Feeling overwhelmed with work, household chores, family commitments — and on top of everything — cooking for the entire week? Despite your busy schedule, cooking can be quite easy if you follow some basic procedures. By following a few simple Pack Health recipes, you’ll eat healthily and spend time in the kitchen efficiently. Here are a few helpful tips to get you started:
01 Gather All Necessary Ingredients, Dishes, and Tools First
Rather than stressing about finding an ingredient when you’re already halfway through a recipe, plan ahead. Take time to read through the entire recipe so you know you have everything before you start. This way, you won’t run into problems down the road and have to run to the store. Even recipes in published cookbooks may leave ingredients out of the list, or mention a springboard later on when you don’t have one — and you may realize it only when you go through the procedures. So be sure to read through the entire recipe before you get started!
02 Preparing Your Vegetables
Healthy eating often involves cutting vegetables, so it’s important to purchase high-quality knives or sharpen your current ones. Sharper knives will decrease the risk of injuring yourself because you won’t need to use as much pressure to cut or slice. Be efficient about how you prepare different kinds of vegetables. Suppose you are preparing two different Lettuce-less Salads for lunch and dinner. If you need chopped vegetables for both meals, cut all the vegetables at lunchtime, enjoy half for lunch, and store the rest for dinner.
03 The Importance of Oven Planning
If you check out Pack Health’s Heart Healthy Recipe Cards, you’ll notice that each card’s procedures start with heating the oven. If you need two items to bake in the oven at the same time, search for baking dishes that’ll enable you to place them side by side with ample room. Adjust your timer so these dishes can bake in the oven together. This will save you time when cooking!
04 Don’t Crowd the Pan or Baking Dish
Now that we’ve talked about oven planning, it’s important to note that you should plan efficiently. Crowding the pan when you are baking chicken or potatoes can interfere with baking times. Your food may start to steam and change texture rather than cook to that browned, crisp outside. Opt for a baking tray that will provide ample room for cooking rather than having to cook in batches with smaller pans.
05 Keep Track of Time
Running around while cooking can lead to problems, especially if you are carried away with other tasks and come back to a burnt meal. Try setting up a table that is reasonably close to the oven or stove so you can sit and work while waiting. Otherwise, you should set a timer on your phone for four to five minutes before the timer is up, so you have enough time to get back to your food.
06 Choose Your Desserts Wisely
Rather than spend hours mulling over a multi-ingredient recipe for a dessert that is high in fat and cholesterol, consider Pack Health’s assortment of healthy smoothies! They contain a variety of fruits and are high in essential nutrients such as potassium, dietary fiber, vitamin C, and folate. Or enjoy fresh, seasonal fruit in a bowl with a dollop of sugar-free Cool Whip.
07 Prepare for the Rushed Meals
When choosing breakfast recipes, look for simple dishes that are easy to prepare and keep stored before you get to work. Check out Pack Health’s Egg Muffins. These can be frozen and reheated whenever you need a quick, filling breakfast or afternoon snack.