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For one person: meal planning
Wed Feb 13, 2013 9:49 amNewbie "Fry Cook" Poster
So my husband is going to be heading out soon for a 7.5 month deployment. Just wanted to see how helpful meal planning is and if anyone has any advice for cooking for one person and not being wasteful. Thanks everyone!
Wed Feb 13, 2013 2:02 pmForum Host
I like to cook lesser amounts - even if you freeze leftovers, they are leftovers. Unless they can really be repurposed. Some is ok, but too much gets depressing.
I have a cookbook of recipes that are small quantity or that are readily reduced to one or two servings (i.e., the recipe calls for 4 fillets, for example, rather than for a roast). Perhaps it will give you a start, Two by Two
Sat Feb 23, 2013 6:25 pmFood.com Groupie
I may be late to answering this ...
I'm just the opposite. It is just me most often; but I plan a full meal most nights. And leftovers are only boring if you let them be boring, IMO.
I just cooked a whole chicken. Made 5 pot pies (normally I would make 3, using a smaller chicken; but I got a huge one cheap; so 2 are for a friend. Freeze and reheat. A great dinner already.
I also have 3 bags of chicken cut up from this same chicken
1) One night, quesadillas; add some peppers, onions, or mushrooms and cheese; throw in some black beans on side and dinner.
2) The other chicken I'll add to a wild rice soup; and have soup and a sandwich for dinner
3) And, the last bag; either chicken salad on a bed of lettuce; or, a BBQ chicken sandwich with slaw; and onion rings
Pork ... tenderloin. Easy and quick. Leftovers make
1) pork fried rice 2) BBQ sandwich 3) tacos or wrap sandwiches 4) shepherds pie
Cooking for 1 or 2 is always twice as cooking for 4; you just need to get creative, plan, and think ahead.
A beef roast can be made into stew, soups, calzones or meat pies; also quesadillas, hot sandwiches like a phili cheese steak with melted cheese; Shepherds pie, pot pie, etc. Endless. Stir fry, pasta dishes, etc.
You just make sure to MARK your freezer bags and check them often.
I cook a ham every 2-3 months. I eat it one night and bag the rest. Scalloped potatoes, ham salad, grilled ham and cheese, mac and cheese, pasta with peas and ham w/fontina cheese; quiche, fritatta; sandwiches, etc.
I do the same with turkey. Soup, cream of turkey, tettrazzini, salads, open face turkey sandwich, cold cranberry and turkey sandwich; of course the basic turkey and stuffing
But plan ...
If I make a roast, I try to make sure that I plan 2 or 3 meals to use that up within the next month. Plan ahead, and think what you can make
Like my leftover chicken I didn't use to make my pot pies; I only used the white meat. The leftover chicken will make a great chicken salad, but a lighter dinner; or make some for a light lunch with crackers. Or make a wrap sandwich for lunch or dinner. How about easy creamed turkey; or tacos. You could even through it in a soup if you wanted. That is NOT bad leftover if you ask me.
Or, serve over mashed spuds, add some gravy and broccoli for a simple dinner.
Tomorrow I have company. I am grilling steak for dinner. I'm making extra. I should have enough for 2 nights. I am making a open face steak sandwich with swiss and sauteed mushrooms; potato salad on the side.
For the second dish. Steak and eggs. I'll grill up some onions and peppers; and top with a grilled egg; and maybe roasted potatoes on the side. Or hash. Nothing wrong with breakfast for dinner in my book.
SO, PLAN AHEAD; AND LEFTOVER DON'T HAVE TO BE JUST LEFTOVERS.
Think ahead and mark your bags. And most of all, check weekly to see what you have. And use at least 2 leftovers each week
FYI ... the last 3 weeks, I have spent NO more than 20 per week for food. Now, that doesn't include, cat food, wine, soda, milk, cheese, eggs; etc. But, I have really only been buying cheese, milk, vegetables, and fruit. And with what a spend, I usually am putting 3-4 dinners in the freezer as well for another time.
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