Brittany stands in a doorway holding a plate of bowtie pasta with cheese and peas. She's smiling and wearing a white blouse, as well as a blue apron with red poppies on it.

My Body Needs a Vegetable! Easy Recipes For the Cooking-Averse

Look. You know that feeling when you’ve been eating takeout for days on end and you can just tell that your body needs something fresh? Well, the fact that I don’t cook means that I live in that zone more often than I would like. And it feels bad.

It’s not news to anyone that I don’t cook. When I try, I start feeling panicky, hot all over, sweaty, uncomfy–you get it. I don’t like to cook, I don’t want to cook, I married someone who’s happy to be the household chef, and that’s that.

But here’s the thing. I’m a grown up woman with two needy children. I need to eat every day. Sometimes things come up and Paul doesn’t have the time to put together a meal. And even though I hate it, cooking is a pretty basic task. Like, survival-level stuff. My team challenged me to learn how to cook something, and I have to say that it wasn’t terrible. My pasta and I made it to the other side, and it was (dare I say?) delicious. I think that you can learn how to make it, too.

You’ll Need:

Closeup of a bowl of bowtie pasta.

You know how some “easy recipes” are actually ridiculously complex? 🙄 Um, excuse me. I’m looking for low effort, high reward meals, so I definitely don’t want to have to julienne anything. Who do you think I am?

Finding an easy recipe

When I say that I want an easy recipe, here’s what I mean:

  • MAXIMUM two pots or pans, but ideally one.
  • No special equipment necessary. Please just assume that I only have/know how to use the basics.
  • It shouldn’t take more than an hour to make.
  • No more than 5-10 ingredients are allowed, but preferably 5. This recipe was pushing it with 9 ingredients, but my team justified to me that salt, pepper, and olive oil hardly count because they’re countertop staples.
  • If I have to pay close attention to anything that might suddenly burn, boil over, or be suddenly ruined, I’m out.

That’s one of the reasons I love Smitten Kitchen recipes. Sure, she has some more advanced meals and recipes, and when someone else is cooking I’m all for them. But Deb, the author and founder of Smitten Kitchen, seems like someone who really knows what I mean when I say that I want an easy recipe. And I love her for it.

Brittany puts a mint leaf into a bowl of bowtie pasta with peas and cheese. She has a yellow-painted thumbnail.

My fate in your hands

My team chose a few recipes that they thought I could handle, and then turned my culinary fate over to you in an Instagram poll. You chose this pasta with peas, lemon, and ricotta, and let me say– good choice! I didn’t do a perfect job and my taste buds still aren’t up to par (thanks, COVID), but even so it was very good, and I would make it again. That’s right, even though I hate cooking I would subject myself to this recipe repeatedly. That’s high praise.

Brittany cuts a lemon open. Her fingernails are painted spectacularly with checkers, flowers, and lines. Brittany grates cheese while wearing a light blue apron with red poppies.

You can watch me muddle my way through this recipe in this video!

More easy recipes

Here are some more easy recipes that the team likes making. We’ll see if I get around to making them, but they’re all Lars-approved via the team.

Lars Recipes

Over the years I’ve released a few recipes on the blog. They’re clearly mostly desserts (which are much more motivating to make than nutritious meals, sorry!), so satisfy your sweet tooth and learn a new recipe with these!

Thanks to Smitten Kitchen for the recipe and instructions! Do you have any favorite easy recipes? Send them my way!

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