10 Great Tips for Stress Free Cooking.

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If you are as busy as most people are then you are always looking for ways to feed your family in convenient, fast and on the cheap while trying to keep it as healthy as possible. Take the advice from your ole buddy a man in the kitchen, and try the following suggestions:

1. Cook several meals for the week at one time. It may take a couple of  hours of your time up front but it will pay off in the long run when you come home each evening and have a meal ready to eat in a short amount of time. Try cooking a large roasted chicken and use some for dinner then save the bones and carcass and make a hearty soup, or try a roast and using part of it as a main meal and then using some for sandwiches or as part of a stir-fry. Even cook  hamburger meat and make a casserole, taco meat and chili to freeze for use later in the week.

2. Clean as You Go . After you get home from the  store clean and cut up all of the fruits and vegetables. When it’s time for a meal all you will have to do is cook them or add them to a salad or soup. This will also get you and your family into a healthy mindset and used to eating veggies more often.

3. Watch TV…Get Ideas. I love the Food Network and cooking shows on punlc television. Get ideas from the cooking shows on T.V. There are great shows that show you how to make a healthy meal in a short time. Also, keep a constant eye on www.amaninthekitchen.com for great tips and ideas.

4. Make a Revolving Recipe File. If you get a panic attack  just from the though of having to plan 30 meals a month the recipe file idea is for you. Let family members choose some of their favorites and put the recipes in a monthly file. Flip to day five or fifteen and there is the meal just waiting to be cooked.

5. Get Help. Enlist the help of the members of your family. As soon as the kids are old enough divide up the cooking responsibilities. Let everyone take turns with specific tasks or the whole meal. Pair these meals with fruit and veggies that have already been washed and cut-up and you are ready for dinner.

6. Share and Share Alike. Share the cooking with friends or neighbors. I’ve known people who cook four or five of the same meal and then trade with four or five other people. This works best when people share the same basic ideas on what they like and don’t like. It’s a great idea though for a very easy week of evening meals. It’s also fun and if you decide to do a potluck type of dinner…..that’s even better.

7. Clip Coupons. Save coupons for those convenience things at the grocery store. They have entire entrees and dinners either fresh or frozen. Sometimes they are rather pricey but with the coupons they are good to have on hand for an evening when everyone is running in different directions and time is of the essence you can just drop by your local 7-11 or quick stop convenience store and grab some grub.

8. Eating Out. It’s O.K. to eat out from time to time. Clip coupons for these occasions and if you have kids keep a look-out for the places that have special prices for children. Some of the fast-food restaurants are trying to offer item choices that are a little more healthy. Lately pizzerias have been having some amazing deals. $9 for a large pizza and a 2 liter of soda…damn, you can’t beat a family meal for under $10.

9. Buy Food Prepared for You. Many larger cities have businesses that prepare food for the evening meal. They seem expensive at first but are so convenient and available for one person or entire families. There are many menu choices and meals cooked for special diets. When you calculate the groceries you buy and the times you eat out each week, this may work for you.

10. Choose the Combo. Combine several of the above ideas into a plan that is best for you. It’s really easy once you think about about it and trust me……a little planning now can make you have a relatively care free week.

It is possible with a little planning to cook meals that are quick and easy without spending hours in the kitchen every day.

You can do it!!!!!

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