As Dorothy from the Wizard of Oz famously said, “There’s no place like home,” this is especially true when it comes to dinner time. Cooking at home is typically less expensive, better for us and believe it or not takes less time than eating out. Try some of these easy tips to make cooking at home easier.
First, plan ahead. Choose 20 minutes preferably on the same day of each week to sit down and plan meals for the next week. Some may find it easiest to have 14 different dinners that you rotate on a two-week schedule.
When planning, use circulars from the grocery stores that you shop to get the biggest bang for your buck by planning meals based on what is on sale. It will save you money and time. Knowing what you are going to buy means not having to browse and think of what to buy when you are there.
Save time by cooking enough meat, vegetables and/or fruit at one time to use for two or more different meals. For example, make a crock-pot beef roast for dinner one night and use the left over beef for tacos. You can cook enough peppers and onions to have Philly Cheesesteak sandwiches one night and then use the peppers and onions to have fajitas another night.
Cook according to your schedule. If one day you get home by 4 p.m. then you may have a little more time to spend cooking than a day you get home by 5 p.m., but have to be to dance practice for one child at 6:15pm and soccer practice at 6:30pm for another child.
Get the family involved. Have everyone plan a meal or plan part of the meals. Give children things to do within their knowledge and skill level so that they participate in the family meal. There are a lot of websites that can help add variety and give you ideas of what to make for dinner. Check some of these out:
Happy home cooking!
By: Molly McBrayer, Clinical Manager, Roper St. Francis Bariatric and Metabolic Services