Jyl Steinback Cook Once, Eat for a Week

by Jyl Steinback
ISBN: 0-399-52844-X

The title of this book is a little misleading because it’s more a collection of make ahead meals than of menus. You’ll still have to do your own planning and shopping list.

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Cook Once, Eat for a Week

However, there is a mix and match menu with 14 days worth of ideas for breakfast, lunch and dinner plus the book offers an assortment of desserts.

Every recipe has nutrition information which is handy and a not so handy shopping list. The shopping list is the same as the ingredients list just sorted by grocery department.

Jyl Steinback uses ingredients like egg substitutes and tofu and low or no fat versions of ingredients like sour cream, mayo and cheese or low sodium soy sauce.

Also, the recipes are only offered in one size and make anywhere from four to twelve servings. Serving size is noted at the top of each recipe on the right hand side.

The recipes are mostly from scratch and fairly simple to make, and there are tips to save time, use your freezer, handle food safely and prepare for parties.

Recipes pages also include guidelines for how you can make them ahead such as; “prep-cook-chill,” “prep-bake-refrigerate or freeze,” “prep-freeze-bake,” “prep-chill-grill or broil.”

When more than one method can be used both are listed so a recipe might be “prep-bake-refrigerate or freeze” and “prep-freeze-bake.” I also like that every recipe has it’s own page and the book is spiral bound thus it opens and lays flat.

Every recipe page has instructions that are one big block of text but otherwise clear and easy to follow and a health or time saving tip at the bottom of the page.

Some of the recipes can only be prepared one day in advance and the only way to know how far ahead something can be made is to read the instructions. It would be nice if this info was printed in bold above the recipe next to the serving size and cooking methods.

The other down side is that this book doesn’t have any pictures nor is the prep or cook time listed for you.

Jyl Steinback gives two handy reference charts. One gives details on how long to store food in the fridge and freezer, the other is forty pages long and includes measurement conversions and substitutions for just about everything. The index is well laid out by recipe name and main ingredient.

This book is ideal for people looking for recipes and menu ideas but recommended for someone who only wants to cook once a week.

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