Friday, January 1, 2010

Cooking for One

It sounds so sad, cooking for one. But, it's a lot less sad than McDonald's for one. (Not exactly knocking the golden arches, but I know I'm not exactly in the best mood when I sit down to a giant bag of Mickey Dees.) But I know I feel best when I sit down to a home cooked meal and a favorite show. If I have enough energy left I might even do the dishes, but that's a pretty big might.

When you live alone, food can be a big problem. You either have to make a recipe that serves 4 to 6 people or microwave a Lean Cuisine... again. Left overs aren't so bad, but it sucks when you have to eat the same thing for a week just because you're alone.

Fresh veggies are a great place to start with single-serve portions because you can buy the just the amount you need and prepare them as desired. Bagged frozen veggies are next best option.
The Hungry Girl cookbooks have great single serve recipes for everything from breakfast to dessert, but they use a lot of processed products in their recipes to cut down the calorie count. Real eggs and be used in place of the fake egg and so on, but that will increase the calories that are listed for each recipe.

Breakfast food is a great option for single-serve cooking, but they are often carb and fat heavy. Which is why cooking it single-serve is great, because you have the treat one day and aren't left with it sitting around.

Cooking for yourself can be hard, but it's one of the best things you can do for your body. Having complete control of everything that you ingest is step one to becoming a healthier person.


  1. I hear ya. My biggest 'beef' is when I shop. I don't need a gallon of buttermilk for just one thing, or a large loaf of bread when it's just me and my dog. But that's how the prices are kept low....Or so they say....

  2. One of the problems though is that there's a huge lack of recipes available for solo cooking. There are some, but they range from college student fare to gourmet fare with little in between. I've found one really good solo one and two couples' ones--but neither one deals with breakfast, grains, or salads as meals. So I've taken to using the Betty Crocker and B&H Cookbooks and physically rewriting the recipe to pare it down to two servings. Spices are the tricky area, so I'm going to have to experiment with taste to see if I get the measurements right. I'm also buying single servings of things like fish (3 oz often only costs a dollar or two), which I can either pouch and add lemon or lime juice or put in aluminum foil and sprinkle with spices, and then bake in the oven. For grocery shopping, I finally started ignoring "great" sales because it's not a good sale if I have to throw out the pasta sauce because it went bad before I could finish it. Instead, I try for smaller quanities--though it sometimes means I need to go to different grocery stores.