Essential Tips for Meal Prepping After Bariatric Surgery: Your Path to Healthy Eating

Feeling overwhelmed by the idea of meal prepping after bariatric surgery? Don’t worry—you’re not alone. To make this process simpler and more manageable, this guide breaks down meal prepping into three straightforward steps. Get ready to feel organized, prepared, and successful with your meal planning and prepping after bariatric surgery. Let’s dive in!

Step 1: Get Organized & Prepared with Meal Planning

The first step in your meal prepping journey is all about saving time and money by using what you already have in your kitchen. It’s time to dig into your freezer, fridge, and pantry to see what’s been hiding there for months.

You’ll need just 5 minutes to get organized and prepared for meal planning after bariatric surgery.

🥦 ACTION STEP #1: Explore Your Kitchen

  • Check your fridge: Identify any vegetables that need to be used soon. Fresh produce like leafy greens, carrots, bell peppers, and zucchini are great for quick, nutritious meals.
  • Open your freezer: Look for proteins and vegetables that can be used in your meals. Frozen chicken breasts, fish fillets, and mixed vegetables can be lifesavers.
  • Inspect your pantry: Find nutrient-dense whole foods that can be incorporated into your recipes. Think about beans, lentils, whole grains like quinoa or brown rice, and canned vegetables.

By exploring your kitchen first, you can reduce food waste and make the most of what you already have. Plus, it helps you to avoid unnecessary grocery purchases.

🍅 ACTION STEP #2: Make a List

  • Write down the main protein sources and vegetables you found that need to be used up. Having this list will guide you in choosing recipes and making a focused shopping list for meal prepping after bariatric surgery.

Step 2: Research Bariatric-Friendly Meal Ideas

When looking for recipes, focus on including a source of protein as a core component of your meal. Remember, you should aim for at least 80 grams of protein daily to meet your bariatric protein goals.

Pinterest and Yummly are great resources for finding high-protein, low-carb meal ideas. Look for recipes that use nutrient-dense whole foods, essential for meal prepping after bariatric surgery.

You’ll need about 20 minutes to search for recipes and build your shopping list.

🥗 ACTION STEP #1: Find Simple Recipes

  • Start with what you have: Look up two recipes that use the protein and vegetables you already have. Simple stir-fries, sheet pan dinners, and one-pot meals are great options.
  • Keep it simple: Choose recipes that are straightforward and easy to make. The fewer the ingredients and steps, the better.
  • Modify as needed: Don’t hesitate to adjust recipes to fit your dietary needs. For instance, if a recipe calls for bread crumbs, you can substitute it with almond flour or crushed nuts.

🛒 ACTION STEP #2: Create a Shopping List

  • Fill in the gaps: List the remaining ingredients you need for these recipes. Be mindful of buying nutrient-dense, whole foods to ensure you’re getting a balanced diet.
  • Plan for snacks: Include high-protein snacks such as Greek yogurt, cheese sticks, or hard-boiled eggs in your shopping list. These will help keep your energy levels up and prevent hunger between meals.

Step 3: Grocery Shopping & Prepping Your Food

The hardest part—figuring out what food you have and how to use it—is done. Now, it’s time to purchase the remaining ingredients and start meal prepping after bariatric surgery.

You’ll need about 2 hours to go grocery shopping and begin prepping some of your recipes.

🍇 ACTION STEP #1: Plan Your Grocery Trip

  • Schedule it: Choose a date and time to go grocery shopping this week. Make it a routine part of your schedule.
  • Delegate if needed: If you’re unable to go yourself, ask a family member or friend to help out.

🍎 ACTION STEP #1.5: Prep Your Food

  • Chop and prep: Once you’re home, challenge yourself to chop up your vegetables and/or prep and marinate your protein sources. This will make the cooking process quicker and easier.
  • Store smart: Use clear containers to store prepped ingredients. This makes it easier to see what you have and reduces the likelihood of food being forgotten and wasted.
  • Batch cook: Consider cooking large portions of proteins that can be used in different meals throughout the week. For example, roast a batch of chicken breasts that can be added to salads, wraps, and stir-fries.

🥕 ACTION STEP #2: Schedule Cooking Times

  • Set cooking dates: Pick two days this week to cook your new recipes. Spacing out your cooking sessions can make meal prep feel less overwhelming.
  • Mix it up: Plan for a variety of meals to keep things interesting. Incorporate different flavors and textures to avoid meal prep fatigue.

In Summary

Meal prepping after bariatric surgery doesn’t have to be a daunting task. With a little planning and organization, you can enjoy nutritious, delicious meals that support your health and wellness goals. Let’s get started and make meal prepping a part of your routine!

Need Help With Meal Prepping?

Download our free Meal Planner Template to help you stay consistent with meal prepping each week!

Our FREE Meal Planner Template will help you:

  • Generate fresh recipe ideas
  • Ensure bariatric-friendly snack options are readily available
  • Choose healthier fast food and take-out alternatives
  • Steer clear of inflammatory foods hindering weight loss
  • Gain clarity on macros post-surgery
  • Create an effortless meal prep template for the week
  • Overcome barriers to successful meal prep
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