11 Tips For Cooking When You're On Your Own
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11 Tips For Cooking When You're On Your Own

To prove you're an adult and can feed yourself.

11 Tips For Cooking When You're On Your Own

Living on your own is one thing -- a lot of people find themselves living on their own for the first time when they go to college -- but living alone and not having a dining hall to rely on, like most freshmen do, is another thing. While it might be tempting to stock the fridge with beer and the pantry with takeout menus, here are 10 helpful tips to help you cook when you're on your own, even if you don't really know how to cook yet.

1. Never underestimate the flavor of sautéing garlic and onions

That smell in the house that always smells so good, but when you come downstairs, Mom has barely started cooking? That's garlic and onions, and you can start there. Just put a little bit of olive oil in a pan and add garlic (you can cheat and buy it pre-cut; I know I do) and diced onions.

2. A lot of vegetables turn out delicious if you coat them in olive oil, salt and pepper, then put them in the oven on convection bake for 10-20 minutes

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This list includes, but is not limited to, asparagus, cauliflower and brussels sprouts.

3. Lots of other vegetables taste really good if you throw them in the pan with the garlic and onions

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Throw anything in there, stir a bit and let it sit until the pieces get a little bit brown.

4. Peanut butter in ramen makes a really delicious peanut sauce

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It sounds crazy, I know, but I swear if you make ramen, drain the extra water, and add peanut butter, you won't regret it. Somehow, that combination of the chicken flavoring and the peanut butter is delicious, and since the ramen is hot, the peanut butter melts almost instantly.

5. Eggs are pretty hard to screw up

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If they used to be an omelet, and now they're just scrambled eggs, that's OK -- they will still taste just as good. Just add in whatever toppings you want.

6. When you get sick of pasta and microwaved Prego, you can change the sauce without totally starting from scratch

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And you'll feel so fancy about it. Start with sautéing garlic and onions (I told you they were awesome), add in any other veggies you want, minced meat if you want to make meat sauce, any spices you like (salt, pepper, cumin and cayenne are good places to start, in my opinion) and let that cook, then pour in the sauce. Add some more spices if you want. Let it simmer for a while.

7. Making mac and cheese from the box totally counts as cooking

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Your mom will be proud you made it yourself, so that's totally got to count for something.

8. Stir the rice a little, or else it will stick to the pot and it will be hell to clean

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Nothing will make you want to eat out for the next five meals more than spending 20 minutes scrubbing scorched rice off the side of a pot. If that does happen, make sure to soak the pot in hot water for awhile first, because that totally helps.

9. Stir fry sauces from a jar

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Stir fry may seem hard because it's something you'd order at a restaurant, but you can buy a ton of sauces at the supermarket to add to chicken and veggies to make a delicious stir fry.

10. Leftovers make for easy lunch

If you make extra of whatever you made for dinner, you can have a lunch that doesn't consist of a sandwich. And that's always a win.

11. There's no shame in abandoning a truly disastrous meal and going to Chipotle

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It happens when you're learning to cook. You burn everything, somehow the chicken is entirely inedible and you just don't have it in you to start again. So wash the dishes, go out for dinner and try again tomorrow.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.

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