Hey local peeps--have you ever dreamt that someone would do your meal planning, your grocery shopping, and your post-meal-prep clean up? If so, good news! Such a dream can soon become your reality and it's likely just down the road at your nearest HyVee grocery store!
HyVee is an employee-owned, Midwestern grocery store chain and many of their locations offer DISH (Dinner Is Served at HyVee) meal prep workshops. I started attending these monthly workshops nearly a year ago and though I don't get there every month, I do my best to go as often as possible so that I can restock my freezer on a regular basis.
Here's how it works:
1. You can either organize your own private group and choose a time to sign up, or sign up for an Open DISH Workshop as scheduled by HyVee.
2. Workshops are usually done in HyVee's "Club Room". Show up with something to transport your meals home in (a large bag, a cooler, a laundry basket, etc.) and expect the session to last about an hour.
3. Once there, choose a station. Ingredients will be laid out for you and some of the prep work may already be done. Follow the directions at that station to prepare the meal. (You will be making multiple of the same meal - one for each and every person attending.)
4. Before leaving, make your rounds and grab one of each meal. Generally, all of the supplies will be placed in a gallon-sized baggie, but sometimes there will be an extra can or package of something to grab.
5. Once home, throw your meals in the freezer. When ready to use, thaw in the refrigerator and follow the instructions per HyVee.
(A few tips: double bag your meals at home. It never fails that my freezer meals--HyVee and otherwise--leak and make a mess of my refrigerator. Also, freeze the meals flat!!! It will speed up the thawing process and keep your freezer more organized!)
Things I love about this program:
// Like I said, HyVee does the shopping, some of the prep work, and all of the clean-up! Win, win, win!
// It is very cost efficient! The grocery bill is split amongst all of the participants and that's all you pay! There is no additional "convenience fee" for attending. (Sessions generally cost between $80 and $120 for eight meals that feed 4 to 6 people.)
// The "Club Room" is very spacious and meal-prep is very simple. Instructions are spelled out very clearly.
// There is a nice variety of meals - both protein-wise and preparation-wise (slow cooker, on the grill, etc.).
// HyVee shares their recipes, so if there's something you really love, you can re-create it at home!
// It's fun! I always go with friends, so not only does it make for a productive night, but a nice social outing, as well! (Bonus if your HyVee has a bar you can visit afterwards! Double bonus if it's half-price happy hour!)
I attend workshops at the Olathe HyVee on 151st street. If you're interested in attending at that location, info regarding their Open DISH Workshops can be found on their Facebook page or their website. To schedule a private group, please email Nicole at email@example.com or Lisa at firstname.lastname@example.org for the dietitian's healthier version!
Disclaimer: HyVee provided me a session of free-of-charge freezer meals in exchange for this blog post. However, opinions--and my absolute love of this program--are all my own!