Have you ever thought…What am I going to cook for myself? I like that meal but it makes such a large amount? Is it worth the effort to cook for one?
You may be surprised. There are some perks to cooking for one. You can eat what you want and not have to cater to someone else’s cravings or preferences or even allergies. You can eat your favorite meal three times in a row if you like. You can eat in your pajamas or in front of the TV. If the meal you’re cooking doesn’t turn out, no one knows but you. Cooking is what you make it. Yes, there are random and unexpected challenges that come with grocery shopping, stocking a kitchen, meal planning, recipe sizing and more. Below, there are some tips to help make meal time a bit easier.
Some tips for cooking for one:
- Actually make a meal plan
- Shop the Bulk Bins and Deli counter
- Don’t overbuy produce
- Fill up that freezer
- Reinvent leftovers
- Consider investing in a small appliance such as the Toaster oven
- Split groceries and leftovers with friends
- Learn how to scale down larger recipes for one
- Make a list of your favorite single serving “Go to “ recipes
- Find ways to make cooking for one Fun
By following the above suggestions, you can budget based on the sales in your local grocery stores. Pre-planning a menu ahead of time, may also prevent food waste. Soups and casseroles can be divided up into smaller portions, frozen and then reheated in the Toaster oven or a microwave. Remember that pre-packaged frozen vegetables are easy to store and prepare. You can even get out of season vegetables that are frozen.
Bulk buying allows you to purchase quantities suited to your needs and is usually less expensive than buying the full –sized packaging. At the Deli and meat counters ask the attendant if you can get a single breast of chicken instead of a package of 4? Or maybe only a couple of slices of your favorite cheese, instead of a wedge or larger package. The meat department may trim the fat from off a piece of steak or debone a piece of salmon for you. It never hurts to ask.
Scaling recipes if it says that it makes 6, then divide it by 6. If it’s an egg, whisk it first then divide it. Make your own buttermilk instead of buying the carton. To make 1 cup of buttermilk, add 1 tablespoon of either white vinegar or lemon juice and enough milk to make it 1 cup. Another alternative is 1 and ¾ teaspoons of cream of tartar and 1 cup of milk.
Try experimenting with your food and have fun.