He & She Eat Clean | Healthy Recipes & Workout Plans

Essential Meal Prep Tools

Whitney CarlsonComment
Essential Meal Prep Tools for Clean Eating Food Prep

We post our meal prep often and get many questions regarding what tools we use (especially the storage containers!). This is a list of tools that we use ourselves. We've had most of these for many, many years so they are definitely worth the investment.

As you probably know by now, sometimes we consider ourselves minimalist. We *try* to only purchase items that we know we will use. Sure, you could also get a veggie spiralizer, and a million other gadgets but we didn't include those because we don't think those are necessary in order to get started. :)

We are doing a series of these posts in order to answer the questions we frequently receive. If you haven't already, check out our post on clean eating pantry staples and sign up for our newsletter so you don't miss the next helpful post!

Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links. Check our disclosure policy for more details.

Essential Meal Prep Tools for Clean Eating Food Prep

A kitchen scale is probably what we use most often. We're pretty good at being able to eyeball servings of protein and carbs but peanut butter and pistachios are a different story. Without a food scale, we could easily consume 2-3 servings at a time.

I really think that a kitchen scale is something that everyone should have in their kitchen, especially those just getting started. You might be surprised at how large some servings are and how small others seem!

We use a meat thermometer every single time we grill chicken or bake it in the oven (for things like turkey meatloaf muffins or monster meatloaf). Meat thermometers aren't expensive and it's worth the piece of mind to know that your meat is fully cooked. Many recipes you find online (ours included) may have cooking times that vary so it's important to learn the cooking times on your own oven and the easiest way to do that is by using a meat thermometer and checking the tempature of your meat.

We used to use random plastic meal prep containers but recently invested in great quality glass food prep containers and we LOVE them. I listed them below for you and we have the one compartment and two compartment containers. It's very easy to portion everything out and just grab and go in the mornings. It also keeps our refrigerator much more organized than the previous random sized containers everywhere!

We started with a slow cooker. Many of the recipes on our site use a slow cooker and many are some of our most popular (see: Apple Cinnamon Overnight Oats and Chicken Tortilla Soup)! We now have an Instant Pot too but still use the slow cooker as well.

We bought our Instant Pot years ago and it took us 16 months to actually take it out of the box and use it! We use our Instant Pot for things like chili, to boil eggs, and to make rice and quinoa!

We actually have two blenders. We have a small one, a Ninja, and we also have a Vitamix. We use both of them on a daily basis. The small one we use for things like protein shakes and the Vitamix we use to make juice and occasionally make our own nut butter. It took us awhile to bite the bullet and buy the Vitamix because of the price tag but it has been so worth it! We've had it for almost seven years.

A lot of our food prep we do on the grill (see: Zesty Grilled Chicken). We have a tabletop gas grill (that we purchased from Costco) and also a Kamado Joe. I knew Scott was looking for a Kamado Joe grill when we moved into our new house so I looked on Facebook Marketplace and found one an older couple was selling that was practically brand new and came with a wood table! We've used it way more than I ever thought we would!

If you don't have room for an outside grill, a George Foreman works great! We make our Italian Turkey Burgers on ours!

Do you have anything that you would add to this list? Let us know if there's a tool you use that we should know about!

Top 5 Clean Eating Pantry Staples

Whitney CarlsonComment
Top 5 Clean Eating Pantry Staples

Our pantry is always stocked with plenty of food, thankfully. We do most of our shopping at warehouse stores (Costco or Sam's) but also order a lot of groceries online, usually through Subscribe & Save. Below are some of our clean eating pantry staples, with links to where we order online. Sometimes you can find these products in stores like Whole Foods but they tend to be very expensive...plus we don't live near a Whole Foods so online ordering is much easier! I hope this helps you stock your clean eating pantry!

Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links. Check our disclosure policy for more details.

Top 5 Clean Eating Pantry Staples

We use oat flour in a ton of our recipes! It's in most of our protein bars and desserts. We also keep quick oats and steel cut oats in the pantry at all times!

Our favorite is Bob's Red Mill, which is what we have delivered almost every month on our Subscribe and Save order!

Yum - nut butter! We don't discriminate with nut butters, we love them all! We always have either almond butter or peanut butter hanging around the house. We use it on our Ezekiel toast, in our recipes, and consume it by the spoonful (or two). ;-)

We usually buy our nut butters at Costco but you can also get them on Amazon. When shopping for nut butters be sure to look at the ingredients. We prefer only peanuts (or almonds) and salt. Most of the ones you find online (like the ones listed below) will also have oil added. Try to avoid ones with added sugar or artificial ingredients.

Stevia is our sweetener of choice. We've tried a TON of different brands and, by far, prefer Now Foods stevia. It doesn't have the gross aftertaste that many do. We use the NOW Better Stevia in our oats, coffee, protein shakes, etc. When baking, we use Stevia in the Raw. We can find Stevia in the Raw at our local grocery store but also purchase both online.

This is one that we stock up on when Costco puts it on sale. I'm talking like we buy the maximum each time week go during the sale period. We usually spend around $200 on this tuna when it goes on sale but we are also saving a TON of money! Costco has Wild Albacore Tuna in a pack of 6 for $14.99 (when on sale it's usually $9.99). Tuna isn't our favorite food but it's great to have when we don't have any food prepped or don't feel like making anything. We typically mix it with mustard. If you don't have a Costco membership you can buy it on Amazon.

Below is a link to the brand that we prefer. When shopping for tuna look for tuna that is not packed in oil.

5. Oils

Coconut oil cures everything, right?! I'll leave that up to someone else to decide but we do use coconut oil A LOT when cooking! We use it weekly in our sweet potato cubes and in our chocolate chunk protein bars.

Olive oil is also a staple in our pantry. Scott actually adds olive oil (along with the mustard) to his tuna, and we use it for cooking, etc. When shopping look for high-quality oils.

Do you have any clean eating pantry staples that we left out? Let us know!

Have a Costco membership? Check out our Costco shopping list here.

1,500 Calorie Clean Eating Meal Plan

Meal PlansWhitney CarlsonComment
1,500 Calorie Clean Eating Meal Plan

We hear from so many of you that are looking for meal plans. Finally, we decided to make a few that should fit many calorie needs. I know a lot of people (mainly women), think that the magic calorie number is 1,200 but that is FAR from the truth. I would say 1,500-1,800 is the minimum for most people. I'm starting with a 1,500 calorie meal plan to help encourage you to forget the idea of living on 1,200 calories.

These meals are reader favorites for a reason... they are delicious! All of the meals can be made ahead of time which is a huge time saver during the week. P.S. We share a lot of our food prep on Instagram (heandsheeatclean), Pinterest, and Facebook. So follow along!

You may also find the following posts helps as you prepare your meals for the week!

1,500 Calorie Clean Eating Meal Plan

Breakfast:

  • This recipe for Apple Cinnamon Steel Cut Oats was one of our very first recipes on the website and still continues to hold down a top spot! It's SO. GOOD. You can make a big batch in advance and then portion them out for the week. If you are not used to eating steel cut oats, this may seem like a lot of food but you need to fuel your body. The best way to get the correct serving size is by weighing your entire batch of oats after they cook and dividing by how many servings you made. Pair these oats with a few eggs and you have a complete breakfast.
  • 1 serving Crock Pot Apple Cinnamon Steel Cut Oats
    • Calories: 193
    • Fat: 3.7 g
    • Carbs: 34.3 g
    • Protein 7.4 g
  • 2 whole eggs (make them in the Instant Pot, oven, scramble them, or make an omelet
    • Calories: 140
    • Fat: 10 g
    • Carbs: 0 g
    • Protein 12 g

AM Snack:

  • These bars are everything! If you are the kind of person who needs a little chocolate during the day or you will go crazy, you must try these. The recipe makes 4 servings (of 4 bars per serving) so after you make them, divide them up into little baggies and there's your snack for the week!
  • 4 Chocolate Protein Bars
    • Calories: 264
    • Fat: 2.8 g
    • Carbs: 36.8 g
    • Protein 22.8 g

Lunch:

  • This one is a staple in our house almost every week, especially during the cooler weather. We've been making ours in the Instant Pot lately but it can also be made in the Crock Pot or stovetop.
  • 1 serving Bison Chili
    • Calories: 340
    • Fat: 15 g
    • Carbs: 22.6 g
    • Protein: 30.3 g

PM Snack:

  • We love to mix frozen berries with Greek yogurt. One option is to go ahead and mix them together when you are getting your meals prepped for the day and by the time you are ready to eat the frozen berries should be melted. Another option is to thaw the fruit and then add to the Greek Yogurt. You could also use fresh fruit but we just love the juices from the frozen fruit.
  • 2% Greek Yogurt (170 g)
    • Calories: 150
    • Fat: 4 g
    • Carbs: 8 g
    • Protein: 20 g
  • Organic Frozen Blueberries (1 cup)
    • Calories: 60
    • Fat: 0 g
    • Carbs: 18 g
    • Protein: 0 g

Dinner:

  • This casserole is another one of our top recipes! If you want to save some time on this one, make your chicken in advance (learn how to boil it here) and buy already cubed butternut squash.
  • 1 serving Savory Chicken Casserole
    • Calories: 318
    • Fat: 10 g
    • Carbs: 13.1 g
    • Protein 28.8 g

Everything listed above brings your daily totals to:

  • Calories: 1,465
  • Fat: 46 g
  • Carbs: 133 g
  • Protein: 121 g

Notes:

  • Don't forget to include veggies in your day! I consider veggies "free foods" as long as you are eating them raw or close to raw (without adding a ton of olive oil, butter, etc). We love to cut up celery, carrots, and broccoli for the week.
  • You can move around these meals if you want. Sometimes I just want eggs and oats for dinner so that's what I have!
  • Don't be scared to eat protein, carbs, and fats. Your body needs all nutrients.
  • You'll notice that the calories are a little less than 1,500. Your exact calories will vary based on the brand of ingredients you use. I have calculated the macros based on the brands that we typically use.
  • If you feel like you need a snack before bed, try our Four Ingredient Protein Pudding or a protein shake. It's better that you satisfy your craving with something healthy than devouring an entire pint of ice cream! Look for a cleaner protein powder. Look at the label...it should have few ingredients, low calories, low carbs, and low sugar. Adding a plain protein shake may add 120-150 calories to your day - this is not a deal breaker!

We will definitely be sharing more meal plans soon! Make sure you are subscribed to our email list so you don't miss when they are released!