Everyone knows that having a baby is no easy task. But with two young girls at home, I had to make sure meals were prepared and my pantry was stocked so I could take the time I needed to rest and bond with my baby.
Here’s a list of things I made to meal prep for my maternity leave. Although, I never fully take off work because I run a family meal prep service Prep + Rally, I knew I had to get ahead and batch cook and freeze staples to make life easier. Especially because Covid hit soon after I gave birth to Solomon, I was so happy to be prepared.
- Breakfast is the most important meal of the day so I had to be prepared. I cooked a bunch of pancakes, banana muffins, and peanut butter granola bars one afternoon and froze them in mini bags. I even made a big batch of fruit smoothies and froze them in containers so I wouldn’t have to pull out the blender on a hectic weekday morning. Preparing these helped tremendously with breakfast for my girls post birth and when my baby would wake up early and I had to tend to him.
- I did a huge Costco and grocery stock up so I wouldn’t have to be busy picking up toiletries, snacks, baby necessities, or pantry staples. Some of the items I bought were frozen rice, dried pastas, proteins, canned tuna, dried fruits, bread, nuts, and snacks for the girls.
- I cooked a few types of soups and froze them. These were a lifesaver! If it was too hectic to cook a whole dinner, I knew I could just defrost a soup and throw some chicken of tofu in the oven and my family would be happy. I made chicken soup (perfect for a post-birth mama), a hearty vegetable soup with barley, and a sweet potato butter nut squash soup. I was so happy to have these soups either as a quick lunch for myself or a dinner for my family.
- I decided to batch cook some meals, especially for the first few weeks post birth. I took some chicken bottoms and brown rice and cooked them in the oven in family size portions before freezing them. That way, all I had to do was defrost them by reheating them in the oven for an hour or two. I also made sure to marinate some chicken cutlets, bread some fish, and freeze salmon in individual portions. This way, I could throw the chicken or fish in the oven on a sheet pan with some veggies, and I was good to go. Trust me, making eggs with a baby in toe isn’t an easy task.
- I prepared and froze homemade tomato sauce and pesto so I would have delicious sauce that I could put over pasta or chicken as dinner for my girls. Having these flavorful sauces and marinades really helped elevate a meal I had no time to fuss over.
- I made sure to prepare some healthy deserts so I could treat myself after long, tiring days post birth. I froze some homemade chocolate peanut butter cups, healthy biscotti, and some muffins so I wouldn’t grab candy or chips when I had cravings. Don’t forget to prepare things for YOU before you give birth- you’ll be a better mother to your kids and your baby!
Now that my baby is a bit older, I continue to meal prep because it helps so much. I love using the Nanit because I can be running around the house- working, cooking, cleaning- and have the Nanit app right on my phone to check in with Solomon. I love that it shows me how long he’s been in bed for and that I can talk to him through the monitor to calm him down and extend his nap if possible. The Nanit is definitely the perfect addition to my busy lifestyle and it allows me to have a grip on everything going on between running a business and being a wife, and a mom of 3!
I hope this helps you mamas or almost mamas prepare for an exciting, yet super busy time in your life. For more tips and tricks, check out our blog at prepandrally.com.