Tired of your sink being filled with dishes? Here are some tips, tricks, and recipes for one-pot meals to minimize mess and clean-up.
Organization – Tips & Tricks
- Take out all of the ingredients you will need before you start cooking
- Clean as you go (cutting board, colanders, putting ingredients away after using them, etc)
- Make more than you need and freeze the rest for an easy meal another day
- Brown your meat first, this will caramelize the meat and leave a nice flavor for cooling the rest of your ingredients
- Choose fresh and healthy ingredients
- Fruits and vegetables that are in season are always good options
- Add ingredients in descending order of cooking time- the quickest cooking time ingredients should go in last, this will help to build your perfect flavor
- Try and make homemade stocks and broths using your vegetable scraps
Staple Food Items
- Grains- these are so easy to add to almost any meal you make- some will even increase your protein if you aren’t cooking meat in your dish
- Pasta (try a legume pasta alternative like lentil or chick pea)
- Beans- another easy and cheap way to add nutrients and protein to your dishes
- Try rehydrating dried beans
- If you do buy canned beans, look for some that have no added sodium
- If they do have sodium added, make sure to rinse them before using
- Sauces and Pastes- easy way to add deep flavor to any dish
- Curry paste
- Chili sauce
- Simmer sauce
- Spices- Salt and Pepper are the main staples, but try a spice you never have before, it’s so fun and delicious to get creative
- Try using fresh herbs when you can
- Dried herbs can be just as effective, just make sure they are still good
- Try growing your own herbs all year round
Cast iron skillets are great for searing your meat and can easily go in your oven for additional baking time if needed. Make sure your cast iron is seasoned and that you are taking care of it correctly so it doesn’t rust.
One Pot Recipes
If you want a soupier meal, add more liquid to your pot, if you want a more saucy feel, add less. You can always add more liquid, so start with less than you think and you can always add more depending on how you like it!
Sheet Pan Recipes
Try not to crowd your items on one sheet pan, this will steam the items instead of getting a nice brown bake. If you want an easy cleanup, line your pan with tinfoil or parchment paper before adding ingredients.
The presentation was given to NCJW by Arielle Kroser, Program Assistant, JFCS Squirrel Hill Food Pantry