Generally most people would prefer a homemade meal at the end of the day. Homemade meals tend to have less sodium, fat and better quality ingredients. The most common reasons for not making a homemade meal are not having enough time, running out of ideas, and a lack of energy. Here are some tips to make homemade meals more of a reality at your home.
- Invest in a slow cooker. You can prepare the meal in the morning and walk in to the wonderful smells of dinner.
- Look online for a few new recipes. Focus on meals that are one meal wonders and those that take less than 30 minutes to prepare. One of my favorites is www.allrecipes.com; they even have an app for that can be downloaded on your I Pad. This is an easy way to get a tried and true recipe the entire family will enjoy.
- Make a grocery list according to your menu. This will take a little time, but save you time and money in the long run. Also who wants to think about what’s for dinner after a long day? Planning ahead makes it easier to answer the question, “What’s for dinner?”
- Set aside some time on the weekends to prepare some meals in advance. Make foods in advance and freeze them. Soups, stews, and casseroles, are at the top of the list.
- Make dinner a family affair. You can take some of the burden off you by having the husband or the kids help out in the kitchen. Don’t be afraid to give little ones task to do. You will be surprised to find out how well children can snap peas or season foods. (I know this from experience.)
I hope these tips help you in dodging the fast food lane or just saying no to take out at least a few times a week.
Erika Watson-Lawson is a registered dietitian with Memorial Hospital.