Meal Prep Tips from Mac OUT Nutrition Coaches

Everyone has their own version of meal prep. Whether it’s planning for an entire week of meals or preplanning the day ahead, it’s completely individualized – that’s the beauty of flexible nutrition. One size does not fit all and my only recommendation is to do what works best for you and your schedule!

Here is a variety of personal meal prep tips from the Mac Out Nutrition coaches:

TAYLOR GRGURICH: I rarely meal prep for an entire week. Yep, I said it. I don’t use “I’m too busy” as an excuse, I just rather spend my Sunday afternoons with my son and with flexible eating it’s 100% doable! I fill my fridge each week with fresh fruits and vegetables and purchase staple protein items to have on hand that are fresh or frozen. I usually stick with frozen style or rotisserie chicken, eggs & egg whites, tuna packets, chicken sausage links and of course I can’t leave out the beef and pork in my deep freeze. I typically work from home 3 days out of the week so for me, I don’t necessarily need to meal prep a weeks worth of meals to eat flexibly. Days that I work in the office, I prep my meals the night before always – improves my health, saves money and time in the mornings.

Being 21 weeks pregnant, my food palate isn’t the same everyday so I have to change it each day on what sounds good to me. Typically I can only eat smaller portions nowadays but very frequently throughout the day. This usually consists of 3 medium sized meals and 2-3 snacks per day. With pregnancy I eat a lot more carbohydrates so my snacks usually contain a fruit or yogurt/granola/fruit bowl of some sort. There’s nothing wrong with snacking throughout the day, but having a plan each day in general on what you will be eating and when makes the biggest difference!


MORGAN PIPER: Meal planning/prepping has become a weekly routine over the past couple of years. Breakfast and lunch are often similar meals most days. For breakfast, I always try to balance my plate with protein, Carb & Fat (egg or cottage cheese, cheese & ham or bacon, whole wheat muffin or toast). Most days I have a protein shake after my workouts to start fueling my muscles!

Lunch is also balanced!  Incorporating proteins, carbs & fat (ground beef, steak, chicken or deli lunch meat for protein, cheese or a dip spread for fat, and tortillas, whole wheat bread or sweet potatoes for carbs).  If I am working outside my home, I always pack my lunch the night before so it is easy to grab the next day before I head out the door.

What I have found that works best for my family for dinner is choosing 2-3 types of proteins and 2-3 types of carbohydrates that I will have during the week.  Since I mostly work from home, when making the protein or selected carbohydrate, I make sure that we make extra so I have it available for at least 1-2 more meals.  When making extra portions when cooking, it cuts down time spent in the kitchen and sets me up for success!  I do have to admit that I don’t really care for some leftover vegetables so that is something that I make fresh, which takes about 5-10 minutes. (I do like asparagus leftover). Planning simple meals and breaking down each meal to protein, carb & fat has helped me stay on track and simplifies flexible eating.

Example of one week Plan & Prep for Dinner:

Sunday: Grill Pork Chops (make extra),Bake 2-3 larger sized sweet potatoes (cut up into 1/3), Fresh Veggies

Monday: Same as Sunday, maybe change up veggie or carb for couscous

Tuesday: Carne Picada (make extra), Corn Tortillas, Fresh Veggies

Wednesday: Using leftover carne picada, adding black beans and sweet potatoes (already prepped) for a stuffed sweet potato

Thursday: Grilled Chicken (make extra), Couscous (make extra), Fresh Veggies

Friday: Use leftover chicken & prepare chicken tacos or buffalo chicken with leftover couscous


LESLIE BENNER: Meal prep, such an important part of macro tracking.  Due to busy schedules, I often try to keep my meal prepping very simple.  I also try to complete my prep on the weekend, however, sometimes it happens to be Monday when it gets done.  What’s most important though – I’ve taken the time for myself to be prepared for the upcoming week so I can stay on track and reach my goals.

  1. Protein:  I prepare plenty of protein (especially ground turkey and chicken) to have readily available for the meals I want to make during the week.  This also means that if I don’t have a plan for my meals one day, I have the protein I need for the day ready to go!
  2. Veggies:  I roast A TON of veggies, such as carrots, cauliflower, zucchini, and green beans.  I like having roasted veggies on hand so I can throw them in a tortilla with some protein for a quick lunch or have them as a part of my dinner.
  3. Breakfast:  Breakfast is one meal I try to prep for the entire week.  I do not have time in the morning to cook or put something together.  Currently, I am loving baked oats.  I make a pan and then divide it into portions for the week.  Adding fruit and yummy nut butter makes it a delicious breakfast (and gives me some carbs and fat)!
  4. Items I always keep on hand to add to meals and/or eat as snacks: Greek yogurt, egg whites, carb balance tortilla shells, protein powder and bars, Sola or Ezekiel bread, sweet potatoes, tomatoes, spinach, and fruit (raspberries, strawberries, bananas, and apples)

During the work week, my meals often look the same.  I am ok with that!  It’s easier and convenient for me!  However, on the weekends, when I do have more time, I am able to add more variety into my meals by creating and trying new recipes.  Meal prepping doesn’t have to be elaborate or complicated, it’s about choosing what is going to help you feel successful during the week!


MORGAN COOPER: When it comes to meal prep, I keep it very simple and basic. I’m one of those people who does not get sick of food very easily. I’ve probably been prepping the same thing every week for over 6 months now. I will usually switch out my breakfast, but lunch and dinner stay pretty much the same every week.

Breakfasts can be yogurt and granola, breakfast sandwiches, oatmeal / oatmeal bakes or egg scrambles. If you want any of my breakfast recipes and more details just let me know!

Lunch is super quick and takes me less than an hour to prep start to finish. I cook 2lbs of ground turkey (93/7%) and add in 2 packets of low sodium taco seasoning once it’s fully cooked. After I mix the taco seasoning in, I add in some fresh spinach (usually ½ a bag, sometimes the full bag) and stir around until it’s wilted. I divide that mixture into 5 containers for the week!

Dinner is also pretty simple. I’ve been on a crockpot kick lately. It’s so easy to cook in bulk! All I do is throw some chicken in and dump a full jar of salsa on top. I let it cook on high for about 3.5 hours. When it’s done I shred the chicken and throw it back in so I can mix it with the salsa. I measure it out equally into containers. I do 5oz per container but you can adjust that depending of your macros and needs. I also add 100g of COOKED jasmine rice to eat container for my carb. For veggies I’ve been making Brussel sprouts. I use the air fryer to cook my Brussel sprouts and it is a GAME CHANGER. I slice the sprouts in half or quarters, toss them in olive oil and sea salt and throw them into the air fryer. I’ve been cooking them for 6 minutes at 380 degrees F, take them out to shake around and flip, and then cook it for another 6 minutes at 380. They are delicious! Lastly I add about 75g of brussels to each dinner container, then my meal is complete!

Meal prepping is 100% worth it! It may be time consuming, but once you get in your groove you can usually prep pretty quick. It helps me so much to stay on track during the week, especially when I’m busy.


Lunch: 302 calories

36.2g P / 8.7g C / 12/8g F

Dinner: 375 calories

49.3g P / 34.7g C / 5.2g F


SARA BUTLER: Meal prepping doesn’t always mean cooking for hours every Sunday!

Every week I do my all to make sure I have extra protein prepped for lunches and quick dinners. With working full-time, running multiple side ventures, a husband with crazy work hours and a busy teenage son, time is limited. However, it doesn’t take much to cook extra meat/protein on the days we are home to make sure I stay on track with my macros. If we are grilling, we usually grill 2-3 different protein options so that there are choices for all of us and leftovers to add to future meals. After dinner, I’m usually packing my lunch with leftovers to take to work the next day. It makes it easier when all the options are still out on the counter.

For added fiber and carbs, I make sure each week I have plenty of romaine, spinach, frozen veggies (broccoli, green beans, asparagus), potatoes (sweet, red, Yukon or hash browns) and tomatoes on hand. Grabbing staple items each week helps me stay on track. Other staple items I like I have each week are a few apples, canned light syrup peaches and always frozen blueberries to add to Greek yogurt or cottage cheese. Ensuring I have good nutrient dense options keeps me from snagging my teenage son’s snacks that are…not so healthy. Food prepping could just be making sure the fridge and pantry have good choices available once you get accustomed to what carbs, fats and proteins work great for you (and what meals you like to have on repeat)!


As you can see nutrition is completely individualized on how it can fit into your lifestyle! Wanting to learn how you can incorporate small steps of meal prep into your lifestyle? Click HERE to “Get Started!” 

Breaking Through Plateaus

Plateaus are a given during your weight-loss journey, but it is how we look at them that makes all the difference.  

Let’s not think of a plateau as a point in your journey where your body is stuck, but a point in your journey where your body is actually able to maintain its new weight.  Ultimately, when we reach our goal we want to be able to maintain it.  A plateau is showing us that our body is capable of maintaining its new weight.  It’s showing us that we are capable of maintaining our goal once we reach it.  Yes!

However, what if we haven’t reached our goal yet?  How should we break through the plateau?  

Plateaus occur because there is no longer a deficit.  Our energy “in” has equaled our energy “out”.  Often people want to jump right to having their macro numbers lowered.  But what if your numbers are already low?  Do you really want to eat less food?  (Eating even less food can make it hard to stick to the plan!) 

Let’s think about a few other things to help break through your plateau before considering lowering your macro numbers – 

*Are you tracking everything you put in your mouth?  Little bites add up and can put you over your macros causing your progress to slow down.  Also, undereating can tamper with your progress…are you tracking food that you are not actually eating?

*If you are feeling hungry, which is causing you to make questionable food choices, consider increasing foods that have less calories but you can eat more of – for example, spinach, broccoli, tomatoes, and many other veggies – to help you feel full.

*Increasing training sessions during the week – consider increasing the amount or duration of formal exercise during your week

*Consider the intensity of your training sessions – are you able to safely increase the intensity of your training sessions?  Lift heavier weight? Increase reps? Pushing yourself a little bit harder?

*If your schedule does not allow you to add training sessions into your week or increase their duration, consider increasing your movement throughout the day.  For example, parking farther from the store, standing more at work, taking 5-10 minute walks throughout the day, etc.

With a few adjustments, we can break through a plateau and be back on the road to reaching our goals!


-Leslie Benner, Health Coach

How to Create Sustainable New Years Goals

Here we go, we’re already over halfway through the first month of the new year! Some of us have BIG goals to crush from financial to educational or nutrition/fitness related. No matter what your goal is, is it completely off the wall from your normal routine OR is it something you truly can accomplish and sustain within this New Year?

January is always a busy time for nutrition and fitness programs! All health services are overloaded and diets generally are in full go. Mid spring these services usually slow down or taper off and gyms start to decrease in capacity. Every. Single. Year. 

So let me ask you this? Why not set reasonable goals, goals that you can sustain and have flexibility for a lifetime? I can’t tell you after someone learns I’m a dietitian they start talking to me about a certain “Fad diet” and how they have learned what foods are “good” and “bad.” Conversations usually lead me to saying, “you know, you really can eat all foods in moderation unless you have a medical reason or allergy.” I usually get the confused look and the questions filled with doubt.

You really can eat everything in moderation. That’s sustainability without restriction and let me tell you, I’m here for it. 

Let’s talk about nutrition or fitness goals that look a little different than previous years.

Instead of making a goal to go to the gym 6 times per week when you haven’t exercised ever, try 2 times per week.

Instead of plunging into a Keto or Atkins diet when you love carbohydrate rich foods like fruits, pastas, bread etc., maybe try to incorporate 3 vegetables into your normal diet every single day? It’s a healthier step and not so restrictive. 

Instead of saying I’m never eating out, try limiting restaurant foods to 1-2 times per week?

Instead of saying “No” to pop, try limiting it to 1 beverage per week.

See what I did? I created common goals and switched them to more realistic practices. I think it’s great each of us have big goals for ourselves, however, big goals can not be achieved without creating small, flexible changes first. Being goal oriented and having something to crush is empowering. Just remember, it’s a marathon, not a sprint.


Through our personalized nutrition coaching, you will make sustainable changes that align with your current lifestyle through our flexible, macronutrient-based approach to nutrition. We’ll arm you with a solid nutrition foundation that will help you set goals and create progress you can sustain for a lifetime – not just a quick fix – and provide guidance every step of the way! Click here to “Get Started”.

3 Macro Friendly Holiday Desserts

Dessert is by far the #1 dish we look forward to on the holidays. Below are a few macro friendly options that would be fantastic to take to a holiday gathering that will satisfy your sweet tooth! Yum!

1. Strawberry Pretzel Salad

This high protein spin on my favorite holiday dessert is SO good, similar to the original!

Mix together for a perfect treat! 

All you need:

1 cup Two Good Strawberry (or vanilla) yogurt

2 oz low fat cottage cheese

1 cup SF Strawberry Jello

1 oz diced strawberries

10 pretzel twists

Macro breakdown: 24P, 3F, 21C

Kate Lyman Nutrition

2. FunFetti Protein Cake

Who doesn’t love cake? My brother-in-law, Cory, made this recipe and I can’t get enough of it! Cake is the perfect dessert for ANY occasion! Holidays, birthdays, rainy days, etc!

Cake Ingredients:

1 1/2 cups (159g) Kodiak Cakes Buttermilk pancake mix 

3 scoops (93g) Quest Vanilla Milkshake protein powder 

1/2 cup (96g) Swerve granular sugar substitute 

2 tsp (8g) baking powder 

1 cup (240 mL) unsweetened cashew/ almond milk 

1/2 cup (120g) unsweetened apple sauce 

1/2 cup (122g) canned pumpkin 

1 large egg (50g) 

2 tsp (8g) vanilla extract 

4 tbsp (40g) sprinkles 

Frosting Ingredients:

4oz. (110g) fat-free cream cheese, softened to room temperature 

1/2 cup (120g) 0% plain Greek yogurt 

31g (1 scoop) Quest Vanilla Milkshake protein powder 

2 tbsp (24g) Swerve granular sugar substitute 

1 tsp (4g) vanilla extract

All you do:

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F and spray two 8″ round cake pans with non-stick cooking spray. Set aside. 
  2. Mix the dry cake ingredients in a large bowl. Keep sprinkles set aside. Add wet ingredients and whisk together until smooth. Fold 2 tbsp of sprinkles into the batter.
  3. Pour half of the batter into each cake pan. Bake for 22-26 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Allow cakes to completely cool before adding the frosting. 
  4. For the frosting: Blend the cream cheese and vanilla extract until smooth and pour into a medium sized bowl. Add the Greek yogurt and protein powder, mix thoroughly. 
  5. Frost the top of one cake before placing the second cake on top. Frost the top and sides of both cakes together and top with remaining sprinkles. Enjoy! Refrigerate after serving. 

Makes 8 slices, each: Cal: 200, F: 3g, C: 32.5g (2.5g fiber), P: 21g

Breanne Freeman, Master Your Macros

3. Mini Pumpkin Pies – Perfect for Thanksgiving! 

Morgan P. created these delicious mini pies! Prepare pumpkin filling mix  – {making the mix from the ingredients from the back of the pumpkin can}. Pour 1/4 cup mix in each mini pie crust. Bake at 350 degrees F for ~1 hour. Simply top with whipped cream! 

Macros for each WITH whip cream: 2.4P, 6.7F, 16.5C

Try new recipes! Look for healthier alternatives or substitutions while still incorporating your favorite foods and treats within your diet. To learn more about how to incorporate your favorite foods and still reach your goals, set up a call with us and get started!