i should make a low-effort cookbook
like you get those ‘i hate to cook! 101: easy meals for the kitchen novice!’ and it still wants you to make a three-cheese spinach casserole
mine would be like
did you know you can put chocolate chips on a spoonful of peanut butter and obtain the perfect snack
did you know if you crack some eggs into your pasta sauce and stir there’s more protein in it so you can go longer without having to make another goddamn meal
did you know you can mix a cup of cooked rice to any condensed soup instead of water and now you have dinner and breakfast
also put cheese on it
put cheese on fucking everything
and finally here’s a list of things you can microwave in a short enough time that you won’t walk out of the kitchen, go back to bed, fall asleep for four hours, and totally forget you attempted a lunch
frozen pizza is expensive but! biscuits in a can + last dregs of jar of tomato sauce + some shredded mozzarella cheese = EIGHT MINIPIZZAS
dump all your chinese delivery into a hot pan and crack two eggs into it, stir, now it is soft and good
if you add a kraft single to mac and cheese from the box it’s magically more delicious (and if you also add hot sauce then it’s spicy)
nachos: chips + shredded cheese + salsa + rummage in fridge in case there’s other things? and then under the broiler for a minute or two. if it’s hot it counts as a meal! works good on stale chips.
an incomplete list of vegetables that won’t instantly rot on you: anything frozen, cauliflower, cherry tomatoes (they get wrinkly but u can still eat them), carrots, onions…i throw away a lot of veggies that have gone soft 😦
i love parchment paper. $4 for a roll but lay it down on ur baking sheet and know you’ll never have to scrub cheese or cookie crumbs off it again. perfect for cooking with low spoons. nothing sticks to it!
THIS IS SO IMPORTANT
also: mug cakes
also also: if you cook rice you might as well dump some canned tomatos and canned beans in it. TADA NUTRITIONALLY COMPLETE MEALS
in the list of foods that last: apples. apples can last an entire fucking winter.
also also also: cottage cheese + bell peppers + crackers = what I ate for dinner for like a year
1. You cook the rice in a pot. No spices, no nothing, just water oil and rice.
2. Just before it’s ready, when there’s about a pinkie fingernail’s worth of water on the top, add in a tablespoon of peanut butter.
3. Stir. Cook the rest of the way.
4. It’s a meal! It has carbs and protein, it’s filling, it tastes good and it looks and feels like a legitimate dish, which is great for lifting the spirits a bit.
5. If you feel fancy, add a teaspoon of honey or a handful of crushed peanuts.
Alt., mix the rice with lentils. Cereal (rice, wheat) + legume (lentils, beans) = complete protein. Most people’s bodies will accept that in lieu of animal products.
Since no-one explained how to cook rice: (1) put bit of oil in pot,
heat up on medium flame, (2) add 1-1.5 cup rice, mix up and add a bit of
salt (you may need to reduce flame), (3) while you’re doing that, boil
water in an electric pot, (4) add 2 cup water for each 1 cup rice;
reduce flame a few seconds before you do that and mind the steam won’t hit you, (5) cover and set a 20min timer.
Pasta: (1) boil water, lots of water (covered pot goes fast; you can also use an electric pot for a shortcut and bring to a full boil on the stove – experiment), (2) up to 100 gr pasta per 1L water will work, but the more water per pasta the better, (3) reduce flame to medium (light bubbling), add pasta, set time to 10min, (4) check and add time as necessary – you may not need to.
Egg or bean noodled cook faster than pasta – like, half the time.
Easiest pasta sauce: 20-50gr of butter, melt; 1-2tbs lemon juice,
homogenize; dump in pasta (and possibly peas, boiled from frozen). Taken
5min or under and will liven up pasta that’s been sitting in the
Easiest cream sauce: 1 standard (250ml) cream carton, 1
tsp shredded cheese (keeps well in freezer) or more, 1 tbs cottage
cheese, spices to taste. Heat in a small pot on a small-to-medium flame
while stirring constantly (if it’s too hot to stick a finger in, it’s
too hot). Takes maybe 5-10min. Will keep in fridge up to 1 week.
Rice freezes well. Pasta doesn’t. Plain pasta (and most noodles) will last for up to a month in the fridge, though, and just dump it in the pan with some ketchup/tomato paste(+oil + water) and you’re good.
…nobody said that dry onion lasts? Dry onion lasts. Fried onion freezes well and keeps forever. So does diced garlic. If you
like ‘em but worried about them going bad/don’t always have the time or
spoons to deal with ‘em, there you go.
Fresh bread freezes well. Keep emergency bread
in your freezer, sliced. It’ll thaw in the fridge/on the counter
overnight, or you can stick a slice as-is in the toaster (just turn it
up 1 notch relative to your usual preference).
Potatoes in their peel are the single most nutritious food. (You can, actually, survive on mashed potatoes.) A boiled potato will stay good in the fridge for a couple days. Boil partway (should still somewhat resist a fork), turn over/toaster oven on 150C (350F) or higher while you do the rest, slice potato(s), spread like deck of cards, brush oil over (with the sort of silicone brush one uses for eggs – costs next to nothing and you’ll be glad you got it), bit of salt, stick into oven and come back 20-40min later. Will re-heat well.
All of the following are good in eggs, just (1) dump them in the pan before the eggs, (2) the more you fluff up the eggs the betters: cubed semi-boiled potatoes, sliced/cubed tomatoes, tinned garbanzo beans (<-legume), tinned/frozen corn. Tinned and frozen stuff lasts forever. A pre-boiled potato and a couple eggs will save your ass on a cold, miserable morning.
3 shortbread cookies + 2 glasses of milk = 500kcal balanced dinner. Or breakfast.
1 cup cooked pasta + couple fluffed up eggs + shredded cheese (from
frozen) to taste, in a stove-top pan or in the oven for ~20min = full
Black lentils, cooked, will last nicely in the fridge – and
unlike other legumes, they don’t need a pre-soak and only take 20min to
cook. ½ bowl + 3 tbs oil + 2 tsp lemon juice + ¼ onion = dinner so
nutritious you won’t believe it.
Cottage cheese and honey. No really. You only need a couple tsp honey for 250gr cottage tub.
1tbs peanut butter (flat as you can make it) + 3 tbs soy + 2 tbs maple/honey + 1 tsp vinegar = marinade for ~500gr of whatever. Takes ~5min to mix, 20min-2hr to soak, 5-10min to fry (non-stick pan and you don’t need oil). This + pot of rice (<-make while chicken/meat soaks) = lunch for a week. (Or dinner, if dinner’s your main meal.)
A tin of mayonnaise will last for months in the fridge. Hardboiled eggs last a nice while, too. 3 hardboiled eggs, chopped + 1tbs mayo + 1/3 onion chopped = 5min of work and egg salad for a few highly nutritious meals.
Ever make yourself hot chocolate? Make it with milk instead of water, for fuck’s sake. A large cup of hot chocolate is a legit small meal.
Buy broccoli and green beans frozen. For a couple dollars you can get a big enough bag of either to get at least 8-10 servings out of it and it keep for at least 6 months if you keep the bag closed. Buy a jar of chopped garlic in olive oil as well. That’ll keep in your fridge for months and adding a little bit to a handful of broccoli or green beans and sauteing(lightly browning them in a pan or pot on the stove) them together until everything is warm is a cheap, easy way to have a flavorful snack or meal.
Also, ramen, drop an egg and a handful of some kind of frozen veggie(the previously mentioned ones or even some mixed carrots and peas) it adds a lot of nutritional value to your ramen, makes it so much more filling, and makes it have way better flavor than plain ramen.
Buy a jar of Better than Bouillon. Amazon has them for as cheep as $2.99 a jar and one jar has enough in it to make a couple gallons of broth. Just one teaspoon of this stuff added to 1 cup of water will give you a deliciously broth for soup. Pick your flavor and drop whatever veggies or noodles you’ve got leftover in the fridge and you’ve got dinner. It’s also great to add to the water you’re cooking your rice in to give it some flavor as well.
Don’t buy boxed Kraft mac and cheese. It may seem like an easy approach but there is a cheaper approach. A 3 lb bag of macaroni noodles is only a couple dollars and you can get a 1 lb bag of the powdered cheese just like in Kraft for $10 on Amazon. I bought a bag of cheese powder that size and it lasted me more than a year and I made mac and cheese once a week. You can also mix it with milk and broccoli and you’ve got a great dinner of broccoli cheese soup.
My biggest tip for saving money on food is to make things that will freeze well. Say you make a pot of spaghetti. You could get 5 or 6 servings out of a full pot easily, if not more, but you’ll get tired of spaghetti before it’s gone. Stick servings in plastic baggies(which are fine to rinse and reuse!) and freeze them! Then you’ll be able to take out just the amount to eat for a meal and have some back up meals for when you’re loaded down with work, homework, etc and have no time to make a meal.
ALL OF THIS
fried rice: cook a ton of rice, get some frozen veggies, whatever you like. Fry the veggies in olive oil for a couple minutes, add the rice. whisk two eggs and about a tablespoon of soy sauce. Add in. Cook until no longer wet.
Tada – comfort food, you can freeze it, it tastes good, complete meal.
Also rice and pasta sauce is surprisingly good.
my low spoons staple: packaged tuna with a tablespoon of pickle relish (YMMV) and mustard, eat with fork or with crackers/chips. I eat the whole thing in the package (not cans) of tuna – ta da, low effort and no need to wash dishes
I buy individually frozen chicken breasts or tenderloins in the giant family size, and I’ll cut one up after microwaving it for a minute to defrost it and cook it with the store brand of those pasta or rice and sauce side dishes. My favorite is the broccoli and cheese. They use water and a little milk, cost about a dollar, and are ready in about ten minutes. Super yum.
Everything in this is good. Thank you!