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5 savy strategies for simple, savory meals

Fresh or frozen veggies and precooked meat can help you stir fry a savory meal in minutes.
Fresh or frozen veggies and precooked meat can help you stir fry a savory meal in minutes.
Photo by Cindy Ord

Are you tired of takeout, but can't bear the thought of figuring out what's for dinner when you're already tired and hungry? Believe it or not, it doesn't take an energetic, ultra organized, super cook to enjoy a delicious homecooked meal several times a week. Whether you're coping with single life, juggling work and family or struggling with chronic illness, you can develop ways to make tasty, healthy meals a priority. No, you don't have to eat out every night or move back in with Mom. With these easy tips, which you can tweak to your own taste, you can create your own flexible food plan that's both nutritious and delicious.

Basic Tips for Culinary Ease

  1. Herbs and spices are the difference between dull and delicious. You could cook the same basic dishes every night but create a totally different dining experience based on the seasonings you use.It's okay to use shortcuts.
  2. A busy person can use conviences like frozen chopped onions, a bag of grated cabbage or a jar of spaghetti sauce instead of simmering "from scratch" on the stove all day. Frozen vegetables are fresh and nutritious. Certain brands of canned goods are almost as good as home cooked. Luck's Pinto Beans, Glory Greens and Glory Green Beans are among those.
  3. Precooking things like ground beef with onions and freezing in portions suitable for your planned meals, or boiling a dozen eggs in advance for quick tuna salad prep can make cooking easy when you're short on time or energy.
  4. Choose 5 or 6 easy meal plans to depend on. Buy deli meat and cheese to stuff potatoes or omelettes, or top a chef's salad. Use your precooked ground beef and onions as a short cut to spaghetti, Mexican style dishes, vegetable soup and many other dishes. Use the boiled eggs for tuna salad or chef's salad. Boneless chicken breasts or chicken thighs (cooked in bulk, in your Crockpot) can be used in everything from Chicken Teriyaki to Fajitas.
  5. Try new recipes or dishes that require longer cooking on days you have extra time to enjoy the process. Be sure to make enough to have leftovers. Most things really are better the next day, after the flavors mingle.

These tips can help you cook savory, nutritious meals even when you're exhausted or not feeling well, which is when you need it most. Quicking cooking sure beats fast food any day.

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