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Kitchen Shortcuts

By Hannah Newsome RD, CSO, LD

5 ways to cut down your time in the kitchen

a person chopping vegetables on a cutting board

After a long day of appointments and treatment, standing in the kitchen to prepare a meal may be too tiring for some people, making it easy to skip eating altogether. Here are 5 ways to reduce your time in the kitchen:

1. Keep convenience foods on hand:

Stock your pantry and refrigerator with items such as canned beans and shredded cheese for a quick burrito or pre-cooked chicken and hummus to stuff in a pita pocket. Other options include pre-cooked pasta and jarred sauce, rotisserie chicken from the deli, canned/pouch tuna, pre-cooked chicken strips, and low sodium soups.

2. Make extras for freezing on days when you have more energy:

On days when you have extra energy, prepare an extra serving or two of a meal and stick in the freezer! Foods like chilis, casseroles, and soups freeze and reheat well.

3. Simple breakfast ideas:

Start your day off strong with a quick, yet hearty breakfast. Grab a muffin tin and make egg cups with your favorite omelet toppings in the oven. Overnight oats can be prepped the night before so you can grab and go in the morning (basic recipe: ½ cup old fashioned oats, ½ cup milk of choice, sweetener such as honey or maple syrup to taste, and fruit of choice).

4. High protein smoothie or supplement:

Smoothies made with protein powder or Greek yogurt are a great way to incorporate a variety of fruits and vegetables while providing a good serving of protein. If you’re short on time, grab a bottled supplement before running out the door—ask your facility’s registered dietitian for recommendations most appropriate for you.

5. Smart snacking:

Have a long day ahead? Keep snacks like granola bars, pre-portioned nuts, and string cheese accessible so you can munch on the go!

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