Quick And Easy Guide To One-Pot Meals
Tired of sweating in the kitchen every night, only to end up with a mediocre meal that your family is, at best, ambivalent to?
Wouldn't it be great if there were an easier and tastier solution so you could enjoy meals packed with flavour without spending hours in the kitchen?
Well, look no further – the one-pot meal is an excellent option. It's time-saving, versatile, and economical, making it perfect for days when you're short on time, energy and money.
Whether you're looking for complex curries or simple weeknight dinners - this quick and easy guide will have something that pleases both palettes AND pocketbooks.
What Are One-pot Meals & Why You Should Cook Them
One-pot meals are a great way to create complete, delicious meals with minimal preparation and ingredients.
Using one pot or pan not only saves on dishes but also allows you to create a meal in next to no time.
Cooking these types of meals is particularly great for budding chefs who want to learn the basics without feeling overwhelmed by complicated recipes or multiple pots and pans.
Tips for Making Delicious and Flavorful One-Pot Meals
- Choose a hearty base such as pasta, rice, potatoes, quinoa, or bean
- Start with a flavorful base like olive oil, onions, garlic, and/or spices.
- Add in any vegetables you have on hand - the more colours, the better!
- Mix in proteins like ground beef or chicken, fish fillets, tofu or tempeh.
- Finish off with a flavorful broth like chicken or vegetable stock and simmer until everything is cooked through and heated through.
- Serve with delicious toppings like grated cheese, sour cream, chopped herbs or croutons.
Recipes for one-pot meals
Cooking tasty one-pot meals is an easy way to make meals the whole family will absolutely love. Take a look at these recipes designed to tickle those taste buds:
Mexican-style rice and beans
This is usually a firm family favourite and can be served on its own or as a side dish - an incredibly delicious and hearty meal packed with flavour.
The combination of beans, rice, bell peppers, corn and spices makes a filling meal that's sure to please.
Mediterranean penne pasta
Well, this list would not be complete without mentioning PASTA. Classic Mediterranean penne pasta dishes are packed full of flavour, thanks to the tomatoes, olives, oregano, and feta cheese. It's a great way to get your family eating healthier while they still enjoy the delicious pasta they love.
Easy chicken curry
A super simple one-pot dish that is incredibly versatile; it could be a mild curry with chicken, cauliflower, beans and peas, accompanied by yoghurt and mango chutney as side dishes. Or, if hotter than hell is more your jam, try something spicier with chilli and fresh coriander.
Meatball stew with coriander chutney
This dish is easy to tweak depending on the ingredients you have on hand (or the taste buds that will be eating it).
Add Harissa paste for a middle-Eastern flavour or go Tex-Mex with chipotle paste and replace the chickpeas with either black or kidney beans.
Another great contender! We've all heard the horror stories about risotto being overly time-consuming and a bit of a nightmare to get right.
Risottos are actually easy to make with minimal effort and guaranteed delicious results.
All you need is li'l bit of patience, quality ingredients and the right technique to get an amazing dish that your family will love.
A few words on cleaning up after a one-pot meal
Cleaning up after your one-pot meal doesn't have to be a chore. A few minutes of soaking and scrubbing should take care of most pots, pans and dishes if you don't have a dishwasher.
If you do, just pop everything in the machine and let it do its job!
Top tip: If you are the lucky owner of a slow cooker, you may already be aware of this; slow-cooker liners do exist, and they make the cleaning-up process even faster and simpler.
Place one in your cooker before filling it with your ingredients, cook and, once empty of food, remove the liner, run a damp cloth around the inside and hey - presto! Job done!
FAQs about one-pot cooking
What is the best pot for one-pot meals?
It really depends on the size of your family. If you're cooking for two, a smaller pot like a Dutch oven or small saucepan is best. For larger families, you may want to opt for a bigger pot that can fit more ingredients.
Can one-pot meals be made in advance?
Yes! One-pot meals are great for making ahead of time and reheating. Just be sure to refrigerate any leftovers in an airtight container or ziplock bag for up to three days.
Are one-pot meals healthy?
Mostly, yes! One-pot meals can be a great way to get your family eating healthier, as you can choose healthy ingredients like vegetables, lean meats, and whole grains. However, any recipe is only as healthy as the ingredients we put in them, so be mindful of what you're using.
Can you use a one-pot as a slow cooker?
Some one-pots are also slow cookers. These "hybrid" appliances can be used to make a variety of dishes, from stews and soups to curries and casseroles.
The great thing about them is that you don't have to transfer your ingredients from one appliance to another - just set the timer and go...
Is a one-pot the same as a pressure cooker?
No, a one-pot and a pressure cooker are two different types of cooking appliances.
A one-pot is designed to cook meals quickly over a short period of time, while a pressure cooker uses high temperature and steam to cook food faster than conventional methods.
What are the 2 most important meals?
There is no definitive answer to this question, as everyone's dietary needs are different. However, breakfast and dinner are generally the two most important meals of the day as they provide us with energy for the rest of our day and replenish our bodies after a long day of work.
What types of dishes can be cooked in one pot?
Pretty much any dish! From soups and stews to pastas and stir-fries, the possibilities are endless.
You can also use your one-pot for roasting vegetables or making rice dishes.
The best part is that these meals usually require minimal prep time, so you can spend less time in the kitchen and more time with your family.
From foods rich in spices to easy weeknight meals, one-pot cooking provides a range of delicious and oh-so-simple dishes.
Perfect for students, busy families, and young professionals, they're quick to make and taste incredible.
With a little bit of creativity, you can create excellent meals that will wow your family and friends.
Don't be afraid to play around with ingredients and flavours until you find the perfect combination for your meal. With one-pot cooking, it's easy to achieve restaurant-quality results in less time than ever before!
Finally, now that you've reached the end of this article, we would love to hear from you...
Anything you'd like to add? Let us know in the comments!
Happy cooking (and tasting)!