As we continue to follow stay at home orders and social distancing, it’s easy to fall into a spiral of boredom. But, a perfect way to get your creative juices flowing again is through cooking and testing out new recipes. After all, you and your loved ones still need to eat! And, it may even relax your mind too. Check out our roundup of three fun recipes to try out during quarantine with some staple ingredients you should already have in your pantry. Luckily, all of these recipes can be modified to fit your dietary and taste needs.
1. Chips & guacamole dip
This dish is the perfect side for any movie night or socially distant get-together and will be a huge fan favorite for even the pickiest of eaters. Cut and scoop three ripe avocados into a bowl and mash with a spoon or fork until they reach your desired consistency. Now, mix in your ingredients and spices: diced red onion, diced jalapeño (or a serrano pepper), finely chopped cilantro, diced tomatoes, and a teaspoon each of lime juice, cumin and sea salt. If you’re looking for a spicier guac, add in more jalapeño. Stir until all the ingredients are combined, and then serve it with crispy tortilla chips, crackers or veggies. There are also a million other ways to use guac as a delicious topping, like on burgers, tacos, and nachos. The options are endless, you just need to be creative when you are figuring out how to use it in your recipes!
2. Overnight oats with blackberry honey
If you’re looking for a healthy, easy breakfast to prep the night before, try this delicious, creamy oatmeal dish. Add a 1/2 cup of oats, old-fashioned or instant, to a mason jar. Add in another 1/2 cup of any milk of your choice. Alternate between adding layers of yogurt and blackberries until you reach the top of the jar. Then, top with a tablespoon of walnuts or almonds, a teaspoon of dried chia seeds, and a teaspoon of blackberry honey for a fruity, sweet finish. Then refrigerate it overnight and enjoy it! At around 350 calories, this recipe is perfect for staying fit and starting the day off on the right foot. This recipe can be modified however you like! You can add different fruits, flavors, or sweeteners. Try making it with a nut milk alternative or try adding vanilla extract or a different type of fruit like pineapple!
3. Slow-cooker butter chicken
This Indian-inspired dish only requires 10 minutes of prep time and is a cozy, comforting chicken dish that’s heart-healthy, too. This recipe requires using a slow cooker. Slow cookers have multiple benefits and are hailed as easy, fast ways to get dinner on the table, and even impress guests. To start, combine tomato paste, fresh lemon juice, garlic, and freshly grated ginger in a bowl. Then, add in your spices, which will really liven up your chicken: cinnamon, cumin, garam masala, turmeric, and salt to taste. Cut a boneless, skinless chicken breast into 2″ cubes, and put your chicken pieces and the spiced tomato paste into your slow cooker. Lastly, add in onion, butter, and a pinch of sugar. Then, let the crockpot work its magic! If you’re going to be in the kitchen throughout the day, cook the butter chicken for 4 hours on high, and 8 hours on low if you’re planning on stepping out.
When the chicken is done, open the crockpot lid and let out the deliciously fragrant steam. Then stir in a dash of heavy cream for a silky, finishing flavor. Serve with a garnish of cilantro over a hot plate of basmati rice and naan on the side. This dish will transport you to Dehli, even if you’re stuck in your living room. You can still keep your meals interesting and unique while you are in quarantine!
Try out any of these easy, quick recipes for a delicious break in your cooking routine. Though most of the ingredients used above are usually easy to find, make sure you practice safe measures when venturing to your grocery store or local market.