Recipe Searching Tips

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There are SO many recipes out there. So many different combinations of food and flavors! It’s really wonderful on one hand and on the other, it’s overwhelming. Most of us have busy lives and can’t go to 3 different stores looking for an ingredient. Or don’t have 2 hours to spend on preparing a meal.

Here are a few tips! These are things that I keep in mind when choosing a recipe to make.

1. Skim or fully read the ingredients and directions looking for any red flags.

Examples of red flags would be:
• equipment that you don’t have
• ingredients that you know would be hard to find
• a process that sounds too long or too complicated

2. Check the time it will take to prepare the meal

Keep in mind your own speed. If the recipe calls for chopping 5 different vegetables and you’re not a fast chopper, then adjust the “prep time” to what you think would be more realistic.

3. Make sure the ingredients are things that you like

If it’s just a spice that you don’t like, you could always omit it. If the main vegetable is broccoli and you don’t like broccoli, I would consider continuing the search.

However, I also believe in trying to acquire a taste for all vegetables, so sometimes I make something knowing we are not going to love it, but it has a vegetable that we rarely eat. And guess what? Sometimes I’m surprised and we actually do like it a lot!

4. If you like to reheat for lunch, like I do, then think about whether or not it would reheat well.

It’s a guess usually, without having made it, but sometimes it can be pretty obvious.

• Noodles in a broth will often become soggy and less firm.
• White rice and noodles by themselves will often dry out, so having a sauce to add to it will help keep them moist.
• Soups are usually great reheated.

5. Is it convenient for travel?

If you make tacos, burgers, or lettuce wraps, they require lots of containers to keep everything separate and then assembly before heating. First, the amount of dishes that will need to be washed has tripled. Then, you have to lug everything into the office, and if you only use glass containers, like we do, it can get pretty heavy. Last, there is the time spent putting it all together and the “messy” factor.

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