Real Talk: The reluctant chef

My husband is a great cook, and loves to do it when he has the time. He comes from a long line of family members who were/are really great in the kitchen and actually enjoy it! My grandmother and my dad also love to cook; and meals and food have always been the center of family gatherings and memories from my childhood. My mom is an awesome baker, and always was making treats or cookies for us growing up.

I on the other hand, have been a reluctant chef as long as I can remember.

For me,  cooking has always been more of a chore than an enjoyable experience. I definitely feel like I have gotten a little bit better at it over the years, and slightly more adventurous but I am still very much a novice in the kitchen. And it really stresses me out! So how does one break out of that cooking funk?!

Well, it comes down to my husbands love language. The way to my husband’s heart is through food 🙂 He is the type of person who at breakfast is asking what we will be having for lunch and dinner 🙂 So, I am really trying to make an effort to get out of my comfort zone in the kitchen because I know how much he appreciates it

As a mom, cooking is quite a challenge during the week. So, instant pot, one sheet and crock pot recipes are SO great. Anything you can have prepped and cooking, and ready to serve after school and multiple sports practices is always a good thing. If you struggle with weekly dinner planning, I wanted to share a few of my favorite recipes and resources.

Our family eats really clean. We try to do gluten/dairy free and we make an effort to do a protein + Veggies + a light starch most nights. The last few years I have used many SkinnyTaste recipes. She breaks her recipes down by categories (slow cooker, gluten free, instant pot, etc.) Her website also has a weekly meal planner which does the work for you! I also own 2 of her cookbooks and they are fabulous.

image via The Defined Dish 

I was recently introduced to the The Defined Dish, and she is probably my new favorite. Her recipes are super flavorful; a little more involved but the end result is great. I recently did her Oven Baked creamy Lemon Caper Chicken, Short Rib Papardalle which was outstanding, and her Whole 30 Meatballs. I can’t wait to dig in deeper to her website and try more of her recipes.

Image Via The Defined Dish

I also have heard great things about Half Baked Harvest, so I am going to look into her recipes this week.

I think the key is to pick 3-4 recipes, make a detailed list and go to the store on Monday. I love to use leftovers at least one night a week and sometimes I will just have them for my lunch. It has definitely eliminated the stress of trying to pull together something last minute, and also running to the store every single day! If you have any favorite easy recipes, please share in the comments!




  1. I really like Skinnytaste as well! And have made a lot of things from Damn Delicious and really enjoyed them. But yes, it’s more of a chore for me that I am trying to get better at. The weeks I meal plan (which aren’t very often unfortunately) I always ask myself why I don’t do it all of the time-makes my life so much easier with running to school pickups and practices!

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