Kitchen hacks that help you save time and eat smart all day long
Matthew Kadey, MSc, RD
Some people love spending hours in the kitchen cooking. If you’re not one of them, that doesn’t mean you’re relegated to nuking frozen meals. Employ these kitchen hacks to save time and eat healthy with minimal effort.
We’ve all been there: your stomach is telling you that it needs nourishment in a hurry, but you just don’t have the energy or patience to spend hours in the kitchen preparing a meal. It’s a scenario that makes it tempting to make a beeline for takeout. Luckily, learning a few smart kitchen shortcuts can help you throw together fast, healthy, and stress-free meals in a flash. And anything that encourages us to practise home cooking more often is a recipe for dietary success. A recent study in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine found that people who cooked their meals at home more often had an easier time achieving a better Healthy Eating Index score (more fruits, vegetables, whole grains, etc.) and saved money while they were at it, compared to people who ate out more often. But pressing the easy button to take the stress out of meal prep and minimize effort doesn’t mean sacrificing flavour. Use these “oh-why-didn’t-I-think-of-that?” kitchen tricks to MacGyver delicious meals and help save time (and your sanity). Now, all that’s left is to decide what to do with your extra free time. Walk in the park, anyone?
You need not always cook from scratch to put a healthy meal on the table. These healthy time-saving packaged foods will help you get in and out of the kitchen fast.
It’s still rich in nutrients and antioxidants, but there’s no chopping required and it’s less bitter tasting than full-grown kale. Add to pasta dishes, sandwiches, salads, and green smoothies.
Budget-friendly canned beans are an easy way to enrich salads, scrambled eggs, and tacos with plant-based protein and hunger-quelling fibre. Some brands offer salt-free options.
Why tip the delivery guy when this ready-to-bake crust makes a weeknight pizza party a possibility?
No need to fire up the oven to get your fix of mega-healthy omega fats. Add this velvety delight to wraps, salads, pizza, and dinner omelettes.
Conveniently pitted for you, add these sweet-tart nutrition bombs to smoothies, oatmeal, desserts, or salad, and even use them to make a quick sauce for cooked meats like chicken.
This no-cooking-required tofu is an easy way to infuse your meals with smoky tasting protein.