8 Hacks for Freshening Up Your Quarantine Meals

The best ways to keep your meals feeling fresh without going to the grocery store for produce every other day

Mary Fawzy
Published in
5 min readMay 27, 2020


Photo: Ben Mater via Unsplash

Most of us are limiting our trips to the grocery store these days. Although you can still technically get groceries anytime, it’s better for your health and for protecting others to be out in public as little as possible. The downside is that perishable foods like fresh vegetables and fruits are necessarily less prominent in our quarantine meals. You may have fresh produce for the few days after you do your grocery run, but after that, you’re most likely going to be relying on starches, pulses, beans, frozen meals, and canned foods. You are going to miss the bite and flavor of fresh ingredients.

Here are some ways to ways to shop, preserve, and cook to keep your meals tasting fresh during this time:

1. Turn fresh herbs into chimichurri or pesto

Herbs never last long anyway, so this is a handy trick whether in quarantine or not. Making a chimichurri or a pesto is a great way to use any quantity of herbs. To extend the life of your herbs, when they’re close to turning bad, grind/whizz them up with some oil and nuts for pesto, or with some oil and vinegar/lemon juice for a chimichurri. Because the oil will preserve them, they’ll last longer in your fridge and add amazing flavor to any meal in the coming days. Herbs are full of nutrients and this is an easy way to eat a lot of them, deliciously. These sauces will jazz up any sandwich, are delicious on avocado toast, and are so good in pasta.

2, Cabbage and carrots

If you buy them whole, these vegetables last a long time in your fridge, even up to 3 weeks. There are so many ways to cook them, but having them shredded raw into a slaw is so refreshing this season. You can add apples, too. Make a simple dressing of olive oil, vinegar, and salt — and the best thing about this slaw salad is that it gets tastier the longer it soaks in the dressing. Make a big batch and you’ll have a delicious and crisp salad for 2-3 days.

3. Blanch your spinach and freeze it soon after buying



Mary Fawzy

An Egyptian food, politics and culture writer based in Cape Town, South Africa.