What do you eat when you don't want to cook??

HU-753479426

We're retired and a "bubble" of two. We have no delivery options where we live. We both cook, but are weary of figuring things out. Tonight it's going to be a can of refried beans, flour tortillas, cheese and salsa.

seagrass

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krystalmoon2009

Sometimes for us, it might be a frozen pizza. Tonight leftover grilled chicken breast but on a sandwich with bacon, cheese, tomato and lettuce with oven baked fries

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cindy_z6b/7a VA

Popcorn, sometimes with Penzey's Brady Street Sprinkles added.

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Louiseab Ibbotson

Nothing, and that gets me in trouble as I am underweight?

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LoneJack Zn 6a, KC

Prepared things that I can just stick in the oven or air fryer then take out and eat. Things like pot pies, pizzas, chicken strips, breaded shrimp, Stouffer's lasagna, baked potatoes. I also usually have some hand made tamales in the freezer that I can pop in the steamer any time.

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fawnridge (Ricky)

Leftovers.

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plllog

It depends on who's eating. I try to freeze cooked main dishes so I can have instafood. I can make simple things from boneless chicken parts or ground beef that take no real "cooking" though, of course they have to be cooked rather than raw.

Last night, I was desperate for a big hunk of protein (not deli from the fridge!) and had a package of chicken breasts. While eating the previously steamed artichokes, and handfuls of arugula (not an actual salad) with a bit of sour sesame dressing (i.e., not sweet), I steamed the chicken. I didn't have any sauce in the fridge, so I grabbed a jar of low sugar pear preserves. No patience to water it down, just about half a teaspoon on each piece, brushed both sides. It was little enough, one couldn't see it, but it was sufficient for the flavor and roastiness, and made the lemon pepper and fines herbes stick Steam roasted on 60% steam, 360° F (if you don't have a steam oven, put a ramekin or butter melter of water on a rack in the oven). Delicious, and the biggest prep tasks (given the already cooked artichokes) were opening and disposing of the chicken package and flipping the pieces while brushing and seasoning.

Ground beef most preplessly is sloppy joes. It's work to chop onion, pepper, etc., and then sweat them. I use dehydrated mixed veg (mostly peppers), dehydrated onion, and dehydrated parsley, a little dry jalapeño. Nothing to chop or pre-cook, and no prep cleanup. Timing the dry going in to just when the meat releases water, so instead of it going as steam, it just absorbs into the veg. S&P. Squirts of ketchup and mustard (or your preferred flavors). Basically, one pan, little fuss, hot meal. On bread open face or in a bun. Cheese optional. Steam lightly or zap to melt.

But if it's a nice day, depending on moods, sandwiches are always an option. :)

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lisaam

Cheese, crackers and apples

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nekotish

I told my husband that tonight is "International Cuisine." Potstickers, because I bought a huge bag from Costco and Greek Salad because I happen to have all the veg. When I make soup, I make a vat and freeze in single servings, so "pick a soup" night is also common here. Sometimes accompanied by grilled cheese, sometimes crackers. Anything like stew or soup, I make more than we need and freeze portions, so there is always something to choose from. Our delivery options are abysmal, as are takeout options unless we want to do the 20 mile round trip to the nearest "bigger" town. I would be happy with cereal and fruit - DH prefers something a little more substantial.


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HU-753479426

We have depleted our homemade soups, stews and casseroles. We're certainly not out of food. We have a well-filled freezer. Neither one of us wants to chop, assemble and cook, for some reason. The burritos will fill us. We do need to venture out to buy some eggs and some kind of bread tomorrow.

seagrass

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nancyjane_gardener

We really haven't changed our eating habits (maybe a little OCD can be helpful!) I do use my foodsaver for soups and stews etc which comes in handy when I'm totally bored with putting together a meal EVERY night (except Fridays when we purchase something).

I will do a FS meal about once a week...add a salad and it gives me a break!

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amylou321

Well, if i am alone its whatever. Cereal, chips, cookies, bread and butter. Just whatever. Now that i am back on my diet, some cheese and pickles or a spoonful of peanut butter or a lunchmeat and cheese rollup. If SO is involved, we will go get takeout from somewhere. He is of the opinion that if there is no meat, it is not a meal.

I have to say I can't remember a time when cooking was a problem. There are certainly times that I know I do not want to have to clean up my mess afterward. Those are takeout days.

Today, before I went to work I reheated some homemade baked pasta that I had frozen in small portions for him.

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HU-753479426

We use our vacuum sealer a lot for meat, especially, that we buy in bulk "family packages" when we find them on sale. We have plenty of all kinds of meat in our freezer. I'm just in a depressed funk, not much appetite, would love to have someone just serve me a meal. Maybe I'm ready for the "home". Not really - I spent a few weeks in a rehab facility after a hospitalization about 4 years ago and the food was really disgusting.

seagrass

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bragu_DSM 5

ramen noodles ... 3 min nuke

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annie1992

No delivery here, either, and not all foods adapt well to "take out". Because we seldom ate out before the pandemic, I don't miss it, it's way down on the bottom of the list of things I want to do when things open up again

The beans and tortillas would be fine with me, and we always have a big batch of beans in the refrigerator, Elery eats them daily with breakfast, with some chips as a "dip" or as nachos, or for supper with some cornbread. He likes beans, whether it's black beans, pinto, garbanzos, whatever, so I make a big pot when I make them, or he makes his own in the Insta-Pot, which is his "gadget" and I never touch.

If it's just me, a bowl of cereal or some peanut butter on toast is fine, although I always have home canned soup on the pantry shelf, as well as canned chicken or beef which can be shredded and mixed with BBQ sauce for a fast sandwich. I've also been known to just pop open a pint of home canned green beans or beets or grab a bag of mashed butternut squash from the freezer, stick it in the microwave and eat that. Elery also likes eggs, so some eggs wrapped in that tortilla with some salsa and cheese would be another option that would be OK with him.

My girls will still take an English muffin or hamburger bun, smear it with pizza sauce, add some cheese and bake it, making a fast "pizza". Tuna fish sandwiches is another big winner for them, although Amanda is celiac and would rather have her tuna stuffed in a hollowed out cucumber half.

I hope you feel better soon...

Annie



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carolb_w_fl_coastal_9b

What Ricky said 😁

I like to make amounts that will last a few days. I do a lot of roasted 1 pan meals and stews, or roast/grilled meat, vegetables and a big salad. Having a selection of spice blends makes it really easy to prep things.

If I'm really in a pinch, there's always eggs or a sandwich, and some fresh fruit. Does that count as cooking?

I also boil 6-7 eggs at a time and keep them in the fridge for lunches or snacks or to add on a salad.

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moosemac

For DH, DS and DD, cereal is the meal of choice. For me, leftovers, crackers and cheese, celery or carrots sticks but my favorites are hot homemade chicken broth or doctored store bought. I doctor store bought chicken broth with ground dried garlic and fresh lemon juice.

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plllog

Carol, Sandwiches that you have to cook things for, like frying the burger, bacon and/or eggs, grilling the onions, even making the mayonnaise fresh, especially if you pasteurize the eggs (if you made it yesterday, it's leftovers not cooking), that sandwich counts as cooking. Grilled cheese is cooking. Putting bread in and out of the toaster isn't cooking, really, or that is, cooking happens in toasting but the toaster is doing it not the operator or the toaster. Toasting bread in a skillet or grill pan, where you have to stand over it and judge when it's done is cooking. Taking a bunch of stuff out of the fridge and making a sandwich, even zapping to heat or melt cheese, isn't any more cooking than making a bowl of cereal with banana or berries.

Cooking eggs in an automatic egg cooker is not cooking (I use one for hard boiled). Sunny side up or scrambled is cooking. It's not stressful cooking, maybe, but it's raw eggs getting cooked with the attention of the Cook. Fresh fruit doesn't count as cooking unless, maybe, it requires a lot of prep, like cutting up a pineapple, though I suppose if you do the pull apart method, it's must messy and not really a lot of prep.

But most of all, if you feel like you're cooking, it's cooking. If you feel like you're avoiding cooking, it's not. :)

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carolb_w_fl_coastal_9b

Haha pillog - those are your definitions of cooking. I was wondering what seagrass' is 😊

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plllog

Oops! This is something that was part of what I did in college, finding the edges of definitions. I haven't slept much this week.

Sorry, Seagrass. Of course, it's a question of what you consider cooking, not the language's tolerance for the word! Sorry, Carol.

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Linda 117

I usually make up chicken salad (buy the canned chicken at sams like tuna fish) and have that made or can make it in five minutes. Egg salad, soup, salad. The air fryer is amazing, you can put just about anything in there. Grilled cheese, (sorry, that is not cooking to me) Refried beans in a wrap is not a meal to me

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gardengal48 (PNW Z8/9)

There are things that involve cooking - using the range or oven - that I don't consider real cooking. Making breakfast, grilled cheese sammies or tuna melts, paninis, reheating anything frozen. I don't even consider making tacos, burritos or nachos as cooking so any of the above could be on my dinner menu. And a sandwich and/or soup are also likely candidates.

But I am also perfectly happy with crackers, cheese and fruit or guac and chips. I also am fond of the grab-and-go dinners for one that my local market makes if I feel like a real meal but just too lazy or tired to bother.

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arkansas girl

I'll throw a tortilla on the skillet and put some tomato sauce, mozz cheese and some pepperoni and let it get hot.

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ruthz

Cereal, peanut butter toast (love this and have it often for breakfast or if I don't feel good), egg sandwich or grilled cheese sandwich.


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bragu_DSM 5

two slices of bread in the toaster ... with a slice of cheese added after

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annie1992

Seagrass asked what we ate when we don't want to cook, not what we eat that requires no cooking at all. I took that to mean food with minimal cooking, not no cooking at all. She said they both cook but are tired of "figuring it out", which I understand. I don't mind cooking but deciding what to cook every day is just tiresome sometimes, factoring individual likes or dietary requirements, what we have that need to be used, what can be made without a trip to the store, etc.

I don't really know why I don't consider warming an English Muffin with some sauce and cheese in the oven cooking, or making a grilled cheese or scrambling an egg, really. None are any more work than opening a can of soup and heating it.

Sometimes it just seems like more work to figure out what to cook than it is to actually cook it.

Annie

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nancyjane_gardener

Annie, that's my problem is figuring out what to eat! I've got some stuff in the freezer, but want to add to my DD and DIL's freezer since they've recently had twins!

Actually I've also decided that there will be NO more than 2 things on the stove per meal! One thing can be in the microwave or the air fryer.

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carolb_w_fl_coastal_9b

No apology necessary, pillog🙂

And I almost forgot a truly no-cook high protein meal I often have as lunch - a can of Trader Joe's smoked sardines, drained and sprinkled with salt, pepper and lemon or lime juice, eaten on Ak-Mak cracker bread, with an apple or other fresh fruit on the side.

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lizbeth-gardener

I agree, Annie, deciding on what to cook is sometimes more work than cooking it. I do a lot of food saving, so usually always have things in the freezer to pull out. Some of the things we have when I don't want to cook are just things that are easier to throw together.

One that my DH likes was invented by one of our sons in high school. To a box of Annie's or Krafts Mac n Cheese add a can of drained albacore tuna-could even throw in some frozen peas if you like and a piece of fruit for dessert. And I never use the butter and milk in the mac n cheese , but sub plain Fave yogurt.

I always have a can of Red salmon in the cupboard for a quick meal of salmon patties, a microwaved baked sweet or white potato and heat a frozen or canned vegetable. We always have fresh fruit around and I usually have a can of pears in the refrigerator for such times.

I hard boil 7 eggs in my egg cooker weekly, so have those in the refrigerator to use for tuna salad or just as they are.

I keep good hard cheeses and Johnsonville all beef summer sausage on hand and paired with a ripe pear or a good crisp apple and crackers works for me when I really don't want to cook.

One of my favorites from childhood: a slice of buttered bread generously covered with slices of ripe avocado, then a grating of fresh black pepper and again generously cover with freshly shredded cheddar cheese. Yummy! Add a glass of milk and an apple for dessert.

Seagrass, I hope you are getting some ideas that work for you!


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plllog

For me, the not wanting to cook is usually tied to how I'm feeling. I can always think of things I want to cook, but can't always accomplish them. So what do I cook when I do want to cook? Yesterday, my injury was better enough to go finding what didn't survive the not really cooking epoch (detailing a minion to do the actual putting in the compost bin part), and I pulled out the remaining good greens and washed them all, and put eggs in the hard boiler, and started to make salads, but a great big delicious looking sunchoke had fallen out of the bag, so I interrupted the plan to make stew including the chard and kale which I'd just washed, and made sunchoke chips for the salads and by the time the salads were done, I was tuckered out, so maybe today I'll get after that stew, and make some meatloaf as well. And maybe beet chips. And an egg bake. And if I get ambitious, maybe I'll slice a little kabocha thin and see if I can make it do the puff thing in the air fryer. But if it rains and I go sleepy, maybe just cheese sandwiches. :) Or if I get fancy, hard boiled egg and cheese sandwiches.

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Bumblebeez SC Zone 7

I am very big into piling things in a bowl. Microwave some asparagus, add cooked meat from the refrig- usually steak, grilled chicken or fish, some parm, pomegranate seeds, toasted pepitas, crushed blue corn tortilla chips

Occasionally brown rice ( always some in the freezer) instead of tortilla chips.

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