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4 ways to make cooking fast and easy

Posted on December 21 2015

Couple cooking

When you get home from a long day at the office, the last thing you probably want to think about is cooking - after all, ordering takeout is so much easier! However, getting your food delivered all the time doesn't just get expensive, it isn't very healthy either. If you plan ahead and figure out a system that works for you, making meals at home doesn't have to be a pain in the neck. Here are four ways to make cooking fast and easy:

1. Create menus

Planning what you're going to eat in advance can definitely save you time in the kitchen. Think about what you want to eat during the week and create a menu. Ellie Krieger, RD, host of Healthy Appetite on the Food Network, told Cooking Light Magazine she plans her meals by figuring out which three proteins she will eat for the week.

"If I buy a rotisserie chicken, I prepare a salad one night and chicken tacos the next," Krieger explained. "If I'm making roasted pork loin with veggies on Monday, I may use the leftover for pulled-pork sandwiches Wednesday night."

2. Keep your freezer and pantry stocked

Bon Appétit recommends storing chicken stock, bread, sausage, peas and shrimp in your freezer and garlic, onions, rice, potatoes, tomatoes, olive oil and canned beans in your pantry. If you always have these foods on hand, it'll be much easier to whip up a meal. For example, sausage is great to add to pastas, salads and grain bowls. You can keep these foods fresh longer by storing them in vacuum sealer bags.

3. Batch cook

When you have extra time one weekend, think about cooking in bulk. Pre-cook the upcoming week's meals and store them in your freezer. Imagine how nice it will be having a meal ready for you when you come home from work. Since air in a freezer can lead to the dreaded freezer burn, it's a good idea to store the meals in vacuum sealer bags.

4. Sharpen your knives

You will be able to chop your vegetables and fruits much faster if you keep your knives sharp. The 30 Minute Dinner Party recommends using a large blade chef's knife and getting it sharpened by a professional once a year.

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