Sunday, May 8, 2011

Too Tired to Cook--Low effort meals

I am pooped.  After digging out (by hand) two garden beds today, I really didn't feel like making dinner.  Again.  I've been having this problem a lot lately, so I figured I should just make a list of ways to handle this.  After all, I'm sure I'm not the only person that ever has this problem.

So here are some ideas for handling being too tired to cook--without hitting the drive-thru:

1) Plan ahead and have dinner waiting for you in the crockpot.  There are lots of crockpot recipes out there, but I don't have very many developed yet, since I just started using one recently.  Don't have time that morning to put together a crockpot meal?  Throw everything in the pot the night before and refrigerate it until the next morning when it is time to turn the crockpot on.

2) Salads.  Throw some lettuce, maybe some other veggies, meats, and/or cheeses in a bowl, you have a near instant meal.  During the summer, this can be almost free too, since a lot of this, if not all, can come right out of the garden!

3) Precook parts of the meal and combine at the last minute.  This can be something like my make-ahead meatballs, browning some ground meat, or having chicken pieces cut or torn up for something.  Have cheese preshredded (don't buy it that way unless you can get a really, really good sale of course!) and veggies cut up and ready to use.

The Freezer Cooking Manual from 30 Day Gourmet: A Month of Meals Made Easy
4) Have some complete meals precooked and frozen, ready to just pop in the oven.  Pasties are my favorite of this kind of meal, but lasagna works well for this too, as do a lot of other meals.

5) Have ingredients on hand to make something fresh and fast.  Tacos can be made very quickly (especially if you have the meat cooked and the veggies and cheese already cut up as mentioned above!), so can spaghetti.  In a pinch, even grilled cheese sandwiches and tomato soup is a more palatable, cheaper and healthier option than hitting a fast food place!

6) Breakfast for dinner.  Not something we do around here a lot, but it is still a valid option!

Here some books you can turn to for more ideas and recipes to make dinner when you are too tired to cook:


What are some of your meal ideas for things that are fast and easy for those nights you are too tired to cook?

1 comment:

  1. Eggs, I love how quick they are. You can make great omelets using up all the odd pieces of veggies and other leftovers. Bonus even my pastured eggs are an economical meal for a family at $2 a dozen