Healthy Meals for Busy Writers
Writers are abuzz with posts about NaNoWriMo, but in the excitement, it’s often forgotten that it’s rather difficult to prep meals, work a full time job, take care of the kids, and bother about dinner while tapping out 1500-ish words every night. Even when it’s not November or you don’t have a full-time job apart from writing, when I’m in the writing groove, the last thing I want to do is mess with cooking. I actually hate cooking and cleaning and pretty much anything domestic. What’s a writer to do?
I have found a few things that work for me. Utilize these tips for some easy, healthy, tasty meals for busy days, even if you hate to cook.
1. Make friends with your crockpot
The crockpot is an amazing appliance and perfect for work at home moms and dads. All you have to do is toss your ingredients in the pot in the mornings and you are rewarded with a delicious dinner in the evenings! Need some recipes? Visit Pinterest or your favorite recipe site for some good ones.
2. Visit Once a Month Mom
Once a Month Mom is amazing! You spend one day prepping meals for the month. They won’t feed you every day, but they are great for busy days. Her posts are complete with easily accustomed shopping lists, printable labels, and step by step instructions for how to do it all at once. It’s a lot of up front work, but we like to make it a family affair. Everyone pitches in and we have the ability to put dinner on the table without much effort throughout the month.
3. Plan ahead
Save time and money by making a menu plan. Not worrying about what’s for dinner will save you last minute stress, last minute trips to the grocery store, and last minute eating out because you’re just too tired to think about it.
4. Prep on weekends
Once you have a meal plan, chop your vegetables on Sunday so you can easily toss the ingredients in a pan throughout the week. Making fajitas? Chop your onions, chicken, and peppers, season, and pop it in the fridge for an easy weeknight meal.
5. Toss some things together
It doesn’t take much thought to throw some spice mix on a piece of meat, toss some baked potatoes in the oven, and add a salad and/or other quick vegetable. This can save you money, too. I plan most of a menu, but leave a couple days blank so I can go to the store, see what’s on sale and/or in season, and make a “meat and potatoes” meal out of that.
6. Double your recipes
When you do cook, double the recipe and freeze the leftovers. A friend gave me this tip and it has proven to be one of the most useful. If I make pancakes, I make extras we can pull out of the freezer for easy meals in the mornings. If I make a casserole, I make two. If I make chicken, I season enough for two dinners.
7. Eat out
It’s okay to eat out once or twice on particularly busy days. Don’t feel guilty! Sometimes, it’s just not worth the hassle!