We’ve been talking this month about quick weeknight meals and ways to fit cooking into our busy lives. In our house, one thing that really helps is having a few standby meals that require zero thinking: the ingredients are in the pantry, we can make it with our eyes closed
, and it’s always good. Period. Do you have meals like this?We love the excitement and rush of making a new recipe, but they also require a lot of energy. Ingredients and procedures are unfamiliar. We often have to stop and figure out what an instruction means, or miss a step altogether.
That’s why it’s nice to have a few recipes that we’ve made a million times before and know inside and out. We don’t have to wonder how long a step will take or if these onions are done enough. We can relax, even hold a conversation while our hands do the chopping.
We have three standby meals in our house: tomato sauce with pasta, frittatas, and homemade pizza. All of these are endlessly adaptable to whatever we have in the kitchen, even if it’s only a jar of roasted red peppers and an old onion. They’re not always the most fantastic dishes, but they are satisfying and get the job done.
A note for new cooks: If you’re just finding your way into the kitchen, it might take a little while to figure out which meals are going to be your standby meals. Trust us, the more you make those unfamiliar recipes, the easier and less time-consuming they will be come.
What are you standby meals?
Related: 10 Pantry Staples Not to be Caught Without
(Image: Emma Christensen)