Many of us have grown up enjoying home-cooked meals made by our loving parents. Some people would have picked up valuable cooking skills and continued to make great use of their kitchen when they finally moved out of home – for others it’s not so easy.
With all of today’s options for fast food and home delivery, it’s increasingly harder for some of us to find the motivation to buy raw ingredients and cook a healthy meal at home. This is especially true for those people who work long hours and really don’t have the energy to prepare an elaborate meal from scratch every single evening.
Services that deliver pre-portioned ingredients for healthy and easily prepared meals have become popular with people who want to cook from home without all of the stressful grocery shopping. A dukkah steak with lemon and feta greens, for example, is very nutritious, low in carbohydrates and easy to cook once you have the ingredients!
There are also plenty of tips and tricks you can use to make cooking at home more convenient and/or appealing to you. The following will take a look at some of the best methods you can employ.
Cook several simple meals at once
One of the main things that turn people off cooking at home is the fact that they need to make an effort in the kitchen every evening. As mentioned earlier, this can be particularly unappealing for people who come home physically and/or mentally exhausted from their jobs.
A great way to avoid this is to simply cook several dinners at the same time. There are plenty of healthy, filling meals you can create in bulk and easily re-heat on different days of the week.
The only disadvantage of this strategy is that it’s not really practical with more elaborate dishes, so you might end up getting bored of eating similar meals over and over again. However, it is still a great way to ensure you are getting a nutritionally wholesome meal each night of the week.
Plan your meals ahead of time
Another great way to make cooking at home less of a chore is to build a weekly meal plan that sets out what dishes you want to eat and what ingredients you will need to prepare them. Doing this means you won’t waste as much time in the supermarket or staring at the contents of your pantry thinking about what you want to cook.
For many people, the act of supermarket shopping for healthy, raw ingredients can be a stressful experience. Being bombarded with so many different decisions about food can be overwhelming and lead people to simply opt for a quick takeaway or microwavable option.
Writing down what you plan to eat and how you are going to prepare it will make you far more likely to actually commit to that plan. This helps motivate you to continue cooking healthy meals and lessens the temptation of unhealthy choices.
Involve other people
If you find the prospect of cooking an entire meal from scratch daunting, why not try to lessen the workload by asking for some help? If you live with family members, a romantic partner or a flatmate you can ask them to help you cook a healthy dinner that you can enjoy together.
Not only does this lessen the overall workload and speed up the cooking process, but it also helps bring you closer together through a shared experience. Cooking can be a wonderful bonding exercise that can help make your interpersonal relationships much more dynamic and meaningful.
Invest in time-saving cooking appliances
If the length of time it takes for you to cook a healthy dinner is holding you back, you should look into acquiring new appliances that can save you a lot of time and effort in the kitchen. Modern technology is truly amazing and you’d be surprised how much quicker you can do things with a new cooking gadget.
A rice cooker is a great investment for those who find the manual method of preparing rice frustrating. They make it easy to cook several pounds of rice with little to no-effort required.
A slow cooker or crockpot is another amazing cooking device that allows you to simply chuck in a load of ingredients before heading to work so you can come home to a hot, healthy meal.
Learn better cooking techniques
If cooking is a skill that doesn’t come naturally to you then it never hurts to try to get some extra training and guidance on how you could improve. The reason you’re not cooking as much in your kitchen may be just a simple case of you not knowing the most efficient way to make use of everything in your pantry.
If you have a friend or relative who is an excellent cook, ask them to come around and show you some tricks. They’ll be flattered you asked them for their expertise and should be happy to train you free of charge.
Otherwise, you can always sign up to a professional cooking class. While this will cost money, you will learn a lot of really useful skills incredibly fast.
Hopefully by using the above techniques you can get yourself utilising the full potential of your kitchen while also ensuring you are following a healthy diet.