10 Feb Instant Meal Prep With Instacart
We’ve preached the importance of weekly meal planning and preparation for a long time, but we’re always looking for ways to make it more convenient. By using Instacart and pre-made meal suggestions, we will hopefully make your meal planning even easier.
When you typically meal prep you buy a lot of lean protein (chicken, turkey, pork, fish, egg whites) and cook several days’ worth of meals. Then you add veggies on the side for fat loss, or veggies and a moderate portion of healthy carbs at lunch and/or dinner.
However, there are plenty of healthy, pre-made options at local grocery stores that are easy to overlook.
Today I’m going to identify some meals that either require zero cooking ahead of time or can be prepared in 5 minutes or less.
Then I’ll provide Instacart links so you can get them delivered to your door to save you as much time as possible if you live in St. Louis.
Instacart is a service that delivers groceries and other items to you which could save you significant time each week. If you don’t use Instacart, you can also purchase these items at your local grocery store such as Schnucks in St. Louis.
For the purpose of this blog, we’ll define a “healthy meal” as…
- Women: 20-40 grams of protein, under 400 calories, under 700 mg of sodium
- Men: 30-55 grams of protein, under 600 calories, under 1100 mg of sodium
Obviously, a meal can be outside of these ranges and be healthy.
We typically recommend 4 meals per day eating every 4 hours, but 5 meals per day eating every 3 hours is another alternative. As long as your total protein and calories are the same, it doesn’t make much of a difference.
See Our Blog: The Last Diet You’ll Ever Need for more details on our nutrition recommendations
These suggestions will be based on a 4 meal per day meal plan.
We’ll assume that you go with a protein shake, egg whites or greek yogurt for breakfast and a protein bar for your mid-day snack if your goal is fat loss. If your goal is body fat maintenance, then you should add 2-4 servings of healthy carbs such as oatmeal at breakfast, an apple for your snack or potatoes at dinner.
The main challenge with instant meals is ensuring that you don’t exceed your total daily sodium levels, so we handpicked lower sodium options that should naturally keep you in a healthy range for the day (under 2300 mg). If you go with the suggested items for breakfast and your snack, it will allow more room for higher sodium meals at lunch and dinner.
Below is a list of meals that you can order from Instacart and have ready to cook in 5 minutes or less. Enjoy!
Meals With No Microwave Required
- Deli Turkey or Chicken Sandwich
- 3 oz Turkey – 340 calories, 34 g protein
- 6 oz Turkey – 430 calories, 53 g protein
- Deli Turkey Or Chicken Wrap
- 3 oz Turkey – 310 calories, 36 g protein
- 6 oz Turkey – 400 calories, 55 g protein
- Deli Turkey Or Chicken Lettuce Wrap
- 3 oz Turkey – 200 calories, 27 g protein
- 6 oz Turkey – 290 calories, 46 g protein
Instacart Ingredient Links: Deli Turkey (Low Sodium), Deli Turkey (Cracked Pepper), Deli Chicken (Low Sodium), Deli Chicken (Buffalo), Romaine Lettuce , Carb Balance Smart Wraps, Dave’s Killer Bread (Thin Slices), Vermont Cheddar, Honey Mustard, Grilled Chicken Strips, Romaine Lettuce Wraps, Greek Yogurt Ranch, Low Fat Balsamic Dressing
Other Condiments To Consider: Salsa, Siracha, Ketchup, Mustard, Stubbs BBQ Sauce, G Hughes BBQ Sauce, A1 steak sauce, Greek yogurt ranch dressing, Hummus, Boar’s Head Chipotle Gourmaise, Buffalo Wing Sauce
Meals Ready In A Microwave in Less Than 5 Minutes
- Salad With Grilled Chicken With Balsamic Dressing, Cranberries and Walnuts
- 4 oz Chicken – 179 calories, 28 g protein
- 6 oz Chicken – 231 calories, 42 g protein
- Links: Chicken, spring and spinach salad, low fat balsamic dressing, cranberries and walnuts
- Other options: Greek yogurt ranch dressing, romaine lettuce, raspberry vinaigrette dressing, Blueberries and cranberries, fresh blueberries or strawberries
- Tip: Adding fruit, or a side can easily add healthy carbs and calories if desired.
- Grilled Chicken and Broccoli
- Healthy Choice Power Bowls – Frozen Meals
- Chicken Marinara – 210 calories, 19 g protein
- Spicy Black Bean and Chicken – 210 calories, 20 g protein
- Basil Pesto Chicken – 230 calories, 20 g protein
- Shiitake Chicken – 310 calories, 21 g protein
- Cuban-Inspired – 340 calories, 20 g protein
- Sweet & Zesty BBQ Seasoned Pork – 350 calories, 23 g protein
- Lean Cuisine – Frozen Meals
- Spice Market Chicken and Cauliflower Bowl – 220 calories, 20 g protein
- Meatloaf and Mashed Potatoes – 240 calories, 20 g of protein
- Glazed Chicken – 260 calories, 20 g protein
- Alfredo Pasta With Chicken and Broccoli – 280 calories, 20 g protein
- Chicken Teriyaki Bowl – 310 calories, 20 g protein
- Chicken Club Panini – 340 calories, 24 g protein
- Chicken Parmesan – 350 calories, 20 g protein
- Pepperoni Pizza – 400 calories, 20 g protein
- Other Healthy Meals Not On Instacart:
- Smart Made – Frozen Meals (Currently Out Of Stock On Instacart):
- Lemon Garlic Chicken Fettuccini – 200 calories, 20 g protein
- Mexican Style Chicken Bowl – 260 calories, 21 g protein
- Mexican Style Pulled Pork Bowl – 320 calories, 26 g protein
- Roasted Turkey and veggies – 240 calories, 20 g protein
One Important Note: You’ll notice that a lot of the frozen meals are low in protein and calories for men. You could technically eat two meals to get into the ideal protein range. This is fine once a day, but the other daily meal should be balanced with a home cooked or lower sodium option to keep you in an ideal zone.
Meals That Need To Be Cooked On A Stove Top In 5 Minutes Or Less
- Kevin’s Natural Foods
- Flavors: Thai Style Coconut Chicken, Korean BBQ Style Chicken, Teriyaki Style Chicken
- 1 Servings (5 oz) With Caulirice: 205 calories, 25 g protein
- 2 Servings (5 oz) With Caulirice: 365 calories, 48 g protein
- Notes: You can swap the caulirice with any other veggie. You can add carbs such as brown rice, potatoes, etc for fueling performance. There’s tons of other options on their web-site as well.
- Tip: With 3 servings per container, this is perfect for a couple who wants to make a meal in 5 minutes. However, these require a stove top so they’re not good options for lunch for most people. However, they are DELICOUS.
Other Instacart Options That May Require More Cooking Time
- Lean Protein: Chicken, Turkey, Lean Beef, Pork Chops, Tilapia, Salmon, Egg Whites, Greek Yogurt
- Veggies: Broccoli, Cauliflower Rice, Green Beans, Celery, Carrots
- Healthy Carbs: Oatmeal, Rice, Potatoes, Apples, Strawberries, Banana, Kind Bar, Skinny Pop Popcorn
- Other Healthy Go-To’s: Start Right Waffle Sliders (they also have excellent waffles), Kodiak Pancakes/Waffles/Treats, Sugar Free Syrup, Butter Spray, Cooking Spray, Splenda, PB2, Hummus, Almonds, Mio
Tip: Another option to make meal prep convenient is to use a healthy meal provider like Fit Flavors in St. Louis.
Meal Planning Consistently Can Help You Get Results Like This…
We suggest keeping it as simple as possible when starting the habit of meal planning or picking it back up. You can get more elaborate after a couple of weeks.
With the convenience of Instacart and these instant meals, hopefully your meal planning just got a lot easier.
Want more help with your nutrition?
Check out our Faster Results Calorie Calculator.
Have a great day!