Food·Posted on Oct 28, 2018These 7 Tips Helped Me Get Into Cooking And Made Me Feel More Like An Actual AdultAdulting is hard, but cooking doesn't have to be!by Beatriz SerranoRedactora de BuzzFeed, EspañaFacebookPinterestTwitterMailLink Hi, I'm Beatriz Serrano, and I've already lost count of all the times when I felt like a second-rate human being because I wasn't doing the basic stuff that adults do. Tap to play GIF Tap to play GIF Ryan Murphy Productions Normally, I blame the evil late capitalist system and find a range of excuses for staying planted on my couch, but occasionally, I get emboldened to grasp the ~reins of destiny~ and act as if I'm the protagonist of a certain movie about a recently divorced woman who goes on a trip around Europe to discover herself.And without a doubt, one of the things that helped me feel more like a functional adult was cooking more. There are countless reasons why, but let me mention three of them: it saves you a lot of money, it makes you more organized, and since you are eating healthy, homemade food, it makes you feel better about your body.Here are some tips that helped me get cooking more and actually enjoy it quite a lot: 1. Put together a menu for the week, or at least spend 10 minutes every day thinking about what you would like to eat the next day. Pexels It is impossible to start cooking unless you set aside a few minutes to think about what you want to make. You pick the best time: what works for me is to take Sunday to plan a weekly menu for the three days that I know I'll be bringing lunch to the office. If this feels like too much work, at least take ten minutes every day to think about what you would want for dinner the following day.This will help you become better organized and avoid falling back on saying, "But I have no food in the house," and ordering a delivery or going out to eat. Besides, planning what you are going to cook before you go to the supermarket will keep you from getting "the usual," which results in having the same thing for dinner all the time. And, finally, another benefit of planning ahead is that you will be buying only what you need, so you can save some money. 2. Buy a cookbook... Pexels You can shoot for the classic 1,001 Recipes type or bet on something more adventurous. In my case, about a year ago I bought The Silver Spoon, which is something of an Italian cooking bible. Ever since, I've learned to make a couple of traditional dishes with pleasantly surprising results. Just leafing through a cookbook will inspire you to cook different dishes, and, to be honest, these books are normally written with so much detail that, even if you think you are useless at the kitchen, you will see that step-by-step instructions work. 3. And resolve to learn to cook a new dish every two weeks. Pexels You can also make it just once a month, or once a week, if you're ambitious. At any rate, you will see how gratifying it is to start the whole process from scratch and finish in a few hours.Think about it: if you learn to prepare one dish a month, by the end of the year you will know how to make 12 awesome recipes perfectly. 4. Make plans where food (and its preparation) are at the center. Pexels All of us, humans, have one thing in common: we love to eat. This is why we organize so many social events around food. The problem is that sometimes you spend too much money when you go out to eat frequently. A good way to cook more and have a different plan is to set up a culinary plan for your home. There are thousands of ideas: you can hold a tapas contest with you friends, or a vegetarian dish competition, or simply get together with a friend to learn how to make pizza or a cook a great stew. You will realize that these things are cheap and enjoyable, and that spending a morning with your best friend making mac&cheese can be a great idea. 5. Get out of your comfort zone. Pexels Do you always end up making a couple of same old grilled chicken? Get online and look for new ways to cook them. Sometimes, all it takes to get a completely different dish is spending three minutes to marinate chicken with Greek yogurt and spices. A good tip is to look for new ways to prepare the foods that you consume very often, because one thing will lead to another, and you will discover new ways of eating.You can also set up small challenges such as going 15 days without eating meat: it seems silly, but in Spain, we are so carnivorous that sometimes we get into the routine of dining on a steak and a salad... so if you take meat out of the equation, you may learn to cook vegetables and fish, and stop eating the same food all the time. 6. Make a commitment to waste nothing. Pexels Sometimes, when we go to the grocery store, we tend to buy without thinking and, unfortunately, we end up wasting a good amount of food by throwing it away. A tip that a friend gave me is to search online for recipes with those foods that I can see are about to spoil. The internet will always know how to turn half a broccoli and half a zucchini into a great creamy dip.In general, try to challenge yourself to throw away as little as possible and learn to develop recipes that use what you have left. This is not only good for your wallet; it also helps take care of the environment. 7. Put on some music. Pexels To be honest, now that I cook more, I have realized that I find it to be very relaxing, and, honestly, very enjoyable. After all, cooking is a short project that has a clear start and end, as well as results that are nearly always delicious.If you have difficulty concentrating and even if you have a bit of anxiety, cooking is highly recommended because it lets you focus on one thing at a time during a specific time period.Another benefit is that my cooking time becomes my "me time," which I can take advantage of by catching up on things I've been planning to do, such as listening to a new album by some artist or the latest installment of a podcast I follow. You can adapt it to your preferences and interests, but the hours you spend preparing meals for next week can be the perfect time to enjoy other things you did not get around to during the current week. 8. This post was translated from Spanish.