I’ve officially written fifty one pot recipes here on the blog! If you missed #50 see it here. There are standard methods that I use for almost all of my one pot recipes. I’ve become somewhat at of a pro at this one pot meal thing: making shortcuts, using easy ingredients and tricks and I thought it was about time I shared them all with you!
So if you are interested in my one pot meals and want to make them even easier, whether you are new in the kitchen and intimidated by cooking or already know your way around the kitchen – these tips are for you!
One Pot Meal Tips
Tip One: Use the right tools!
Skillet: My most used cookware is this pan!! It is perfect for so many of my pasta and skillet one pot meals. You can use it for a ton of things!
Crockpot: I love love love my crockpot! Just dump and go! I always use a liner because then my crockpot is basically still clean and there is no scrubbing or scrapping cooked on food!
Large Pot: This pot matches my skillet and I use this for soups a lot!
9×13 Pan: My other most used item, anything that goes in the oven goes in this baby. I always use aluminum foil or Pam for easy clean up.
Tip two: Prepare
I get out everything I am going to need right when I start: tools and ingredients. Pull out the recipe and put everything you need on the counter.
Tip Three: Easy Ingredients
I don’t use fresh onion or garlic when I cook – you can do this is you choose I am just way too lazy because I like the flavors in every meal lol and going fresh is just too much work for me everyday. So this is what I use when something calls for onion/garlic. It adds the flavor with out the work.
Olive oil – when using a skillet to cook meat (especially chicken) always use olive oil so it doesn’t stick to the pan!
It’s okay to use canned and frozen ingredients – seriously it makes your life so much easier. I always use frozen broccoli, peas, carrots, etc. And canned corn, tomatoes and green beans! Also microwaveable rice packets are the best – I use Uncle Ben’s or Trader Joe’s frozen brown rice packets!
Tip four: Use your best judgement
I always just eyeball my seasoning – I never measure it out. Start with less, you can always add more. My amounts of seasonings in my recipes are always rough guesses.
I rarely follow time closely. Times are really guidelines. You can tell when your meat is fully cooked and your pasta is soft and when things are no longer frozen or melted. Trust yourself! (I know this takes practice but it gets easier).
I will say though that skillet meals usually need to be stirred a lot to cook evenly!
Tip Five: Clean up as you go
I always clean as I go. This means throwing away trash while things are heating up, rinsing out any tools you use, etc. I also try and set the table and get our plates and stuff while things are cooking. I use this for every meal I cook.
Tip Five: Don’t Be afraid of cooking pasta in one pot meals
Most pastas can be turned one pot recipes if you add some chicken or beef broth – and they cook up just fine! Pasta does not have to be cooked separate in boiling water. Also pasta CAN be cooked in the crockpot too – the last thirty minutes or so and it is good to go!
Tip six: Chicken
I usually call for “diced” uncooked chicken in my recipes. I always buy the “chicken tenders” so the pieces are smaller and then I have a pair of kitchen sheers I use for food only and “cut” my chicken up with those and then wash them well. This makes chicken cook so much faster!
TIP Seven: Make clean up easy
I also divvy up everything into portions (for our plates and our containers for leftovers) all at once so I don’t finish eating and go back to cooked on food in my pan. I take my pan off the heat and then when I go back all I have is our dishes and one pan to quickly clean because it’s a one pot meal and I did the rest of my cleaning as I went!
Well I am sure I will think of more tips later, but I will be sure to add them here when I do. This will linked on my One Pot Meal page for easy future reference! I truly thank you all for using my recipes to make your dinner – my goal is to help and make dinner time easier and less stressful!
Thanks for catching up!