This review represents recent research on using chemical prelithiation to improve cycling performance of nanostructured electrode materials for lithium ion batteries in our group. We focus on two typical cathode materials, MoO3 nanobelts and FeSe2 nanoflowers. Methods of direct or secondary hydrothermal lithiation of MoO3 nanobelts and FeSe2 nanoflowers are described first, followed by electrochemical investigation of the samples before and after lithiation. Compared with pristine materials, lithiated samples exhibit better cycling capability. Prelithiation of other kinds of materials, such as V2O5, MnO2, etc. is also briefly reviewed. This demonstrates that prelithiation can be a powerful general approach for improving cycling performance of Li-ion battery electrode materials.