The best way to save money, cut down on waste, and maintain good health is to meal prep. But have you ever prepared 10 dishes in an hour? Batch cooking maybe the answer you have been looking for.
Making a strategy is the key to success even though it may seem like an insurmountable task.
A dish like fajitas is a good start. The two main ingredients are mince and onions; these are also the foundation for two additional popular dishes: spaghetti Bolognese and chilli.
You can make two family-sized quantities of burgers and meatballs, which can be frozen, while the meat is browning. You can then also divide the pot and prepare two servings of each of the other three recipes. You’ll then have 10 servings of five different dinners to put in the freezer.
Batch cooking doesn’t have to be a neverending procession of stews.Some of the best dishes include churros, dirty fries, cheesecakes, calzones, koftas, and ramen.
The advantages of batch cooking are indisputable, especially during tougher times.
You don’t have to cook every single night or even when you want to eat. Just set aside a period to prepare the dishes in your spare time. This can also help to provide financial savings on takeout or impromptu journeys to the grocery store.
Here’s how to start batch cooking in order to save time and money:
The best thing to do is start small. Just find a dish you can freeze and pick two meals a week that you eat frequently.
Every time you prepare it, make double the amount you would normally make. Eat one and freeze the other straight away. Because you have a dinner in the freezer, you’ll save yourself having to cook on another night.
If you start cooking this way, you’ll want to do it more and more.
Planning just one extra meal will help you save money rather than having to plan every meal.
These days, everyone shops in reverse. First, when we get to the grocery store, we ask ourselves, ‘Right, what do I want to eat? Additionally, supermarkets are designed for you to choose products that will generate them the most money.
Decide what you want to eat before undertaking your grocery shopping. Check what you currently have and you’ll stop wasting food and save money.
It’s best to be organized while batch cooking; lay out all your ingredients and get everything else you need ready. It’s also beneficial to have a full sink of hot, soapy water or an empty dishwasher.
By doing this, you can avoid having “a vast kitchen to clean up” when you’re done cooking, which can put you off for good.
Add more items to your freezer selection
Over the years, frozen foods have developed a negative reputation for being high in sodium and saturated fat. However this is no longer the case. Today, the freezer section of the grocery store is home to some of the healthiest foods available. These include grains, quick breakfast breads, fish and seafood, and even nutrient-dense frozen meal options. Frozen fruits and vegetables are selected and flash-frozen at the peak of ripeness. This is when their flavor and antioxidant capacity are at their highest.
Here are some tips for buying frozen foods:
- Choose ancient grains, whole grains, and quick-cooking refined grains when buying frozen grains (like rice or noodles)
- Buy frozen blueberries along with any other frozen fruit that suits your tastebuds.
- Breakfast items: potatoes are great in any form, especially waffles.
- Potatoes are great in any form, especially waffles.
- Frozen meat: consider grass-fed beef, fish, chicken, turkey, and shellfish.
- Vegetable mixtures: You can’t go wrong with your favorite vegetables. Try experimenting with them in their frozen form.
It’s time to start your own recipe book now that you have a few tried-and-true recipes under your belt and a ton of new favorite foods and tastes to cook with. This will make it easier for you to remember your favorite meals and motivate you to keep making them for years to come.
Create your own cookbook using paper and a pen or a computer; whichever is the quickest and most efficient for you.
In case you decide to go the digital path, you should be aware that several applications let you create unique recipe journals. In fact some of them even integrate with other websites like Yummly or Whisk. Your own recipes can be saved and made shoppable by several online grocery delivery services. You can choose the items in your supermarket cart based on what you intend to make thanks to this easy integration.
Snacks in bulk
Start purchasing snacks in bulk and storing them in reusable containers. One of the more challenging areas to handle is snacks. Buying snacks in bulk and then packaging them yourself at home to have on hand when you need a midday snack is always a good idea. It’s a method of cost-cutting that also enables you to create your own unique, tasty, and nutrient-dense products.
You’ll need some trustworthy reusable containers to get started. These are a more environmentally friendly choice than single-use plastic baggies. Glass jars can be recycled, or you may buy silicone bags that come in a range of sizes.
- Roast almonds in the oven for 10 to 15 minutes at 350°F after marinating them in low-sodium tamari.
- You can lightly salt sunflower seeds, toss them with dried thyme and chile powder, then roast them for 10 to 15 minutes at 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Try mixing your roasted nuts with popcorn for more crunch.
- Buy seaweed sheets in large quantities, then combine them with miniature rice cakes for a delicious snack.
- For a crunchy variation on trail mix, combine puffed ancient grain cereal with your preferred dried fruits and nuts.