Holiday Lifehacks: 3 Easy Ways to Save Time in the Kitchen
Holiday parties, school performances, family get-togethers, shopping, and vacations may not be occurring exactly the same manner for most of us this year; yet, despite these changes, we will all remain extremely busy over the holiday season.
Give yourself the gift of adopting some shortcuts and festive hacks to take some of the strain off so you can be cheerful and relaxed.
Make it Semi-Homemade
Although we are talking about the health benefits of consuming home-cooked meals, there are times when you can achieve victory in the kitchen with a few shortcuts that you can use instead of running to ready meals to shorten your kitchen time. Take, for instance:
You may get the health advantages of high-quality protein without having to spend additional time preparing it if you buy a rotisserie chicken and add it to soups or chilis. To prepare your meal, shred the chicken and place it onto cabbage with a squeeze of lemon for dinner.
Make a meal by starting with your favorite frozen pizza dough, then layering it on your preferred jarred sauce, vegetable toppings, and delicious cheese.
Invest in food that has already been cut, particularly time-consuming veggies like squash that are difficult to handle and need additional preparation. Roast the vegetables after tossing them with one tablespoon of olive oil and serving them as a side dish or adding them to salads throughout the week.
Cook a Dish Only Once, and Enjoy it Twice
No matter what time of year it is, batch cooking in bulk is an effective method for staying on track with your objectives for healthy eating. Basically, it means making more food than you need at the moment so you can use all the cooking tools and gadgets that are already in use and at the ready.
Batch cooking, not to be confused with the concept of leftovers, often refers to the preparation of a single component in large quantities in order to reuse it at a later time. For example:
Do you have any rice or quinoa on hand for your supper on Monday? You would love to make a big quantity of this so that you can easily use it in grain bowls and salads throughout the week.
Preparing boiled eggs? The preparation of six items requires exactly the same amount of time as the preparation of two items. You may eat it as a snack, add it to salads by crumbling it or mash it together with some avocado.
Can you cook sweet potatoes? Make a few more than you need and you have the foundation for a simple, adaptable and ready-to-eat lunch.
Also, you don't have to use these extra sweet potatoes for the same purpose. You can use the sweet potato flesh as a substitute for the pumpkin you add in your baked goods by mashing or pureeing it. In this way, with the same cooking time, you will have both a ready-made basic material for different meals and a mortar for your long-lasting bakery products.
Use Sheet Pan and One-Pot Dinners
Raise your hand if cleaning up after you've finished cooking is your least favorite aspect of the process. We feel you! Find one-dish dinners to make life a little bit simpler for yourself and cut down significantly on the amount of time you spend washing dishes. To get you started, here are a few examples:
You can add your salmon that you have sauced as protein, your baby potatoes as carbohydrates and your vegetables such as onions, garlic, carrots, broccoli on a single baking tray and cook them at the same time. In this way, you can catch a balanced meal with a single method.
If you decide to make a one-pot vegetable dish, you can add rice as a carbohydrate and chicken or meat as a protein.
With the help of this reliable and user-friendly pressure cooker, you can defrost and prepare frozen foods in record time. A delicious cacciatore can be made in only 12 minutes using frozen protein (such as chicken thighs), the tomato sauce of your choice from a jar, and olives. This dish will have everyone racing to the table for supper.
If you want to use a plant-based protein source, such as dried chickpeas, all you have to do is soak the dry beans for a whole night and make sure they are submerged in liquid (jarred sauce plus some broth) before boiling them in an Instant Pot.