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Hello! I’m Anjali. I’m a board certified health coach, author, wife, mom and food lover from the SF Bay area (now living in Seattle, WA!); with a passion for delicious food and a desire to make healthy eating easy, tasty and fun! Learn more about me here and stay for a while!

Anjali Shah

5 Ways To Take The Stress Out Of Healthy Cooking

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take the stress out of healthy cooking

For some people, cooking comes naturally to them: they love being in the kitchen, experimenting with ingredients and spending time creating meals from scratch. For others, it’s stressful and overwhelming! I used to be in the latter category – I didn’t know anything about how to cook (surprising right?) But when I first got married, I had no idea how to use a can opener, let alone put together a meal. Fast forward almost 10 years later and I love cooking! Sometimes, with our busy lives, it can be hard to find time to fit it in, but with some planning and quick healthy meals at my fingertips, I have learned how to take the stress out of healthy cooking and love my time in the kitchen.

take the stress out of healthy cooking

Here are my tips for taking the stress out of healthy cooking!

Tip #1 | Plan your meals

I can’t emphasize this enough! Planning takes a lot of the stress out of cooking, and eliminate a lot of the last minute “what are we eating for dinner tonight?” conversations that inevitably happen when you’re already starving. I like planning my meals on a weekly basis, choosing recipes that don’t take more than 30-45 min to make (including cooking time), and keeping lunches and breakfasts relatively constant. One other trick I use is cooking food in bulk: I often make a double batch to store in the fridge or freezer to use for a future meal. It’s worth also considering ways to use leftovers and repurpose them to create a delicious dish the next day. With enough planning, and tools like a slow cooker (I use this one all the time), you can also consider meals like stews and casseroles which are easy to make but take a long time to cook. Planning ahead can make healthy cooking a lot easier!

Tip #2 | Get your kitchen organized, create a nice environment

A disorganized or messy kitchen can contribute to a stressful cooking experience. It makes sense, I mean who wants to spend time in a space that’s chaotic? Some easy ways to get organized: make sure that you’ve got enough countertop space and that everything has a “place” in your kitchen – including your ingredients and kitchen tools! Make things that you use often easily accessible instead of hidden in the back of a cupboard. You can also use sites like Kitchen Byte, which has resources for helping you to organize food in your fridge and has a handy one-pager on optimal storage times and temperatures for ingredients. And while you’re at it, make your kitchen a place you want to be. Add some nice flowers, or a pop of color to your countertops. Make it a peaceful and inviting space and you’ll end up feeling more relaxed just being in that room!

take the stress out of healthy cooking

Tip #3 | Make cooking easier with kitchen tools

There are plenty of kitchen tools on the market that can make cooking a lot easier! Some of my personal favorites include: my instant pot which cuts your cooking time down significantly, an immersion blender, a great (and sharp) chef’s knife, and my VitamixThis list at Greatist has a few other great, time-saving tools that could cut down on a lot of stress and effort when cooking at home. This butternut squash soup took me less than 20 minutes to make thanks to my immersion blender and instant pot!

take the stress out of healthy cooking

Tip #4 | Get others involved

Cooking is a lot easier and more fun when you get other people involved. I love cooking with Layla – and it’s great for her too. Cooking with kids gives them a fun activity, the opportunity for family bonding, confidence in the kitchen and appreciation for all types of food (it’s a great way to combat against picky eating! Kids who cook are less likely to be picky eaters). If you don’t have kids, get your partner or friends involved. It’s a great excuse to get a bunch of people together and it might even motivate you to try a more challenging meal since you have help!

Tip #5 | Multi-task

If you happen to be cooking alone, and it’s the end of a long day, and the last thing you want to do is be in the kitchen, try multi-tasking while you cook! Listening to music or binge-watching a favorite TV show is one of my favorite things to do while I’m cooking alone. It makes it feel more like a leisure activity or something to look forward to instead of a stressful thing to fit into your day.

I hope these tips make it easier for you to cook healthy meals at home!

5 Ways to Take The Stress Out of Healthy Cooking - easy healthy recipes, tasty healthy recipes, delicious healthy recipes, vegetarian healthy recipes, quick and easy recipes for picky eaters

16 responses to “5 Ways To Take The Stress Out Of Healthy Cooking”

  1. Every tip is so relatable. Whenever I feel like being sad or down, I walk to the kitchen and create something new all from scratch.

  2. This article comes right in time for me since I’m in the moment where I am bored with cooking my own healthy food, and at times just go out and buy my food out. Thanks for sharing this tips

  3. Thanks so much for this. I think I fall into the category of the people that would wish cooking time will just pass but it’s quite impossible if I still want to keep my husband happy. However, things are getting easier now and your blogs have been very helpful. This is also a great addition and I’m grateful for it. Keep doing what you do best, Anjali.

    • Thanks for sharing your experience Isabella! I’m so glad my blog has been helpful to help you and your husband cook healthier food at home!

  4. Hiii, I have introduced avacado to my 6month old twice but he refused to eat, how can I sweeten the avacado puree. How to refrigerate avacado puree.The cut avacado turns brown when I kept it in a bowl which plastic wrapped. Finally my baby has difficult time while pooping because of these solids, what are the remedies for constipation. He has been introduced to carrots, apples, avacado and sweet potatoes. Can any of these cause constipation.

    • Hi Susan! I wouldn’t recommend sweetening the avocado puree too much, since you don’t want your baby to get used to only sweet foods. But you can add a little banana puree, or mix it with breastmilk or formula to give it a little more palatability. Also – just keep in mind that some babies need to taste a food up to 30-40 times before they accept it, so keep offering it to him even if he doesn’t like it! I would recommend freezing, not refrigerating the avocado puree because of the oxidation issue. If you make it and freeze it right away, it will stay green when you defrost it (only defrost the portion you are using at that particular time). Regarding constipation, that can be common when babies start solids — usually because they aren’t getting enough water! All of the foods you listed are high in fiber which is great, but fiber can be too binding if there isn’t enough liquid in your baby’s diet. So I’d recommend giving him water (either in a bottle or sippy cup) with his meals when you feed him. I hope that helps! Let me know if you have any other questions!

  5. Anjali,
    First of all, what a lovely name.
    Second, this is a great article. It can be so stressful to try and keep meals healthy when you have kids, are tired, or just too busy to get them ready. I am really looking forward to trying some of your recipes. We love anything with sweet potatoes, squash, or kale in it. I can’t wait to check out your kid friendly recipes. Thanks you for what you do.

    • Thank you so much!! I can’t wait to hear how you like my recipes — I have a TON of recipes with sweet potatoes/squash and kale – those are some of my favorite veggies too! 🙂 Keep me posted on how it goes!

  6. Hello Anjali
    Can i just say your website, recipes and whole energy (from what I can feel from your blog) is so undeniably amazing. I cant stop looking and reading! I have a 2 year old and your recipes make me feel so comforted as i know it will be nutritionally balanced as well as tasty! I know because i have made your kale, spilt pea and sweet potato dal and the baked falafels!!!
    I first discovered these maybe 3 years ago, but since having my daughter its been hectic and i forgot about your blog. I was looking into getting back on track and remembered you! Im so glad i found you again and long may you keep going. I love love love your meal plans!! Thank you for giving so much and asking for little in return xx

    • Hi!! Thank you so much for your comment and for your kind words! I’m so glad you and your family have been helped by my recipes and that your daughter enjoys them too! 🙂 Thanks again for sharing your experience with me, I’m more than happy to help!

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