One of the most common grievances I hear from my clients when they start to incorporate more healthy food into their life is, “I'm spending all my time cooking and I cbf, tbh! When am I meant to call my Gran/catalogue my Goosebumps collection/ make origami frogs”. “I hear that!” I say.
Preparing wholesome, healthy meals at home is an important part of a healthy lifestyle – but it’s not fun (or sustainable) if it takes up a too big a chunk of your precious time. To make things as easy as possible (and leave plenty of time for stamp collecting and bird watching), get into the habit of
Cook once, eat twice.
Simple huh? In fact, it often becomes more a case of “cook once, 3 or 4 times (or 20 in the case of bliss balls)”.
Here’s the idea: if you’re cooking anyway, think about doubling the recipe or making extra and using it for another meal. Even just steaming some extra veg or cooking an extra fillet of fish for tomorrows lunch will save you precious time.
I apply this to pretty much all the cooking I do and it makes eating well super easy because there’s always something in the fridge or freezer that I can turn into a healthy meal in five minutes. Awesome!
Here are a few of my favourite ways to live by the “cook once, eat twice” rule:
- Double the recipe when making bliss balls, healthy muffins, healthy banana bread, chia pudding and hummus and store in the freezer. Double this recipe with caution – its so good you might eat the whole lot. Oops!
- Make extra quinoa and freeze in cup cake moulds (1/3-1/2 cup per portion). Whip it out to stir through salads, serve with curries or stews or turn into a lovely quinoa porridge for breakfast
- When you’re making a smoothie, get out the ingredients for 5 or 6 and divide them up into zip lock bags and pop them in your freezer. If you have left over fruit, or veggies like cucumber and zucchini, that you don’t want to go rotten, chop them into chunks and add these to your smoothie packs. Leafy greens like kale keep really well in the freezer and then seem to have a creamier texture when blended as well. Cool!
- I make bone broth (here’s the recipe I use) or veggie soup in the slow cooker and then freeze it in jars. Just remember when freezing in glass to fill only to a couple of centimetres below the opening and screw the lid on loosely – when liquid freezes, it expands and we don’t want cracked jars, no thank you!
- If you make nut milk, make the biggest batch you can in your blender and then freeze in small glass bottles or jars so you can put one into the fridge to thaw as you need it. Nut milk needs a good shake once it defrosts, as it tends to separate and look kinda gross.
- Make double when you cook healthy pancakes or fritters and keep them in the freezer. Now you can use them as coasters, frizbees, or ill fitting hats! Or eat them I suppose.
- If you make your own granola, make a nice big batch - I find I can keep it in an airtight jar in the pantry for a couple of weeks. A nice jar of granola is also a cute gift that will save you a trip to the shops.
- Roast veggies make any salad awesome and making extra takes hardly any more time or effort. Use them in omelettes or frittatas, as a side dish, or have them by their delicious selves! Just chop up whatever you have and fill the oven up. They should keep for about 5 days in the fridge.
- Instead of mixing up a dressing each time you make a salad, make enough to last you a week and keep it in a jar in the fridge.
Now give your Gran a call and set up that bird watching date, you've got all the time in the world.
Do you cook once and eat twice? Any tips that you would like to share? Let me know in the comments below.
Lots of love,