Six Ways to Help Yourself To Cook More

Six Ways to Help Yourself To Cook More

Cooking after a long day can be very stressful and time consuming, and of course, lead you to just give up and throw a pizza in the oven or order out, but if you do a little prep work ahead of time when you aren't busy or have an hour in your week to spare (instead of being on GaG or other social media), you can help yourself do half the work or more.

1. Prepare ahead of time

Six Ways to Help Yourself To Cook More

Cut up your veg for the week and keep them in an airtight container. Most will last a few days to a week's time. If you use a vegetable chopper, your preparation time can be cut down to mere minutes. Buy meat pre-chopped or cut it up yourself when you buy it and stick it in the freezer until ready for use. Also consider a storage area in your pantry where you place all the dry ingredients for the nights or days meals in them, so all you need to do is just pick up the basket and you're ready to go.

2. Come up with a realistic meal plan for the week

Six Ways to Help Yourself To Cook More

It can be hard to come up with ideas for what to cook each day, but if you have a meal plan written down, all you need to do is follow it. By knowing what's on your list, you can prep accordingly. On your non busy day, write down and/or gather up the recipes for things you can make with the time you have for the week. Plan harder or longer to cook meals for your less busy days, and easier ones for the days you know you'll be too exhausted to do anything that requires a long cook.

3. A slow cooker is your friend

Six Ways to Help Yourself To Cook More

A slow cooker has been the favorite of home cooks forever because they allow you to literally set it, and forget it. We're talking drop in your meat/veg...even still frozen, pour in some liquid, put on a lid, and let it go on slow for hours. You can leave your house with the slow cooker on, and return home to a fully cooked meal. Recipes can easily be found online.

4. Double your batches

Six Ways to Help Yourself To Cook More

I never make things like spaghetti, or soups, or carnitas for one time meals. Think about it...if you're already going to cook the meal in the first place, why not just double or even triple the recipe and then freeze the other portions for later. You get double your output for around the same effort.

5. Create or Join a Freezer Meal Club

Six Ways to Help Yourself To Cook More

If you have a Mommy group, or a couple of friends who can come over, get together and buy some collective ingredients, and create meals for your group which you can each freeze and have a batch of your own. If everyone is working together, it makes cooking fun, and means you won't have to do cooking during the week. Even if you can't find or create a group, you can freezer cook for yourself or your family by making meals that just need to be heated in the oven or thrown into the slow cooker.

6. Use the internet


In this day and age, fewer and fewer people are being taught to cook by a relative or friend, but don't let that discourage you. Use the internet and specifically Youtube to help you learn what you need to. There are YouTube channels like Tasty that make it easy to see what's going on with each recipe, let you know all the ingredients and cook times, and make it easy for you to follow for even a beginner cook.


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Most Helpful Guy

  • 7) The oven is your best friend as well!

    When I was in college, what made the oven so useful was the lack of need to babysit my food. Just set the timer, set the timer on my phone 5mins ahead of the oven, roam my apartment complex or do whatever, phone goes off, head back to my apt, and food is ready! :-D

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    • I wish I had had an oven in college! I would have loved it. I was relegated to a George Foreman and a microwave. I lived on campus, and the only real kitchen outside of in the cafeteria which we had zero access to was one of the first floor of a 16 story, of which I lived on the 15th, and they made you sign in to use the kitchen with your ID card, so you couldn't leave your food cooking or the room without signing out, but for those with apartment style housing, I imagine it would be that wonderful convenience.

    • I lived in the dorms my first 3 years, my last 2 I lived in an apartment off-campus. The oven was awesome, and I was easily the best cook in the house. :-D

    • Thanks for MHO!

      Even when I was in the dorms, I had a minifridge so I would keep snack foods in there all the time! Cheese, juice, etc.

Most Helpful Girl

  • Thanks for sharing this mytake. I actually like the idea of cutting the vegetables before time. Putting them away to save some time.

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    • Awesome! I've been doing it for years now. It is usually the most laborious part of the cooking process, so knowing you just do it once a week, really leaves room and time for other things you want to do other than standing over a cutting board.

    • So true :)

    • Thanks for MHO hun! :-)

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What Guys Said 13

  • where i live im part of a community development project and we do teach people to cook but a lot of young and older people need to know basic as simple as cutting up veg and learn to cook ur own food is way better becuz you ll know what goes in your food

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    • That's amazing. I am a total supporter of programs like the one you speak of. We can't just expect anymore that people are being taught these fundamental life skills at home anymore, and it's good that there are people out there reaching out and filling in the gaps, and teaching important sustainable life skills.

  • Makes a lot of sense in this modern very active world with most adults in a household unit working or in school

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  • Good take! Also if you find a recipe you want to try and want to save money, check weekly ads and keep track of when those items, specifically meat goes on sale.

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    • Definitely. One of my local grocers has four annual meat sales, and I buy enough to last me until the next one.

  • OK, I already do some of these things, to increase effectiveness and pure yield of what I’m cooking, but there is one more problem. I don’t want to do it. It’s boring. I hate going shopping, because…you know…it’s boring, lot of people there, I hate the time and energy, what I have to put into this. And…I didn’t find here some solution: how to at least tolerate something, what I consider beneath me. It’s job for robots, just like cleaning and so on. I’m human, I can create, this shit is for machines.

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    • I can't change your attitude if you are dead set on the idea that is is boring, but if you do want to change that mindset, two solutions for you: 1) major grocery chains now allow you to order your groceries online. Some will deliver directly to your door, and others offer a pickup service so you don't have to "waste time" doing your grocery shopping. 2) You can also subscribe to something like Hello Fresh which delivers meal ideas/ingredients straight to you with the recipes in box, so all you have to do is follow the steps. This way you get all the ingredients and get to cook new things with each delivery. Where there is a will, there is a way!

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    • OK, I guess you’ve partially got me. But it seems like you still cannot understand the fact, that some people will not enjoy some activities, no matter what.
      Here is the problem. Right now, I need to be the one, who do the shopping, so I get out. But I still don’t want to. It might be confusing, it is, but this is how it is in my head.
      New stuff…I try sometimes.
      Actually…yes and no. Your assumption is correct when you take that there is nobody like me: who clic on this article and read it even though he isn’t into it. I’m not a program, I have „free will“. So to answer your question about why bother reading: no reason. I’m human, not machine.
      I get angry sometimes, that I have to do certain things, which I don’t want to do.
      Ehm…I’ve meant to fly…without anything. Like…birds fly with their body. So…you „will“ with yours. No other things.

    • There is no misunderstanding on whether people do or do not enjoy activities, LOL! This is a basic premise of life. I know literally no one in this world who loves everything they do or try, or even eat for that matter. Like I said, I would assume if you came here to read this and comment here, you perhaps were wanting to cook more. I'm not a mind reader. I don't know you personally, and you are saying things that I should know about you personally and that's simply impossible unless, like you've done in your last comments, you say them aloud. So, here's the thing. It's your life, you know this, so do what you want with it. Don't cook, cook. I seriously don't think you "needed" me to tell you this, because you are going to do whatever anyway. Best of luck to you, have a great week!

  • times an issue so do it in bulk cook good food that you can frezz for latter

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  • Great take! Although I don't know much about cooking rather than pasta, rice... and sandwiches.

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    • That's a start! Whenever I'm talking to new cooks or people who are frustrated by cooking, my advice is to start with simple basic recipes and become good at those and work your way to wherever you want to go with it. Being a good cook is not about being able to make the most complicated dish on earth with 42 ingredients. Some of the best dishes are simple and require only a handful of ingredients, but make them well, and you're set for life.

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    • Try kosher meat. It's not going to help you with your raw flesh fear, but with the other half it might.

    • Ok, thanks again.

  • I'm not good at cooking but now I will surely try it. Thanks for your take. :)

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  • Great take! Thanks for sharing!

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  • @RicanEyes what's your expertise, is this right?

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    • Nope I always find time to cook very rare when I eat out or order in. I actually learn how to cook by my cousin. I think this mytake is nice because you can save some time by cutting vegetables and putting them away in a container. I actually like this idea.

  • I seriously need to buy slow cooker. Nice tips.

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    • I'm telling you, it's life changing. You just dump stuff in, set it, and go, and then come back and you've got an awesome meal and usually enough leftovers, if you buy a large one, to freeze the extra for later or eat later in the week.

  • Thank you

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  • I actually prefer to cook for myself...

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  • love cooking ;) nice take

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What Girls Said 11

  • Good read. Another way that I utilize to get me cooking more is the meal delivery services. I use Blue Apron and Sun Basket. They deliver all the fresh properly portioned organic ingredients and recipe cards to make really fabulous meals in around 30 minutes.

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    • It's a great service, plus you never get bored because they offer up new recipes all the time. Great tip!

  • m.youtube.com/channel/UCeKWgImK1RAD9IGjWZqxmIw

    The Internet isn't always the best way to learn to cook as seen
    This woman even has her own Facebook page

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  • Who says you have to cook? Sometimes, eating raw fruits and vegetables can be tasty and filling. ;)

    Also, who says you need to make a dish with many ingredients with seasoning? Sometimes, you just want a plain corn on the cob or chickpeas on butter lettuce leaves.

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  • OMG thank you so much because this is what I'm looking for at the moment hacks to make cooking easy because unfortunaly I don't eat at work anymore because I don't have time to cook. Which make me hungry hence eat unhealthy food which doesn't make me feel full.

    I needed this. I'll apply it from now. Specially the chopping preparing once a week. Plan and chop. Let's say Saturday.

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    • Happy to help. I think a slow cooker would work well for you too, because, if you're cooking for yourself, and if you eat meat, cook in bulk things like roasts, chicken, beef, etc, and freeze for later. You'll have ready to go meals on those days you can't get around to cooking or don't want to.

  • Good tips! I'm new to cooking so it's helpful to read

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  • I love to cook! In fact I try out new recipes everyday! :)

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  • I am no good at cooking. It is said I can burn water. lol but I am willing to try again and with these steps that helps.

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    • Good for you. Baby steps. Easy recipes, with a few ingredients. If you fail, try again, don't give up.

  • These are useless since I won't even go into the kitchen. But good take though.

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  • Interesting Take, thanks for the tips :)

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  • Good take

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  • good take

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