Cook a Big Meal in a Small Kitchen

Don’t let a smaller kitchen stop you from making those big holiday meals.  With a little coordination, you’ll pull off the impossible like a boss. 

Where do you start?  It may sound like a dull beginning, but you need to get yourself organized for the magic you’re about to pull off.  Make all the lists you’ll need so nothing gets left behind.  Your lists will keep you in check when things get fast paced and hectic. 

  1. Start with your menu. What are you cooking for the big day? Think about how everything you want gets cooked.  If everything requires the stove, you might run into a struggle.  Try and mix and match cooking methods.  Then list everything along with their recipes. 
  2. From there, you can make your grocery list.
  3. If you want to go one step further, you can make a day of event list with step by step directions including the times they need to get started.   

Tip: Fake more counter space with an oversized cutting board placed over top your sink.

The week or two before your big meal, take a look at your fridge and plan that week’s meals around the foods you already see.  You’ll need the fridge space for the big day. Not only does living off of your existing foods help open up space, it also eliminates waste because we all know you’ll be living off leftovers for several days afterwards.  On top of fridge space, you’ll want to capitalize on all the counter space you can.  Will you be using your toaster for the meal prep?  Probably not.  You could probably stash it in a cupboard (or bedroom closet – wherever you find space) until the next day.

Tip: A BBQ doesn’t have to solely be used for burgers on a hot summer day.  You can make corn, potatoes, or broccoli on the grill, and voila! You now have more stove space.

Did you know that you can make a few dishes before the actual day?  That’s right!  A lot of side dishes can be made beforehand and kept in the fridge or freezer. Don’t worry, you won’t be losing flavour just because cooking was done ahead of time.  For those dishes that may not be able to be cooked in advance, you can always do the little prep beforehand.  The slicing, peeling, shredding, and so on.  Do anything and everything you can before to make it easier on yourself. You can go as far as to pre-measure all the ingredients and put them in little baggies ready to go.

Tip: Clean as you go.  It’ll clear up space AND make end-of-the-meal cleanup way less overwhelming. Don’t be afraid to ask – or bribe – your friends and family members to help with clean up either. 

Now you’re ready. With your step by step timed list by your side, your prepped meals, and everything on the go, you’re officially ready for a big meal in a small kitchen.  Don’t forget to have fun!

What tips can you share to make big meals in a small kitchen easier to handle?