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      3 Meal Planning Tips when Cooking for One or Two People

      3 Meal Planning Tips when Cooking for One or Two People

      While working in the Hamilton Beach test kitchen today, performing test routines on a number of products, it occurred to me that my whole team is currently working from home and cooking for just one or two people. Our group runs the gamut from a young professional sharing an apartment with a roommate to me and my retired husband as empty nesters. Curious about what everyone else was cooking now that we are eating all our meals at home, I took the opportunity to check in. In between sending funny memes and a photo of Lily the dog monitoring a speeding mail truck, some great tips were shared. (I sure do miss being with these people!)

      Our top three tips when cooking for one or two people are as follows:

      Make More Than One Meal 

      Shredded Cuban Mojo Pork
      Cook once so you don’t have to cook again so soon. How? Meal prep! Shredded Cuban Mojo Pork is the perfect example of a great meal prep slow cooker recipe — it can be served over rice for dinner night one, then in a wrap the next day. A little planning can make for easy meals all week long, thanks to the slow cooker. Here are two more meal prep ideas and their day two incarnations:

      Day One: Slow Cooker Basic Shredded Chicken
      Day Two: Mediterranean Chicken and Quinoa Bowl

      Day One: Slow Cooker Beef Pot Roast
      Day Two: Pot Roast Po Boy

      Freeze for Later 

      Slow Cooker Tuscan Chicken Stew with Tomatoes, Sausage and Beans
      Soups, chili, and even the shredded meats from the first tip can be frozen for use later. Make individual-sized portions of a hearty chili for faster reheating and grab-and-go lunches. Or save turkey or chicken bones for making bone broth or chicken stock. Vegetables about to go bad can be frozen to use in soups or stocks as well. Here are a few of our favorite meals that can be easily frozen and taste just as good the second time around:

      Store in Just the Right Sizes 

      Dijon Salmon with Green Beans Sheet Pan Supper
      Some of us like leftovers less than others. Vacuum-sealing meats or poultry in appropriate size packages and storing for later use cuts down on waste and dealing with leftovers. This can also save money when buying in bulk. Use the perfectly portioned proteins as the centerpiece of some delicious sheet pan dinners for two that can be cooked using your countertop oven. Here are some of our favorites:

      Cooking for one or two doesn’t have to be a chore; plan ahead and let your kitchen appliances help shoulder the load. What tips do you have for those cooking for themselves or one other person? Leave us a comment below with your ideas!

       

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