The Ultimate Guide to Quick and Easy Meals–Tips and Tricks for Cooking in 30 Minutes or Less

Woman Cooking in 30 Minutes
Photo Courtesy of Pexels – Juan Pablo Serrano Arenas

Time is such a precious commodity with how busy our days can be. Therefore, it always helps to have tips and tricks for cooking in 30 minutes or less to get more done and gain extra leisure time. In this post, I will show you the basics for shopping, kitchen organization, preparation, and cooking that can help serve quick and easy meals in record time.

You can speed up a recipe in several ways. If money is not important to you as much as saving those extra minutes in time, you can often buy ingredients for your recipe already sliced, grated, diced and just ready for use. For instance, you can buy grated mozzarella cheese to keep in your refrigerator when you want make pizza or something else. However, you are paying for that convenience with a higher price compared to buying that mozzarella cheese in bulk.

I buy a big block of mozzarella and cut it into four smaller hunks. I freeze three and leave one in the refrigerator to grate when needed, which is much cheaper. I don’t advise buying a huge block of cheddar cheese because that tends not to hold up well as mozzarella in the freezer or the refrigerator.

On the same note, you can buy frozen vegetables or fruits to keep on hand in the freezer to add to soups, casseroles and desserts instead of devoting more time to cleaning, peeling and chopping. Again, you pay more for that solution.

Read the steps in the recipe that you’re planning and try to shorten how it is done. Take cucumbers for a salad or zucchini in a casserole are two that don’t need peeled. Peeling takes more time and wastes valuable nutrients that you are depositing in the garbage.

Speaking of the vegetables as ingredients in a recipe, try cleaning and preparing the vegetables you specified along with the spices in a zip-lock bag to store in the freezer to later pull out for that recipe. Afterwards, all you have left to do is add the meat or poultry and liquids for the rest of the recipe for cooking in about 30 minutes.

How efficiently you organize your kitchen matters for reducing time devoted to cooking. Wasting too much time just rooting through your shelves or pantry to find the ingredients, right pot or pans to utensils bogs us down. Aiming to find what you need like staple items, herbs, spices and have them visible instead of hidden shortens the time among the secrets for fast cooking.

When preparing recipes, line up all the ingredients, utensils, pots or pans needed first is important to increase your success reducing meal preparation.

Next, chop, slice and peel all the ingredients needed at the same time. Stopping to take care of another aspect of the recipe only delay you because you’ll be washing your hands again after returning to finish.

Open all the cans the recipe requires at one time instead of individually. This saves time.

Cooking on the stove-top or broiling the recipe can reduce time compared to using your oven.

You also need to remember that size matters in regard to shortening cooking time. Chop vegetables or meats into smaller pieces helps.

If you enjoyed this post with tips and tricks for cooking in 30 minutes or less, you might also like my previous post on meal prep tips and cooking hacks to save time. Check it out here and learn how to plan your meals ahead, use shortcuts in the kitchen, and make more out of your leftovers.

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