Home Food Cooking for Two: Healthy Eating as the Nest Empties

Cooking for Two: Healthy Eating as the Nest Empties

by Brandy Burke

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The same 4:30PM events repeat themselves at least 4 times per week when it’s just us and we’re faced with cooking for two.

I hear my husband walk in the door from work and I sit my laptop down to greet him – I’m not done with the day’s work, but I missed him. We congregate in the kitchen hashing out the days events – he talks to me about some brainiac software thing he’s doing, I complain about how no one listens to me at work and we both nod and pretend to understand each other.

“so what’s for dinner?” I ask as I plunge my fist in to a box of dry cereal – a light snack, I tell myself.

My husband has always been our home chef – he loves to go to the market and prepare meals – and we love that he loves it. But since Grace moved to her own place and Gabby is rarely if ever home, cooking big meals seems to be a whole lot of work, a whole lot of waste and a whole lot of expense for just two people.

We’re tired, if we don’t have to put out the effort to prepare meals for 45 minutes and clean up after it, we’re not going to just so that we can tell people we did.

Alternatively, there is the drive thru – But honestly, there are more problems with running through a drive thru that I can list on one hand so I’ll just highlight a couple of big ones: It costs money for terrible trash and it takes a lot of effort to go out of your way to find something gluten free (ahem, tacos or a salad) and wait in line.

You know I don’t like a complainer that doesn’t have an answer – so don’t worry, I’m one step ahead already, but it happened by chance.

I heard about Freshly through another blogger – and yeah, I was pretty stoked. Because when I went to the Freshly website the thing that stuck out the most to me was the words Gluten Free.

I know!

So I waited. And I waited and waited until my husband got home from work and we selected meals together – and within a few days the shipment arrived and we no longer have to repeat our dry cereal dinner decision fest 4 nights a week.

Instead, we can each quickly (in under 5 minutes) heat up a meal that has ingredients we can pronounce and tastes absolutely outstanding.

Cooking For Two with nutritious ingredients

The packages all say “heat for two minutes” but lets be real – we’re paying college tuition here so we can’t afford to upgrade our early 90s microwave. Seriously though, five minutes isn’t too long to wait for a really tasty meal, right?

Cooking for two Chicken Rustica

Chicken Rustica

There are so many pros to this cooking for two solution that it makes perfect sense for us:

  1. We don’t have to select ingredients
  2. We don’t have to eat the same thing
  3. We don’t have to wait in a drive-thru for unhealthy food
  4. We don’t have to cook for 45 minutes
  5. We don’t have to do any sort of clean up other than licking the fork and putting it back in the drawer (I kid, I kid).
  6. The food actually tastes good and has incredible flavor
cooking for two almond chicken

Almond Chicken

Now we can save the time-suck trips to the market and the hour of prep-work and clean up for the times when all four of us are actually at home sitting around the table. But even then, we might consider faking the cooking and just serve freshly meals.


Disclaimer: I was sent 6 Freshly meals in exchange for my honest review of Freshly – the post is an actual story of my life, the opinion is completely my own. I will purchase Freshly meals for my family because I truly found the convenience, nutrition and flavor mentioned above to be well worth it.

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Karen Grosz June 6, 2016 - 9:07 am

I have been hearing about services like this popping up. I love that this one sounds quite healthy. Right now I am in the, my son is home from college…how do I make that much food stage. 🙂 Not a bad thing but was getting used to cooking less.

brandyburke June 6, 2016 - 12:58 pm

That’s true – when both kids are home we can’t put enough food on the table, but all of us being home is happening so much less frequently!

Chrissa - Physical Kitchness June 6, 2016 - 9:36 am

Love this!! I struggle cooking for two – because many of the meals I make are for my blog, so I need more than 2 servings. But I HATE wasting food! So basically we live off leftovers. But this service looks amazing!

brandyburke June 6, 2016 - 12:59 pm

I hate wasting food too – and we always have great intentions on eating left overs, but left overs turn to piles of green miscellaneous in tupperware for us – I so wish we were better at it!

Brittany June 6, 2016 - 12:47 pm

Never heard of this company! but that food actually does look really good!

brandyburke June 6, 2016 - 12:57 pm

It is! I was surprised, I’ve never had frozen meals that actually had crisp vegetables in it!

Joanie @ ZagLeft June 6, 2016 - 3:03 pm

My husband and I are (almost) empty nesters but with a very busy high school daughter, it feels like we’re already there. I love cooking for just the two of us now – it forces me to be creative.

Brittany Giles June 6, 2016 - 9:40 pm

Such a convenient way to maintain a healthy lifestyle!

Cathy Mini June 6, 2016 - 9:55 pm

Our nest won’t be empty for awhile now, but when my daughter is at her grandma’s I definitely struggle on cooking for just my husband and me. We usually end up getting take out, which we need to get better about.

Anne June 7, 2016 - 7:17 am

I’m almost an empty nester – and it’s nice only cooking for two once again!

Patricia @ Grab a Plate June 7, 2016 - 8:22 am

Good to know about this service! The food looks really good! Sometimes it really is hard to cook for two (especially with a husband who hates leftovers)! Thanks for the info!

Heather Davis June 7, 2016 - 3:07 pm

In just a few years I am going to go from cooking for 10 to cooking for 2. I will have to remember this.


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