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Fad diets and exercise crazes come and go, but good old-fashioned healthy eating is always in fashion. Meal prep is one of the most popular ways to keep oneself from randomly splurging on a calzone lunch three days in a row -- not that I've done that or anything. One problem with meal prep is that it can feel like a daunting task at the beginning of the week to do all at once, but if you have the right meal prep containers, it takes a whole lot of the sting out. Plus, functional tightly sealed plastic or glass meal prep containers will keep your food fresh and tasting great until Saturday, aka "cheat day." 

Indeed, there's an attainable way to make meal prepping feel less like a chore, even if you're making three meals a day for an entire family. Taking the time to establish a meal prep routine and practice that work, coupled with the proper food storage containers can make the entire process very empowering toward keeping those new year's health goals. What you really need is motivation and you may find it motivating to collect a set of reliable and reusable meal prep containers, that make meal planning and meal prepping kind of enjoyable, or, at the very least, easy. 

There are so many food storage options out there: plastic meal prep containers that are microwave- and freezer-safe, locking glass or metal containers, leakproof easy-to-clean portion control Tupperware and containers with vented lids. And if you're feeling particularly fancy you could go for a bento box or set of glass Mason jars. Seriously, selecting the best meal prep containers to store your nutritious breakfasts, lunches and dinners can be the difference between a fleeting healthy resolution and one that sticks.

Read more: The healthiest meal kits and meal delivery for 2021: Sun Basket, Home Chef, Freshly and more

We've scoured the internet to unearth some of the best and most popular food prep container sets that are simultaneously good-looking and functional with locking, leak-proof lids to put you in the meal prepping spirit. There are glass meal prep containers, those made from sturdy plastic and some out-of-the-box ideas too, like a bento box (actually, several bento boxes). In short: You'll never have to spend $16 on an overpriced salad (or any other food) again. So prep some overnight oats, shake up that salad dressing, pull out your meal prep recipe book and check out our list of the best containers for meal prep in 2021.

Amazon

This durable 18-piece set of glass food prep containers is a dream for portioning out healthy meals. Use a glass container for soups, snacks, veggies, stews and brown-rice bowls, and then toss them in your work bag or pop them in the microwave. The locking lids on these glass meal prep containers are completely leak-proof and spill-proof. (Hot tip: Use the tiniest one for storing condiments and dressings.)

Amazon

If you're working from home for the foreseeable future and won't be lugging food to an office, I strongly recommend glass meal prep containers. For one, they'll last longer and glass gets sparkling clean with almost no effort. Plus, they're just sort of classy, don't you think? Speaking of aesthetics, these large glass food storage containers with airtight bamboo lids look great and stack easily in the fridge. It's a perfect meal prep system and under $40 for a set of four.

Sur la Table

May you never buy another plastic bag again with these clever food storage containers that are great for meal prep. These reusable silicone wunderkinds come in a variety of sizes (there are three in this set). Use one food container for your sammy and the baby ones for cut carrots, nuts and berries or chocolate.

Amazon

We know you've maybe heard of this one before, but still, there's nothing more satisfying than constructing a gorgeous Mason jar salad, which is pretty much the perfect way for a meal prepper to beat the "home desk salad" blues. These durable, freezer-safe meal prep jars are also great for storing liquids like salad dressing, soup and protein shakes. Best of all, glass gets sparkling clean with no effort, unlike some other materials.

Amazon

Perfect for portion control, these colorful reusable food storage containers will help you spot your lunch in a crowded fridge. The locking plastic lids will minimize leaks and spills with their airtight seal -- and they collapse after use, which means more cupboard storage space for you!

Amazon

This genius three-layer food prep salad container separates your proteins and toppings from your veggies and greens, and a mini container with a twist-off top keeps your dressing in check.

Amazon

A favorite product of Oprah's, this genius pack has a sleek bamboo cover and a Tetris-like modular design with durable containers that are completely spill-proof. (You can buy different sizes to mix and match to help with portion control.) It's microwave-safe, freezer-safe and dishwasher-safe. Plus, it comes with magnetic cutlery, which decreases your chances of accidentally tossing a fork in the trash.

Amazon

Prove that you're a millennial who can actually cook (or at least one who remembers to use those leftovers from last night) with this double-decker bento lunch box that can be converted into a single-tier box, too, depending on your bento lunch haul.

Amazon

This adorable triple-decker box isn't just a looker -- the insulated top layer of the compartments will keep your food warm for two to three hours.

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This story was written by July Vadnal for Chowhound.

The information contained in this article is for educational and informational purposes only and is not intended as health or medical advice. Always consult a physician or other qualified health provider regarding any questions you may have about a medical condition or health objectives.