These days, it’s easier than ever not to cook and Americans are taking advantage of this trend. However, what you save in convenience, you lose in cash and the majority of Americans can’t afford such a costly habit. This is especially the case when it comes at the expense of being unprepared for an emergency such as this year’s skyrocketing unemployment rates.

  1. How Much People Spend on Eating Out May Shock You

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average household spends an average of $3,008 per year on dining out. To put it in simple words, if you eat out every workday and spend, on average, $10 per meal, this adds up to $2,500 a year.

  1. The Benefits of Cooking at Home

When you cook, you are a part of the process from start to finish which makes you far more in tune with the food you’re feeding your body with. This act alone results in a multitude of benefits.

Save money

Making your own lunch will cost you half that as one VISA survey found you only spend on average $6.30 when you bring something you prepared at home. But to truly save a significant amount, you should be mindful of your electricity usage. Adopting simple energy efficient habits in the kitchen can significantly lower your Gas South bill.

Eating fewer calories

Restaurant meals are often abundant with butter and salt, whereas packaged food is typically heavy with sodium and additives. On the other hand, dishes made at home tend to be more nutritious and contain fewer calories. Moreover, restaurant-sized portions are often large enough to feed two or more people and you’re less likely to serve yourself these mega portions. Moreover, skipping a dessert or a cocktail when in a restaurant is much more challenging.

You’re more mindful of what you’re putting into your body.

When you sit down to eat what you prepared, chances are you’ll eat more mindfully, noticing each flavor and component you added to the dish which is a great exercise for feeling centered. Eating mindfully for even just one bite can help us to come back into the present moment and to let go of the swirl of thoughts that we are often caught up in. Sometimes, a more meaningful way of being is only a bite, or a breath, away.

Opportunity to socialize

With a little effort, cooking can do wonders for your social life. Asking your children to join you while cooking by giving them a task is a great opportunity to bond and help them create healthy habits.  Cooking together with friends can create unforgettable memories. Moreover, you can make new friends and pick up new skills by subscribing to a cooking class.

Stimulate your brain

Cooking is a a great opportunity to be creative and experiment by trying out new ingredients and playing with recipes. Moreover, preparing a new recipe can stave off cognitive decline and even help build self-confidence for seniors.

3. Beginner Cooking Tips

A few simple home cooking beginner tricks can make your preparations just as delicious as a restaurant dishes while simplifying the cooking process.

Don’t overcrowd the pan.

As a preventative measure, leave a few inches between each item to ensure they cook thoroughly as there’s a chance the heat won’t distribute properly, thus affecting flavor or even creating a health risk.

Respect each ingredient

To prevent a steak from losing its juiciness, place it directly on top of aluminum foil after taking it off the stove or grill, wrap it and let it sit for approximately five minutes. Besides allowing the juices to settle, the meat will continue to cook while it is in the foil.

The right storage

To prolong the life of your spices, keep them in a cool, dark place as heat and humidity can alter their flavor.

Shut the stove off before the eggs are done.

Whether you scramble, fry, or poach, always turn off the stove a few minutes before the eggs look done, even when they seem a bit runny, as the remainder of the heat is all it takes for a fluffy perfection.

Chop the herbs with salt.

To prevent herbs from flying all over the place when chopping, sprinkle a bit of salt onto the board to keep them in place.

Use pasta water for the sauce

Before dumping used pasta water, add a cup of it to your saucepan to add more flavor to the dish. If salted, it will also improve the texture of the sauce, while delighting your taste buds.  

Always keep essentials in the freezer

The most common reason for eating out is when people have nothing to eat. But, this scenario is less likely to happen if you are stocked with the right tools such as meat and frozen vegetables that make a great last-minute meal.

Takeaway – Cooking does more than fill your belly. It saves you money, while boosting your mental and physical health, proving you with a multitude of benefits you’ll enjoy long after the meal is over.

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