10 simple tips for preparing cheap and healthy meals

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A kitchen sheet of sugared cranberries with wooden spoon and ora_335045

A kitchen sheet of sugared cranberries with wooden spoon and orange peel and slices. Preparation for making Thanksgiving cranberry sauce.

As winter sets in, try your favorite soup or stew recipe with your slow cooker.

Simple kitchen timesavers, take the stress and hassle out of cooking.

1. Allow more room for prep space by clearing off counters before you start cooking.

2. Organize your kitchen to save time from having to search for items later. Keep frequently used items suck as cooking oils, spatulas, cutting boards and spices within easy reach.

3. Healthy and creative meals don’t have to be complicated, a simpler menu will usually cost less money and will be easier to prepare in the end.

4. When chopping up veggies for a meal, chop more than you need then take the extra and place it in a reusable container to freeze. It is a simple way to skip a step the next time you need the ingredient.

5. Grab all the ingredients needed for your meal to make it easier to spot missing items and avoid skipping steps.

6. Divide jobs among family members, because kids love to be in the kitchen. The extra help gets more done with more time to enjoy with your family.

7. Potlucks are a great option for large families, by preparing the main dish and leave the sides to the rest of the family, it creates less work for you and allows everyone to make and sample each other’s creations.

8. Get more servings out of your favorite recipes by adding rice to soups or stews, frozen vegetables to favorite pasta dishes or beans to burgers to serve more meals.

9. Instead of getting food to-go, for your next casserole or stew, try doubling the recipe and freezing the extra to have an easy go-to dinner during the week.

10. Fill up the sink with soapy water and wash the dishes as you cook to make cleaning up easier.

Planning healthy meals ahead of time can help you stick to a healthy eating style. For more tips, check out meal planning made easy tips from the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

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