Quick Cooking—Even When You Don’t Feel Like It

A couple nights ago I was tired, lazy and starving. A disastrous combination.

What I wanted to do was plop onto the couch, turn on So You Think You Can Dance and order from the fastest delivery place that I know.

Luckily I had just read a post from my favorite Lunch Box Lady about staying motivated and accountable when you really don’t feel like it. Granted, Colleen was talking about her gym life, but the truth is that motivation in the kitchen is just as important as the inspiration you need to get your sweat on.

So, I got cooking despite my clouding thoughts of how easy it would be to dial a phone number. And, oh, the agony of doing dishes. Okay, I was being a drama queen…but, I was starving! The menu board is completely unhelpful in times like these.

I decided to make fish because it cooks relatively quickly. Since there was zero chance I was actually going to cut anything, I got out a bag of pre-chopped vegetables. And I pulled out a box of NearEast couscous—my 5-minute grain miracle pasta—and loving savior in moments of utter starvation and laziness.

Like I said any extra work to feed myself in my starved state was just out of the question.

I quickly crusted tilapia with panko bread crumbs and coconut flakes (sounds fancier than it actually is) and put my fishy friends into the oven where I immediately proceeded to guzzle water to hold myself over. The moment the smell of my feast made it to my nose I knew I had made the right decision. Within 20 minutes I was eating and, in all honesty, that was probably faster than any delivery could have made it to me.

I’ll admit…it wasn’t the best meal I had ever prepared and I was definitely not going to win Top Chef title, but my meal satisfied, I didn’t have to pull out my wallet and I felt good about myself when I put my fork down.

You know that amazing feeling you get after you exercise? I find that the same “high” you get from breaking a sweat transfers to the feeling you get when you eat right. Once I got into the kitchen and started the quickie meal, it really wasn’t half so bad and all of my negative thoughts were replaced with positive ones (plus no after pizza sweat pants needed!).

In the end, I was so glad I mustered up the energy to make a healthy meal decision. And my pets were into it too.

On a completely random note, I saw this man lounging out on the subway like he was in his home living room. Not sure if this is genius or just flat out rude?? Needless to say, I don’t think the unspoken rules of fellow subway-ers would approve had it been bit more crowded…I feel like I have gained subway road rage since living here.

 Huge thanks to The Lunchbox Diaries for my much needed meal motivation 🙂

Have you ever had similar lazy food cooking experience? What do you cook when you really don’t feel like it?

Feature photo via


  1. All the time! When 8:30 rolls around and we still haven’t started dinner, we make one of our “go-to” meals. The quickest is ground turkey and broccoli florets – takes about 15 minutes from fridge to plate.

  2. Doc called me at 4 yesterday and asked “Whats for dinner?” Isn’t that just like a man?

    I said, “I have no idea!”

    So, last night HE threw together some chicken enchiladas with refrigerator left overs. Took him about 10 minutes to put the whole thing together and about 15 minutes to cook and get it on the table. YES!

    • Ohhh your stuffed sweet potatoes…I am drooling already just thinking about them. Maybe I should have done that instead of getting out the pots and pans!

  3. I love how you point out that it took about the same time to make that than it would to get delivery! There are so many quick options when your body needs fuel quickly that will leave you feeling great!

  4. Your quickie meal is more involved than my lazy days! I only cook something that requires a lot of effort once or twice a week. The rest I the time I munch on a lot of raw veggies and fruit, and eat a lot of eggs, cottage cheese, salsa, tortillas, oatmeal, and protein shakes…

    • I like all of those things too…It definitely did involve a few more pots and pans than I wanted, but it was mostly sitting while things were in the oven and on the stove top. I would have had a can of soup but it was so hot out!

  5. We all have those days, don’t we? I find that having kids has helped me with dinner time laziness; I really don’t want to be feeding them crappy takeout, so I make the energy to always put something healthy on the table, even if it’s just scrambled eggs, toast and fruit salad (‘hey kids, let’s have breakfast for dinner!’)

    When I know that I have a busy week ahead, I pre-prep meals. Roast a whole bunch of chicken breasts and veggies on Sunday night and make a big pot of brown rice. And macaroni and cheese too for my picky eater. Then all we do is warm up leftovers between tae kwon do class and hockey practice!

    You probably have better takeout options in NYC than we do in Port Moody…

    • I love breakfast for dinner!! Can I come over? Love that you prep meals ahead of time in order to keep the good eats rolling all week long.
      I live pretty far north so my takeout options are pretty limited…which is actually a blessing because if there were more then temptation would be much more difficult to control.

  6. Love it! I used to be the queen of, “Oh, it’s been a busy day, let’s get carryout.” But you’re right, you feel so much better when you push through the laziness and make a home cooked meal anyway. Your dog & cat are super adorable, BTW! 😀

    • Haha thank you! In their begging state:)
      It definitely takes the same amount of motivation to cook healthy at home as it does to wake up early and go to the gym…but it is so worth it.

    • Lauren, thank you! I am thrilled to connect with you and honored that you added me to the Versatile Blog list. You know how to make a girl blush!


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