Cooking dinner every night can quickly get tiring, especially when you are trying to think of something new that the whole family will enjoy. Moreover, eating out may seem like a good idea at first, but it can get expensive over time. Also, ordering fast food because it’s convenient won’t be the best choice, if you want to prioritize your family’s health. However, cooking for the whole family doesn’t have to be a complicated process. If it seems overwhelming to you, you will find that the tips below can help you make cooking more manageable and enjoyable. You will learn how to find easy recipes and keep the menu fresh with fewer ingredients.
Create A Plan
Firstly, it’s important to set aside some time every day, when you can focus on making delicious and nutritious meals for your family. If you don’t have a plan, cooking every night can feel exhausting and frustrating. It might be useful to create a plan for the entire month, as this will help you stay organized during each week. This way, you will know exactly what ingredients and tools you need to make dinner on different nights of the week. Once you know what you are going to make, you can even spend some time prepping everything you need earlier in the day.
Treat Your Family
There is nothing like treating your family to a special dinner by making their favorite foods like homemade pizza. For best results, you can use a portable outdoor pizza oven, such as Ooni, which will provide you with maximum flexibility to make amazing pizzas or even fresh bread for the whole family. You will also be able to cook with wood and charcoal, which ensures a wood-fired flavor, that cannot be achieved with regular frozen pizzas. Ooni enables you to make delicious and healthy pizzas with minimal effort and create a memorable experience like having pizza in your outdoor backyard.
Invest In Useful Tools
If you are looking for ways to make dinner as fast as possible after a long and busy day, investing in some useful cooking tools can save you a lot of time and hassle. There are many great gadgets available on the market, such as rice cookers, slow cookers, pressure cookers, or bread makers. For instance, every time you feel like you are too busy to make a healthy meal, you can simply toss some uncooked rice, frozen vegetables, sausages, and some spices into your rice cooker. Then, you can walk away to finish other tasks and before you know it, dinner will be ready.
Strive For A Balanced Diet
Keeping your family’s diet balanced will help you ensure that everyone feels satisfied and fulfilled and your kids can get all the important nutrients they need every day. Therefore, it’s essential to incorporate a variety of fruits and vegetables into their diet. Variety is crucial, so it’s advisable to eat plenty of different-colored foods, which provide various vitamins and minerals. This can also help you make your meals look nicer. Make sure your family eats in healthy quantities in order to achieve a good balance.
Prep Items Ahead Of Time
Whenever you find some down time during the day, this can be the perfect opportunity to do most of your cleaning, chopping, and prepping ahead of time. You can get as much done as possible, which will save you time when it gets to dinnertime. For example, if you are doing a stew for dinner, you can spend some time after lunch cutting all the vegetables you are going to need and placing them in containers for easy access. Also, you can do any measurements ahead of time so that when you are making dinner, all you have to do is combine the ingredients and cook.
Cook In Batches
Batch cooking is a great way to save some time during the week and it can work well with sides. If possible, try to keep most of your sides similar. This way, you can make enough of them the first night so that they can last you the entire week. For example, you can wash enough lettuce for the whole week and place it in a bag in your fridge so that you can quickly make a salad as a side. You can also chop a few other vegetables that you will need to make a salad and store them separately.
Find Easy Recipes
Thinking of new recipes every night can be tiring, so it’s best to look for some simple meals, that can be done with fewer ingredients. Look for some recipes which don’t require much effort, such as healthy burgers, mashed potatoes, or one-pot meals. Placing everything in a pan and letting it cook will make it so much easier to clean after as well. To make things simpler, you can also try making breakfast for dinner by making pancakes or omelets. This can be a nice change from typical dinners and it won’t take you as much time to prepare.
Organize Your Fridge
Although many people often cram everything in the fridge as soon as they come back from their weekly grocery shopping, keeping your fridge organized can help you in the long run. Not only is it going to look better, but you will know exactly what you have on hand, which means you can avoid the possibility of wasting food. It’s crucial to clean your fridge regularly by giving it a really good scrub and using an old toothbrush for awkward corners. Always check items for their expiration dates to make sure they are still safe to eat.
Leftovers from one night can often be used to make brand new meals the next one. All you have to do is use your creativity to come up with something new. For example, if you have any meat and vegetables left, you can make a quiche the next night. You can also transform your leftovers into a delicious soup. As soon as you see that your bananas have developed a few brown spots, save them for later, when you can make banana pancakes or a banana cake.
Get Your Children Involved
There are many ways in which your kids can help you while you are making dinner. Depending on their ages, you can assign them different tasks, such as zesting or grating for younger kids and slicing and chopping for older ones. Getting your children involved in the cooking process offers plenty of benefits, as this is likely to spark their interest in cooking and encourage them to develop healthy eating habits. It can also get the whole family closer together, making the whole process more enjoyable. Moreover, your kids will learn how to make healthy recipes and follow a balanced diet.
Challenge Your Family
To make the process even more fun and interesting for your family, you can come up with different challenges and turn cooking into a competition. For example, you can choose a single ingredient, such as cheese and ask everyone in the house to think of a recipe using this ingredient. You can also offer them rewards for the most creative recipes. In addition, it might be a good idea to challenge your kids to look for recipes in cookbooks and magazines and adapt them based on what you have in the fridge.