Bulk cooking saves you time and money, which makes having a healthy home cooked meal every night easier than ever. These bulk cooking recipes will help you start cooking less often, yet having home cooked meals more often.
Advantages of Bulk Cooking
- You save cooking time because you’re cooking several meals at once.
- It saves cleanup time, because you have fewer cooking sessions to clean up after.
- It saves money because bulk cooking makes it easy to shop better. You can wait for good sales, take advantage of bulk buys (even if you live and eat alone!) and, with a little planning, make sure everything you buy gets used in a recipe. You can also take advantage of cheaper cuts of meat because most of these recipes – especially slow cooker/crockpot recipes – are designed to tenderize tough meat and make it all delicious.
- No wasted leftovers, because these recipes are designed for freezing and serving again later.
- You know exactly what’s in every meal, which gives you lots of control over the nutrition.
- Adapt it to any diet. Bulk cooking may make you think of meaty stews and casseroles, but you can also make vegetarian bean salads. Swap beef for fish or chicken. Swap meat for lentils or any other substitute you prefer.
Cooking in bulk does take a little bit of planning in advance. Less than regular cooking, I think, but you will have to make a few adjustments. Here are some links to give you ideas:
- Several different strategies for bulk cooking explained.
- This guide to batch cooking has some great tips.
Basically, there are a few ways to make bulk cooking work for you. You can:
- Cook a few elements of meals, such as the pulled pork and tomato ground beef mix, and keep them on hand to add to meals. That way, you just need to cook sides and maybe some rice or pasta, or just put the meat on a bun. You can also cook your sides in advance, and mix and match to form meals.
- Cook one-dish meals, like stews and pasta dishes. You can even freeze your own “ready to heat” pizzas. Just freeze the portions you don’t use immediately, and heat them up as needed.
Bulk Cooking Recipes
These recipes are easy to fix. You can make them in a crockpot or slow cooker if you prefer.
- Chicken Noodle Soup – our own recipe is delicious and easy to fix. If you double all the ingredients, you’ll have enough to make quite a few meals.
- Southwestern Casserole – chicken casserole Tex-Mex style. Easy to divide into meal-sized portions on the freezer, and grab and go.
- Jambalaya – the classic spicy Cajun stew. Same page also has a wonderful recipe for Tomato Basil Tarts.
- Breaded Beef – turn a less expensive cut of meat into a real treat. It’s like breaded veal, except it’s beef.
- Ham and Lentil soup – delicious, cheap and healthy. This tomato based soup is hearty and has lots of healthy fiber from the lentils.
- French Toast Sticks – kids can heat and serve these themselves. Another great one for grabbing out of the freezer and heating up quickly.
- Pancakes – make your own microwavable pancakes. Easy to serve in the morning, even when you’re rushed.
- Six-bean casserole – with spicy barbecue sauce and pepperoni. This works great as a side or an entree.
- Crockpot pulled pork – combine it with BBQ sauce or put it in soup. Keep this on hand to add some meat to all kinds of meals.
- Bacon-Wrapped Chicken – freeze them uncooked, and cook as you need them. It’s like having microwaveable appetizers on hand, except you know exactly what’s in them.
- Lasagna Rolls – another one kids can heat and serve. These make a great lunch or snack, or even a light meal.
- Tomato Ground Beef Mix – a handy starter. You can serve this on tacos, over rice, or even over pasta as a meat sauce.
- Chicken, Quinoa and Corn stew – full of savory flavors. This hearty stew makes a great meal, all in one dish.