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16 Amazing Cooking-for-One Recipes You'll Thank Us For

Just because you're only feeding yourself doesn't mean you can resort to endless takeout.
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Flying solo? Just because you're only feeding one person—yourself—doesn't mean you can resort to endless takeout, or frozen TV dinners (although those can come in handy from time to time). Keep yourself well fed with nutritious but easy meals that don't require a whole lot of effort of fussing. We've chosen recipes that make perfect single-serving portions or dishes that make great leftovers or prep-ahead meals. So you can either whip up something delicious quickly, or cook once and eat all week long. Start cooking for one better than ever!

The Perfect Omelet

omelet sprinkled with salt pepper and parsely
Kiersten Hickman/Eat This, Not That!

Let's start at the beginning. An omelette is quite literally one of the easiest things to make for one and get it right. Our recipe outlines the basic technique that'll have you cooking perfect omelets for years to come. Also great for dinner.

Get our Single Best Way to Make an Omelet.

Chicken Panini With Pesto and Peppers

Paleo chicken panini with pesto and peppers
Mitch Mandel and Thomas MacDonald

Paninis are always a good idea, whether you're cooking for one or four. And you'll love this indulgent, melty panini—it tastes like something you'd get at Panera bread, but is actually much lighter and healthier (and low in calories, too).

Get our recipe for Chicken Panini With Pesto and Peppers

Sheet Pan Chicken Fajitas

chicken fajitas recipe for a sheet pan dinner
Kiersten Hickman/Eat This, Not That!

Sheet pan dinners are an excellent idea when you want a hot, home-cooked meal but don't feel like going through the trouble of washing multiple pots and pans. Use one chicken breast and one bell pepper if you're only cooking for today, or make the full recipe if you'd like to have some leftovers (that are super easy to reheat in the oven, too).

Get our recipe for Sheet Pan Chicken Fajitas

Avocado Berry Smoothie

avocado berry smoothie
Rebecca Firkser/Eat This, Not That!

This smoothie is equally suitable for paleo dieters and those who don't know what paleo is. It's just a really good, nutritious smoothie you can make in the morning or enjoy instead of a piece of fruit in the afternoon.

Get our recipe for Paleo Avocado Berry Smoothie.

Breakfast Burrito

Breakfast Burrito

Here's a neat trick: fold up four breakfast burritos on a Monday morning, and you'll have them for the rest of the week. We absolutely love the heartiness of this burrito which includes chicken sausages, eggs, and black beans. If you're storing these for later, leave out the avocado, and simply add it in right before eating. Also, make sure you use our foolproof burrito-folding method.

Get our recipe for Fiber-Filled Breakfast Burrito.

Peanut Butter Overnight Oats

spoonful of peanut butter overnight oats over a jar
Kiersten Hickman/Eat This, Not That!

If you're a planner, you'll like the idea of making your breakfast the night before, and waking up to a delicious overnight oatmeal in the morning. This makes one jar, so scale up if you're prepping them for the whole week.

Get our recipe for Peanut Butter Overnight Oats.

The Ultimate BLT Sandwich

Healthy ultimate blt
Mitch Mandel and Thomas MacDonald

This BLT is a good idea for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. So easy to put together and with minimal prep and cleanup.

Get our recipe for The Ultimate BLT Sandwich.

Golden Mango Smoothie Bowl

golden mango smoothie bowl with pomegranate and kiwi
Waterbury Publications, Inc.

Treat yourself to a boost of vitamins in the morning by making a perfect zesty-but-sweet mango smoothie. The beauty of a smoothie, or bowls in general, is that you can easily make a small portion for one. We love this recipe in particular because it's a riff on golden milk, a healthy anti-inflammatory Ayurvedic drink.

Get our recipe for Golden Mango Smoothie Bowl.

Loaded Toast

Kiersten Hickman/Eat This, Not That!

A loaded toast, or an open-faced sandwich, if you will, is a great back-pocket recipe to have in your cooking for one arsenal. They're highly customizable and highly recommended for times when you're dying of hunger, and need to eat something pronto.

Get our 15 Toast Recipe Ideas That Go Beyond Basic Avocado.

Mac and Cheese with Spinach, Ham, and Tomato

Healthy spinach ham mac and cheese
Mitch Mandel and Thomas MacDonald

This mac and cheese is healthy, hearty, and makes killer leftovers. Store them in air-tight containers in the fridge to enjoy this cheesy pasta two days in a row.

Get our recipe for Mac and Cheese with Spinach, Ham, and Tomato.

Arugula and Prosciutto Pizza

Healthy pizza with arugula, cherry tomatoes, and prosciutto
Mitch Mandel and Thomas MacDonald

Now, you may think we're suggesting you make a whole pizza from scratch, just for yourself. And you're right! You know you want it, you know it's great leftovers, and you know you'd be OK with eating this delicious version two days in a row. If you've never had peppery arugula on a pizza before, you're missing out!

Get our recipe for Arugula and Prosciutto Pizza.

Smoky Stovetop "Baked" Beans

Baked beans

You know what stores in the fridge really well for days, and heats up beautifully in the same pot you made it in? Beans! Don't disregard the magic of cooking a big pot of smoky, bacony beans, and eating it for days. Not only are you getting your daily dose of fiber, you're eating a dish that gets better with time.

Get our recipe for Smoky Stovetop "Baked" Beans.

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Fish Taco Bowl

whole30 fish taco bowl
Posie Brien/ Eat This, Not That!

Any bowl that's made with several different components—in this case cauliflower rice, slaw, mango salsa, guac, and a fish filet—is perfect for one person. Even if you're making more than you need for one bowl, you can eat the different components in a completely different dish tomorrow. This recipe makes two servings, but is easily scaled down to one.

Get our recipe for Whole30 Fish Taco Bowl.

Mason Jar Bean, Salmon, and Kale Salad

Waterbury Publications, Inc.

Mason jar salads are the thing of meal prep legends. So easy to layer and keep fresh in the fridge for days. Not to mention, customize. Get your inspiration with this simple, healthy version that combines kale, chickpeas, and some flaky salmon (you can even use canned salmon for this).

Get our recipes for Mason Jar Bean, Salmon, and Kale Salad.

The easy way to make healthier comfort foods.

Crockpot Italian Meatballs

Crock pot Italian meatballs with spaghetti
Kiersten Hickman/Eat This, Not That!

This crockpot recipe is a perfect example of the set-it-and-forget-it magic you can whip up in your crockpot or slow cooker. Freeze these meatballs for later, or simply store in the fridge until they're gone. You can add them to pasta (duh!), but also make a mean meatball sub or simply add them to your grain bowl.

Get our recipe for Crockpot Italian Meatballs.

Tangy Slow-Cooker Pork Carnitas

Four pork carnitas tacos on a plate
Kiersten Hickman/Eat This, Not That!

Make a batch of pork carnitas in your slow cooker, and you can assemble tacos and burritos on the fly, with whatever you have in your fridge or pantry. Some great additions include quick pickled onions and homemade salsa. If you're feeling kitchen-ambitious, make your own tortillas, too.

Get our recipe for Tangy Slow-Cooker Pork Carnitas.

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Mura Dominko
Mura is ETNT's Executive Editor, leading the coverage of America's favorite restaurant chains, grocery stores, and viral food moments. Read more about Mura
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