How to incorporate more home cooked meals in your day to day busy life.
As a busy parent, you probably have a lot on your plate. Between work, school drop-offs and pickups, extracurricular activities, and household chores, finding time to cook can be a challenge. But with a little planning and some helpful tips, you can make home-cooked meals a regular part of your family's routine.
Here are some tips on how to slowly incorporate more cooking into your busy schedule.
PC: Katie Sprague
1. Prep and Plan in Advance
The first step to incorporating more cooking time into your day-to-day life is to plan your meals. Spend a bit of time at the beginning of each week creating a meal plan and grocery list. This will help you stay organized and ensure that you have all the ingredients you need to make sure your meals at home. You could also use meal planning as an opportunity to try out new recipes and include more healthy options into your diet. Prepping your ingredients in advance can also save a lot of time and make cooking less stressful during the week. You could wash, chop, and portion out your ingredients for the week. It'll only make it easier to throw together meals during the week and reduce the amount of time you'll spend in the kitchen.
2. Use Your Slow Cooker
Slow cookers are the best tool invented for busy people who still want to enjoy home-cooked meals. Take a few extra minutes in the morning to load your slow cooker up with the ingredients you want, set it to the right temperature, and let it do all the work while you are at work and the kids are at school. When you get home after a long day, dinner will be ready and waiting for you.
3. Keep it Simple
You don't have to be a gourmet chef to cook delicious, healthy meals at home. Keep your recipes simple and focus on using fresh ingredients. Simple dishes like roasted vegetables, grilled chicken, and steamed rice can be prepared quickly and provide a nutritious meal.
4. Cook in Batches
Cooking in batches can be a great way to save time and ensure that you always have healthy meals on hand. When you have a free afternoon or evening, cook up a big batch of your favorite meals and portion them out into containers for the week. This will save you time during the week and prevent you from reaching for unhealthy takeout options.
5. Get the Whole Family Invovled
Cooking can be a great way to spend quality time with your family. Get your kiddos involved in meal prep by having them wash vegetables, stir ingredients, or measure out ingredients. By involving your kids, you're not only teaching them important life skills but also creating opportunities for quality time and bonding.
Cooking at home can seem like a challenge, especially with a hectic lifestyle. However, with some planning, preparation, and simple strategies, you can incorporate more cooking time and home-cooked meals into your daily routine. Not only will this improve your health and save you money, the time and energy you save during the week, thanks to a little planning in advance, will be well worth it.
Founder and Owner of Bloomin' Chef
(formerly known as Culinary Sprouts)