Many of you take great delight in your cooking, in making things from scratch. This isn’t for you. I want to give some advice to those who would rather eat a meal from 7-11 than cook for themselves.
It is actually very easy to learn to cook healthy (or at least healthier) meals for yourself. And if you do it correctly it won’t take much time out of your day. There isn’t much worth eating near my university, and I’m often here by myself, so I’ve learned out of necessity.
First: Teach yourself to make 5 dishes: a stir fry, a pasta, roasted veggies (and/or fish/meat), a bean dish, and a curry. Then make them in large enough quantities that you can get two meals out of them each time. That’s 10 meals a week, and you can eat out the other 4 meals.
Second. Don’t turn your nose up at pre-made sauces. While not ideal, it is still better than eating out every night. You can flavor them with extra garlic and spices, and control the amount of oil used in cooking. (Note: avoid sauces with lots of hidden sugar!)
Third. Stock up on proteins and veggies without worrying too much about how you will cook them. If the ingredients are good and fresh, you really don’t need to worry too much about how you cook things. Paying a bit more for better ingredients will make you want to eat at home.
Forth: Cook healthy carbs in large quantities and save half for your next meal. Also vary your carbs. I use brown rice, whole wheat pasta, quinoa, sweet potatoes, etc.
Fifth: Pre-cook tough veggies to speed up cooking time. Parboiling, microwaving, or roasting tough veggies ahead of time is easy to do and makes them cook up quickly when you add them to a stir-fry. It is also easier than standing for a long time in front of a hot stove.