7 Ways to Keep Quarantine Meals Exciting

7 Ways to Keep Quarantine Meals Exciting

Written by Dana Plucinski

If you’re like us, you’re probably cooking at home a lot more than you have in the past! However, you may be finding it hard to get all the ingredients you need, and you may not be grocery shopping very often. Or maybe you're not the biggest cook and have only a handful of go-to recipes.

With that in mind, we’ve put together some advice from our recipe developers on simple ways to make your meals more exciting, even when you may not have everything you want on hand.

💡 Add fresh (or dried) herbs. Using a variety of fresh herbs in your roasted veggies and other dishes not only adds more flavor, but it can also help make everyday dishes more interesting and special. Plus, different herbs have different health benefits, so mix it up! Don’t have fresh herbs on hand, use dried ones instead.
💡 Balance your dishes with acidity. How many times have you tasted a dish and felt like it was missing something? That “something” may be acid. Our taste buds are happiest when the fat, salt, sweetness, and acidity levels work together. Your dish may be coming up short because it’s off-balance. Try adding something sour/acidic (e.g. vinegar, lemon juice, or lime juice) to help add better balance.
💡 Rediscover your spice cabinet. Now’s a great time to see what has been hiding in the back of your spice cabinet that may make a great addition to your meals. Varying your spices can give the same leftovers a totally different feel the next day. Plus, spices contain many health benefits! Try our Moroccan Spiced Brussels Sprouts or our Spicy Tunisian Carrots to make good use of some of those spices!
💡 Prep ingredients, not meals. This way you can assemble the same ingredients into multiple different meals instead of having the same meal over and over again. For example: If you prepare tofu, beans, carrots, and greens, you can have a loaded salad one night, the next night you can have taco night, and the third night you can have veggie bowls!
💡 Top your dishes with seeds. This adds extra flavor, crunch, protein, and nutrients! We've been using our Sprouted Seed Salad Toppers on most things we eat because they have a little extra seasoning and can make a standard dish feel more special. Nutritional yeast is another great source of nutrients and flavor that you may already have in your pantry.
💡 Make a versatile sauce. There are many types of sauces that can be made in advance and used on a variety of meals. For example, vegan mayo plus your favorite spices makes a quick creamy sauce that adds a boost of flavor to your dishes. Or try this Sundried Tomato Pesto or our Nut-Free Basil Pesto.
💡 Add dried or fresh berries/fruit. Fruit is not just delicious on yogurt or oatmeal, it can be used in salads, protein dishes, and a variety of other dishes too. Dried berries are an especially good addition to baked goods and desserts as the bright pops of tartness help balance out higher-fat ingredients. For example, try our Superfruit & Mixed Seeds Chocolate Bark.

What are your favorite tips and tricks for keeping your meals interesting? Please share them with us in the comments below!

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