Joanna Gaines Shares Her Time-Saving Meal Prep Tip

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In addition to running a store, a brand, an upcoming restaurant, and an HGTV empire, Fixer Upper’s Joanna Gaines has four kids and another on the way. That doesn’t leave a ton of time for things like julienning vegetables. So just like us regular people who do not have lucrative TV deals, Gaines relies on a weekly meal prep plan to save time in the kitchen. As a bonus, she says it even gets the kids to eat their vegetables.

Gaines posted a photo to Instagram showing a close-up picture of a sheet pan full of chopped sweet potatoes, broccoli, and cauliflower, and she says her healthy eating trick is to make sure she prepares all her vegetables and fruit for the week in one fell swoop. She just sets aside half an hour to wash and chop everything she’ll need, and then for the rest of the week anything she needs is right at hand.

As PopSugar points out, washing, peeling, and chopping vegetables can be time-consuming, but it’s actually a lot faster to do it all at once. Washing and chopping two sweet potatoes doesn’t take much more time than doing one, and it’s a lot faster than doing one on Monday and another on Wednesday. You can wash multiples at once, you only have to get out the equipment once, and once you’re on a roll, even the chopping goes faster.

And of course, once all the prepped vegetables are in the refrigerator, it dramatically reduces incidents of, “Ugh, I don’t feel like it today. Let’s order in.”

Gaines’ favorite way to prepare her refrigerator full of chopped vegetables is to toss them in olive oil, sea salt, and fresh pepper, then roast them in the oven at 425°F for about 20 to 25 minutes. She says her kids hate raw or steamed vegetables, but they devour the roasted ones.

I’m with Gaines’ kids: Roasting is arguably the most delicious thing a person can do to a vegetable. I’ve often said that if I won the Lottery, I would hire a personal chef whose whole job was to bring me a little plate of roasted vegetables every hour. But there’s not really any need for the personal chef, because if all the vegetables are already clean and chopped in the fridge, that plate of roasted vegetables is never more than 25 minutes away.

Do you prep all your vegetables at once?