Winter's officially begin, and it's clear as you-know-what that nights have become much longer, and days, shorter. The earlier sunset can often translate into not wanting to cook at night: coming home to a pitch-black house and cooking dinner from scratch can be daunting during these cold weather months. On the flip side, however, eating out every night can be harmful on wallets (and waistlines!). With a little bit of planning and prep work, we can all look forward to delicious home-cooked meals. Here are five tips for Winter weeknight cooking.
- Prep on the weekends. After your weekend trip to the grocery store, wash and prepare your produce for the week ahead. Greens should be rinsed, wrapped in paper towels, and stored in a plastic bag in the refrigerator. If possible, avoid pre-cutting produce, as fruits and vegetables rapidly begin to lose nutrients once they are cut.
- Live by the one-pot meal. Cooking meals in only one pot will help control the mess, which means less clean-up for you! Examples of one-pot meals include paella, casseroles, and chili, among many others.
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- Dust off that Crock-Pot. Slow cook an amazing, flavorful meal to be enjoyed when you get home. Try a lamb tagine, Cuban braised beef and peppers, or chicken stew with white wine.
- Consider intentional leftovers. Make strategic meals on weekends that will give you lots of leftovers to play with for the week. Roast a chicken on a Sunday and make salads and quesadillas from the leftover meat, and chicken soup from the carcass. Make a frittata out of leftover pasta and use up almost anything in your refrigerator in empanadas.
- Don't forget about breakfast for dinner. Scrambled eggs and omelets aren't just for the morning. They're really easy to whip up and served with a side salad or avocado toast — these protein-rich meals will leave you satisfied.