Is there anyone who doesn’t love eating out? If so, I need to meet them. Nathan and I could probably eat out most days of the week if we allowed ourselves. The odd thing is I actually love to cook. I would also dare to say it’s something I’ve become pretty good at over the years. My mom is a fabulous cook and has taught me all she knows. The things that draw me to eating out are pretty simple - it’s easy, convenient, and there’s no clean up or stress. One of my New Year’s resolutions was to stop eating out so much and I’m here to say we’ve been doing a pretty good job at it thus far. I think the best part of sticking to this goal is that when we do decide to eat out we can choose a nicer restaurant since we’ve spent little to no money eating out. We also have enjoyed it just a little bit more. It’s more of a treat than something we’re doing on the regular, which usually makes most things feel a little bit more special.
Due to my New Year’s resolution we’re dining in a lot more. Let me shed some light on a few of my dining in rules :
Most of the time I ask Nathan to be in the kitchen with me. Whether he’s washing dishes, cutting up vegetables or just hanging out it’s a great time to catch up on your day, or just chit chat. If I need alone time, I turn on some music and let him know I don’t mind cooking alone that night.
Always try to make enough for leftovers. This way you both have lunch the next day, or dinner later in the week when you’re tired of cooking. Leftovers are a staple in our house most weeks.
Try to make one night meatless. I’m a huge meat lover, but every now and then it’s good to focus on a meal full of veggies. In our house we do meatless Mondays.
Spice up your usual dinners and try something new. You don’t need to find a recipe with 15 ingredients, but search Pinterest, FoodNetwork.com, or AllRecipes.com to find something outside your comfort zone.
- Pay a little extra for a few high quality ingredients. Some weeks we love to pick out premium meats at Whole Foods in place of eating out. It’s the best of both worlds - it saves us some money and we still get a delicious meal at home. The butchers at our Whole Foods are always knowledgeable and will tell you how to properly cook whatever meat you’ve selected.
Here are some of our favorite meals!
Personal Pizzas ||
Cook the flatbread crust by itself under the oven broiler for a few minutes to make it crispy. Take out of oven, add sauce, toppings and pizza seasoning. Put pizza back under the broiler. Watch closely as they'll cook quickly.
Whole Foods Deli ||
- Salmon with spinach and feta for me
- Steakhouse Skirt Steak for Nathan
Cooked our meat per the butcher's instructions. Added in some fresh veggies and mashed potatoes we already had at home and it made the perfect dining in meal!
Smoky Black Bean Bisque ||
Followed this recipe from Food Network's The Kitchen. The only thing I changed was I used a can of mexicorn instead of regular corn. This made enough for a few lunches and is perfect for Meatless Monday!