When my daughter was a baby, anyplace with a drive-thru became my best friend. I needed food and it was winter in Minnesota. With temperatures below zero, I refused to leave the comfort of my car and those amazing heated seats. Then my daughter went through that stage where she would only nap by me driving her around in the car for hours…hellooooo Starbucks and McDonalds. I was convinced that my daughter would initially think that food only came from a window and drinks were served as tall, grande, or venti. That’s until I discovered some options with no cooking required.
However, cooking just takes a lot of time and energy. And time and energy are pretty much in short supply during these early years of parenting. Cooking takes planning and grocery shopping. More time and energy. Cooking makes dishes, pots, and pans pile up in the sink. More time and energy. Ohhhhhh…it makes me tired just thinking about it! So ya know what? I decided to just stop cooking. GASP!!! Cue up the “I’m supposed to be ashamed of this” mommy guilt. And I’m a stay-at-home-mom. WHAT?!?!?! Isn’t cooking part of my job description? Ooooo…that’s funny. NOOOOO!!!!!
Since cooking is not how I want to spend my time and energy, do we starve? Nope. I have found ways to feed our tiny human with no traditional cooking required.
There are so many “healthy” steam-in-bag, canned, boxed, and precooked options that require minimal prep work and almost no cleanup or dishes. So now I only cook when it’s convenient and it’s something I want to do instead of something I have to do. Also, we eat most of our meals with paper plates and bowls. Fewer dirty dishes = more time and energy for other things = a happier me!
Here are a few items that are staples in our house and usually in rotation. Most only require a can opener, microwave, and occasionally some boiled water. (Also, this stuff is pretty much dairy-free with minimal soy, gluten, and eggs.) So if you dread the task of cooking, join me in microwaving your way out of the kitchen!