I’m not particularly fast at cooking – part of the reason I’ve probably never really enjoyed it much. There have been many times we’ve ended up eating out or picking up fast food because I don’t plan enough in advance (apparently pork chops take 2-3 days to defrost in the fridge??) or because I have a recipe in mind, and then when I start to get everything together and really read the recipe, I see that it’s going to take 2 hours (which in my world is about 4 hours).
This is still a struggle for me, but not as much as it used to be. Having kids has forced me to learn a bit more about cooking, and through trial and error I’ve managed to come up with some tricks to shorten preparation time, or even just some go-to quick meals that I can even involve the girls in the preparation.
I know I can’t be the only one who struggles with this, so I want to share these tips and meal ideas here to hopefully help those who want to keep on a budget and cook at home more. Be forewarned though: most, if not all, of my ideas involve *some* kind of packaged food – this isn’t all from scratch. I am pretty careful about what kinds of packaged foods I buy, so overall the meals should be fairly healthy.
Likely you won’t find anything new, or innovative (I’ve got a ways to go before I can be that kind of cook!), and you may even see some ideas you’ve seen elsewhere. Pinterest has been a great source for me on this (with plenty of failed experiments as well!)
To make this easier in case my list gets long (it’ll be awhile), I’ll add to this post and link to the ideas as I’m able to post them.