I used to be a horrible wife. For the first two years of our marriage, I made Wade a Lean Cuisine every night. That was our big dinner...Lean Cuisine. I always wanted to cook and change things up, but I felt like cooking took too long and I wasn't organized enough to plan out what I was going to cook ahead of time and then I wouldn't have the right groceries. It wasn't fun. I even had a few times where I was so sick of eating Lean Cusines that I thought I would throw up when trying to eat one.
So when we moved to Charlotte I figured I had some more time on my hands and my husband was working hard at the office so I decided to try cooking. I had two criterias for any meal that I might prepare. 1. It had to be super easy. 2. It needed to be healthy. So I went on the hunt for cookbooks on Amazon.com and found two cookbooks that I thought might work well. I have used one A LOT and if you are in any situation like I was in I think you will like it too.
The book is called "The Weeknight Survival Cookbook" (subtitle "How to Make Healthy Meals in 10 Minutes") by Dena Irwin, R.D. She gives a shopping list for the week and then you use a lot of leftovers from previous meals later in the week and that makes my grocery bills even cheaper. For example, I made a turkey meatloaf on a Monday and then on Wednesday we had a spaghetti type meal that the leftover Turkloaf was chopped into. Then she also takes shortcuts in some places, but in other areas you are making a sauce or something from scratch so it feels like I can truly tell Wade I cooked something for him instead of popping something in the microwave or oven. And that makes me feel proud of my skills.
The first week I bought everything on her shopping list, but I realized Wade and I don't eat 6 big meals a week. So I decided to pick 4 of her meals and then only buy what I need for those, which makes my grocery bill like $70 for a week of meals. All the meals are 4 servings so I end up eating some of the leftovers for lunch the next day.
Hope this helps any of you struggling out there. I won't say I feel completely comfortable with cooking yet, but I am learning.