Some folks leave the nest with a solid education in cooking for themselves. Some folks move away from home and can barely microwave a frozen burrito without the risk of burning the house down. Luckily for those of us in the latter camp, meal kits exist.
It’s an appealing concept: You sign up, pay a subscription fee, and they send you entire meals broken down into pre-measured ingredients, along with step-by-step instructions on how to construct dinner. If you do everything right (or mostly right) you wind up with a restaurant-level meal out of your own kitchen, along with the rare sensation of competence. Meal kits can save a lot of time (since the cooking prep work is done for you), and you can use them solely for their convenience. But you need not meal kit forever: You can also use them to actually learn how to cook, sort of.
Here are some skills you can actually learn from preparing meal kits, and how to apply them when you decide you’re ready to go rogue and remove your Blue Apron.
The most obvious thing you can learn from using meal kits? How to cook.
Meal kits do a lot of the work for you, but there are certain things you can’t avoid doing for yourself when making a meal. Meal kit recipes will require you to poach things, roast meats, make sauces, sear, stir fry, and braise.
Most of these kits come with detailed instructions, often with pictures and sometimes with online companion videos that show you exactly how each technique is accomplished. Many of these skills are used repeatedly across different recipes, so you’ll get to practice them a bunch. Once you master those skills, they’re yours to use any time. Once you learn how to make a fresh pasta sauce, for example, you can replicate the process any time you want, experimenting with ingredients and seasonings. Guess what? That’s cooking.
Meal kits can also improve your cookery because they can teach you how different foods go together, often in surprising ways, and how spices and seasonings actually work — for example, how little salt you actually need to give something a flavour boost.
Some people struggle with portion control. Whether it stems from parents who insisted you “clean your plate,” or a history of food insecurity, many of us simply overeat at every meal — if you’ve ever looked at the “serving size” information on a snack and been amazed to discover you routinely eat four servings of chips at a time, you’re in the club.
While portions aren’t one size fits all, and different bodies have different caloric needs, meal kits almost always have dietitians and other professionals helping to design their meals, and part of that involves a measured approach to portions. If you are looking for guidance on what a single, standardised meal “should” look like, at least according to dietitians, these kits will certainly provide a visual reference point.
Develop healthy habits
Along with portion control, meal kits can also Daria Nipot you to have healthier eating habits. Meal kits tend to have balanced proportions of proteins, vegetables, and carbohydrates, so if your main source of vegetables has been french fries, this alone can be an education. Learning that vegetables can actually be delicious is valuable in and of itself.
Many meal kits can be customised to some degree, so you can get healthier options if that’s what you’re looking for, and there are many specialty meal kits as well, catering to people who are gluten-free or must stick to a specific diet. These kits offer an easy way to improve your diet dramatically literally overnight and can teach you how to eat better whenever you sit down for a meal.
Expand your palate
When it comes to food, we can all fall into delicious ruts. Like a kid who refuses to eat anything but chicken tenders, we get into a routine of eating the same things over and over again and shying away from experimentation with other cuisines or styles of cooking. Meal kits can be the cure for that sort of reticence. Even meals that are more or less in your comfort zone will often include ingredients you’ve never tried before or combinations you’ve never considered. Over time, even incremental exposure to different flavours, textures, and experiences can expand your palate and allow you to appreciate new foods, cooking styles, and food traditions.
The Cheapest NBN 50 Plans
Here are the cheapest plans available for Australia’s most popular NBN speed tier.