coVid-19. We are all stuck at home... not necessarily because we want to either. However, it is for our safety.
Cooking could become your new favorite hobby during through this time. While we greatly miss being able to get out and attend our favorite restaurants, it's best we STAY HOME! Most places have shifted to takeout or delivery but why not use this opportunity to experiment in the kitchen!
To build a new habit, we've put together 12 ways to motivate yourself to cook more and have fun with it.
Make it Easy
1. Don't overdo it. Don't try to cook everyday, if it doesn't work for you. Start small. Maybe you can start by focusing on amazing lunches. Don't feel obligated to cook something new every day. Taking on too much, too soon may be overwhelming, better yet discouraging, especially for a new and upcoming chef! *wink*
2. Plan out your meals. We should be limiting our time outside of our homes and spend more time planning meals. For example: Mexican Mondays. Thai Tuesday. West Indian Wednesdays. Turkish Thursdays. Fry Food (air friers count, too) Fridays. This will keep things fun but also intentional.
3. Have go-to recipes that you love, are easy to make and help add variety to your days. For example: burritos and tacos can have different fillings or toppings, depending on what you have and what you're in the mood for.
4. Bulk cook by making a pot of rice, quinoa or anything else you can eat with different things. We want to limit our carb intake, especially if you aren't exercising. However, having a carbohydrate you can grab quickly, allowing you to spend your time being creative with the remainder of your meal.
5. Use cooking shortcuts like canned beans, frozen vegetables and powdered seasonings. Time to look through those cabinets! These items have a longer shelf life so you will waste less have shorter prep times.
6. Keep your kitchen clean. Ideally, your sink is empty, counters clear and food items organized. One of the positive things about this quarantine is we have more free time! Have you added "clean the kitchen" to your ever long list of house items to do? (We know you have a list... we do!) Nothing's more discouraging is walking into your kitchen, gearing up to cook and realizing you have limited or no space at all. Nothing is where you thought it was and at that point, you are over it. Set yourself up for success by making sure your kitchen is clean and organized.
Make it Exciting
7. Try something new. Creativity. Creativity. Creativity. When is the last time you've roasted your protein? Air fried? Grilled? Boiled? Swap out ingredients you normally use for different ones. Try buying something new like a different spice or vegetable. As you are planning out your grocery list, pick one to two items you're willing switch up.
8. Have fun by playing music, your favorite podcast or a book you're listening to. Cooking time should be one of the highlights of your day. It should bring you joy. Make the most of it!
9. Invite your framily (friends and family) to eat with you When is the last time the entire family sat down and ate? If you live alone, have you ever hosted a virtual dinner party? Taking this approach can act as a motivator to cook a real meal instead of the TV dinner or takeout you may normally eat on Thursday nights. Plus, people will want to know your cooking secrets when they see how great your food looks and tastes!
Make it Important
10. It's better for your body. When you make it yourself, you will have a much better sense of what is in it, and you can control what goes into it like salt, oils, and sugar. You can greatly reduce the amount of unknown processed substances you put into your meals by cooking for yourself. Check out our blog about adding protein to your diet.
11. Think of all the money you'll save during this time by not ordering in or picking up take-out. Plus, when we are able to roam freely again, you'd have saved enough to pick up one of our new Spring 2020 Professional Lunch Totes! for yourself and a loved one.
12. Document your journey. You'd be surprised how much you'll learn about yourself during this time. Foods you didn't know you liked, recipes you completely failed at. See this as a season of growth! What's the worst that can happen? At least you'll know what your true palette is.
Remember these three things: Make it easy, make it exciting, and make it count.
T|W Tote was founded because we wanted to carry our lunch, in style. We wanted our community to try and master new recipes, add variety to their meals but most importantly, save money! Our goal is provide luxury yet affordable meal carrying accessories that look great and feel better on your pocket. But without meal prepping, you cannot sport your tote!
Do you have any other tips for motivating yourself to cook? Let us know in the comments!