Have you ever wondered why some people want to cook delicious, wholesome foods in their kitchen every day and some people don’t? Let’s have a quick look at why. Then let’s look at ideas to change things so you’ll want to be in your kitchen and enjoy super healthy plant-based food every day. Sound good? This article is all about simple habits to keep you inspired with your plant-based cooking.
If you have a kitchen that is cluttered, where you can’t find anything, that makes your head spin, then you aren’t going to want to cook in it. Everything becomes a chore. Basically, you feel less inspired to cook wholesome food and you’ll avoid anything to do with the kitchen if possible.
One of the secrets to wanting to cook delicious meals in your kitchen is to create a space that you want to be in. A space that inspires you. Somewhere that keeps you coming back again and again.
Let’s re-frame things. I want you to feel inspired to create habits that make you want to be in the kitchen. I want you to make delicious, wholesome plant-based food, and enjoy it. Super healthy plant-based food is a part of my daily routine. I love it! Here I am going to share simple kitchen habits that I learned on my journey over the years.
Have I missed anything off the list below? If you have another good habit that I’ve missed please write it in the comments below.
10 Healthy habits for plant-based cooking
1. Keep your kitchen free from clutter
Having a clear kitchen makes you want to be in it and make stuff.
You can breathe! A clutter-free space helps your mind feel calmer and more balanced and you’ll be thinking “ahhhhhhh I just want to hang in the kitchen because it feels sooooo good in there”. Keep the countertops and floor clean. Think about that good feeling when everything is clean. The little bit of effort that it takes is totally worth the feeling you’ll get.
Organise stuff so that it flows. Arrange things so they look pleasing to your eye. If you have nice bits of odd pottery bowls – get them out and use them to put little nibbles or things in. If you have nice wooden chopping boards, put them on display. They’ll speak to you “come to meeeeee – chop some delicious ingredients”.
2. Keep your pantry well-stocked
Let’s face it, if you don’t have wholesome food in the house then you are much more likely to reach for something junky. Have wholesome nibbles on hand (think dried fruits, nuts seeds, healthy snack bars or whatever you enjoy).
Make sure you’ve got your favourite ingredients in stock. This means that whenever you feel inspired to cook there are no excuses. It is so much easier to whip up a delicious recipe on demand without the faff of having to wait until you get yourself to the shop.
3. Have fresh herbs in pots
Fresh plants breathe life into your kitchen. Either grow your own or cheat and simply buy some from the supermarket (I do this all the time). A snip of fresh herbs used to garnish or to cook with brings a whole new dimension to your plant-based mealtimes.
Every time I wander into my kitchen I give the mint and basil a little rub whilst inhaling that delightful aroma. It immediately lifts my spirits and fills the air with a gorgeous refreshing scent.
4. Play your favourite music
For instant feel-good in the kitchen, play your favourite music. Turn it up, let it inspire you when making food, organising, or cleaning your space. Have a bit of a dance whilst stirring your pot, blending, mixing. Sing, sing, sing!
5. Put fresh fruits in a bowl and leave them in a prominent place
Not only does fresh fruit remind you to eat lots of plant-inspired goodness, but you are also more likely to grab a piece of fruit when bored or hungry. Arrange them in a beautiful way if you feel arty. Fruits are a constant reminder of health and vibrancy.
6. Put ingredients in jars and make them a feature of your kitchen
To be fair, I might be obsessed with jars! But goodness me, they work wonders. Think colourful dried herbs and spices all lined up in a row. Use jars for your grains, lentils, beans.
Here’s my trick. I save jars or various size, soaking off the label so that I can use as storage containers. Not only am I being resourceful and re-using perfectly good jars, but I also have ingredients on display to brighten up my kitchen. They give me an ongoing nudge to make delicious wholesome foods with their delightful colours.
7. “Hello dishwashing meditation”
I don’t know anyone that says “YES, please let me wash the dishes.” Well maybe I know one person who loves it, but pretty much everyone else gets stressed when dishes and pots pile up! I have a remedy for that. Are you ready?
The excellent thing about washing dishes is that it requires no brain-power (woohoo – I am in!). Let’s leverage that to our advantage.
If you don’t have a dishwasher (like most of the world haha) and you wash by hand, like me, then say ‘hello dishwashing meditation’. Say it loud. And get ready to love washing your dishes. This is a GOOD thing.
- You can let your mind wander, listen to music, switch on your favourite podcast or whatnot. That works and I do this all the time.
- Alternatively, see dishwashing as a meditation. How present can you be with each swipe and rub and oh those delightful bubbles! Honestly, it might sound weird, but it is a lush thing to do. Your mind will wander and you’ll start thinking of something random, but that’s normal. As soon as you realise your mind has wondered just be totally present with the next little rub. It’s a proper meditation haha, for real. Embrace the weird – because it works.
8. Make it easy by having good plant-based recipes to hand
Let’s face it, sometimes it is just hard to know what to make for dinner. These are the moments we might reach for something less than healthy. This is an essential habit for plant-based cooking. (and your body will be super thankful for it).
The key here is to make it much easier for yourself. Having good recipes on hand will help to keep you inspired. Print recipes off the internet and put them in a folder or better still, find your favourite plant-based cookbooks and keep them on display. It might take a little bit of effort to start with, but the more you find easy, delicious and nourishing stuff to make THE MORE you will want to make it. You have to get the ball rolling – once the ball is rolling it will be easier. Make it easy for yourself.
9. Plan regular cooking sessions each week and batch make your favourite things
Having regular cooking sessions (in your jazzy, clean, well-organised kitchen) is going to further your inspiration no-end. If this means once a week for you – do it! If this is several times a week, or daily then get dancing in your kitchen. You’ll get a real buzz out of preparing your own simple meals from scratch. It feels so good to eat food that you’ve made yourself and is well worth the effort.
Do you feel that you don’t have time?
If you think you don’t have time, then have a look at what you are doing in your daily life. Are you are spending a lot of time on social media or zoning out in front of the screen? Then steal some of that time back! This will benefit you hugely. If you are busy with kids, get them involved in the process or get them making lego on the kitchen table whilst you cook.
Making your own food is good for your mental health, it’s good for your body and soul. You’ll shine more, smile more and light up your little bit of the world more.
Make extra food to chill or freeze so that you can whip them out at a moments notice throughout the week. Beetroot burgers, shepherd’s pie, homemade hummus, veggie bakes are brilliant for freezing or chilling.
10. If you struggle to be motivated, then find a vegan cooking course online to support your journey
Finding a good plant-based cooking course can be an invaluable addition to your toolbox. Find one that takes you step-by-step through the cooking and makes it easy and inspiring for you to be in the kitchen. There are lots of courses available with different energies and quality, so have a look around.
Oh wait a minute – I have a top-notch, easy vegan cooking course online which definitely deserves a mention haha! After realising that 84% of vegetarians and vegan abandon their plant-based diet with the top reason being ‘unsatisfied with food’ I decided to create a Vegan Cooking Series to help inspire my friends to stay inspired in the kitchen. The course helps you find the best recipes (most of which freeze and work for batch making) so that you keep coming back again and again. I wanted to offer people a top-notch experience, keeping it simple by weaving in my 27 years of plant-based cooking experience.
If you think that might help you then please do have a look here:
Vegan Cooking Courses to Keep You Inspired
A final note on healthy habits for plant-based cooking…
Do you have any good tips, habits or ideas for staying inspired in the kitchen? I’d love to hear about them in the comments below. Let’s keep each other inspired and healthy.