Reply To: Cooking for my Family

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A couple of ideas:

Make a list of all the dishes your family likes to eat, ask them to contribute suggestions as well. Rank them in order of how much they appeal to you as well, and only cook from the bottom 50 percent of the list.

If there’s something they crave that you love as well, send them out to eat it as a special treat for them. Take a hot bath or do something that feels indulgent for yourself while they are gone.

Always cook for yourself first. I’ve found this means I spend better than half the day cooking or cleaning up from cooking, which is a drag (but I’m fortunate as a stay at home mom to be able to do that). I set up a computer with Netflix in the kitchen and stream shows while I cook and clean. It is much easier to cook for my family after I’ve had something satisfying to eat.

Buy good quality prepared foods for them — I’ll got to whole foods and pick up some frozen foods that have quality ingredients so that I don’t have to do as much scratch cooking right now. It’s a splurge, and generally not as healthy as if I was cooking for them, but if they aren’t willing to make the sacrifice of eating with you or cooking for themselves, I think it’s a reasonable solution. Costco has some great prepared foods as well, if you have that option. Consider that expense an investment in your health, and consider that it will be cheaper than sending them out to a restaurant.

Make crockpot meals and casseroles — I find that dishes I can assemble from raw ingredients and walk away from for the remainder of the cooking time are less tempting. Instead of baguettes, which are really time consuming, make no-knead bread for them. It will still smell incredible when you pull it out, but you will have spent all of five minutes on it and will be more willing to give it away without needing to try it.

Look for more recipes like this one below, that you can tweak to the diet (in this case I’d food-process up plain coconut shreds into a meal-y texture and replace the almond meal with that) that will still appeal to your family. There are a lot of paleo recipe sites on the web for inspiration:

good luck!