Contents

How to eat healthy if you don’t like cooking

Choose convenience foods wisely

With so many of us leading busy lives, there are more and more convenience foods popping up on our supermarket shelves. These may have gotten a bad reputation in recent years as being high in calories, fat, salt, sugar and unwanted additives. But the recent demand for healthy foods means that nowadays, there are lots of healthier convenience foods available too – if you just know what to look for. So next time you’re looking for a quick, healthy meal at the supermarket, keep an eye out for things like:

  • microwaveable pouches of grains like brown rice and quinoa
  • tinned pulses like lentils or chickpeas
  • ready-made salads
  • chopped and ready-to-cook vegetables (both fresh and frozen varieties)
  • bake in the bag or tinned fish
  • vegetable soups (look for low-salt varieties and avoid cream-based ones)

Get to know your labels

If you’re buying pre-made and packaged convenience foods, then it’s important to learn how to read the ingredients and nutritional labels on the packet. That way you can make an informed decision on what to buy. Here are a few things to remember when checking the labels on packaged food:

  • Use the traffic light labels on the front of packets to get an overview of the nutritional value of the product. These list how much calories, fat, salt and sugar is in that food and places them into either green, amber or red categories. Choose foods with more green categories than red wherever possible.
  • Ingredients are listed in order of how much is in the product. So for example if sugar is the first ingredient named, that means the food contains mostly sugar and might not be the healthiest option.
  • Remember that there can sometimes be lots of other names for some common nutrients. For example sugar may be listed as dextrose, maltose, molasses, fructose, glucose and invert sugar.
  • Use apps to figure out if the product is a good choice, or if you could pick a better brand. For example, the FoodSwitch app allows you to scan the barcode of a food using your phone and lets you know if it’s high in fat, sugar or salt. It may also suggest a similar product which is healthier for you to buy instead.

If in doubt, try to remember that:

Low salt: ≤ 0.3g per 100 grams

Low fat: ≤ 3g per 100 grams

Low sugar: ≤ 5g per 100 grams

Snack healthy

Most snacks don’t require any cooking at all. So if your stomach begins to growl between meals, try not to reach for processed or sugary foods like chocolate or crisps. Instead, choose wholesome and healthy snacks like:

  • fresh fruit
  • chopped vegetable sticks and dip
  • a small handful of unsalted nuts and dried fruit
  • low-sugar cereal bars
  • low-fat and low-sugar yoghurts

Create your own smoothies

Smoothies are a great way to get lots of vitamins, minerals and fibre into your diet without having to cook. There are lots of pre-made varieties available to buy. But they’re also quick and easy to make yourself with a huge range of recipes to choose from. Simply throw your choice of fruit, vegetables, yoghurt, milk, nuts and seeds into a blender. Add avocado or nut butter to give it a creamy texture, or throw in a tablespoon of flaxseeds or chia seeds for a dose of heart healthy omega-3. You could try making your own smoothie in the evening so it’s ready to grab and go the next day for a nutritious breakfast or snack.

Remember that one small glass (150ml) of smoothie counts as maximum one portion of your 5-a-day, even if it contains more than one different type of fruit or vegetables.

Make cooking as easy as possible

If you do decide to get in the kitchen, making a healthy, home cooked meal doesn’t have to mean spending hours over the stove. There are lots of recipe books, websites and apps filled with quick and easy ‘five-minute meal’ ideas for you to experiment with. So start easy and look up a simple new recipe to get you inspired. You could also try investing in some easy-to-use cooking equipment, such as a slow cooker or a soup maker that does most of the hard work for you. Use these to make healthy one-pot meals and hearty vegetable soups. Use frozen or pre- chopped vegetables to make it even easier.

Cook in bulk

Make the most of any time you do spend cooking by making big batches so there’s always some leftover for another meal. For example, if you’re making a jacket potato, cook two or three so you have some ready for the week ahead. Or if you’re roasting seasonal vegetables on the weekend, make a large tray full so you’ve got plenty to eat during the week. For recipes like soups, stews and chillis, put whatever you don’t eat into individual portions and into the freezer ready for another day.

Make healthy choices when eating out

Of course, the easiest way of eating without cooking is to eat out. Not only can you catch up with friends but you’ll also skip on the washing up. But if you’re eating out a lot, try making healthy and informed choices where you can. The following might help.

  • Think about where you’re eating and pick a healthier cuisine such as Japanese or vegetarian over fast food outlets and all you can eat buffets.
  • Swap add-ons like fries or garlic bread for a healthy side of mixed salad or steamed vegetables.
  • Choose sugar-free and low-calorie soft drinks or water over fizzy or alcoholic drinks.
  • Choose grilled, baked or steamed dishes instead of deep fried, creamed, buttered or battered options.
  • Enjoy fish, seafood or chicken rather than red meat dishes.
  • Don’t arrive too hungry. You might be more likely to order a large, unhealthy meal and lots of sides. It might also help to have a look at the menu online beforehand and decide what to order before you go.
  • Wait a little while before ordering dessert to allow your main meal to reach your stomach and register that you’re satisfied. If you still fancy a sweet treat, opt for a sorbet or fruit salad or share one with a friend.

Quick and easy meal ideas

If you feel inspired to dust off your apron and release your inner Nigella, here are a few of my favourite healthy meals that take just a few minutes to prepare to help you get started.

Breakfast

  • Mashed avocado on wholemeal toast with lemon juice and cracked pepper.
  • Poached egg on wholemeal toast.
  • Microwaveable or ’just add water’ porridge oats (choose low-sugar sachets).
  • Wholegrain, low-sugar cereal such as wheat biscuits with low fat milk and fruit.
  • A fruit smoothie.

Lunch

  • Jacket potato or sweet potato topped with a tin of tuna or baked beans.
  • Chicken and salad wholemeal wrap.
  • A no-cook mezze board of olives, vegetable sticks, falafel, tabbouleh, wholemeal pitta and hummus.
  • Sushi or ramen.

Dinner

  • Vegetable and noodle stir fry.
  • Baked fish with oven roasted vegetables and microwaveable brown rice.
  • Grilled chicken breast with mixed salad and tinned pulses like chickpeas.

Are you interested in learning more about your health? Discover more about our range of health assessments.

Balancing Your Food Intake

Not everybody can cook healthy meals all the time. Some of us travel, others live with family members and having a special menu is not an option and others simply don’t have time to cook. That however doesn’t mean you can’t eat healthily.

Let’s establish, for a moment, a baseline for healthy eating, There are two things you need to keep in mind:

  • Getting enough nutrients to help your body build and maintain itself.
  • Not overloading on carbohydrates, sugar and salt.

Sure there are questions about calories, vitamins and protein but they are all about fine-tuning a process rather than jump-starting it and really it’s that baseline foundation we need to address, first. How do you maintain even a semblance of healthy eating if you’re on the road and all you have access to is fast food? How do you make sure your body gets everything you need when you don’t have time to cook yourself or if you do no cooking whatsoever because someone else is in charge of it? How do you get a healthy diet if you’re a student on a budget or are running a large family?

To answer these questions we need to look at the basics. What is it you need to have a healthy body?

What kind of nutrition are we talking about exactly and how can it be achieved? There are two basic requirements any body needs:

  • Fuel
  • Building materials

Without the first it cannot even get started. Without the second there is going to be no growth or development and even basic maintenance of muscles and joints will suffer. To achieve all this we need a diet that provides six basic ingredients:

  • Carbohydrates
  • Protein
  • Fat
  • Vitamins
  • Minerals
  • Water

You need carbohydrates for energy, protein for building and repair, fat for back-up energy, vitamins and minerals to maintain healthy body functions and water to keep you alive.

The trick is to get all the ingredients to balance just right. Every diet, even a fast-food one, will have carbohydrates and fat. It will most probably also contain some protein or provide some of the basic amino acids for the body to synthesize it.

Rather than obsessing over getting each ingredient just right here’s what you need to focus on:

Water. Always make sure you’re properly hydrated. This will not only help your body work right but it will also help your digestion which is even more important when you’re not eating all the right foods.

Carbohydrates & Fats. If your diet is super-rich in carbohydrates (sugars, bread, past and rice, for example) and you also have some animal fat, you need to make sure you’re not eating more than you need. Exercise portion control by eating perhaps half your lunch (or going without lunch if you do no exercise that day). Shaolin monks eat the heaviest meal of the day at breakfast so they can have the energy they need to train during the day. They have a slightly lighter lunch and less food in the evening. Try doing that, reducing portions from breakfast to dinner and see how it works in terms of your energy requirements.

Vitamins & Minerals. Try and have some vegetables and fruit as opportunity presents itself. Again without obsessing about it, this will take care of some of your body’s vitamin and mineral requirements and it will also provide protein for growth and repairs.

Protein. There are more misconceptions about protein than any other of the key ingredients necessary for a healthy body. Ideally you should be eating low-fat meat because it’s easy to digest and it gives you a handy protein source, but if you don’t cook, can’t cook, are on the go and your diet is not entirely in your control, pretty much anything you eat will contain some form of protein or the building blocks necessary to synthesize it. That includes iceberg lettuce and tomatoes (they both contain protein). As a matter of fact the World Health Organization (WHO) report on nutrition lists Brown Rice, Tomatoes, Potatoes, Green Peppers, Corn, Lettuce (iceberg),Celery, Cucumbers, Oats, Carrots, Broccoli and Pinto Beans as excellent sources of protein. Meat makes life easier but not having access to regular amounts cooked well is not an issue.

Eat What You Can, When You Can

All of this should give you an idea of your nutrition strategy: eat what you can, when you can, monitoring only the amount of food you choose to eat in direct relation to the amount of exercise you are doing. The ‘wrong’ food will not be a problem because we rarely stay on it long enough for it to become an issue. But the wrong amounts of the wrong food is an issue as it overloads our system with calories we don’t need and should not have to process.

So, summing up, you can pretty much eat anything you like provided:

  • Your diet is varied in the long term and you don’t end up on a fast-food diet for months on end;
  • You don’t eat more than you need to stay active – keep your portions small on low activity days;

And that really should take care of most obsessions over food, specific macrobiotic diets, the ‘right’ kind of protein (there is no such thing, all protein is just protein) and so-called ‘performance’ diets.

How to “Eat Healthy” When You Don’t Like to Cook

I’ve never liked to cook. Many years ago, when I started trying to make better food choices, I tried forcing myself to cook in hopes that I’d eventually learn to enjoy it. It wasn’t until recently I finally came to terms with the cold, hard truth: I loathe cooking.

However, I love eating, and it’s important to me to eat healthy, so I chose to look at my disdain for cooking as an opportunity to figure out how to do so using minimal amounts of really simple cooking.

Before we go on, let’s consider what it means to “eat healthy.”

What Is Healthy Eating?

If we asked a dozen people their definition of healthy eating, we would get a dozen very different answers. Healthy eating depends on several factors, which means it won’t look the same from one person to the next. Here are four things that are often overlooked when one creates their own unique definition of healthy eating.

Cultural Considerations

Healthy eating can look quite a bit different depending on a person’s culture. For example, my own family is Japanese. In Japanese culture, not only is rice considered healthy, but it’s served with nearly every meal, whereas here in the United States that amount of carbohydrate might be considered unhealthy by some.

This is only one of many examples, but it’s important to take an individual’s culture into consideration when determining what healthy eating may look like for them.

Economic Considerations and Availability

Healthy eating will also look different based on a person’s budget, and which foods are available to them. These are two very important things that need to be factored in. Not everyone has the same means or access to the same foods.

Personal Preference

Some people may view certain food items as healthy, even though they personally despise the flavor, texture, or both. If they try to force themselves to eat those foods anyway, they may end up dreading their meals at best, and creating a problematic relationship with food at worst.

While every meal you eat may not be worthy of winning culinary awards, I think it’s fair to say that your food should, at the very least, be tolerable in order for it to be considered healthy for you.

Food Allergies and Sensitivities

If an individual has a sensitivity or an allergy to certain foods, these foods will not be healthy for them to eat — and could instead be quite harmful — regardless of the fact that they may be considered “healthy” by some.

As you can see, healthy eating is much more involved than simply following a certain diet or popular nutrition protocol.

Healthy eating will always be unique to the individual; there is not one size that fits all.

Embrace Short Cuts

I’ve had countless clients tell me they feel guilty for taking short cuts when it comes to preparing healthy meals. They seem to feel like healthy meals don’t “count” unless they do all of the washing and chopping, and prepare the meal from scratch.

While I applaud the intention, find peace in knowing that long and intricate preparations are not necessary for healthy meals unless you genuinely enjoy the process. Additionally, the easier you can make things on yourself, the more consistent you will likely be, and consistency will always reign supreme for getting results, regardless of what the goal is.

Taking available short cuts for the sake of consistently preparing healthy meals you enjoy is an act of self-care.

Fruit and Vegetables

No matter what your unique definition of healthy eating is, it’s probably safe to assume that you believe that fruit and vegetables are beneficial. In my experience working with hundreds of women, fresh produce is often perceived as tricky because it’s highly perishable.

We can get around this by buying either frozen or canned, both of which are more cost effective than buying fresh.

Many frozen vegetables now come in their own steamer bags, making it easy for you to cook them in the microwave in a matter of minutes! Add a bit of butter, or a sprinkle of cheese, or just some salt and pepper and you can add them to any meal. (When I worked in an office I would take steamer bags of veggies with me and cook them at work to go with my lunch — it doesn’t get easier than this.)

Otherwise, you can quickly thaw frozen fruit and vegetables in the microwave if you prefer to prepare them a different way. And of course you can slowly thaw these in your fridge if you are planning ahead.

Frozen and canned produce don’t seem to get much attention, but can be an easy, fast, and healthy addition to meals without much cooking required.

If you prefer fresh vegetables and have the means to opt for this, many stores offer a wide variety of pre-washed and pre-chopped vegetables. Grab your favorites, dump them onto a baking sheet with a drizzle of olive oil and your favorite seasonings and bake them all at once. This will provide you with plenty of delicious vegetables for the next several days.

Another trick that I love is getting a bunch of pre-chopped vegetables from the salad bar at the grocery store and then cooking them into a big stir-fry once I get home, which also provides plenty of leftovers.

Protein

We encourage women who regularly engage in exercise and resistance training to consume moderate amounts of protein.

If you consume animal products, frozen burger patties are really easy. They are available at many groceries stores, and come in beef, turkey, chicken, bison, and different types of fish. You can cook them from frozen in a skillet in less than 10 minutes. Add your favorite burger toppings, and you’re in business in less than 15 minutes. You can also prepare several at a time for leftovers!

Additionally, you can find prepared sources of protein at many grocery stores, such as rotisserie chicken, hard-boiled eggs, pre-cooked sausage, and deli meat. These are convenient additions to almost any meal.

Note: whether or not a person chooses to consume cured meats, or how much of them, is a decision for them and their body.

Another trick that I recently discovered is buying cooked diced chicken and steak from local burrito shops or Middle Eastern counters. While they don’t necessarily advertise it, they often sell meat by the pound if you ask them. This has been an incredibly easy (and delicious!) way to add protein to salads, burritos or wraps, on top of pizza, or to eat by itself.

For those who don’t eat meat or prefer not to have meat or eggs at every meal, you can add quinoa, different kinds of legumes, and cottage cheese to your meals. Quinoa and legumes require very little prep, and cottage cheese is simply a matter of opening the container!

These are just a few examples of easy foods that contain some protein, and that may also provide you with carbohydrate.

Carbohydrate and Dietary Fat

Carbohydrate and dietary fat are two things that don’t require much preparation at all, and are usually easy additions to a meal. Boiling or steaming some rice (in a rice cooker or in the microwave), or baking potatoes are two examples.

Dietary fat can be incorporated effortlessly into most meals, and it can significantly boost their flavor. Drizzling your vegetables with olive oil or coconut oil, sprinkling a little cheese onto your meal, slicing up some avocado, or adding some butter or ghee takes less than 60 seconds, and is nearly effortless.

Of course, these are just a few examples of dietary fat, but it can be easy to keep it simple.

Putting Things Together

When it comes to preparing healthy meals, the two things that seem to require the most preparation are protein and produce. Once you have those selected, all you need to do is add the appropriate amount of carbohydrate and dietary fat for your unique needs and you’ve created a meal!

While it can be tempting to assume things need to be complicated with a lot of prep and cooking time, it doesn’t have to be. By having a few staples and switching up what you add to the meal, it can be really easy, fast, delicious, and healthy.

My recommendations are based on my culture, availability, and means. However, by broadening your own definition of what “healthy eating” means, you can open up new possibilities for different foods, flavors, and preparation styles. This can improve your consistency with healthy eating, all while learning to think in a more inclusive manner, too!

How to Cook A Woman + Dark Web

Hey Life Stylists you are here again for another load of awesomeness!! And…that’s good! Is it good or great? Hmmm??

So judging by the reason you are here you’re probably wondering what the hell is this guy blogging about today?! What is this cook a woman thing? He must have meant something else cause if he didn’t then he must be a nasty cannibal! Nope! I made a mistake with my title. This is what it should say:

How to Cook A Woman + Dark Web

Hold on a sec let me correct the mistake…

Oh mistaken again. Final correction!

How to Cook A Woman (so she lasts longer)+ Dark Web

I don’t think I could’ve made the same mistake thrice and it not be my intention. Today’s blog is not teaching you how to cook anybody so to all my cold-blooded readers you can put away your knives, seasonings and recipe books. YOU Nasty savages!

So a few months ago I was broke and looking to go into a line of business that if the 9-0 heard about would not be too happy if happy at all. Being humans our three basic activities are eat, kill and sex. I wasn’t going to kill anybody to boil any wizard broths. No. It had to do with computers, ATMs, credit cards and DDOS (pat on the back if you what I mean). I started saving towards acquiring a new Linux laptop so I could begin my use of Tor to carry out solo missions on various public WiFi. AlphaBay would be my first website visit since Silk Road shut down recently. There a few gadgets would be acquired along with tools to properly hide my identity. DUMPS and FULLZ INFO was also of interest but no comments on them.

Banks have always, aaaalways been very interesting criminally run institutions to me. Oh what it would be like giving them some sort of virus on a thumbdirve while sitting on the other side. The other side of the desk at customer support is always vulnerable at my local banks and a perfect hijacking script could be easily bought with some XMR, BTC or DASH. BTC is unsafe without a scrambler and almost all wallets are linked back to your Google account so say bye to anonymity there. The other two currencies do a better job at that sh*t. Do you know what banks really do?

  • Ooh yes @thelifestyler we do. They give us interest rates, savings plans, AC rooms, mortgages, business loans and cheap financial advice so we can be financially secure. They are a really big help.

The other side of the desk at customer support is always vulnerable at my local banks and a perfect hijacking script could be easily bought with some XMR, BTC or DASH.

At this moment I ask my wise Life Stylists to smack your palm on your face and shake your head.

Its either the majority is blind or they are just f$cking blind. How can you not see what banks really do?! They frikkin steal our money through inflation, hidden fees and a ton of other BS just to stay relevant to our society! They create a weakening of international currencies, then offer a loan as the solution. They create wars so thet can push countries into as much debt as possible; financing both sides of the war they make a whopping profit.

Bankers are narcissists. They are thieves.

narcissist. (naarh- si-cist) – someone who creates a problem so they can frikkin solve the problem for personal gain. ~ defined by my brain inside my head dictionary!
Most times they blame you for causing the problem with being unable to pay your utility bills and put food on the table. 2.3 billion children are starving because of the global elites and lack of world class financial education. What we need is more education not advice. Advice is for teenagers. We need real money education. The elites control our school system and will do whatever they can to keep control of the money. Have you ever wondered why we are taught math, trigonometry, calculus and the other 90% of trash we never use. Look around you. Do you use calculus and trigonometry when doing a singing performance? Or sales? Better yet cooking.
Eg. A+B=C
SIN+TAN=COS
Q
If you take one whole chicken, the lenght of the chicken is 20cm. What is its gradient?

That’s no proper way to treat a chicken

My answer:
“It doesn’t matter. What does this dumb stuff have to do with majority of modern careers? Nothing!

Jackie Chan: What is it good for? Absolutely nothing! Ooh aah yeah (rep chorus)

Instead of teaching us, they must protect their big corporate banks while secretly ruling the world. Kill them with Bitcoin guys ;-).

Now to avoid confusion let me differentiate between deep and dark webs very simply.

Deep has all the stuff you wouldn’t normally see with a Google browser. It is the files of websites and a ton folders and back alleys to websites, not to mention a ton of other data most people have no business allowing search engines to find. Often times scientists store research data there, government websites are running beneath there and it is basically behind the scenes of organizations. It is legal to go there. Just don’t try logging into a government site with your IP EXPOSED.

Dark web haha. This where you find some real juice, for some it drowns them and they lose their identity or lives LITERALLY! This is where shit hits the fan and for all wondering how Monero and DASH keeps going higher but can’t see the hype make a tiny peek here. Most users of the underworld cryptocurrency Bitcoin have migrated to two totally anonymous cryptocurrencies.

Moving along we have mostly sex toys, porn and dating ebooks being sold here. Just kidding. Assassins for hire to kill celebs, guns, ganja, most of which comes from my homeland and neighboring territories, coke, stolen credit cards, people’s SSN, fake ID, passports, specialized hacking services and other cool stuff… I m-mean evil stuff ahem! Dark web gives you illegal stuff. Although you get illegal stuff here, you can easily get hacked, scammed or have your identity stolen as this is where the investigative services is trying to bust people, and so are the street devils & angels.
Never use a credit/debit card, your real name or address. You potentially lost your identity if you did.
2. Never use a windows Laptop because it stores too many logs and one can easily sniff out your personals (phone number, family members, social media, etc)
** 3. Tape your front camera with electric tape**
4. Use Tor browser downloaded only from the official Tor website.
5. Never open a file you downloaded from Dark Web while connected to the internet. You can get hacked this way without knowing it, then receive a call from your bank that says you are out of money.
**6. Keep two separate lives. No one should know who you really are. **
7. If using Bitcoin use a scrambler as all transactions can be traced on the block chain unless a scrambler is used.
8. Buy from trusted sources.
9. If carrying out a group or solo mission well this is where you might find some readymade ransom ware, viruses and shit like that.
10. Meeting strangers in person is dangerous. If you should, go with a partner. Both of you need disguises. Have your pickup/dropoff vehicle park a couple hundred metres away. Meet in a crowded to mildly crowded area to do business. If the feds swoop down you need to ensure public transport runs regularly their. Keep a spare change in case you need to make a run for it. Keep your eyes open and fitness up.

So while I was first exploring this whole dark web thing I saw a video on YouTube about this eBook on how to cook a woman on dark web. I went to subreddits because I could not use Tor at the time. I searched and found similar content. Would you believe that someone disgusting enough created a book on how to cook a living woman so she stays alive longest? Can you imagine how many women he/she must have experimented with before finally finding the best way off cutting parts and getting as much as they possibly could before she dies?! I understand this may come in handy so don’t get me totally wrong here. Only when in a trapped in a desert with no food, and you have caught an enemy with no diseases. One must do what they must to survive (easier said than done). I would piss out my guts if I had to cook a woman my gang and I kept hostage in a survival/war scene. It has a good use but…🙈🙉🙊
I want to hear what my Life Stylists have to say on the cook book and Dark web. Also tell me if I might have missed a rule up above so I can add it in the future. Thank you for deciding to read not just a blog but experiencing your awesome self as a Life Stylist.

Don’t like religion read here:

Conquer Confidence

I’m fascinated by learning new skills. For me, it’s a vital part of my quest to become a well-rounded, self-reliant, and attractive man. In the last few years this passion has lead me to the art of cooking.

I believe everyone should be able to prepare his or her own meals. Not just good meals, but great meals. I love going out to restaurants (perhaps too often), but there’s a certain satisfaction to creating your own fresh, delicious dishes.

When I began teaching myself how to cook, I discovered that:

  • You gain control over your food. Cooking at home lets you to choose exactly what ingredients go in your mouth. You can pick quality produce, eat healthier, and portion effectively. It’s helped me keep my weight off.
  • You save a ton of money. With the same amount you pay for a restaurant meal, you can make multiple dishes that last for days. Eating out at work adds up quickly and leftovers are awesome for next-day lunch.
  • It makes for great dates. Women love a man that can cook. Inviting a girl to your place (or hers) for collaborative cooking on a second or third date is perfect. It establishes a fun atmosphere, facilitates closeness, and allows for a lot of physical contact. Plus, you’re already home which naturally leads into a more intimate night.

Sold yet? Good. Here are my 25 cooking tips to cook smarter and wow the ladies:

  1. You need three fundamental knives. You’ll use an 8” or 10” chef’s knife for the majority of work, a paring knife for peeling fruits and vegetables, and a serrated bread knife for duh, bread. Filet knifes and cleavers come afterwards. Victorinox (cheaper) and Wusthof (more expensive) are excellent choices.
  2. Keep your knives sharp. Dull knives are dangerous as hell and will cause accidents. Hone your blade with every use (it straightens the edge) and get knives professionally sharpened every six to twelve months. You can sharpen at home with an Accusharp, but it could eventually ruin the knife.
  3. Mise en place. Have all your ingredients measured and prepared before cooking. Make sure you read the entire recipe before you start as well. Then, give yourself an extra 15 minutes longer than you think you’ll need.
  4. Cook fluffy, moist scrambled eggs. I hated scrambled eggs growing up; they were dry, clumpy, and flavorless. I’ve tried every recipe out there and this one wins. You can use milk instead and it’ll still taste great.
  5. Timing is critical. Especially when making multiple dishes or courses, map out the chronological order of steps. Figure out what needs to be defrosted and pre-seasoned, how long you’ll need to boil water or preheat the oven, and what needs to cool before serving. You’ll learn when to multitask and when to devote your full attention to something.
  6. Defrost your meat properly. There are three approved ways: in the fridge (best, a day or two beforehand), Ziploc sealed and submerged in lightly running cold water (good, 30 min-1 hour maximum), and in the microwave (last resort, fastest). Never ever defrost at room temperature or in warm/hot water – that’s asking for bacteria.
  7. Watch the master chefs in action. Visual aids are important in understanding proper cooking technique. Alton Brown, Jacques Pepin, and Gordon Ramsay are some of my favorites. They not only show you how to cook, but teach you the science behind it.
  8. Flip your burgers as much as you’d like. Contrary to popular belief, they will cook evenly. Just don’t squeeze all the juices out of them.
  9. Salt and taste at every stage of the cooking process. Salt doesn’t just make your food taste “salty”, it brings out the natural flavors of almost every ingredient. A major difference between restaurant food and home cooking is how much salt they use – LOTS.
  10. Use kosher salt when preparing meats. This is a coarsely ground salt and will draw more moisture from the meat, increasing it’s yumminess.
  11. Peel fresh garlic like a pro. For one or two cloves, you can use the side of your chef knife to smash it. For any more than that, use the shake method.
  12. Pyrex is your friend. Pyrex is tempered, soda lime glassware that can be refrigerated, microwaved, or put in the oven. There are rumors that claim their formula has changed and is prone to exploding — it’s not true. Pyrex has even created a full page discrediting the allegations. Just follow these four basic rules and you’ll be fine.
  13. Develop basic knife skills. They drastically cut down your prep time and ensure your safety.
  14. Get a pepper mill. Freshly cracked pepper has way more flavor and has superior presentation on food. Say no to pre-ground pepper!
  15. Dry your meat before cooking. Use a paper towel to gently pat down the surface of the meat. Excess moisture will prevent your meat from browning or searing correctly.
  16. Rest your meat after cooking. This is huge and always overlooked. If you cut into your meat right away, all those wonderful juices will end up on your plate. Letting the meat rest for a few minutes before eating allows those juices to absorb back into the flesh.
  17. Generously salt your pasta water. Add a minimum of one to two tablespoons to the boiling pot. This will infuse your pasta with extra tastiness.
  18. Use aluminum foil in the oven for easy cleanup. Place a piece on your baking sheet or inside your casserole dish and add your food on top. Once you’re finished, roll up the foil and throw it away (or re-use if still clean).
  19. Learn to pan fry the perfect steak. As recommended above, watch Gordon Ramsay’s magic at work. If you need help choosing and preparing your steak, check out the seriously thorough Serious Eats guide.
  20. Test before cooking for guests. As much as you want to try something new, save the first experiment for yourself. Keep to a tried and true recipe. There’s nothing worse than panicking out of frustration or delivering a bad meal.
  21. Don’t start cooking with a sink full of dirty dishes. They’ll only pile up and look more intimidating. Also, clean as you go along. That way food doesn’t have time to dry and stick.
  22. Use unsalted butter. You can control exactly how much salt is going into your food for optimal taste. There are two exclusions: use salted butter as a spread (on toast, etc.) and when a recipe specifically calls for it.
  23. Cut onions efficiently. Random chopping is fun but not the most precise. By keeping the root on while cutting, you’ll prevent any man tears in the kitchen.
  24. Care for your cast iron skillet. A well-maintained cast iron pan lasts for generations and is great for cooking meat. When you first get your pan, you’ll need to “season” it: lightly coat the surface with Canola oil (like spray Pam) and pre-heat in the oven at 450-500 degrees for 30 minutes. Make sure to preheat the pan regularly before use – it needs to gradually get hot. Clean with water but no soap.
  25. Use reliable recipes. Serious Eats and Cook’s Illustrated (paid) always provide incredible dishes. Allrecipes is another wonderful resource, just make sure to pick highly reviewed recipes and read the comments for suggestions. Also, every recipe I’ve made from The Best New Recipe cookbook has been a smash hit.

As with building any new skill, appreciate the journey. Experiment. Keep an open mind to new flavors or techniques. Praise your successes and laugh at your mistakes. Fully embrace the process of trial and error when cooking.

When cooking with a woman you like, you always want to have a smile on your face. If you’re having fun with it then she will, too.

Looking to meet girls you can cook with? Let’s chat for a free consultation.

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‘The Pioneer Woman’ Ree Drummond’s Secret for an Easy Meal to Cook When You’re Tired

Cooking a hearty meal your family enjoys is satisfying. However, one thing that’s not so satisfying is having to cook when you’re tired and then cleaning up a mess afterward. Fortunately, “The Pioneer Woman” star Ree Drummond has a trick that will help you quickly feed your family without creating a huge kitchen mess. Here’s the secret Showbiz Cheat Sheet learned about Ree Drummond’s solution for delicious meals minus the kitchen cleanup.

What inspired ‘The Pioneer Woman’ Ree Drummond to cook

Savannah Guthrie and Ree Drummond | Nathan Congleton/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images

Drummond’s empire grew from her love of food. Her simple recipes are what keep fans coming back to her blog and Food Network show. What inspired the “accidental country girl” to take an interest in food? Drummond told “Parade” magazine she loves to eat. However, this wasn’t her primary inspiration. She told the publication her mother and mother-in-law inspired her to take cooking seriously:

I love to eat, and I always have. My sister and I are the same. As soon as we finish a meal, we start thinking about what the next one is going to be. My mom was a really great home cook, and my mother-in-law cooked for crowds of cowboys and visitors. They were my main cooking inspirations.

Ree Drummond’s secret for an easy meal to cook when you’re tired

Stephen Colbert and Ree Drummond. | Scott Kowalchyk/CBS via Getty Images

In the holiday 2019 issue of “The Pioneer Woman,” a reader asked Drummond if she could recommend a dinner recipe that would help her prepare a meal without having to deal with a big mess afterward. “What easy dinner recipe do you recommend for a mom who is too tired to cook a big meal and clean up a big mess?” the reader asked.

Drummond gave the reader a great solution to her dilemma. Here’s what the Food Network star suggested for those nights when you’re too tired to cook and dread washing a pile of dishes:

It sounds like a cop-out, but you can’t beat my 7-Can Soup on those nights when you don’t want to make a big mess or put forth a lot of effort. All you have to do is crack open the cans and throw them into the pot. The results are magic!

Ree Drummond’s 7-Can Soup recipe

Ree Drummond (L) and Editor -in-Chief of Food Network Magazine Maile Carpenter | Bryan Bedder/Getty Images for Hearst

Drummond posted directions for how to make her 7-Can Soup on The Pioneer Woman blog. She says people are often surprised by how something so simple could taste so good. “I made this soup on my Food Network show a few weeks ago, and it’s seriously one of those recipes that makes a person say phrases like, ‘Uh… could you repeat that?’ and ‘Whaaaaa?’ and ‘Crazytown!’ and other questions/exclamations that convey surprise over how such a simple list of ingredients could result in something so, so good.”

Drummond’s recipe includes a wide variety of ingredients, including cheese and beans. She likes to mix canned chili, canned corn (the fiesta mix), canned black beans, canned pinto beans, canned kidney beans, and diced tomatoes. Visit Drummond’s blog for the full recipe.

Read more: What It Takes to Get ‘The Pioneer Woman’ Ree Drummond’s Mercantile Ready for Christmas

Check out Showbiz Cheat Sheet on Facebook!

Let’s face it. You can’t live off instant noodles and take-out forever. So let go of your fear and start cooking…

#1. Simple sesame noodles.

Add some crushed peanuts for a little bit of crunch! Check out the recipe here.

#2. Cheddar garlic grits with fried eggs.

Cheese and eggs, what’s not to love about this recipe.

#3. One-minute coffee cake in a mug.

Because you can never go wrong with coffee and cake. Get started here.

#4. Tiramisu trifles.

Super easy, super delish. Check out the recipe here.

#5. Chili cheese omelette.

Step up your regular breakfast game with this recipe, and get crackin’!

#6. Perciatelli all’Amatriciana.

An easy pasta recipe, just don’t let the name scare you!

#7. Chorizo, tomato, and cheese pizzas.

We know how tempting it is to just have a pizza delivered, but it wouldn’t hurt to give this recipe a shot.

#8. Italian bean salad.

A number of the population is probably in outrage that these two are mixing, but to each his own. Check out the recipe here.

#9. Parmesan eggs.

Check out this recipe for savoury eggs. Mmmmm.

#10. Crunchy Asian ramen noodle salad.

Your college-self probably never would’ve thought of this. Check out the recipe on GimmeSomeOven.

#11. Fruity ice cream cups.

Insanely easy, incredibly satisfying. Click here to see the recipe.

#12. Veggie biryani.

The perfect recipe for dinner to share.

#13. No-chop low-carb chili.

You can even opt to serve them in some bell peppers if you want a more creative presentation. Get the recipe here.

#14. Peach cobbler oatmeal.

Check out this recipe. Sweetest breakfast bowl, perhaps?

#15. Microwave mac and cheese in a mug.

For when stores run out of your favourite boxed cheesy treat. See the recipe here.

#16. Chicken and avocado burritos.

Don’t even dare say no to this burrito. Get the recipe here.

#17. One-pot chicken.

Your mother would be proud. Check out the recipe here.

#18. Pear and maple yogurt cups.

Perfect as an on-the-go snack or breakfast. There’s no way to mess this up.

#19. 10-Minute zucchini pasta with vegan cashew basil pesto.

This dish is a perfect reason to bust out that spiralizer. Get the recipe here on thefitchen.

#20. Banana caramel bread and butter pudding.

An easy, and satisfying dessert. Check out this sweet recipe here.

#21. This easy peasy burrito bowl.

For when you want to venture into a non-Chipotle burrito experience. Get the recipe here.

#22. Creamy corn salad.

Perfect as a side dish or even on its own! Click here to get the recipe.

#23. Butternut squash ramen bowl with rice noodles, tofu and fresh pea shoots.

Would you believe this only takes about 10 minutes? Try out the recipe for yourself!

Happy cooking, and good luck!

These 30 quick and easy, healthy dinner ideas are perfect for even the busiest of weeknights.

All good summer things have come to an end my friends. We’ve had a big summer full of sun, fun and ticking things off the summer bucket list, but once again, it’s that time of year where we trade in pool time for school time.

As we gear up for shorter yet somehow fuller days that seem to slip right through our busy little fingers, we need quick and easy dinners we can throw together on the fly. So for our ninth installment of our 31 Days Series, we’re bringing you easy recipes that won’t cramp your chaotic week or make you a takeout slave or victim of cereal for dinner. Confession: Sometimes we love cereal for dinner. #yougottadowhatyougottado P.S. we’ve also got you covered on the breakfast front, because we know those mornings are just as crazy!

Luckily, these dinners swoop in and save the day. Some only require three steps, some are made in the slow cooker or in one pan, and pretty much all of them need 10 minutes of prep or less (yay less dishes)! So let’s slay these busy weeknights and show them who’s boss, eh?

To see all of this year’s 31 Days Series, check them out here:

31 Days of Healthy Comfort Food Recipes to Make in January

28 Days of Lighter Pasta Recipes to Make in February

31 Days of Weeknight Chicken Dinners to Make in March

30 Days of Healthier Salads that Make a Meal in April

31 Days of Sheet Pan Dinners to Make in May

30 Days of Easy Grilling Recipes to Make in June

31 Summer Slow Cooker Recipes to Make in July

31 Days of Summer Produce Recipes to Make in August

Here’s how to make meal planning your month of meals a snap.

First, to fill in, tape to the fridge, take to the grocery store, or use for reference next year when you can’t remember what the heck were your fave recipes from this one.

And then sign up for your free weekly meal plan and prep list here.

You get the idea. Now get cooking!

September 1: Slow Cooker Thai Chicken Soup

FoodieCrush

Thanks to minimal prep, you can enjoy dinner without worrying about those dreaded dishes afterwards. Seasonings of red curry, coconut, ginger, and lime are what give this soup mega flavor, and the slow cooker does all the work!

September 2: Easy Skillet Chili

Rachel Schultz

You’ve gotta love a meal you can make entirely in one skillet. This chili is everything chili should be: Hearty, comforting, and effortless.

September 3: Lime Beef and Basil Stir Fry

Sweet Peas and Saffron

30 minutes is all you need to make this flavorful, Thai Stir-Fry sizzle!

September 4: Coq au Riesling Pasta

Simply Delicious

This French pasta tastes like something Julia Child would have whipped up (only on a weeknight, because it comes together in just 30 minutes)—oui oui!

September 5: 15-Minute Creamy Tomato Garlic Butter Shrimp

Cafe Delites

This creamy 4-step pasta is teeming with flavor thanks to lots of garlic, and it only takes 15 minutes!

September 6: 20-Minute Ground Chicken Tacos with Poblanos

Healthy Seasonal Recipes

Tacos make everything better, especially when they’re bursting with flavor, easy to make, and only take 20 minutes of work!

September 7: Garlic White Wine Skillet Chicken with Olives & Artichokes

Snixy Kitchen

Perfectly juicy and super crispy chicken is gussied up with briny olives, zesty artichokes, garlic, and white wine, making this one sexy skillet dinner! Though the flavors and presentation are sophisticated, this dish actually requires minimal prep, making it weeknight-friendly.

September 8: 15-Minute Lo Mein

Pinch of Yum

Ditch the greasy takeout and make these addictive, no-frills noodles instead. They’re healthier, you can make them in one pan, and they’re ready in just 15 minutes!

September 9: Smokey Chili Mac Soup

Bev Cooks

If this mac and cheese-chili hybrid doesn’t scream “coziness,” then I don’t know what does! Smoked paprika and fire-roasted tomatoes are the magic ingredients that give this one pot chili a major punch of flavor, and leafy kale makes it extra hearty (and a tad virtuous).

September 10: Sheet Pan Honey Mustard Chicken & Vegetables

Joyful Healthy Eats

This 30-minute sheet pan dinner is everything you want a weeknight meal to be. Loaded up with colorful root veggies and a dijon mustard chicken, it’s easy to make, healthy and filling, and requires minimal cleanup!

September 11: Turkey Taco Quinoa Skillet

Spoonful of Flavor

This protein powerhouse is everything you love about a burrito, but without all of the calories. Also, it comes together in just one skillet, and is super healthy and satisfying.

September 12: The Best DIY Foil Packet Dinners

These DIY foil packets are like a choose your own adventure dinner. They’re totally customizable with whatever ingredients you have on hand, and there are so many fun directions you can go in as far as flavors are concerned. Not to mention they’re incredibly easy, taking just 30 minutes in the oven or on the grill!

September 13: Cajun Chicken Pasta

Whisk it Real Gud

A creamy alfredo sauce, spicy cajun chicken breast, and tangles of linguini make this easy, 20-minute pasta dish a decadent weeknight win.

September 14: One-Pot Chicken and Rice Fajita Soup

Carlsbad Cravings

This 30-minute one pot fajita-inspired soup is chockfull of so many wonderful spices and flavors. Just don’t forget all the yummy fixings!

September 15: Chicken Snow Pea Green Curry

Nutmeg Nanny

Lean chicken and tons of fresh veggies make this aromatic, creamy curry healthy and satisfying. Plus, it it all comes together in just 20 minutes!

September 16: One-Pot Black Bean Enchilada Pasta

Savory Nothings

You can never go wrong with a one pot pasta during a busy workweek. This one only has two steps, and can be on your table in 30 minutes! The best part? The only dishes you’ll need to wash are a knife, cutting board, and pot!

September 17: Honey Mustard Slow Cooker Pork Loin and Rice

Food Faith Fitness

With just 10 ingredients and 10 minutes of prep, you can’t beat this easy weeknight meal that your whole family will love. Melt-in-your-mouth-tender pork and brown rice are brought together in the most irresistible honey-dijon sauce, resulting in the most comforting, yet healthy, and gluten-free dinner!

September 18: 30-Minute Sesame Chicken Noodle Stir-Fry

Gimme Some Oven

Everyone loves a good stir-fry, and this one features a killer homemade sauce that you’ll want to use on everything! Plus, it’s quick and easy, and customizable with whatever veggies you have in your fridge.

September 19: Chicken and Broccoli Shells and Cheese

Love Grows Wild

We’ll never be too old for some mac and cheese! This dreamy (not too caloric) version only has three steps and you can make it in just minutes. Plus, it’s got some chicken thrown in for protein, and broccoli for good measure, so you get something green! Everybody wins.

September 20: Slow Cooker Chipotle Lentil Soup with Avocado

Cookin’ Canuck

This soup may be vegetarian, but it’s wonderfully hearty and filling. Flavors of cumin and adobo lend a nice smokiness to it, and once again, the slow cooker steps in to save the day!

September 21: One-Pan Balsamic Chicken and Veggies

Chelsea’s Messy Apron

After a mini 2-ingredient marinade (that’s also used as a cooking sauce and dipping sauce) and 10 minutes of prep, you can sit down and relax with a glass of wine while this healthy sheet pan dinner cooks away! All weeknight dinners should be this easy.

September 22: One Pot Cheesy Sausage Penne Recipe

Crunchy Creamy Sweet

Let’s be real, I’ll always be excited about any dish that involves penne, sausage, cheese and is made in one lil’ old pot.

September 23: Easy White Chicken Chili

Two Peas and Their Pod

A simple store-bought rotisserie chicken makes this comforting chili a breeze. You can prep everything in just 10 minutes, and it only needs 20 minutes to cook.

September 24: (Really, Really Good) Black Bean and Sweet Potato Chicken Enchilada Skillet

Iowa Girl Eats

This recipe makes a whole lot, so halve it if you’re cooking for one or two or make it part of your weekly meal plan to eat through the week, the leftovers are excellent reheated.

September 25: 30-Minute Tarragon Chicken Pasta

Gnom Gnom

The trick to this quick meal is in browning the chicken first, followed by a brief poaching in dry white wine with sautéed shallots that’ll keep the chicken juicy all week long.

September 26: Italian Chicken and Vegetable Skillet

Recipe Runner

Bright pesto, Italian seasoning, and garlic breathe so much flavor into this light and easy dish. It comes together in just 30 minutes, and you can eat it straight from the skillet, or add to your favorite grain or pasta—mamma mia!

September 27: Sheet Pan Thai Glazed Salmon with Vegetables

The Recipe Critic

Flaky salmon and veggies get tossed in the yummiest zesty Thai sauce and then cooked up on a sheet pan in this super easy 30-minute meal! Eat as is, or serve over some rice, then rejoice in the fact that you have practically zero dishes to wash!

September 28: Chicken Shawarma Gnocchi Bowls

Climbing Grier Mountain

Simple and quick, herbed baked chicken tops little pillows of heaven, GNOCCHI! for a dinner or lunch that will totally bowl you over. This yummy dish totally hits the spot.

September 29: Crockpot Thai Chicken Curry

The Endless Meal

Want curry in a hurry? Let your crockpot do all of the work! This version is super creamy and flavorful, yet light and healthy. It’s naturally paleo and gluten-free.

September 30: 30-Minute Caprese Chicken

You only need a handful of ingredients to make this beautiful and easy chicken. Serve over pasta, salad, or alongside your favorite veggies, and pretend it’s summer all year-long!

This recipe round-up was curated and written by FoodieCrush contributor Hayley Putnam of Seven Day Weekend. Follow her foodie tastes and other flights of fancy on Pinterest and Instagram.

Thanks for stopping by and visiting FoodieCrush. Have something to say or a recipe round-up request to make your dinnertime meal making easier? I’d love to hear from you. Email me at or let me know in the comments below.

As always, thank you for reading and supporting companies I partner with, which allows me to create more unique content and recipes for you. All opinions are always my own.

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Ahh, cooking dinner. Sometimes it’s the therapy I need after a long day. Making something from scratch and feeding my kids a meal that took me a few hours to make often gives me a nice sense of satisfaction. But more often than not, I don’t have a ton of time to cook, or just the thought of spending an hour in the kitchen at the end of the day feels less like therapy and more like a horrible chore. And let’s face it, my kids can’t live on boxed mac ‘n’ cheese and take out all the time.

Instead of reaching for another boxed meal, split the difference. I’ve got an arsenal of recipes on hand for those days that I’m just feeling too lazy to cook but still want my family to eat something homemade. Get dinner on the table again with these easy recipes that cut out all the hassle. All of these meals are super simple, and are sure to please everyone in your family. Check them out in the slideshow.

More Easy Dinner Recipes:

  • 51 Easy Rotisserie Dinner Recipes
  • Wine Down: 15 Most Pinned Recipes That Include Wine
  • 31 Tasty Quesadilla Recipes My Family Craves Constantly

25 Main Dish Dinners for People Who Claim They Can’t Cook

Our all-staff Slack room is where we instant message (and constantly distract) each other for the entirety of the day. It’s full of ho-hum office ins-and-outs (leaking sinks, urgent desk clean-ups), but also lots of fun food-related questions and answers that—here’s a wild guess—probably don’t come up at many other companies.

Like this one, from our Operations Manager Olivia Bloom: “What would be your #1 Food52 recipe to suggest to your little brother who doesn’t cook?” Requirements: Must include meat. Doesn’t necessarily have to be impressive (but hey, that helps).​

Here’s the list we came up with, adding in some seafood, too. (And a special shout out to Merrill, whose recipes appear here over and over again.) Share the list with your little brother—or older brother, or aunt, or friend—who doesn’t cook. Then invite yourself over for dinner (but bring a bottle of wine).

Beef

If you don’t have a grill, use a big, heavy skillet or grill pan to make this steak:

Chicken

This could be you:

Pork

Cook these chops on the stove (best option: in a grill pan) if you don’t have access to a real live grill.

Sea-dwellers

Beginners, you don’t have to choose the 3-hour smoking option—simply bake the cod at 350° F for about 20 minutes skin side down, then broil the top for 2 minutes:​

What recipes do you suggest to friends and relatives who don’t cook? Tell us in the comments below!

Easy Recipes For People Who Don’t Cook

8 Easy Recipes That Should Be In Every Guy’s Repertoire

April 11, 2016 Share Tweet Flip 0 Shares

This article is brought to you by Reebok ZPRINT.

The only thing in your kitchen drawers is a stack of Chinese take-out menus, and you haven’t carried a packed lunch since grade school. You seriously need to start cooking. It’s the easiest way to eat healthier and get in shape. In fact, whatever they are cooking, people who cook regularly consume fewer calories per meal than those who eat out, according to research from the Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health. Plus, unlike your other get-fit efforts, cooking will actually save you money. Here are eight easy, tasty, healthy recipes — courtesy of top chefs, nutritionists, doctors, and trainers — to help get you started.

1. Greek-Style Yogurt Chicken

Ingredients

2 bone-in chicken breasts
2 cloves garlic, chopped
½ teaspoon dried oregano
½ teaspoon dried thyme
1 cup yogurt
¼ onion, chopped
¼ bunch cilantro, chopped
1 drizzle olive oil
salt and pepper to taste

Directions

Preheat the oven to 400ºF. Chop the onion and herbs, and combine in a large mixing bowl with the chicken. Add yogurt, salt and pepper, and mix all of the ingredients together. Put the chicken on a baking tray and drizzle with olive oil. Roast for about 20 minutes or until the internal temperature reaches 160ºF to 165ºF. Let sit for 5 minutes, then cut and serve. Makes 2 servings.

Recipe courtesy of Sonima.com contributing chef, Andy Clay.

2. Baked Apple Parfait

nsalt/Flickr

Ingredients

8 baked apples
1½ cups plain, 2% Greek yogurt
1/3 cup protein powder
2 tablespoons water
2 teaspoons stevia

Directions

Cut each baked apple half into 4 even strips. Place the yogurt in a small bowl along with the protein powder, stevia, and water. Stir well and serve. Makes 8 parfaits.

Recipe courtesy of Brett Hoebel, creator of the 20 Minute Body and celebrity trainer on The Biggest Loser season 11.

3. Three Bean Summer Salad

grongar/Flickr

Ingredients

48 ounces mixed beans (red, black, and pinto)
1 ear roasted corn kernels
2 steamed carrots, chopped
2 steamed parsnips, chopped
2 roasted poblano peppers, finely diced
1 sweet onion, peeled and finely chopped
1 sweet pepper, diced
1 medium to large garden fresh tomato, chopped
1 mango, peeled and chopped
Juice of ½ lemon
1 teaspoon ground allspice
2 teaspoon chili powder
1 teaspoon ground cumin
2 tablespoon olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste

Combine all the ingredients and mix well.

Directions
Combine all ingredients and serve. Makes 12-16 servings.

Recipe courtesy of cardiologist and professional chef Mike Fenster, M.D., author of The Fallacy of the Calorie.

4. Two-Ingredient Pancakes

42dreas/Flickr

Ingredients

1 large ripe banana
2 organic cage-free eggs
¼ teaspoon baking powder
¼ teaspoon cinnamon

Directions

Combine all ingredients in a blender or food processor until smooth. Heat a bit of butter or coconut oil on a griddle or cast iron skillet on medium-high heat. Once warm, pour batter like you would for normal pancakes, flipping halfway when slightly browned, approximately 4 minutes on each side. Makes about 8 medium pancakes

Recipe courtesy of Sarah Adler, creator of SimplyRealHealth.com and author of The Simply Real Health Cookbook.

5. Spicy Shrimp Lettuce Wraps

Ingredients

1 package glass noodles
1 pound shrimp (16-20 per pound)
2 limes
1 teaspoon Sriracha hot sauce
2 sprigs mint
8 leaves Bibb lettuce
3 ounces sesame vinaigrette
24 leaves Thai basil
1 cup pickled carrots
1 pinch salt

Directions

Preheat oven to 325ºF. Toss shrimp with salt, lime zest and juice, Sriracha, and mint. Bake until just done and still juicy, about 20 to 30 minutes. Drain shrimp and slice thin. Break up glass noodles while still in package, and then cook them in boiling, salted water about four minutes or until done. Rinse with cold water and toss with a small amount of vegetable oil. Then, toss noodles and shrimp in sesame vinaigrette and arrange on lettuce leaves with pickled carrots. Sprinkle with fresh chopped Thai basil. Makes 8 lettuce wraps.

Optional: Serve with tamarind dressing (recipe below)

¼ cup tamarind concentrate
¼ cup garlic, minced
6 tablespoons fresno chiles, seeded and minced
½ cup sugar
½ cup fish sauce
½ cup lime juice

Mix ingredients together until sugar is dissolved.

Recipe courtesy of Brandon Sharp, chef at the six-time Michelin star-rated Solbar, at Solage Calistoga in Napa Valley.

6. Mixed Berry-Veggie Smoothie

notahipster/Flickr

Ingredients

1 cup frozen blueberries, strawberries, raspberries, kale, and spinach (brands like Rader Farms sell frozen mixes of them)
1 cup water or coconut water
1 tablespoon olive or avocado oil

Directions

Combine all ingredients in a blender or food processor, and serve. Makes 1 smoothie

Recipe courtesy of nutritionist Rania Batayneh, MPH, author of The One One One Diet: The Simple 1:1:1 Formula for Fast and Sustained Weight Loss.

7. Frozen Breakfast Burritos

suckamc/Flickr

Ingredients

12 eggs (6 whole, 6 egg whites)
¼ cup skim milk
1 red pepper, diced
1 green pepper, diced
1 onion, diced
¾ pound turkey sausage
1 cup reduced fat cheddar cheese, shredded
10 whole-wheat tortillas

Directions

In a large mixing bowl, beat together eggs and milk. In a large skillet over medium-high heat, brown the sausage, peppers, and onions until the sausage is no longer pink and the vegetables are tender. Turn the heat down to medium and add the eggs. Cook for about 1 to 2 minutes, or until cooked, continually scraping the eggs from the edge to the center of the pan.

Sprinkle the cheese on top and let set for 20 to 30 seconds while the cheese melts. Spoon some of the sausage and egg filling into tortillas. Wrap up each tortilla burrito-style. Place each burrito seam side down and allow to cool for a couple of minutes. Wrap each burrito in plastic wrap and then either wrap in foil or place in a plastic freezer bag. When ready to eat, remove wrap and place in the microwave for 90 seconds. Makes 10 burritos.

Recipe courtesy of Jared Beckstrand, PT, DPT, physical therapist and founder of Tone-and-Tighten.com.

8. Beef Pot Roast

kewl/Flickr

Ingredients

3 pounds grass-fed beef chuck roast
1 medium onion, peeled and cut into quarters
6 cloves of garlic, peeled and crushed
¼ cup raw apple cider vinegar
¼ cup tamari sauce
2 cups vegetable broth
3 tablespoons Italian seasoning
salt and pepper to taste

Directions

Place all ingredients in the slow cooker and cook on low for 8 hours or on high for 4 hours. Makes 4 to 5 servings.

Recipe courtesy of Strong Medicine: How to Conquer Chronic Disease and Achieve Your Full Athletic Potential, by Dr. Chris Hardy, D.O., and Three-time World Master Powerlifting Champion Marty Gallagher.

14 Easy Meals Every Guy Should Know How to Make

I never understood why more guys don’t cook. Food is delicious. You can make it yourself. Why in the world would you not do it? There are legions of easy recipes that make food that is mind-bogglingly badass, cheap and tasty, yet many just won’t do it. In my mind, that makes them losers. Here are 14 stupidly easy recipes that anyone can make, all of which every person on the planet should know how to do.

14. Stir-Fry

Making a stir-fry is crazy easy, universally flexible, and takes next to no time at all to throw together. You need a pan, and some oil that can take a decent heat — canola’s easy, sesame’s delicious. Get that pan nice and freaking hot with a little oil in it, and chop up some vegetables and some meat into slivers. Put each set of the ingredients into the pan, and stir till cooked. Maybe throw some soy sauce in, that shit’s delicious. Got some black bean or hoison sauce floating around? Gold. That goes in to. Keep going until you’ve run out of vegetables to cook, and you’ve got the meat done to your likeness. Toss those badboys with some rice or noodles. Boom, stir-fry. Quick, easy, delicious. Dig it.

13. Rice and Beans

So, your ass is broke. That’s cool, it happens to us some times. Maybe you’re in finals week, your loans have run dry, and you’re down to $5 for the month. Maybe your car died, and it took all your funds to fix it. Whatever happened, you have almost no money, and you need some freaking food in your belly. That’s where rice and beans come in. They’re the simplest, most delicious, most filling thing in existence. Cook rice. Rinse a can of beans. Combine. Spice that motherfucker with just about anything you can find in your drawers. Hot sauce, cheese, canned tomatoes, cilantro, bell peppers and onion are all great additions, too. It’ll keep you going when you can’t afford anything else.

12. The Hangover Cure

This is one you need to figure out on your own, but you need to have down pat, so that you can make it when you feel like the whole world has shat inside your head. You can’t see straight, everything hurts, and you just want to die? Time to make a hangover cure. It needs to be greasy and delicious. My choice is a bacon, egg, and fried onion sandwich, with hot and brown sauce poured all over that bad boy, with a huge fuckoff glass of OJ. And don’t forget, cook the eggs in the bacon fat, you need it. It won’t get rid of your hangover, but it’ll make you feel a fuckton better, and it sure as hell beats an Egg McMuffin.

11. Fried Pizza

Woah, woah, back the fuck up, a recipe on how to reheat pizza? Everyone knows how to do that, right? Not so fast, you son of a bitch, if you take that cold pizza even near a microwave, I’ll stab you through the heart with a baguette. Grab your frying pan instead, I’m about to blow your fucking mind. The best way to reheat a pizza?

I’m sorry man, but hard-shell tacos? That’s BS. Why would you eat those things, the only thing they do is cut up your throat. Screw that noise. Go to your local Mexican grocer, you know, the super sketchy one, and pick up some freshly made soft, small, tortillas. Decide what meat you want from them: steak and chorizo are both easy and fucking delicious. If you grab the steak, just cook it medium-rare, then chop it into cubes. For the chorizo, split the casing and throw the meat in a pan, and cook. Chop up some onion and cilantro, and grab a lime and salsa. That’s all you need. Now, heat the tortillas in a hot pan on each side, until they get a bit puffy, and some dark spots. Flip. Grab em out, and throw on the meat, onion, and cilantro. Squeeze a lime wedge over them. Add salsa. There, you have some legit tacos, and they are fucking delicious.

9. Pancakes

A basic pancake recipe is worth memorizing. You know why? It’s easy as hell, and it’ll impress the crap out of anyone you might happen to wake up with. Everybody freaking loves pancakes. Here’s what you need:
1c flour
2t baking powder
2T sugar
pinch of salt
1 egg
1 cup milk
2T fat (butter, oil, shortening, whatever’s around)
Mix the dry. Mix the wet. Combine gently, little lumps are fine. Cook. Learning how to cook them properly takes practice, but it’s practice that gives you delicious pancakes, so spend a couple of weekends perfecting it. If the mixture’s too wet add more flour. Too dry? Add more liquid. You can sour the milk with a little vinegar or lemon juice to make everything thicker, if you need. Bring your lover pancakes in bed, surefire success, and guaranteed morning nookie.

8. Microwave Chocolate Cake

For chocolate emergencies, nothing beats the emergency chocolate cake. There’s a recipe that most people know that actually kind of sucks, so I’m deferring to the writer of the Super Cool Food Blog, who tweaked the recipe substantially, and made something much more palatable. Just follow the directions (the non-vegan one is better), and in five minutes you’ll have some awesome chocolate cake. Just be careful, it comes out bastard hot, and is easy as anything to overcook. It’s absolutely perfect for when you’re high off your tits, and a chocolate cake sounds amazing.

7. Vegetable Stock

If you buy vegetable stock, you’re doing it wrong. It’s crazy easy to make, and makes your soups taste delicious. Here’s what you do: every time you cook anything with vegetables, keep the scraps you would otherwise throw out. The ends of carrots, the base of celery, the heels of onions. All of it. Keep it in a gallon ziploc bag in the freezer. When it’s full, throw them in a pot, add some whole vegetables, some peppers, some herbs, and gently boil for around an hour. You don’t need to watch it, go play some video games while it goes. Around an hour later, strain out the vegetables. There you go, vege stock. You can cook it down, if you want it more concentrated. Freeze in smaller chunks, and whenever you want an amazing soup, thaw and throw in whatever you want.

6. Grilled Cheese

The only people on the planet who don’t like grilled cheese sandwiches are the lactose intolerant, and that’s only because they’re jealous. A good grilled cheese sandwich will impress the panties (or briefs, if that’s your thing) off just about any potential romantic conquest. Even though it’s super fucking simple, a grilled cheese sandwich (and maybe even soup) is instant access to just about anyone’s pants. The thing is, there is so much variation in the sandwich, you need to figure out what you like, and how to cook it. Are you 50s traditional? White bread, margarine, American cheese? Or are you fancy, with focaccia, a mix of gouda and brie, cooked in olive oil? Whole grain bread and local cheddar? Do you add tomatoes? Sandwich meat? Mustard? Figure out what you like, and what you can grab easily, and master it. My personal trick is to treat it a bit like a steak: sear the outside at a medium high heat, then turn it down to let it melt through.

5. Stuffed Peppers

Another easy recipe bound to impress, especially for vegetarian eaters. For some reason, as soon as you stuff anything, it gets infinitely more awesome. Grab some nice bell-peppers, regardless of color. Slice them in half, length-ways. Clean out the seeds and end. Preheat the oven to 350°. What you need to do now is make a stuffing, and this is incredibly flexible. Cooked rice, tinned tomatoes, some beans, a whole bunch of herbs, some onions. Whatever you have floating around. Cooked ground beef is good too. Anyway, mix all that stuff up with a ton of grated cheese. Fill the peppers up with the stuffing, and then sprinkle more cheese over the top. Cook for around 25 minutes, until warmed through, then throw it under the broil setting to make sure the cheese is melty and delicious. Shit, yeah!

4. Bolognese

If you use spaghetti sauce from a jar, you are a horrible, horrible person, and should feel bad about yourself. It’s remarkably easy to make a basic Bolognese sauce, even without leaving it to simmer on the stove for eight hours. Brown some garlic and onions. Throw in some diced vegetables like carrot and celery. Add ground meat, and brown that too. Add a can or two of crushed tomatoes, depending on how much you’re making. Cook for a while. That’s just about it. You can use tomato paste as well, red wine, various herbs and spices, or whatever you have around. I’m particularly fond of throwing in a bit of mustard and Worcestershire sauce. It’s stupid easy to make, and isn’t just red HFCS like the stuff in a jar.

3. Scrambled Eggs

Gordon Ramsey is a bit of a cock, there’s no denying it. He’s also a damned good cook. Watch the video, and you’ll see how you should be making the eggs. They’re gloriously fluffy and rich, and amazing to eat. Once you do it this way, you’ll never go back to just chucking them in a hot pan, and shaking them round a bit.

2. Steak

It’s your job as a guy to learn how to cook a steak. I don’t care if you’re vegetarian. I don’t care if you’re vegan. I don’t care if you were raised by cows, and could never touch the flesh of one. You need to know how to cook a steak properly. Let the steak come to room temperature slowly. Pat dry, and season with salt (no pepper, it’ll burn when it hits the stove, pepper afterwards.) Get a cast-iron skillet super fucking hot with some high smoke point oil. Get the oven up to around 350°F. Sear the steak, and get a nice thick crust on either side. You’ll know when you can flip it because it’ll lift easily off the skillet. Try not to touch it until then. We’re looking at 2-3 minutes a side. Yes, it’ll smoke. Open all the windows, unplug the smoke detector. Once it’s nice and crusty, throw it in the over for 4 minutes. Check for doneness. Repeat until desired level is reached. Cover and LET IT SIT! 5-10 minutes. Cracked pepper, then devour.

1. Bacon

Yeah, you were surprised? Bacon. It’s enough of a meal to count as a recipe, and if you don’t think so, go make a BLT with it. There are three ways to make bacon, in my mind: microwave, stove, oven. Microwave is for emergencies: when it’s 2AM, you’re drunk off your face, and don’t trust yourself cooking. That’s cool, wrap a couple of pieces in paper towel, and ballpark for around a minute a slice. On a stove, just throw them in a pan over medium-low heat, and cook to desired crispiness. Salvage the rendered fat, and use it in cooking, shit is delicious. For the oven, put the bacon strips on a wire rack over a baking dish, so the fat drains away. Cook at 400°F for 15 minutes, then check on it. Keep checking on it every 2-3 minutes until it’s as crispy as you like, and this is the way to get it the absolutely most crispy it can be. There you go, bacon! Fuck yeah!

9 Simple, But Delicious Recipes For People Who Can’t Cook

Cooking is truly an art. Some people have a knack for it, and others just don’t. And just because you’re not a culinary expert doesn’t mean you have to miss out on one of the finer things in life— delicious food.

With these recipes at your disposal, you’ll be able to dine like you actually know what you’re doing in the kitchen.

Many of these recipes are so simple that they only require one pot or pan to whip them up. So, chef or no— let’s enjoy some good food, shall we?

Check out 9 recipes that are so simple, anyone could make them!

1. One Pan Chicken Caprese

All you have to do to make this dish is layer chicken, mozzarella, spinach and tomato in a skillet. That’s all it takes to create one of Italy’s finest dishes. Get the recipe.

I Wash You Dry

2. Mac ‘N Cheese Ramen

Ramen’s easy enough to make, right? I mean, it’s already pretty much one of your staples if you can’t cook. So, why not mix things up a bit and turn your go-to noodles into some seriously cheesy comfort food? Get the recipe.

Caroline Liu/SpoonUniversity

3. One Pan Teriyaki Chicken & Pineapple Rice

Instead of opting for take-out, why not make your go-to order all in one pan on your stovetop? Seems easy enough, right? Get the recipe.

Carl’s Bad Cravings

4. Fruity Quinoa Breakfast Bake

If you’re looking for a simple breakfast option, combine cooked quinoa and fruit into one skillet for a healthy, filling and not to mention super easy to make morning meal. Get the recipe.

Edible Perspective

5. One Minute Chocolate Mug Cake

Whether you can’t cook or you’re just feeling lazy a mug cake that can be made in the microwave is totally your speed. Get the recipe.

The Live Fit Girls

6. Lunchtime Smoothie

Lunches are tricky even for the best of chefs because making something that lasts ’til lunch hour can be easier said than done. For something that’s easy to make in the morning and take to work with you, look no further than this filling smoothie. Get the recipe.

Skinny Mom

7. Bell Pepper Pizzas

A healthy version of pizza that is easier than dialing for delivery? This is just the kind of thing you need. Get the recipe.

Peas & Crayons

8. Slow Cooker Creamy Italian Chicken

Meals that go into the slow cooker and come out looking gourmet require minimal effort, but taste delicious. Just what you were looking for, huh? Get the recipe.

Live Fit

9. 3-Ingredient Banana Pudding

This faux banana pudding recipe is just as good as the real deal— without the trouble of making pudding from scratch. Get the recipe.

The Faux Martha

So, novice culinary artists here are some ways that you can keep your cooking at a minimum, but still eat really yummy foods. That sounds like the best of both worlds, doesn’t it?

My mom used to tell me never to use the word “hate.” “You don’t hate it, Sarah, you just dislike it.” Thanks for the advice mom, but no. I’m allowed to hate things. And anyone who reads my blog knows that I hate cooking. I’m terrible at it, and the only part I enjoy is the eating.

But you know what? It’s necessary. My boyfriend does almost all of the cooking in our house, but there are those odd nights when he’s stuck at work, and I need to get something on the table before I spiral into a hanger tantrum. That’s wheremy best quick dinner ideas come in. These are the times when takeout is oh-so-tempting, but getting into that habit is terrible for my budget. Instead, I have a few quick dinner recipes in my arsenal that I turn to when my name comes up on the dinner schedule. Here are my favorite recipes for people who hate to cook:

Loaded Carbs

Carbs are my friend. I love them…a lot. And they also make the perfect base for some of the most accessible dinners you can whip up. Disclaimer: none of these are actual recipes. They are basically layering methods, so you can switch them up based on what you have on hand in your fridge and pantry.

1. Grilled Cheese and Tomato Soup

The quintessential classic. Two slices of bread, a few slices of cheese (whatever kind floats your boat, or is already sitting in your fridge), a couple of smears of mayo, and a can of Campbell’s tomato soup. And yes, I did say mayo. If you haven’t subbed mayo for butter on the outside of the bread for your grilled cheese, you must. It sounds weird, but it’s delicious. If you want to step it up a notch, then make your own tomato soup. This recipe is done in the slow cooker, and it isn’t much more effort than opening a can.

2. Beans & Cheese on Toast

Anyone else out there have British parents who fed this to them on constant rotation when they were kids? It was a go-to for my mom, and I’ve found myself coming back to it as an adult. All you do is toast a piece of bread, top it with some canned baked beans and a healthy dose of shredded cheese, and stick it under the broiler for a few minutes. Maybe it’s the nostalgia, but I think it’s delicious.

3. Naan Pizzas

This is almost a weekly meal for us in the summer, because they can be done on the BBQ, and are a super quick dinner. There are also endless combinations you can make (just like real pizza), so they’ll hit the spot with even the fussiest of eaters. I buy bags of premade naan bread, put them on the BBQ for a few minutes, flip and add my toppings, and cook until the bottom is crisp and the cheese is melted. A few of my favorite combinations:

  • Classic margarita with tomato sauce, fresh mozzarella, and basil
  • Sliced beets, goat cheese, and spinach
  • Smoked salmon, cream cheese, capers, and a lemon wedge on the side
  • Shredded chicken with pesto, mozzarella, and cherry tomatoes
  • Prosciutto and pineapple with shaved parmesan

4. Nachos

Because yes, you can absolutely eat nachos for dinner. Think about it: nachos cover all the food groups. You’ve got your meat or beans for protein, your cheese and sour cream for the dairy, corn and jalapenos and guacamole for the veggies, and of course, the chips for the grains. Nailed it.

5. Tacos

Tacos are pretty much nachos, but more accepted as a dinner option. And they, too, have endless varieties you can make. My all-time favorite taco is chorizo, which is quick and easy to fry up, but you can also do a batch of shredded chicken or pork in the slow cooker. If you’re not a meat eater, then you can look to mushrooms or beans as a base.

Clean-Out-The-Fridge Dinners

For those times when the fridge looks full, but there’s still nothing for dinner. This happens to me more often than I’d like to admit. We are avid meal planners, but certain products seem to multiply in our pantry. We always have boxes of pasta, cans of beans, leftover veggies and at least a couple of blocks of cheese. To ensure these extras don’t go to waste we make a point of doing a “clean-out-the-fridge dinner” every couple of weeks.

6. Chopped Salad

Not only does this salad use up a lot of things that tend to accumulate in your fridge, but it’s also delicious. Meat, cheese, chickpeas, a bunch of vegetables and a garlicky dressing equals perfection in salad form.

7. Scrambled Eggs (or a frittata if you want to be fancy)

Eggs are one of the best simple dinner recipes, even if you’re terrible at cooking like I am. They’re also something most of us keep on hand. If you need dinner in a hurry, just whip up a batch of scrambled eggs and throw in whatever veggies, meat or cheese you happen to have on hand. If you want to make something a little more “dinner-worthy” but still easy, try a frittata. It’s basically scrambled eggs, but baked in the oven.

8. Stir-Fry

Stir-frying get a bad rap, because it is the “boring” thing everyone cooks when they have nothing left to cook. That doesn’t need to be the case, though. All you need is a good sauce — and the best sauce is from scratch, not from a bottle. Trust me (although I’m not sure why, since this whole post is based on my lack of cooking knowledge), it makes a difference. It’s also a good idea to step up your rice game. Try coconut rice, or add a little saffron for a flavor kick.

9. Freezer Soup

Are you the kind of person who makes big batches of soup to stock the deep freeze but then never actually eats them? Me too! Set a goal to eat one freezer soup per week to make your busiest night easier and your grocery bill lower.

10. Pasta Salad

Pasta is great warm or cold, so use that to your advantage. Go a little heavy-handed when making pasta, and use some the next day for an easy pasta salad.

No-Fuss Sheet Pan Meals

If you haven’t discovered the magic of sheet pan dinners, you are missing the heck out. Technically, these involve cooking, but not really. You chop, season, spray, spread, cook, and serve. And if you line your sheet pan with foil or parchment paper, you barely even have to clean. Score! Try one of these combos, which are sure to please whoever you’re cooking for (including just yourself):

11. Crispy Sheet Pan Gnocchi and Veggies

14. Sheet Pan Parmesan Fried Chicken, Broccoli & Sweet Potato Wedges

One Step Up Meals

Maybe you have company coming over or want to make something for a date night in — these options will take it up a notch, but are still easy enough for even me to accomplish.

16. Charcuterie Board

This is perfect for date night. Yes, you’ll probably need to go to the store to stock up on supplies, but there’s zero cooking involved. A few types of cheese, meat, crostinis, mustard, and preserves, and you’ll have a delicious dinner you can share over a bottle of wine.

17. Lettuce Wraps

Restaurant-style lettuce wraps cook up quickly, and have the added perk of being healthy.

18. Brown Butter Tortellini

This is one of my favorite pasta dishes ever. It sounds (and tastes) fancy, but it’s about as easy as it gets. You will want to get the best quality tortellini you can find, as it’s the star of the show. And make sure you don’t burn the butter. Just brown, not black.

19. Quinoa Salad

I’ve made this specific quinoa salad so many times, and it’s always a hit. It’s my go-to side dish to take to summer BBQs, but it also works as a main dish. The best part? It keeps well, so you can eat it for days after.

20. Buddha Bowls

The dressing on these bowls is so addictive. I recommend making a double batch so you can give in to the second-day craving. The Minimalist Baker has so many amazing plant-based recipes. If you’re looking to reduce the amount of meat you eat, then browse her site and get inspired.

*****

Getting dinner on the table doesn’t need to be a big production. There are plenty of options for easy and quick dinners that will keep you satisfied and away from the nearest take-out joint.

Do you enjoy cooking or is a chore you dread? What are your favorites for when you need to get something on the table fast?

Sarah is a Canadian personal finance blogger over at Smile & Conquer. She has been working in the world of finance for almost a decade and uses that experience to help other millennials get smart about their money.

Image via Unsplash

Are You a Bad Cook? These Recipes Are Perfect for You

Some people look to cooking as a way to unwind at the end of a stressful workday. For those who never spent much time in the kitchen, it tends to have the opposite effect. On top of that, you usually end up with having to choke down something that doesn’t taste very good.

Like any other skill, cooking takes time to master. Attempting a cheese soufflé during your first foray in the kitchen will just end in disaster, so you have to think smaller. Recipes that utilize ready-made ingredients and simple techniques are your best bet. Get started with these seven foolproof recipes. And in a few years, that soufflé might seem like a cinch.

1. Spinach, Mushroom, and Fontina Frittata

Frittata with spinach | iStock.com

Eggs can be as finicky or as fuss-free as you’d like. Frittatas definitely fit into the latter category because they don’t require any flipping or special techniques. Try this delicious version flecked with mushrooms, spinach, and cheese from Fountain Avenue Kitchen. You can even skip the broiled topping at the end. Just add all the cheese to the eggs before transferring the pan to your oven.

Ingredients:

  • 8 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 2 tablespoons milk
  • ¾ teaspoon kosher salt
  • Freshly ground pepper
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 8 ounces cremini or other mushrooms, chopped
  • 3 ounces spinach, coarsely chopped
  • ¾ cup shredded fontina cheese, divided

Directions: Preheat oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit. In a medium bowl, whisk eggs, milk, salt, and a bit of pepper.

Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a cast-iron or other ovenproof, nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion and cook, stirring, until soft, about 2 to 3 minutes. Add mushrooms and continue to cook, stirring occasionally, until deeply browned, about 8 minutes longer. Stir in spinach and cook just until wilted, about 1 to 2 minutes. If needed, add additional oil.

Reduce heat to medium low and add egg mixture. Cook, stirring gently with a rubber spatula, until eggs begin to set. Stir in ½ cup cheese and continue to cook for 2 to 3 minutes longer. Once eggs have set around edges, transfer to the oven and bake until eggs have just set, about 4 to 5 minutes.

Remove from oven and switch oven to broil. Top frittata with remaining cheese. Transfer back to oven and broil until cheese is golden and bubbling, 1 to 2 minutes longer. Let cool briefly, slice, and serve.

2. Roast Beef Salad with Goat Cheese and Balsamic Vinaigrette

Salad with roast beef and tomatoes | iStock.com

Most people wouldn’t consider an entrée salad difficult, but poor knife skills can make the meal a bit tricky to pull off. Things get even more complicated when you have to perfectly cook a piece of steak to serve over the top. This super easy recipe from Real Simple avoids both problems because it uses deli roast beef and minimizes chopping. Since the lettuce is so tender, tearing works just as well as using a knife.

Ingredients:

  • 2 small heads Boston lettuce, torn
  • 12 ounces sliced deli roast beef
  • 1 large beefsteak tomato, cut into wedges
  • ½ red onion, sliced
  • 4 ounces soft goat cheese, crumbled
  • ¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  • Kosher salt and pepper

Directions: Divide greens, roast beef, tomato, onion, and goat cheese among four serving bowls or plates.

In a small bowl, whisk oil, vinegar, ½ teaspoon salt, and ¼ teaspoon pepper to combine. Drizzle over each portion and serve.

3. The Perfect Tuna Salad

Tuna salad sandwich | iStock.com

If you’re sick of winding up with dry, mealy fish every time you attempt to cook seafood, simplify things with canned tuna. With just five more ingredients, this tuna salad from The Kitchn will become one of your favorite foolproof recipes. Once you’ve mixed everything together, you can use the salad to build sandwiches, make lettuce wraps, or use it as a topping for baked potatoes.

Ingredients:

  • 2 (5-ounce) cans water-packed tuna, drained
  • 2 to 4 tablespoons mayonnaise
  • 1 celery rib, diced small
  • 1 small shallot or ¼ red onion, diced small
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 tablespoon pickle relish (optional)

Directions: Add tuna to a large bowl. Stir in 2 tablespoons mayonnaise along with celery, shallot, lemon juice, and relish, if using. Season with salt and pepper and stir with a fork to combine. If desired, add more mayonnaise. Adjust seasoning. Serve at once or store in an airtight container in the refrigerator.

4. Pulled Chicken Sandwiches

Barbecue pulled chicken sandwich | iStock.com

Chicken is the go-to dinner protein for novice cooks, which can actually be a mistake because it’s easy to overcook. Since supermarkets have mastered rotisserie chicken, you’re better off buying the precooked bird. One of our favorite uses for the poultry is a simple barbecue chicken sandwich. This recipe from Good Housekeeping is especially nice because it uses bottled barbecue sauce and packaged coleslaw but still manages to taste homemade with a few additions.

Ingredients:

  • 1 small rotisserie chicken
  • 1 cup barbecue sauce
  • ½ cup water
  • ¼ cup red wine vinegar
  • 6 Kaiser rolls
  • ½ pound deli coleslaw
  • Carrot and celery sticks

Directions: Shred chicken into bite-size pieces, discarding skin and bones. Add to a 2-quart saucepan along with barbecue sauce, water, and vinegar. Cook over medium heat until hot, stirring frequently, about 5 minutes.

Pile chicken mixture onto roll bottoms, top with slaw, and close with roll tops. Serve with carrot and celery sticks.

5. Microwave-Steamed Garlic Green Beans

Green beans in a white dish | iStock.com

Do you find yourself choking down mushy green beans every time you cook the veggie at home? As delicious as green beans can be, a lot of folks have a tendency to overcook them. The solution is as simple as using your microwave instead of your stove. Try this recipe from Martha Stewart to see for yourself. As long as you follow the directions, you’ll have perfect veggies every time.

Ingredients:

  • 1 pound green beans, trimmed
  • 1 garlic clove, smashed and peeled
  • 1 tablespoon butter, cut into small pieces
  • Salt

Directions: Combine green beans, garlic, butter, and 1 cup water in a 2- to 2½-quart microwave-safe dish with a lid. Season with salt, cover, and microwave on high until beans are crisp-tender, about 6 to 7 minutes. Stir and drain off any additional liquid. Serve.

6. French Bread Pizza

French bread pizza with pepperoni | iStock.com

Working with pizza dough can be a pain even for good cooks, so a homemade pie is out of the question for those lacking any kitchen skills. Partially homemade pizza, on the other hand, is completely doable. All you need is a good loaf of bread and a handful of ingredients to make this delicious French bread pizza from Epicurious. And feel free to add any of your other favorite pizza toppings.

Ingredients:

  • 1 (12- to 14-inch) loaf soft French or Italian bread, split in half lengthwise
  • 1 garlic clove, smashed
  • ½ cup store-bought tomato sauce
  • 1 cup coarsely grated mozzarella cheese
  • 3 ounces sliced pepperoni
  • ¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes (optional)
  • 2 tablespoons coarsely chopped fresh basil

Directions: Position oven rack in top third of oven and preheat to 425 degrees Fahrenheit. Place bread, cut-side up, on a rimmed baking sheet. Transfer bread to oven and bake for 5 minutes. Remove from oven and immediately rub cut sides of bread with garlic.

Spread tomato sauce evenly over cut sides of bread. Top with cheese, pepperoni, and red pepper flakes, if using. Bake until cheese is melted, bubbling, and beginning to brown, about 10 minutes. Top with basil, slice, and serve.

7. No-Bake Monster Cookie Balls

Peanut butter and chocolate chip no-bake cookies | iStock.com

Baked goods can be tricky to master for anyone. Everything from overmixing batter to underbaking a cake can lead to lackluster results. Skip the stress by making these no-bake cookies from The BakerMama. These treats contain just 6 ingredients and only require the ability to stir, so they’re perfect for every skill level. Consider these your new potluck staple.

Ingredients:

  • 2½ cups old-fashioned rolled oats
  • 1 cup creamy or crunchy peanut butter
  • ½ cup honey
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ½ cup mini chocolate chips
  • ½ cup candy-coated chocolate pieces

Directions: Combine oats, peanut butter, honey, and vanilla in a large bowl. Stir well to combine. Add chocolate chips and candies. Stir to combine, then roll dough into 2-tablespoon portions between your hands. Transfer to a parchment paper-lined baking sheet. Transfer to refrigerator until set, about 30 minutes. Serve or keep stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator.

Follow Christine on Twitter @christineskopec

Hate to cook recipes

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