Bethany’s Breakdown: Meal Planning on a Budget

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Bethany'sBreakdownIf you are an avid follower of my blog, you may have noticed I love to talk about three things—food, money and Detroit. I love to eat and I’m great at it. I dislike spending money, but I’m great at it. Like  many women, I could spend hours on Pinterest looking at budgeting blogs and food recipes. I’ve tried all the healthy tips and trends, but have only fallen in love with one of them: meal preps.

One of the beauties of living in a city that’s reinventing itself is everyone around you seems to be doing the same. The power of social media has made it possible to connect with other locals going after their dreams. I first heard about meal preps online, but always thought it would take too much time. When I came across Chef Chris Donaldson (aka Cheffonzworth) through a friend at work, I learned there was an easier way to eat healthy. I was immediately interested, as I have been struggling to eat all my fresh foods before they go bad.

How do healthy meal preps work?

This depends on how you go about meal preps. If you don’t have someone in your area who does meal preps, you can do them on your own. I would recommend making a list, grocery shopping on a Saturday or Sunday morning and spending the rest of the day cooking and prepping. It may take some time, but you have to remember all of the time you’ll be saving during the week!

Healthy meal preps with someone like Cheffonzworth may work a little different. For example, I had to give my nutritional goals (what I was looking to get out of meal preps, foods I like/dislike, allergies to be aware of, etc.). In addition, I gave my desired calorie intake so he could prepare my weeks’ worth of meals based on my restrictions. If you prepare your healthy meals on your own, there are tons of iPhone and Android apps out there that will help you track calories easily.

How much will meal preps cost me?

Again, this depends on the way you meal prep. If you cook and prep meals on your own, it will cost you the price of your groceries (this varies based on preference i.e. where you shop, organic, GMO free, etc.). With Cheffonzworth, I had the option between an $80.00 and a $50.00 plan; I decided to go with the $80.00 one. This included five meals, three ‘on the go’ breakfast meals, and three lunches/snacks. The $50.00 meal plan included five meals that can be for lunch or dinner. Breaking it down, for the $80.00 plan, I spent $16.00 total for dinner and lunch each day. Not bad, right? Both meal prep plans included the meals, two sets of containers and a carrying bag.

What kind of meal preps does Cheffonzworth offer?

To give you a better idea, below is a picture of my meal prep from this past week! If you decide to do healthy meal preps on your own, you are your own chef! In my research, salmon, ground turkey, chicken, quinoa, sweet potatoes and veggies are all great options to consider.


The stigma that healthy eating has to be costly and time-consuming is slowly diminishing thanks to meal preps. As I’m on the road to living a healthy lifestyle, both nutritiously and physically, I am just as eager to share my findings as I am about trying them.

This week’s Pop Quizzle (aka something I learned this week) is: Yesterday you said tomorrow. Make it happen today. So often we find ourselves at a crossroad where we know a change is necessary but we’re scared. That’s ok, it’s natural to be afraid of change. We get comfortable in our day-to-day activities that even when change becomes absolute, we neglect to acknowledge it. My advice to you is acknowledge it. I can’t begin to count how many times I have said to myself, “I need to get in better shape”, “I need to stop eating junk”, “I need to sleep more” and did nothing about it. Well, it’s my second week of working out every day and my first week of meal preps and I already notice a difference in how I feel. I’m not saying I won’t enjoy pizza and beer from time to time (let’s be honest, both weaknesses of mine) but in moderation. Cutting the negative out of your life whether that be toxic habits, food or people becomes essential at some point. Start your journey to a healthy lifestyle today!

(*For inquires on Healthy Meal Preps contact Cheffonzworth at Instagram @Cheffonzworth920 or @fonzworthmealpreps, Chef Fonzworth Meal Preps and