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How To Cook Healthier Even If You're Super Lazy

Ridiculously easy ways to cook a little healthier that even lazy people (like myself) will be able to make a habit.

Kate Bubacz / BuzzFeed News

Look, healthy cooking is already hard enough, but it's even worse when you can barely get yourself to cook as it is.

Columbia Pictures / Via

So to make it easier, we asked the BuzzFeed Community about the little ways they started cooking healthier in 2017, despite being pretty freaking lazy.

Here's all the totally doable stuff that they had to say!

1. First things first — don't go for a full-on overhaul. Start small, and maybe aim to cook your own ~healthyish~ meals a few nights per week.

Nickelodeon / Via

If you can, try cooking something simple and healthy (I recommend Budget Bytes or the Minimalist Baker websites for recipes) a few nights per week. Making it "healthier" could be as simple as making a salad with every lunch or dinner, or throwing some dark greens in whatever recipe you're making.

—Theresa Geis, Facebook

2. And stick to simple recipes that call for minimal ingredients.

Catherine Clark / Via

If it's new and difficult, I might get lazy and skip cooking to eat out, especially if I've had a long day. Changing your cooking habits doesn't mean you need to start making fancy four-course meals. I stick to a core of five to six easy recipes, that don't take much prep time, and I know take very little time to throw together.


3. Buy plain greek yogurt and use it for everything that requires sour cream or some sort of dip.

Jennifer (Show Me The Yummy) / Via

Greek yogurt is less calorie-dense and has SO much more protein per serving.

—Rebecca Laurie Bellows, Facebook

4. Use broth to sauté or stir-fry your food instead of oil. / Via Instagram: @brothbabe

You can use chicken or vegetable broth instead of using oil, or you can do a mix to slowly help you cut down on oil. Broth is flavorful and not as fat-heavy. You can make your own, or just buy things like Campbell's canned broth.


5. And try cooking brown rice or quinoa, instead of white rice. / Via Instagram: @viki.takacs

I've recently come around to quinoa, so you can use that instead of rice altogether.

—Naila Warren, Facebook

You can read more about why you should eat quinoa or brown rice over white rice in BuzzFeed Health's previous reporting.

6. Learn to make eggs, since they're an incredibly easy, high-protein meal and snack. / Via Instagram: @_simple__living_

Hard-boil a dozen eggs at the beginning of the week for an easy, delicious, low-cal, healthy snack. Eggs are an excellent source of protein, and one whole large hard-boiled egg has only like 80 calories and is more filling than you'd think.


7. And don't underestimate the power of canned goods. / Via Instagram: @phaedrasstyle

Also, frozen/canned veggies aren't necessarily bad for you. They're very inexpensive and make an easy-to-use ingredient or side dish.


8. Start throwing things in a pan and roasting them.

Andrew Purcell / Via

This is incredibly easy. Just toss in a piece of meat or fish, some cut up veggies, and toss it all with some olive oil and seasonings, then bake it. You can make things even easier by lining the whole pan with foil, because then you'll have nothing to wash!


9. Make big-batch breakfasts that you can quickly pop in the microwave, because you know you're going to be pressing snooze in the a.m.

Jennifer (Show Me The Yummy) / Via

I make an egg bake every Sunday and eat it all week at work. It’s so simple: six eggs, a splash of milk, some salt and pepper, and whatever veggies, meats, etc. that you want to add. I put turkey sausage, cheese, mushrooms, and green onions in mine. Bake it at 350 degrees for a half hour, portion out, and then grab and go!


10. Or maybe experiment with overnight oats.

Getty Images

It's a fun, hassle-free way to eat healthy, and I enjoy customizing each jar/bowl based on what I feel like having for that day! I've done it with plums, strawberries, red cherries, mangoes, grapefruits, and dragon fruits. It’s a grab-and-go healthy breakfast and is truly a lifesaver when you’re running late.


11. Buy pre-cooked ingredients, like a rotisserie chicken, that you can easily toss into multiple meals throughout the week.

12. Or invest in a food processor or blender that will save you loads of time when putting together a recipe.

Toads and Tiaras / Via

I work at a health food store and I’ve learned the wonders of a food processor. Recently we made black bean brownies and you just throw everything in the processor and then pan it and bake it. So much easier than pulling out a bunch of bowls and doing it all by hand.


Smoothies are the lazy person’s gift from the gods. I buy fruit and veggies from the freezer section, dump them in my blender with almond milk, and voila! Easy, fast, healthy. Get all my veggie servings first thing.


13. When you do cook, try making twice the recipe.

Disney / Via

I like to make extra of a recipe when I do cook, so that I can save the leftovers and heat them up later. As of this moment, I probably have about five separate meals in my fridge and freezer that are just ready to heat and eat...and I only cook maybe once a week, lol.


14. Or precut twice the veggies and meat that the recipe calls for.

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I cut up extra veggies and meat whenever I'm cooking and bag them up for later use. After a long day, I don’t always feel like cutting a bunch of vegetables and when that step is out of the way, cooking is so much quicker.


15. And then when cleaning up, separate the leftovers into individual portions that you can freeze and eat for other meals.

That way you always have something cheap and healthy on hand so you're less likely to order takeout, and the food will last up to six months in the freezer, giving you plenty of time to eat it. Soups, stews, casseroles, and curries work really well for this.


16. Buy frozen bags of veggies or big boxes of greens and throw a little in with every recipe you make.

Rena-marie / Via Getty Images

Frozen steamer bags of veggies have been a lifesaver. We throw a bag of broccoli, brussels sprouts, mixed veggies, etc. in the microwave for five minutes and it's ready to go! It's so much easier than dragging out pots and pans to boil or sauté veggies. Some brands also make "steamable" bags of various grains (rice, quinoa, barley, etc.) with spinach, other veggies, or even chickpeas mixed in, so you can get additional veggies and protein while eating your rice!

—Katie Holzhause, Facebook

I buy a massive container of pre-washed spring mix, and add the greens to everything. They work in a simple salad with a can of tuna for lunch, wilted into a soup or stew, or sautéed on top of quinoa/rice. They're great with eggs, avocado, grains, meat, or fish. It's a great way to sneak in fiber and vitamins.


17. And try to ease up on the amount of sugar and sweetener you're adding to things like tea, coffee, and oatmeal.

Cartoon Network / Via

I stopped adding sugars and sweeteners to tea, coffee and my oatmeal. As a sugar addict this has helped decrease my cravings quite a bit!


18. Carve out time in your schedule to go grocery shopping at least one day per week.

RCA / Via

I spend one day of my weekend shopping and cooking meals for the week so I don’t have any excuse to eat out.


19. But if that doesn't seem doable, consider a grocery subscription service or choose your groceries online and have them delivered. / Via Instagram: @hellofresh

My boyfriend and I subscribe to HelloFresh. It comes with every ingredient you need in perfect portions and makes cooking healthy so easy. And the ingredients really are fresh!


20. Invest in a slow cooker, which you can dump ingredients into before work, and then have a fully cooked meal waiting for you when you get home. / Via Instagram: @fitslowcookerqueen

I cook healthy meals in the slow cooker while I’m at work so when I get home it’s ready and I’m not tempted to snack or get fast food. You can put almost anything into a slow cooker, and a few hours later there is something delicious waiting for you, like a tasty surprise! I do at least one vegetable-heavy slow cooker a week, and it will last me four or five meals throughout the week.


I prepare bulk amounts of protein in the slow cooker and then freeze it. When I need it, I can thaw the chicken and quickly change it into whatever I want it to be in the end: chicken salad, chicken for salad, tacos, etc.


21. Or if you're really lazy (or just someone who enjoys efficiency and simplicity), consider buying an Instant Pot. / Via Instagram: @kelsiezarko

Throw all the ingredients in. Set it. Forget it. Remember it when the house smells amazing. Then watch a Friends rerun episode and eat your delicious, easy meal.


22. Last but not least, take some time to plan out your meals at the beginning of the week and really take into consideration your outside plans and what you're capable of.

NBC / Via

I plan all of my meals and what I want them to consist of ahead of time. That includes making sure each meal contains a grain, raw veggies, cooked veggies, a healthy fat, and some type of beans. I also make sure everything is easy and fast to prepare because I know that when it gets down to it, I'm going to be tempted to order out. It can be time-consuming, but it's a total health game-changer and makes me genuinely happy!


Responses have been edited for length and clarity.

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