Meal prep is a very important skill for high school students and adults alike. The ability to prepare a bunch of ingredients and have them in your fridge ready to go is super valuable. In this post, I will show you how to prepare vegetables by roasting them in the oven. Fortunately, this meal prep method (and cooking method) is very simple, and only requires you to be able to cut, peel, and wash vegetables. If you are not comfortable cutting, peeling and washing vegetables, check out the resources section for some help.
Meal Prep – Preparing Your Vegetables
In my experience, all vegetables taste better roasted than raw! Most people only roast root vegetables (yams, parsnips, carrots, beets etc.), however, I believe that all kinds of vegetables taste better when you throw them in the oven. Keep in mind, there’s no particular reason that I chose to roast broccoli, carrots and asparagus in this post. It’s simply what I had in my fridge at that moment.
Before you begin, preheat your oven. My preferred temperature is 450℉, because it gives the outside a nice crispy flavour. If you prefer a more tender vegetable, consider a temperature closer to 400℉. Once you have selected the vegetables that you want to roast, prepare them as you please. Certain vegetables do not need to be peeled, for example my broccoli and asparagus. However, others are optional (I decided to peel my carrots, but you can certainly keep the skin on). Also, it is in this step where you may decide to cut your vegetables into smaller pieces. I like to cut my vegetables into bite-size pieces, but that is just personal preference. If you are unsure about preparing your vegetable, you can check out my resources page, or ask google.
Now, line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone mat and place your vegetables on the sheet.
Meal Prep – Seasoning
To keep it simple, I only seasoned this sheet with salt, pepper and olive oil. Those are the essentials! If you find yourself bored with that combination only, try adding some paprika, red pepper flakes, onion powder, garlic powder, or cumin! I’m sure google has some more suggestions as well.
If you don’t feel comfortable seasoning things without measuring them, try the following techniques. I recommend a generous seasoning of olive oil. Once you’ve said to yourself, “Have I put on too much olive oil?”, you’ve just hit the perfect amount! In regards to salt, if you can see the salt, you’ve added too much. Try to add just enough salt that you can’t see it, but you can taste it. Pepper is all about personal preference, I like a lot of pepper so you’ll be able to see a generous amount of pepper on the image below. If pepper’s not your thing, I still recommend adding a little bit of pepper because it brings out great flavours.
Meal Prep – Roasting
Once your oven has hit its desired temperature, carefully put your baking sheet inside the oven. You can set the timer anywhere from 25 – 45 minutes. Keep in mind that certain vegetables take longer to cook than others, and you will just learn this from experience. If you are new to roasting vegetables, you can’t go wrong with 3o minutes!
Here is what it looked like after 30 minutes at 400℉:
When you are done, place in a container and in the fridge for up to 4 days. You can separate the vegetables, but I prefer the mixed, for more flavour.
I would like to note that I am not including a recipe for this post. I see people getting too married to their recipes, and not having the confidence to just sorta, you know, cook! Hopefully I to have taught you the basic technique to roasting vegetables, so I recommend trying this yourself and NOT using a recipe. Hope this helps, and may you forever be free from recipes.