Looking to bring some simplicity to your life? Start in your kitchen.
Cooking can be a frustrating experience to many or a mundane chore to others, but imagine for a moment that it’s an enjoyable time, maybe even spent with family and friends.
A great way to make that leap from frustrating or mundane to enjoyable is to simplify your recipes.
Let’s look at five reasons to cook with fewer ingredients and bring some fun times to your kitchen.
1. Less Shopping Hassle
As much as I’m sure we all appreciate our local grocers and the thought they’ve put into making shopping experiences enjoyable, the last thing we want to do is spend any more time there than necessary.
By using fewer ingredients in recipes, we can whittle shopping lists down. This means less food items to search for and buy and even less utensils and hardware needed in our kitchens.
That equates to less time spent roaming grocery store aisles and kitchen gadget shops and more time for the things you want to do.
2. Cooking Is So Much Easier
Let’s face it. A cookbook filled with complicated recipes and a long list of ingredients can be overwhelming, some may even say scary.
A simple recipe with just a few ingredients looks inviting. You might actually look forward to cooking since it takes less time and energy, and you’re much less likely to say, “let’s just order a pizza.”
And the best part about easy cooking… easy cleanup.
3. It’s Wayyyyyy Cheaper!
In so many ways and on so many levels, it is cheaper to have fewer ingredients.
First, the obvious… fewer ingredients means less items to buy and a shorter receipt at the cash register.
Next, since your recipes aren’t complicated and overwhelming, you’re more likely to cook and actually USE the food you buy instead of letting it rot in your refrigerator while you eat out or order in.
And finally, no matter how you look at it, cooking is cheaper than eating out.
According to Trent Hamm, author of “365 Ways To Live Cheap,” a family of two adults and two teenagers would save about $35 by eating a simple meal at home instead of eating out (based on $4 per meal, per person for a meal prepared in the home vs. an average cost of $12.75 per meal, per person for a meal eating out).
4. Your Family Can Help
Using simple recipes makes cooking more inviting and feasible for the entire family to join in.
You and your significant other may want to share a drink and talk over your day as you put your meal together.
The easier the process is, the more likely anyone can handle the cooking for your family, making it a great learning experience for kids and a fun, bonding time for all.
5. Simpler Food Is Healthier Food
Know what you’re eating! Always check the ingredients of the food items you buy.
I’ve seen many recipes hyping “Less Ingredients” that called for soups, soup mixes and other items with loads of artificial junk in them. That is NOT healthier, simpler food.
Below is a list of ingredients from a favorite soup mix used in countless “easy” recipes:
“Onions (deyhydrated), salt, cornstarch, onion powder, sugar, corn syrup, hydrolyzed soy protein, caramel color, partially hydrogenated soybean oil, monosodium glutamate, yeast extract, natural flavors, disodium inosinate, disodium guanylate.”
There are far better alternatives that not only taste better, they actually nourish your body.
One of my favorite ways to make chicken is a great example of simple, healthy and tasty.
Less For More Life Chicken
Take a whole raw chicken and rub it with olive oil and your favorite herbs and spices along with some salt and pepper. (I love fresh rosemary, basil and thyme on mine.) Place a sliced onion in the bottom of a slow cooker and put your chicken on top. Cook all day and enjoy! It doesn’t get much simpler… or better.
If you try the chicken recipe above, let us know how it turns out! I will explore some websites in a future post that have many simple, healthy and delicious recipes.
In the meantime, we’d love to hear from you! Please share some of your favorite simple recipes in the comments below or on our Facebook page.