A thrifty mum has revealed her nifty homemade food prep hack that feeds her entire family for just $15 a week.
CJ Flack, 32, spends the first Sunday of each month cooking up a storm in her kitchen at her home in Brisbane, Queensland.
In just four hours, the mum-of-one and stepmum-of-one whips up an entire month’s worth of breakfast and lunch for herself and her daughter Kitty, 12, and stepson Cooper, seven – and she does it for the bargain price of just $60 in total, or $15 for per week.
The innovative mum, who works from home selling party supplies, reveals that she first began food prepping two years ago when she finally got sick of rushing around to prepare her kid’s breakfast and lunches every single day from scratch.
The food prep queen likes to change it up every month with different delicious recipes for breakfast, lunches and snacks – which include yummy treats such as Vegemite scrolls, mini pizzas, savory muffins, sausage rolls, tuna crackers, veggie meatballs, and fruit jelly cups.
CJ’s photos of her inspirational food prep have made waves online, inspiring parents across the world and racking up thousands of likes and comments.
‘It used to be such a stress trying to figure out what the kids were going to have for lunch every single day,’ the mum says.
‘One day I just had this idea of making their lunches a week in advance, to save time and effort.
‘I went to the supermarket and bought little containers, and while cooking the Sunday roast, I made a week’s worth of lunches.
‘Eventually I decided I could save even more time if I made a fortnight or a month’s worth of lunches in advance.
‘Then I realized that breakfast could be prepared in advance too, which is great because I’m not a morning person and the kids get bored of cereal and toast.’
CJ has even invested in a cheap second hand fridge just to keep all the pre-prepared meals in.
Every Sunday, CJ cooks up batches of healthy homemade lunches, snacks and breakfasts and seals them in Tupperware containers before freezing three quarters of them.
CJ revealed not only are her kids thrilled with her thrifty meal prep ideas, but the online community has given her loads of positive feedback.
She said: ‘I post a photo to Facebook of my food preparation and it soon got over 1,000 likes and heaps of positive comments from people saying what a good job I was doing. It was so nice to hear.
‘The kids love it. I try to involve them as much as possible in the planning and prepping process, so that I will know they will eat it.
‘Some of my friends think I’m a little crazy, but I love cooking and baking so it’s enjoyable for me to do.
‘But I know this might not work for everyone. Not everyone wants to spend four hours prepping, or go straight to the kitchen to cook.
’Some people don’t have the time or energy for this kind of thing, which is totally understandable.
‘But it’s worked really well for us, and saved us lots of time and money in the long run.’