Losing weight will probably be one of the hardest things us girls have to do. With careful eating and plenty of exercise, you can reach your goal weight. Having some kitchen hacks in your back pocket can also really help. Here are some of the best that should have you seeing that number on the scale going down steadily. Good luck!
1. Freeze Pureed Veggies
It might look like baby food, but pureed veggies have benefits for grown ups too. Steam your favorite veggies and then freeze them in an ice cube tray. Pop out a couple of them and toss into sauces and soups to up the nutrient content of all of your favorite meals. This works with squash, carrots, green beans and spinach.
2. Try Overnight Oats
Overnight oats are super easy to make and are the perfect morning meal. But you can also enjoy them for lunch and dinner. Simply place oats in a jar or bowl with milk, honey, nuts and fruit and allow the mixture to sit overnight or for about 8 hours. Instant meal!
3. Make Almond Milk Ice Cubes
If you're the kind of girl who loves smoothies, you need a fast, easy way to make them. Smoothies are great for weight loss if you prepare them properly, which is to say without a bunch of juice or high calorie ingredients. Freeze almond milk ice cubes and they are the perfect way to thicken your smoothie, add flavor and keep the calorie content under control.
4. Prep Your Fruits and Veggies a Week at a Time
You know that eating fruits and veggies is a great way to drop some pounds because they are low in fat and calories. However, when it takes time to prep them, you may be more likely to grab the chips instead. When you get home from the grocery store, peel, slice or chop your produce so it's easy to grab anytime hunger strikes.
5. Cook in a Muffin Tin
The great thing about a muffin tin is that it's like built in portion control. You can make all kinds of things in a muffin tin so you always have just the right amount of food at any meal. Use yours to make egg muffins, meatloaf, pancakes, baked pasta and a lot more. Cool!
6. Plan Your Meals
Nothing can have you in the drive thru faster than not having anything to make for dinner. That's why you need to spend a few minutes on the weekend planning your meals and shopping for the ingredients. With a plan and the right tools to carry it out, you will always have a weight loss meal plan at your fingertips.
7. Freeze Your Grains
Grains are the perfect side dish to go with chicken breasts or fish fillets. They are packed with fiber and low in calories. Instead of having to wait on your grains to cook every single night, cook up a huge batch all at once, portion them out and freeze them. This works for brown rice, quinoa and much more.
8. Make Your Own Ice Cream
Ice cream is the downfall of many girls. It's sweet and creamy and is the best midnight snack. The stuff you buy at the store is full of sugar, fat and calories, which is why you need to learn to make it yourself. Simply freeze fruit, then puree it in the blender. Instant ice cream!
9. Put Veggies in Your Smoothies
Like I said before, smoothies can be a good part of a weight loss meal plan, but only if you do so properly. Tossing in some veggies adds heft and nutrients as well as fiber to fill you up for very few calories. Carrots, leafy greens and sweet potatoes are ideal options.
10. Use Dates Instead of Sugar
You know that eating too much sugar can cause weight gain so it makes sense that if you want to lose weight, you have to cut back on the sugar. By substituting dates for the sweet stuff in baked goods, you can still enjoy a favorite treat without hindering your weight loss goals.
11. Hide Beans in Your Meals
The great thing about beans is that they are absolutely packed with fiber. That's great when you want to lose weight because fiber digests slowly, keeping you feeling full longer. Puree beans and fold them into mashed potatoes, pasta sauce or a smoothie. Easy!
12. Put Zucchini in Your Oatmeal
Oatmeal is a healthy choice for most meal plans, but you can make it go further and cut the overall calorie content by adding shredded zucchini to your oats. The flavor is very mild so it pairs well with fresh fruit, nuts and other oatmeal toppings.
13. Use Protein Powder in Your Baked Goods
No one wants to skip the muffin or cornbread at mealtime, but you can make those foods work for your weight loss goals. Add protein powder to the batter before you bake and you can enjoy a favorite while satisfying your appetite with far less food. Cool, right?
14. Count Your Calories
I know this sounds like the last thing you want to do, but many women totally underestimate how many calories they are taking in. That can really get in the way of your weight loss goals. Keep track for a week or two so you have a better idea of just how many calories you're eating on any given day so you know where you can make cuts.
15. Choose Low-Fat Dairy Foods
You've probably heard that you need some dairy foods to satisfy your calcium and protein needs. Full fat dairy foods have quite a bit of fat and calories and might not be the best choice for someone who is trying to lose weight. By switching to low-fat cheese, yogurt, milk and cream, you can still enjoy foods you really love, while also cutting calories.
16. Try Avocado Instead of Butter
A small bit of butter in moderation is perfectly fine, but if you're trying to cut calories and satisfy your appetite, avocado is a much better choice. Use mashed avocado in place of butter in any recipe and you won't even notice the difference.
17. Keep Healthy Foods Front and Center
When you see food, it increases the chances that you'll eat it. That's why you should keep the healthy foods where you can get to them. That includes fruits, veggies, whole grains and lean protein. If you open the pantry or fridge and see those things, you're more likely to make them into a meal.
What other kitchen hacks can you share for weight loss?