Home cooking time savers for Nutrition Month

Do you love the idea of home cooked meals but struggle with time? Could you use some easy ideas and tips?

Do you love the idea of home cooked meals but struggle with time? Could you use some easy ideas and tips for bringing tasty lunches to work and school?  Well you are not alone!

Simply Cook and Enjoy is this year’s Nutrition Month theme. Simply Cook and Enjoy focuses on helping families get back to the basics of preparing foods at home.  Cooking from scratch does not need to be complicated. Combine a few basic ingredients with a little preparation time and you can enjoy tasty meals in no time.

Food prepared at home tastes way better and saves money. Nothing beats homemade food. Here are some simple tips to help inspire you and your family to make wholesome foods a part of your daily routine.

Don’t be afraid to ask for helping hands.

More hands in the kitchen means more help with preparation, set up and clean up. Ask for involvement or set up a weekly schedule that works for each helper. Sharing basic kitchen skills with your family is good for everyone. The kitchen is also a great place for families to catch up and connect.

A little planning goes a long way.

Planning meals for the week helps provide variety and makes getting meals on the table so much easier.  Keep a grocery list near the fridge and write down items that you need as the week goes by.  While you are cooking, try cutting up extra vegetables or grating extra cheese and then storing it in air tight containers. They will come in handy next time you toss a salad, stuff a sandwich, pack a lunch or need to quickly steam or sauté a side of veggies.

Be creative with leftovers.

Food made for dinner can be enjoyed again the next day. Leftover roasted chicken can be used in a wrap or sandwich, added to soups, or used as a topping for salads. Save time by cooking a little extra and freezing it in small containers for quick, wholesome lunches to go.

If these ideas whet your appetite for home cooking you can find more practical cooking tips and quick, easy recipes at www.nutritionmonth.ca or visit www.cookspiration.com and download the Dietitians of Canada’s free iPhone and iPad app.

Leslie Coates, Interior Health