When you’re ready to shed some extra pounds, the first thing you likely consider is your eating habits. You’re probably aware that you’re going to need to tighten things up and come up with a plan in order to succeed.
Meal prepping, meal planning, grocery shopping, macro tracking, calorie counting… these all make their way to the top of your mind when weight loss is on the table. The problem that many of us run into is that we have no idea where to start. We live in a world that contains an abundance of information, all readily available with the tap of a phone screen. And most of which sound contradictory, complicated, and confusing.
Here at Fit Healthy Momma, we’re on a mission to simplify healthy eating, and part of that is making sure that you have the information and tools you need to set yourself up for success, no matter what your goals may be.
If you’re starting out on a weight loss journey and looking for a meal prep grocery list to be used as a guide for your meal plan, this article will help. We’ll cover what kinds of foods we should be adding to our grocery list, what kinds of foods to be meal prepping, and also share our resources for making this process even easier.
Can Meal Prep Help With Weight Loss?
Yes, it sure can! Planning and prepping your meals can help you lose weight by eating healthier, more nutrient-dense foods, controlling your portions, and limiting your propensity to snack and/or eat high-calorie, low-nutrition convenience foods due to a lack of planning and structure.
It’s important to remember that weight loss is the result of eating in a calorie deficit, which just means that you’re eating fewer calories than you are expending on a daily basis. Calorie deficits can be created by eating less and moving more, however, I always recommend that your calorie deficit for fat loss be created primarily through your nutrition, and meal prepping/planning can 100% help with that.
When you fail to plan, you plan to fail. We all know that one, right? But it’s very true when it comes to your nutrition. If you don’t have a plan, you’re far more likely to undereat, overeat, or make poor choices. While meal prepping will take some time and dedication, it will pay off, I promise you!
What Should I Put On My Grocery List to Lose Weight?
When it comes to putting together your meal prep grocery list with the goal of weight loss, I like to break down my list first by the major macronutrient categories; protein, carbs, and fat. But it’s also important that you make a plan for your meals before you just buy a bunch of groceries - make sure you’re purchasing items that make sense for your meal prepping!
The best way to start is to make a plan for what you’re going to be prepping and cooking for the entire week. If you’re looking for a healthy meal plan that’s full of nutrient-dense, high-protein, family-friendly recipes, we have you covered. Our weekly meal plans are released on Fridays and will help you make a plan for the upcoming week! Plus, each meal plan includes its very own grocery list, eliminating half of the battle.
Once you have your meal plan in place and you know what you’re planning to make, now you can start to put together your healthy grocery list. However, I realize that some people just aren’t planners, and that’s ok, too!
If you simply want to shop for basic healthy foods each week from which you can build out a simple meal plan on the fly, the following grocery list will include staple foods that will allow you to lose weight, save time, and reach your goals. You can get a more detailed list by downloading our macro cheat sheet!
Lean Protein Sources
- Chicken breast
- Pork tenderloin
- 93/7 ground turkey
- Turkey bacon
- Turkey pepperoni
- 96/4 ground beef
- Egg whites
- Protein powder (I recommend 1st Phorm protein Level-1 or Clean Simple Eats (code TAMI saves you))
- Low-fat greek yogurt
- Cottage cheese (I love Good Culture brand)
- Powdered peanut butter
- Protein bars (I recommend Built Bars (code FHM10 saves you), Level-1 bars, and Healthy Eating On The Go Bars (code FHM saves you))
- Beans (chickpeas, black beans, lentils)
- Whole wheat bread, thinly sliced
- Low-calorie whole wheat english muffins
- Rice cakes
- Butternut squash
- Cauliflower rice
- Sweet potato
- Non-starchy veggies
- Healthy noodles or Miracle noodles (Costco finds)
- Tortillas (I like the Carb Smart ones)
- Nut butters (I recommend Off Beat Butter (code TAMI) and American Dream Nut Butter (code FHM))
- Oil (olive, coconut, or avocado)
- Salad dressing
How to Meal Prep For Weight Loss
The most important thing to keep in mind when you’re meal-prepping for weight loss is that you’ll want to build your meals in a way that includes plenty of protein, veggies, and other nutrients that will fuel your body and keep you full. The second most important factor is enjoyability. If you don’t actually enjoy the meals you’re prepping, chances are pretty good that you aren’t going to be too keen to eat them when the time comes.
Below are my top tips for meal prepping for weight loss:
- Make sure you know and understand your personal daily nutrition needs. Remember, weight loss is the result of being in a caloric deficit, which means that you must know what intake is a calorie deficit for you. To get started, use our free macro calculator to calculate your calories and macros based on your goal of losing weight.
- Plan for meals based on your daily calorie targets and/or adjust the meals to suit your needs. When you sign up for our free weekly meal plans, we include sample macro days of 1500 and 2000 calories and then give you guidance as to how you could increase or decrease your intake so that you’re hitting your unique macros.
- Make sure that the foods and meals that you’re planning to prep for the week are ones that you’ll enjoy! Weight loss does not need to be gruesome and hard to handle. You can eat the foods you enjoy and still lose weight! In fact, if you take a look at our arsenal of macro-friendly recipes, you’ll be amazed at how delicious and nutritious everything is without being overly taxing on your daily calories!
- If you don’t want to cook recipes, consider just using the meal prep for weight loss grocery list above to guide your buying decisions and allow you to make healthy, balanced, and nutrient-dense meals all week long.
- Once you’ve identified your meals for the week, write down a list of all of the ingredients you’re going to need to make them and in what quantities (again, this is done for you in our weekly meal plans!). Before you make that grocery order or head out to the store though, check to see what you already have on hand to ensure you’re not unnecessarily buying extras.
- Decide to what degree you’re going to meal prep. Do you want to meal prep all of your meals? Just breakfast? Breakfast and lunch? How many days ahead can you realistically and safely meal prep? Maybe you’d rather just “food” prep some batches of protein, veggies, and carb sources for the week so that you can build simple meals at any time that fit your fat loss macros.
- Consider buying a food scale to weigh and measure your food portions before placing them in your meal-prepping containers to ensure you’re being as adherent and accurate as possible while you track your weight loss journey.
Meal Prep Shopping List For Weight Loss; Final Thoughts
When making your shopping list for a week of meal prepping with the intention of losing weight, the biggest key to your success and sustainability is to choose nourishing, balanced foods with an emphasis on protein as the meal’s centerpiece.
The Fit Healthy Momma team encourages using the “build your plate” method, whether meal prepping or not. Essentially, building your plate ensures that you’re getting the proper balance of protein, carbs, and fats with every meal. The quantities and portions that you use will depend on your unique and specific needs.
Finally, meal prepping does not need to be hard or complicated! In fact, it can be a tool for your weight loss journey that will save you a lot of time and help you to adhere to your nutrition plan. Use the grocery list items that we shared as a baseline for the kinds of foods that are handy to have on hand for meal prepping, but then take a look around at our healthy recipes and choose a few to make for the week. We love meal-prepped Breakfast Burritos, Creamy Buffalo Chicken Bowls, and Healthy Chicken Bacon Ranch Pasta!