(Image Credit: Shelly Westerhausen)

Meal Prep and the Grill Are a Match Made in Heaven (These 5 Plans Prove It!)

We obviously love meal prep; it’s the secret to actually eating home-cooked food on weeknights. But there are certain techniques and tools that make meal prep feel like magic — like you’re getting away with something, like you’re an absolute utter pro at this and watch out, world!

As we head into summer, the best tool for easier meal prep isn’t even in your kitchen — it’s your grill.

The grill is one of those magic meal prep tools, and if you haven’t been meal prepping with the grill in mind, hold on and stay here right now because we have got a plan for you!

Why is the grill so great for meal prep?

Well, first of all, it’s easy to prep for the grill. You don’t have to add much flavor to whole and wholesome foods like chicken breasts, asparagus, and tofu before throwing them onto a smoky grate to cook. You don’t need to prepare elaborate dishes or dirty many pots and pans. Just marinate some chicken and veg, or string a few skewers, bang it all in the fridge, and you’re done.

Secondly, the actual cooking is easy and satisfying. Just prep your food over the weekend and then come home on a weeknight, fire up the grill, put your food on, and then strut back in with swagger. You’re not eating reheated leftovers; you’re eating something fresh from the grill.

Last but not least, when you meal prep for the grill, cleanup is extra extra easy. We love the cleanup, in fact; just brush down the grill and you’re done. No sheet pans or skillets to wash.

Ultimately, the work involved in prepping for a week of meals from the grill (or with some grilled flavor added during prep) is one of the most satisfying, magical approaches to meal prep that we know, and we can hardly wait to share these five plans with you. If you try them, will you let us know how they went, or how you like to meal prep for grilling?

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5 Meal Prep Plans for the Grill

(Image Credit: Photo: Joe Lingeman/Kitchn; Food Stylist: CC Buckley/Kitchn)

This plan doesn’t fire up the grill during your meal prep session; instead, with just one hour on the clock (yes, one hour is truly all you’ll need!), it tackles all the leg work for a week of grilled lunches and dinners for two people. So during the week, all you’ll have to do is fire up the grill for cooking.

(Image Credit: Joe Lingeman/Kitchn; Food Stylist: CC Buckley/Kitchn)

If you’re already following a ketogenic diet or you’re thinking of giving it a try, summer (aka grilling season!) is the easiest time to track your macros and keep carbs in check. It’s prime time to fill your plate with flavorful marinated meat and crunchy fresh vegetables that happen to be perfect for the grill and the keto diet.

This meal prep plan walks you through a week of family-friendly, low-carb and keto grilled lunches and dinners — and it all comes together in about two-and-a-half hours.

(Image Credit: Joe Lingeman/Kitchn; Food Stylist: CC Buckley/Kitchn)

A Week of 1500-Calorie Days for the Grill

If you’re sticking to a calorie budget, you know it can sometimes be a challenge to keep your meals feeling fresh and fun. One way to make it easier, and switch things up at the same time, is simply throwing some of your meals on the grill.

This meal prep plan is for anyone who doesn’t have the time or energy to start from scratch on weeknights, but still wants to enjoy a hot, homemade meal. By chopping the vegetables, blitzing together a sauce, and marinating meat on Sunday, all that’s left to do is toss the components onto the grill once dinner rolls around. Oh, and since these easy dinners all come together on the grill, there’s barely any mess to clean up at the end of the night.

Put it to work: Meal Prep Plan: How I Prep a Week of 1500-Calorie Days for the Grill

(Image Credit: Joe Lingeman/Kitchn; Food Stylist: CC Buckley/Kitchn)

If you love meal prep but hate all the dirty pots and pans you have to tackle afterwards, you’re really going to love grill meal prep. This family-friendly plan is a double win: You don’t have to wash a bunch of pots and pans, and the kids can play in the yard while you cook at the grill instead of in the kitchen.

(Image Credit: Joe Lingeman/Kitchn; Food Stylist: CC Buckley/Kitchn)

Want to know the secret to making your vacation even more relaxing? Plan and prep meals for the week before you hit the road. With meals prepped and packed in a cooler, all that’s left to do when you reach your destination is pick up a few final perishables from the grocery store, local farmers market, or fish market, then toss everything on the grill. This means less time in the kitchen and more time at the beach.

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