10 brilliant vegan cooking hacks to simplify your meal prep
Preparing vegetarian meals can sometimes seem like a daunting task, especially when you’re short on time. But with some clever cooking tricks, you can make the process much easier. From meal planning to time-saving kitchen hacks, these 10 plant-based cooking hacks will simplify your meal prep and make cooking delicious plant-based meals a breeze.
1. Pre-cut vegetables
One of the biggest time savers in the kitchen is having pre-cut vegetables on hand. Spend some time on the weekend chopping a variety of vegetables such as bell peppers, onions, carrots, and cauliflower. Store them in airtight containers in the refrigerator, and you’ll have a ready supply of vegetables for stir-fries, salads, and wraps all week long.
2. Magic Instant Pot
The Instant Pot can be a game-changer for vegetarian meal prep. It is a multi-functional kitchen appliance that can cook food quickly and efficiently. You can use it to make soups, stews, rice, and beans in a fraction of the time it takes on the stove. Plus, it’s great for cooking dried beans without soaking them, saving you even more time.
3. Batch cooking
Group cooking is a great way to save time and make sure you always have something to eat. Set aside a few hours on the weekend to cook large batches of roasted grains, beans, and vegetables. Store them in the refrigerator or freezer, and you’ll have the staples for quick and easy meals all week long.
4. One-pot meals
One-pot meals are a busy cook’s best friend. They’re quick to prepare, require minimal cleanup, and can be incredibly delicious. Whether it’s a delicious chili, a creamy risotto, or a delicious curry, there are countless vegetarian recipes that are perfect for simplifying your meal prep.
5. DIY salad bar
Create your own salad bar in your refrigerator to make assembling salads easier. Wash and chop a variety of salad greens and vegetables and store in separate containers. Add some cooked grains, beans, nuts or seeds, and you’ll have a delicious, healthy salad ready to use at a moment’s notice.
6. Frozen fruits for smoothies
Frozen fruit is a great time-saving ingredient in smoothies. Keep a variety of frozen fruits like bananas, berries, and mangoes in the freezer, and you’ll always have something to make a delicious and nutritious smoothie on hand. Additionally, using frozen fruit eliminates the need for ice and helps create a thick, creamy texture.
7. Use a mandoline to cut vegetables into thin slices
A mandoline slicer is a useful tool for cutting vegetables quickly and evenly. This can be especially useful for dishes such as lasagna, gratin, or salads where thin, even slices are important. It’s a great way to save time and improve the presentation of your dishes.
8. Homemade vegetable broth
Instead of buying vegetable broth from the store, save leftover vegetables and peelings to make vegetable broth at home. Keep a designated container in the freezer and add onion peels, carrot peels, celery tops, and other vegetable scraps as you assemble them. When the container is full, boil the leftovers with water and herbs to create a flavorful broth perfect for soups and stews.
9. Nutritional yeast for flavor
Nutritional yeast is a vegan pantry staple that adds a cheesy, savory flavor to dishes. It’s great for making vegan cheese sauces, sprinkling on popcorn, or adding delicious flavor to soups and stews. Keep a jar of nutritional yeast in your pantry to easily add a boost of flavor to your meals.
10. DIY spice blends
Creating your own spice blends can save time and add a lot of flavor to your dishes. Mix up a generous amount of your favorite spice blend, such as curry powder or taco seasoning, and store it in a container for easy access. This way, you can quickly add a boost of flavor to your dishes without having to measure out a batch of individual spices every time.
With these 10 creative plant-based cooking hacks, you can simplify your meal prep and spend less time in the kitchen while still enjoying delicious, nutritious plant-based meals. Whether you’re a seasoned vegan cook or just starting out, these tricks are sure to make cooking and eating vegan much easier.