Best Pre-Cooking Hacks for Every Busy Mom


Chopping vegetables.Do we need to be cooking daily and preparing three daily meals while disorganizing the kitchen space every single day? 

The answer is no. There are ways to make our cooking activities more efficient and organized, reduce the daily stress of thinking and planning the meals, and decrease the time wasted to get all the meals prepared. 

We can follow some pre-cooking tips and establish planning habits to have a more enjoyable cooking experience and healthy meals. 

Beef & Chicken

These two popular types of meat usually take a lot of time to cook and can’t be instantly prepared. To speed things up, boil them with some onions and spices, then cool down and store them. You can store it in the fridge for a week or freeze it and save it for months. It’s always good to keep the chicken or beef stored in some of the stock. Later, when you want to serve them, you have options to add a fresh sauce, grill, or bake for a quick crust. All options will take minutes to put together and have the protein ready on your tables.

Another option is prebaking which needs a lot of marinating but is worth the effort. I usually do it on the weekend and use them throughout the week. Of course, using oven bags is a great addition, especially if you plan to serve it after a couple of days; it keeps the flavors and the meat moist. Prepare the chicken or beef, leave it in the oven and forget about it until ready. Then, once made, cool it down and keep the oven bag closed in the fridge or freezer until you decide to serve. Bonus, you can always include any type of veggies beneath the protein to bake together; it will be super tasty, delicious, and healthy.  

Veggies and Fruits

Most veggies and fruits, whether for snacking, salads, lunches, garnish, or hot meals, can be washed, cleaned, and cut, ready to serve. It’s great to put them in containers and arrange them by week, to keep their freshness and colors. A tip to have them in great condition is to store each type separately in little boxes or Ziplocs. This helps have healthy foods ready in the fridge and reduces the preparation time for meals. 

Minced Garlic and Chopped Onions

Garlic and onions are the key ingredients in most dishes and are used in cooking proteins, carbohydrates, and veggies. The process of mincing and chopping usually requires time and several deep cleaning activities of the used utensils or kitchen machines. Hence, the best way to do that is to prepare your monthly quantity of minced garlic and chopped onions and have them stored in the freezer in mini-Ziplocs that you can pull easily whenever needed. The garlic is perfectly stored fresh and minced and can stay up to a year or more. The best way to keep onions in a tasty frozen condition is to stir slightly in little butter or oil for 5-7 minutes and cool down to freeze afterward.

Hopefully, if you try these tips, they will make your cooking experience much more enjoyable and less stressful. It’s always good to have a plan to create a structured week, healthy meals, and a clean kitchen.

Farrah Farah is an Egyptian Westchester mom living in Rye. She is a financial planning professional holding a master’s degree in applied economics. Farah gets empowered by supporting and developing others. That’s why she tends to volunteer and support various communities. She started @1125daysinwestchester during the pandemic to support locals, startups, and small businesses by featuring and publicizing their services, products, and events.