Menu Plans

Cooking For A Few

Cooking For a few

You don’t have to prepare a huge feast for your meal to be fancy. If you are dining solo or with a friend, skip the take-out and enjoy a healthy home-cooked meal instead. We’ll get you started with some of our best recipes for one or two.

Featured recipes:

  • Difficult
    Lemon Chicken with Capers
  • Easy
    One Pot Tortellini Dinner
  • Medium
    Curried Shrimp

Tips for Cooking for a Few:

  • Plan

    Plan. Plan your menus AND snacks. Shop with grocery lists and use bulk bins or bulk stores to buy smaller amounts.  

  • Make Planned Overs

    Make Planned Overs. Make more than you need for one meal and use the rest to make something else.

  • Freeze Ahead

    Freeze ahead ingredients.  

    • Season and cook meat, ground meat or poultry and freeze in small amounts for use in quick soups or casseroles. Meat can be frozen once when raw and once after it is cooked.  
    • Muffin tins and ice cube trays are great for freezing raw and cooked ingredients in smaller amounts. Be sure to line with muffin liners or lightly grease before putting food in so that it comes out easier. Once frozen, pop into a freezer bag or container. 
    • Briefly cook and quickly cool vegetables (called shocking) for later use in a stir-fry, soup, stew or casserole. These vegetables can also be safely frozen.  
    • Make and freeze pizza dough and egg-free cookie dough to bake in small batches, as you want them. 
    • Dried beans can be rehydrated, cooked and frozen in small amounts. 
    • Roast and freeze garlic in 1 tsp amounts on parchment paper; package when frozen. 
    • Make 1 tablespoon dollops of canned tomato paste and freeze; package when frozen. 
  • Make Large and Freeze Small

    Make large and freeze small. Make larger recipes cool quickly, divide into meal-sized portions and freeze.  

  • Cut Down Recipes

    Cut down recipes. Casserole recipes can either be cut in half and baked or, after making the whole recipe, divided into smaller pans before baking. Eat one and freeze the others. This is not recommended for baking recipes. 

  • User Smaller Equipment

    Use smaller equipment. Heat-proof ramekins, muffin tins and small loaf pans are great ways to portion out recipes before baking. Leftovers are then already perfectly sized for freezing.  

    Try our Muffin Cup Meat Loaves.

  • Use Smaller Appliances

    Use smaller appliances. Using a toaster oven, barbecue, small slow cooker, or hot plate are not only great ways to cook smaller amounts of food but are also excellent energy savers.  

  • Be Aware of Food Safety

    Be aware of food safety. Learn how long foods can safely be kept in your refrigerator to eat on another day as leftovers. Most cooked food should be eaten within 3 or 4 days. However, hard-cooked and refrigerated eggs in their shells are good for up to 1 week. 

  • Use Half a Can

    Use parts of cans of food. If you only need part of a can of food for a recipe, refrigerate the rest or freeze for later use. Leftover canned food can be refrigerated, out of the can, for up to 2 days or frozen up to 1 month in a refrigerator freezer or 6 months in a chest freezer. The texture may be softer after thawing.

Cooking for a Few

For even more recipes, download and print our Cooking for a Few sheet.