Thursday, July 26, 2012

Cooking for Two

The title of this post makes me giggle.    I haven't cooked for two in 17 years but I know that at some point in the next few years this could be my reality.  A reader wrote in recently asking if I had any tips on two person meals and yes, yes I do! 

Build your week around one large piece of meat.   Not only does that save you lots of money in the store but you'll save a lot of time.  For example, Do a Pot Roast on day one. Use leftover meat and BBQ sauce for BBQ Beef Sandwiches on day two.  Try a Beef Stir Fry on day three.  How about Roast Beef Salad, Roast Beef Casserole or Roast Beef Soup.  And Don't forget a Leftover Buffet at the end of the week to get one final bite of all the goodies before they are gone. That $20 piece of meat broken into 7 meals is less than $3 a day and is easy to stretch with just two people. 

Make leftovers on purpose.    Make a few main dishes and a few sides at the beginning of the week and keep them in the fridge to re-heat over the next several days.  One 9 x 13 casserole may be overkill for two people but not if it's for a week of meals.   I've tried this during busy weeks with my larger family and it was a life saver.  I usually make a big pot of soup, a pasta salad or maybe a casserole and then we eat that for dinners all week.  It doesn't get too boring because you can always have variety with breakfast and lunches.  The bonus is you only have to cook ONCE for the entire week. 

Eat out!   Oh Heck, Ya.  I said it.  When it's just two of you, eating out doesn't cost an arm and a leg.  On the few occasions when the husband and I get away we usually share an entree, appetizer and maybe even a dessert for less than it costs for the 6 of us to order off the Mcdonalds $1 menu.  We've been able to try more adventurous foods and slip in a few glasses of fancy schmancy wine every now and then too.   And if money is crazy-tight for the two of you, we've been known to do a $1 menu date night for a $6 or less.  Treat yourself every once in a while and take a night off. 


momma-lana said...

Cooking for two comes way faster than you ever thing it will! I like to roast a chicken first thing in the week and use it all week. One great thing is that I really do very little cooking since we have leftovers throughout the week. After cooking for 7 plus umpteen friends of the 5 we do eat out a couple of times a week and we are loving every minute of it!

upnorth said...

Gayle, I think this was for me and thank you! I do this, but feel like I'm not making the greatest meals (the hub never complains because he doesn't do any cooking), just makes me feel better that no all the meals are 6 courses, maybe just 2!!!

upnorth said...

thanks so much for answering my question. Sometimes since I don't make a 6 course meal I feel bad, but the "hub" never complains as he doesn't cook!