Cooking for One

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Prior to joining Weight Watchers, I wasn’t a big cook. I lived with my dad and younger brother and often ate what my father prepared or dined out in restaurants. I know now that both of these factors probably contributed to me gaining weight!

I moved in with my ex very soon after joining Weight Watchers and began cooking for the two of us. Having another person to cook and pack a lunch for made it quite easy to plan and prepare meals, do a weekly grocery shopping trip and generally use up everything in our fridge. Most recipes make 4ish servings so we’d have 1 serving each for dinner and then both take another serving for lunch the following day.

Having moved out on my own, I’ve noticed that it has been a very different ball game now that I’m only cooking and shopping for one (officially). In the last month, I’ve fallen into a new groove and developed some new strategies for cooking for one.

Cook for Others
Since I started cooking, I always enjoyed the act of making things for other people and have embraced this as a strategy in my new home. The most awesome part about this is that I now have 3 willing participants in my roommates! In my first week here I started off by making some delicious


and later went on to include a tomato-zucchini curry SANY3284 I am happy to share food when I’m making larger dishes, because there are often still leftovers for me and the food isn’t going to waste. It also means that I can prepare baked goods without having to worry about having the whole pan or batch to myself!

I also enjoy have people over and cooking for them, like I did with the lovely Lindsay a couple weeks agoDSCF9002 We enjoyed baked falafels with a fresh salad and tahini dressing. I love cooking for people and look forward to doing more entertaining in the future. Any takers?

Cook with Others
A few weeks ago I blogged about the
impromptu dinner party the roommates and I had, and I’m sure that there will be more of those to come in the future. Last week I had set out to make the cauliflower-lentil curry from Veganomican when Drew arrived home. I mentioned that he could join me in consuming some curry SANY3374 (2) to which he asked how he could help. Together we made quite the delightful meal. Drew whipped up some red rice and an amazing salad with baby spinach, raisins and sautéed onions, garlic and asparagusSANY3373 (2) SANY3375 (2) It was an awesome meal and having someone else to chat with in the kitchen as well as prepare part of the meal, made the whole experience a lot more enjoyable.

Cook for Yourself
I’ve found that since I’ve been cooking for one, my meals have become a lot more simple and I am okay with this. I’ve been eating a lot of salads
SANY3321SANY3422SANY3085 Stir friesSANY3411SANY3136 and simple dishes like brown rice pastaSANY3330that are easy to make for one! I’ve been making 1-2 more elaborate meals each weekSANY3380 and sticking with lots of veggies, fruits, whole grains and basic proteins like tempeh and lentils the rest of the time. I’ve been freezing bigger batches of things and embracing leftovers in different ways. I find myself eating a ton of fruits and veggies and this makes me really happy!

While cooking for one is definitely different than cooking for two, it’s proving to be an interesting challenge that I’m having fun exploring!

Are you cooking for just yourself? What are some of your tips and tricks? Any good cookbooks or resources that focus on cooking for one?

Looking for some new recipe ideas? Check out the recipes that my members sent me over the last few weeks.



Meghan (Making Love In The Kitchen) said...

You and those cuppins! Need a 12-step program for you!!!

Basht said...

2 weeks out of every month my husband works nightshift so i'm just cooking for my toddler and i. I usually choose 1 or 2 small things and a couple of big meals so that we can have leftovers for a day or two. I make a few different things so that there's variety in the week :)

Katie said...

I cook for just myself, too! I often will make one or two elaborate meals in a week and then freeze the leftovers in individual portions to take for lunches. Sometimes it's difficult to get enough variety but not let food go to waste!

Your food always looks so delicious (and nutritious)! :)

Lauren said...

I live alone so I also do a lot of cooking for one. Sometimes I'll make soup or bigger meals and give leftovers to family and friends, but for the most part, I keep it really simple. I also make a lot of salads. Someone recommended a book to me called Vegan Cooking for One, but I haven't checked it out yet..
I feel so much less motivated to cook when its only for me...I should do more.

Anonymous said...

I cook for myself as well. That is if you consider blending cooking? I've been on a smoothie kick for a month or so now. At least they're healthy :-)

Unknown said...

I cook just for me as well! I have a roomie, but we're never home at the same time so we do our own meals. I find it easiest to make one big dish (pasta, stirfry) and have leftovers all week! Saves on time, too :)

kiki said...

well..when i'm cooking just for myself i prefer salads...i make so many different tipes of salad! i love to find the right combination of flavours! ^^

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