash Safe Slice Mandoline Vegetable Slicer for Meal Prep and MorePyrex Simply Store 18-Piece Glass Meal Prep Storage Containers and Fullstar Vegetable Chopper Dicer and Mandoline Vegetable Slicer

What is meal-prepping?

The concept of meal-prepping is simple — it usually refers to preparing foods in advance for your meals. You can meal prep for a handful of applications, such as lunches at work, weeknight dinners, or meals. To effectively prepare for your meals in advance, it’s essential to consider why you want to meal prep and what tools you’ll need, from the kitchen to the break room.

Essential products for meal-prepping

  • Mandolines, vegetable slicers and food processors: meal-prepping often requires slicing, dicing or processing vegetables before storage. For that reason, most elect to purchase mandoline slicers, vegetable slicers and food processors that can make cutting veggies quick and easy. Upgrade slicers can also include spiral cutters and ribbon cutters.
  • Meal-prepping scales: Buying a scale is especially important for those who are meal-prepping for nutritional purposes. Pre-weighing your foods lets you micro-manage your nutrition before packing it away, so you don’t even have to think twice when it’s mealtime.
  • Storage containers: Storage containers are a crucial part of meal-prepping, letting you separate and stow your food between prep and meal times. You can find storage containers in many materials, most prominently including glass and plastic.
  • Storage bags: Meal prep storage bags or insulated lunch boxes are helpful if you’re transporting your foods often, like those traveling to and from work. Some storage bags are designed for meal prep with multiple compartments and built-in food storage containers.

Best meal-prepping vegetable slicers

Top meal-prepping vegetable slicer

best Dash Safe Slice Mandoline Vegetable Slicer For Meal Prep And More

Dash Safe Slice Mandoline Vegetable Slicer for Meal Prep And More

What you need to know: This nifty vegetable slicer features a unique blade-proof design that makes it easy to slice veggies without risking the safety of your hands.

What you’ll love: The upright mandoline style makes it a safer option for families. The slicer’s body comes in gray, aqua, green, navy, red or yellow. It also comes with 30 cutting presets to customize the type of cut you need.

What you should consider: Some buyers said this mandoline tends to get stuck with denser veggies.

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Top meal-prepping vegetable slicer for the money

best Fullstar Vegetable Chopper Dicer And Mandoline Vegetable Slicer

Fullstar Vegetable Chopper Dicer and Mandoline Vegetable Slicer

What you need to know: The Fullstar vegetable chopper is about as good as it gets without a food processor, offering superior cutting and a useful storage compartment for diced veggies.

What you’ll love: This unique slicer has 11 cutting inserts for different vegetables and other foods. It comes with a safety glove and a spiralizer ribbon cutter. It’s also dishwasher-safe and easier to clean than some vegetable slicers.

What you should consider: This has fewer preset cutting blades than some mandolines.

Sold by Amazon

Best meal-prepping scales

Top meal-prepping scale

best Etekcity 0.1-Gram Food Scale For Meal Prep And More

Etekcity 0.1-Gram Food Scale for Meal Prep and More

What you need to know: This is the ultimate scale for meal-prepping, with a broad bowl surface that fits larger portions while doing food prep.

What you’ll love: It has extremely high-precision monitoring for the utmost in accurate readouts, making it perfect for micromanaging your nutritional needs. This scale comes in red or stainless steel.

What you should consider: Some buyers had to replace this scale’s batteries sooner than they expected.

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Top meal-prepping scale for the money

best Greater Goods Meal Prep Food Scale With Digital Display

Greater Goods Meal Prep Food Scale With Digital Display

What you need to know: This food-prep scale has a clear digital display and a handful of unit conversion options.

What you’ll love: This basic kitchen scale is a great tool for meal prep and offers an easy-to-clean surface. It’s available in nine different colors, including cherry red, blush pink, mint green and ash grey.

What you should consider: Larger objects don’t fit as well on this scale as those with a wider surface.

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Best glass meal-prepping container

Top glass meal-prepping container

best Pyrex Simply Store 18-Piece Glass Meal Prep Storage Containers

Pyrex Simply Store 18-Piece Glass Meal Prep Storage Containers

What you need to know: This set from the trusted classic brand Pyrex comes with nine storage containers, each with its own fitted lids.

What you’ll love: Made from durable glass, these containers are safe for the freezer, microwave, oven and the top rack of the dishwasher. The lids are BPA-free, and the purchase of this set comes with a two-year limited warranty. You can also buy this in 28-, 34- and 52-piece sets.

What you should consider: Some buyers found that their containers warped or cracked after long periods of use.

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Best plastic meal-prepping containers

Top plastic meal-prepping container

best Rubbermaid Easy Find 42-Piece Plastic Meal Prep Container Set

Rubbermaid Easy Find 42-Piece Plastic Meal Prep Container Set

What you need to know: For those who prefer the lightweight build of plastic containers, this 42-piece set features a wide range of sizes.

What you’ll love: These come at a great price point, offering BPA-free plastic that’s great for storage in freezers, fridges or cabinets. They’re also easy to transport and feature sizes ranging from 4 ounces to 7 cups.

What you should consider: These warped more quickly than expected for many buyers. However, some reviewers advised venting the lids properly in the microwave helps avoid this problem.

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Top plastic meal-prepping container for the money

best Freshware 15-Pack Of Plastic Meal Prep Containers

Freshware 15-Pack of Plastic Meal Prep Containers

What you need to know: A smaller, less-expensive pack of plastic containers, these also include built-in compartments that make them ideal for meal-prepping.

What you’ll love: These offer a lot of volume per container, and their uniform shape makes them easy to stack. Each container has a capacity of about 32 ounces. In addition to packs of 15, you can also buy these in 21- and 150-packs.

What you should consider: The compartments make these lids a little less sturdy than other containers.

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Best meal-prepping bag

Top meal-prepping bag

best ThinkFit Insulated Meal Prep Lunch Box And Bag Set

ThinkFit Insulated Meal Prep Lunch Box and Bag Set

What you need to know: For the serious meal prepper needing storage for multiple meals each day, this large insulated lunch bag is designed for food prep transportation.

What you’ll love: This food-prep bag comes with six food portion containers and other accessories such as a shaker cup and pill organizer. You can buy this bag in red, black, blue or purple.

What you should consider: Buyers say this bag is a little smaller than it appears in the product photos.

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