Cooking for One or Two

When the kids are gone and you’re living alone or with your spouse cooking may become more difficult.  As you get older you may simply not feel like spending a lot of time cooking, and you may not know how to cook smaller sized meals. It can seem like too much trouble to cook for only one or two, so many seniors may end up eating snacks or skipping meals altogether.

As we age nutrition is one of the most important factors that will help us stay healthy. Learning how to prepare meals that are geared towards just one or two people can be the trick to continue to eat healthy, well balanced meals.

Importance of Proper Nutrition

Eating right is important for senior citizens. A balanced diet will help the body fight the signs of aging and will decrease the likelihood of getting sick. Keep portion sizes small but eat more often. Don’t skip breakfast because it provides fuel for your day. The U.S. nutrition guidelines have changed. You’re probably familiar with the food pyramid that was used for many years to show the proper foods to eat. The new guidelines utilize a plate to show portions for proper nutrition.

  • Fruits and Vegetables – 4 servings
  • Breads, Cereals, and Potatoes – 6 servings
  • Milk, Cheese, and Yogurt – 3 servings
  • Meat, Fish, Eggs, Beans, and Peas – 2 servings
  • Cookies, Sodas, Sweets – 1 serving or less

Choosing Recipes

Look for recipes that cater to just a few people. Take some of your favorite recipes and make adjustments for fewer portions. If you like you can make the full recipe and freeze portions for easy use later on. Many people eating on their own turn to frozen dinners.  These prepared foods are often not very nutritious and can be high in calories and salt.  Instead, consider making more meals using fresh vegetables. Visit your local farmer’s market to get the best seasonal fruits and veggies. Adding more fresh foods to your diet helps to keep you healthy. Get a cookbook that offers easy recipes that are designed for one or two people. Use a slow cooker to make easy one-pot meals.

Tips for Making Delicious and Nutritious Meals

Small meals can still be delicious and nutritious.  Follow these easy tips to help make cooking a pleasure rather than a chore.

  • Cook smaller portions
  • Use more fresh foods including more fruits and vegetables
  • Get smaller sized cookware and store your large pots and pans
  • Choose easy recipes that can be completed in under 30 minutes
  • Keep basic ingredients on hand so you’ll always have something to cook
  • Plan your meals for the week in advance
  • Watch cooking shows to get ideas for healthy meals
  • Try new foods and recipes to make meals more interesting
  • Eat at set meal times
  • Don’t skip meals

Three Balanced Meals Everyday

Senior living communities provide three well balanced meals a day for residents to enjoy. Taking the need to cook away, senior residents are able to enjoy their entire day and gather in the dining hall within the community for breakfast, lunch and dinner. No more need to worry about cooking too much, what to cook and when to eat!

To learn more about the nutritious options that seniors are offered at the senior living communities near you, call (866) 662-0435.  to speak to your local Care Advisor that will provide you with FREE information about the care options in your area.