Local business aims to bring families back to dinner table

Meals Prepped by Amy sells take home meals


A family dinner has been a staple in the American lifestyle for decades. Having a wonderful, fresh, homemade meal will always make life so much better. However, sometimes we run late, have activities like sports or musicals, work is short handed, or simply don’t have time to cook a meal. Amy Gajewski and her family are always active, with her two kids at school and in sports, they never really have a chance to sit down at the table. Ten years ago they decided to not only eat more cooked meals, but help others who are always on the move just like her. 

“Meals Prepped by Amy” is a business that sells premade, homemade meals for people to take home and heat up for their families to eat. The average meal Amy makes serves 4-6 people and she makes 10 meals per family to eat. The cost is determined by serving, ranging from $4-$6 per serving. All of her meals are nut and gluten free, along with no MSGs added as well. 

On her website, Amy has every meal she is more than happy to prepare for families, but some are more frequently requested than others.

“I often do meals for a lot of families with kids that are picky eaters,” said Amy. “But some that work well for kids are crock pot chicken parmesan, cheesy tater tot casserole, and bacon wrapped apple BBQ chicken.”

Many favorites that sound so good that work in a crockpot, on a grill, or in an oven, basically any way of making a meal, Amy does it. Just like any business, she had to start somewhere. That somewhere was in her own home. 

“I had started Meals Prepped in my basement three years ago,” Amy said. “We converted an old laundry room into a full commercial kitchen and outgrew it in six months.”

Not the most ideal place; however, she had many plans in mind.

“With a lot of families it is almost a dreaded decision to know what’s for dinner. Families try to get something different on the table that’s quick and easy, something healthy too,” said Amy. “Sometimes families get into a meal rut rotation of having spaghetti, tacos, and Hamburger Helper meals multiple times.”

The main goal she said is to help families get more healthy meals, keep them out of the grocery store and give families time back to do other things, not worry about planning dinner as much. 

So in a very short amount of time, Amy needed to move out. This was not the easiest thing to do, legally.

“The Brown County Health Department had no idea what to do with me,” said Amy. “I’m not a restaurant, I’m not a caterer because I’m not cooking the food, because this service is new to the area.” 

She bought out what was an office space and converted it into a commercial kitchen. One thing about her service is the amount of consideration she has for the health side of preparing meals.

“It’s nice having such a big list of meals,” Amy said. “Because this allows me to make keto meals, Whole30 meals, vegetarian meals, low carb meals, low sodium meals, to help fit different dietary restrictions.” 

Not only does she think about the people that are eating, she tries her best to support and buy the majority of her ingredients and supplies from local businesses.

“I get all my meat from Maplewood Meats, canned goods and pasta from Woodmans or Festival, my organic vegetables from Costco, I get some of my spices from Badger Wholesale. I also use my own recipes that we created and all my premade blends I have in Mason jars,” Amy said. “I do this because I know exactly what is in the meal I make, where it comes from, and how much there is. Plus it supports the local businesses.”

She grabs all of her ingredients and supplies from these places just like any family would to make their meals, so people can trust and know the proof is indeed in the pudding. Amy is so excited about what she is doing for her business and the community around it.

“The growth I have received is extremely exciting,” Amy said. “Not only for me, but the local community and small businesses as well.”

However it’s not just about the growth.

“I love growth and helping people,” Amy said. “But it’s the stories I hear from my customers about how amazing the food was, how easy it was to make, I am so grateful for it. Helping people is what fuels me.”

Though last year was quite a tough year for many small businesses, even some shutting down, Amy pushed through and in her opinion, it actually helped her. 

“The first couple months I was down a little bit because people tried taking on making meals by themselves,” Amy said “However after those couple of months, people were tired of trying to make those meals and still found the value of Meals Prepped. So I have been growing since the pandemic started.” 

Meals Prepped by Amy is a true diamond in the rough when it comes to being able to help out her community. From staring in her basement to during the lockdown, delivering meals to people who were at risk of the disease. It is a rare sight to see and she is still hungry for more and who knows what is next for this spectacular journey Amy is on. 

“It’s nice to give people peace of mind during the day because they can come home and have their meal ready,” said Amy.

(If you are interested in learning more, visity Amy’s website at mealsprepedbyamy.com)