Even if you enjoy cooking, there are times when getting dinner on the table may still seem like a chore. To make cooking be more enjoyable, here are some simple and budget-friendly ideas to make your kitchen the most welcoming room at home:
- Consider painting a single kitchen wall a bright or soothing color.
- Hang family photos, children’s artwork or pictures of your favorite places to visit.
- Keep clutter, like gadgets, papers, keys, etc., in cabinets, drawers or baskets.
- Place some colored throw rugs on the kitchen floor.
- Light a few votive candles as you cook.
- Put a bowl of brightly colored fruits on your counter for decoration and for snacking.
- During colder months, simmer a few cinnamon sticks in a pot of water on your stove for a pleasant aroma.
- Drop in lemon, lime or orange rinds to freshen the garbage disposal.
- Plant great smelling herbs (like mint, thyme or lavender) in small pots on your sunny window sill or counter top.
- Use fruit or spice scented soaps for hand and dish washing.
- Listen to your handheld, mini-stereo or radio while you cook.
- Check out audio books on CD at the library and listen to novels, biographies or non-fiction during your kitchen time.
- Open a window and enjoy the sounds of nature.
- Turn off everything to enjoy a few minutes of peace and quiet.
- Ask your family to join you in the kitchen to tell you about their day.
- Add pillows to kitchen bar stools, benches or chairs.
- Place a rubber mat in front of the stove and/or sink to soothe your feet when cooking or washing dishes.
- Rearrange your kitchen drawers so that all the utensils and spices you use most often are easy to reach when cooking. Place items that you don’t use regularly in the backs of cabinets or drawers. (Write yourself notes if you think you may forget where items are stored.)
- Keep hand lotion near the sink to moisturize after washing your hands.
Article copyright © 2014 American Heart Association. This recipe is brought to you by the American Heart Association's Simple Cooking with Heart © Program. For more articles and simple, quick and affordable recipes, visit heart.org/simplecooking.