Life is incredible if you are single, and most people validate it with first-hand experience. You get to live your way in your place, and your solo home is your haven. It is easy to enjoy freedom in everything you do, from decorating your living space to cooking meals of your choice. While the life of a solo cook sounds simple, it can easily get overwhelming if you don’t know the rules of cooking for singles.
Eating a bowl of cereal every second meal is easy, but it can eventually take a toll on your taste buds. But you may not want to spend time cooking a lavish buffet just for one. Things are extreme in either case, but you can ease the stress of solo cooking and make it enjoyable while having something delicious on your table. Here are some practical ideas worth trying.
Opt for mini-meals
Wastage and leftovers are the biggest concerns for solo cooks because you may end up cooking more than you need most times. You can overeat or gain weight because discarding food seems like a waste. It is best to look for singles recipes or do the required calculations with the original recipes. Choosing the right utensil is equally important to control portion size for your meals. Muffin tins and mugs can be real saviors when it comes to preventing wastage. You can easily cook cereals and noodles in a mug, while muffin tins are ideal for pot pies, quiche, meatloaf, bread, and baked goods. You save on ingredients and energy because smaller vessels require less time to heat up and complete the job. Check recipes for the mug and muffin tin cooking, and you will find more than you imagine.
Choose natural single servings
If you don’t want to stress over calculations, you can choose natural single servings for everyday cooking. Meals such as sandwiches, smoothies, and baked potatoes are naturally single-serve. You can add some condiments and personal touches to make them special. Try different types of fillings to create a new sandwich every day. A scoop of nut butter makes your smoothie velvety and delicious like never before. Similarly, you can make baked potatoes more interesting with different kinds of sweet and savory toppings. You only need to think like a creative chef to make restaurant-style single-serve dishes most effortlessly.
Party with a frozen meal
Single cooking shouldn’t be a punishment, eating cereals, salads, and sandwiches day in and day out. But you may not want to invest efforts to cook a party meal unless you have a friend to give you company. Right now, eating out is passé, and dining in is trending, so you must party at home even as a single. Thankfully, you can try frozen hot dogs, sandwiches, and chicken dishes to enjoy a lavish dinner at home. Look for a brand that uses the freshest and healthiest ingredients. The best thing about these frozen meals is that they require practically no prep time, so you can simply heat and eat.
Portion, pack, and freeze
Besides stocking up on frozen meals for your party days, you can have shortcuts for your regular meals too. The easiest thing to do is to portion, pack, and freeze. It will be a lot easier to get a pack out of the freezer, thaw it, and cook your favorite recipe in minutes. Even better, you can cut and chop the veggie portions into perfect sizes on a free day and use them throughout the week. You will not have to measure, weigh, or cut and can get to work straight away. It is a great idea if you are a busy professional working from home or coming back late from the office. You will have a lot less work to do, so there’s hardly a chance to opt for instant noodles after a long and tiring day.
Remix the leftovers
You may be the most judicious cook who goes the extra mile with weights and measurements. But leftovers are an integral part of single cooking, and you have to live with the idea of eating them for the next meal or even the next day. Just imagine how boring eating the same dish twice or thrice can get. But you can get creative and turn your leftovers into new dishes. It enables you to reduce food waste and save money. You can depend on your imagination or try a recipe you find online to cook up something delicious and unexpected with leftovers. For example, if you have some extra grilled steak left after last night, just slice it up and use it as a filling for wraps today.
Get smart with grocery shopping
When you live solo, having a loaded pantry does not make sense because things may end up expiring over time. But you need enough to carry you for a week if you shop for groceries every weekend. The best way to manage things is by getting smart with grocery shopping. Preparing your weekly menu before you visit the supermarket is a good idea. This way, you can have a list of stuff you will need over the week. Buy the right quantities of perishable items to avoid things from rotting if left unused. Check the staples and replenish them when they are close to running out. You can also explore the idea of ordering groceries online if you don’t want to stock up during weekends. Opt for versatile ingredients like eggs and veggies as you will have more options for single cooking with them.
Solo cooks can follow these smart tips and make life in the kitchen a lot easier. With these simple hacks, it will be easy to cook on the fly despite your busy schedule. At the same time, you need not worry about compromising taste and health. You can mix delicious recipes at home instead of ordering every second meal from outside. It makes sense to master the art of solo cooking right now because dining in is the safest option.