“Hey, Morela! I’m a working woman and a single parent to two beautiful children. It can get somewhat tiring to cook every day with the limited time that I have. Can you tell me how I can make cooking less time-consuming with simple tips and tricks?”
Let’s face the unfortunate truth – a large population spends most of our day dealing with our responsibilities at work, less time sleeping, and even less time tending to home chores. Moreover, an average person spends only about an hour at most in the kitchen every day to cook. After all, it’s challenging for most of us to find the time it takes to whip up three meals a day.
If that’s also the case with you and you’d rather prepare healthy meals at home in significantly less time than opting for daily take-outs, I have good news for you. Fortunately, you can use simple tips and tricks to make cooking less time-consuming, even when you’re on a tight timeline.
If you’re wondering what those are, you can refer to the following section as your ultimate guide!
Make Weekly Meal Plans and Preparations
To minimize your cooking time in the kitchen, the first thing you can do is create weekly meal plans, prepping for them in advance. You can check your pantry to see what you have in stock to make a practical schedule. After that, you can slice up the veggies and meat required for each meal, making separate portions for them. This definitely comes in handy at cooking time.
Preheat Your Pots and Pans Before Cooking
Furthermore, cooking in a cold pan or pot translates to wasting time in the kitchen. Contrarily, when you preheat the pans, your food starts preparing the minute it hits the stovetop.
Preheating your oven before you begin compiling everything together can also save you several minutes in the kitchen as you prepare different meals and desserts.
Use Salted Water for Fast Boiling
Salting the water used for cooking pasta, lasagna sheets, veggies, and chicken broth can raise the liquid’s boiling point effectively. Using this tip, you can shave off a reasonable amount of time when preparing meals that require you to boil ingredients beforehand.
Cook Meat at Room Temperature
Cooking room temperature meat can also save you time in more than one way. First, frozen meat takes time to lose its external temperature as the condensation steams off on the stove. Secondly, while the outer layer may cook adequately in this case, the insides are usually unevenly cooked due to unbalanced division of heat. Ultimately, you need to lose extra minutes on turning that wrong into a right.
Put a Lid On It
When preparing meals, putting lids on the pots traps the heat inside, and this helps the food cook faster. Plus, you can even use modern-day pressure cookers for some dishes that take a lot of time to prepare so that they don’t put a dent in your schedule in any way.
Always Note Down Your Final Recipe
Not to mention, you should always write down your final recipe with correct measurements whenever you try something new. This saves time when you’re preparing the same meal the next time as you don’t have to test the spice balance and cooking time repeatedly.
Wash As You Cook
Using those extra minutes in between cooking when you’re free can be used to wash the dishes you’re already done with. Plus, lining your pans with aluminum foil where possible (for example, when grilling chicken) can cut down your cleaning time to a significant extent later on.
Use Baking Soda to Cook Lentils and Beans
Did you know adding some baking soda to water when soaking your lentils or beans can only speed up their cooking to up to fifty percent? If not, you can use this tip the next time to see the results in action.
Freeze Your Freshly Prepared Sauces and Soups for Later On
Lastly, preparing soups and sauces in large quantities and freezing them on the go can help save you a lot of time when you don’t have to repeat your chores every other day preparing the same thing.