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Cooking tips for the lazy chef

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Cooking wasn’t something I ever did until I moved into my first apartment sans a roommate - and that was just three years ago, which means I was at the end of my 20-somethings. How’d I make it through life thus far?

My mother’s a fabulous cook and when I moved out of my parents’ house, I survived on raw foods and the occasional fried egg.

Finally, my grownup gene kicked in and I discovered that not only did I enjoy cooking, but I was kind of good at it, too. Sometimes, though, I revert back to my childish ways and whine about how I don’t want to even look in the fridge or turn the oven on.

Ordering pizza every night gets expensive and it’s a necessity to know a few cooking tips for when you’re extra lazy.

Microwaved Potatoes

Personally, I want to run out right now to buy some potatoes just so I can eat them within 10 minutes. Microwave ‘taters until they’re halfway done, then either cook-mash them or fry them in olive oil. Or, if even that’s too much trouble, just microwave them the whole way, plop some butter and sour cream on there and eat them while reclining in front of the TV.


“How can pasta get any easier?” you ask? Spaghetti is the go-to meal for non-cooks everywhere, but I bet you didn’t know that you can make this simple dish even less complicated. Soak the pasta in cold water into it’s almost the consistency you like and then finish cooking it right in the sauce. Oh, you didn’t notice the whole “wait forever for the water to boil” step? That’s because it’s been entirely cut out. Sheet Pan Meal

This is kind of like a one-pot meal, but without all that difficult stovetop stirring. Toss sausage and cut-up veggies in some olive oil, salt, and pepper, lay them out on a sheet pan and bake at 400F. When things start to get fragrant, give it a look. The veggies should be a little brown around the edges and the sausage should be, well, cooked and hot. If you have potatoes in there, give them a little more time than everything else.

Whipped Cream

Whipped cream is not an essential food item, you say? Tell me that when I’m snowed in for the third day in a row and I’m surviving mainly on hot chocolate. Put a bit of sugar and some cream in a Mason jar, then shake, shake, shake. Just don’t fill the jar more than a quarter of the way and don’t over-shake.

Crazy Easy Salad

Salad ain’t exactly “cooking,” but it is food arrangement resulting in a meal, so just go with me. If you’re like me, you often have a full head of lettuce at the bottom of your refrigerator with nothing to top it with because you used all your veggies for breading and frying.

Next time you’re at the grocery store, make a couple tubs of antipasto and pasta dishes from the deli or self-serve bar. Then, next time you want a crisp lunch, dump the prepared food on top of the lettuce (cleaned, please) and voila, instant salad.


Okay, you’re not lazy. Love cooking but just don’t have the time to devote to three healthy meals a day?

You probably have one “down” day a week, and if you enjoy cooking, making a bunch of food will be relaxing. Cook to your heart’s content and freeze the week’s meals, then put the next day’s food in the fridge the night before to defrost.

Note: Content contributions from Lana Marston, a professional blogger that shares cooking advice. She writes for, where you can find a large selection of delicious recipes.

Contact: Marv Dumon at



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