Cooking can be quite a challenge, and for many guys, it's just easier to let others do it or live off food that comes pre-prepared in boxes, cans and bags. After all, grabbing a burger on the way home or nuking a meal in the microwave is infinitely easier than learning how to actually prepare a meal. Regardless of how culinarily inept you may be, there are several soups and stews that are filling and delicious that you can make with little to no effort.
It doesn't matter if you're a freshman in college and living away from home for the first time, or a man whose idea of cooking breakfast for his family involves pouring cereal and milk into a bowl. In this article, we'll give you five easy-to-make soup and stew recipes that you can use for almost any occasion. If you're looking to surprise your wife by making dinner or trying to impress your date with a home-cooked meal, we have a soup or stew for you.
How easy are these recipes? If you can boil water and pour ingredients into a slow-cooker, you can make the stew featured on the next page.
Beef Stew for an Evening with the Guys
Beef stew could easily be considered the manliest of stews. Sure, it can be enjoyed by just about anyone, but it's really little more than a bowl of flavorful meat. There are some vegetables in there, too, but this stew definitely falls into the "man food" category. A good beef stew recipe always contains -- at the very least -- potatoes, tomatoes, onions and maybe garlic. This recipe for The Best Beef Stew has sausage and beef. Best of all, it's cheap and easy to prepare, making it a perfect choice to serve any time you're looking to have a few guys over to watch a game or play some cards.
French Onion Soup for Date Night
Everyone knows that ladies dig guys who know their way around a kitchen, so it's not a bad idea to try to impress your date with a delicious home-cooked meal. Fortunately, you don't have to be an expert chef to make great-tasting soup. In fact, this recipe for French Onion Soup, from our always-reliable recipe file of tasty dishes, is full of mouth-watering flavors and is easy to make. Just be sure to have some after-dinner mints handy, as onion breath isn't exactly known for its sex appeal.
Chicken Noodle Soup for Sniffly Kids
Anyone can get the flu, and chicken noodle soup has been the food of choice for the ailing and unwell practically since the Dark Ages. Regardless if you're a bachelor caring for an ill girlfriend or an established family man nursing a house full of feverish kids, you need to know how stir up a batch of this curative cuisine. Canned soups are often made with preservatives, have absurdly high levels of sodium and contain potentially dangerous chemicals, such as BPA (bisphenol-A). Opt for this delicious Chicken and Homemade Noodle Soup recipe whenever anybody's temperature starts to rise.
Sweet Potato Stew for Mom's Night Off
Let's face it, not everyone can cook. There are plenty of people out there don't know a colander from a coffee maker, so don't beat yourself up if you're not exactly renowned for your culinary skills. However inept you are in the kitchen, once you've settled down and started a family, every once in a while it would be nice to let your wife take a night off and you cook the dinner. This Sweet Potato Stew recipe is easy, nutritious and delicious -- it's a crowd-pleaser that your wife and kids will love.
Anytime Beer and Cheese Soup
You like beer. You like cheese. And, if you're reading this article, it's a fair bet to assume that you also like soup. The robust flavor of this Beer and Cheese Soup recipe is sure to please your masculine taste buds. However, it's also great for the whole family because it contains very little alcohol, most, if not all, of which should be burned out during the cooking process. Don't worry if your spouse or children seem leery about this particular taste combo -- once they try it, they'll forget any previous misgivings.
Beer and cheese soup is an extremely versatile dish and can be easily adjusted to suit your tastes. Don't be afraid to add ingredients that complement the flavors of the meal. For example, adding a few carrots, a large diced tomato and a cup of yellow corn to the recipe will really enhance the dish. You can even add a pound of chopped bratwurst or sausage for a meaty kick.
Related HowStuffWorks Articles
- Bocco, Diana. "What is the Difference Between Soup and Stew?" wiseGEEK. 2009. (Nov. 13, 2009).http://www.wisegeek.com/what-is-the-difference-between-soup-and-stew.htm
- Consumer Reports. "Concern Over Canned Foods: Our Tests Find Wide Range of Bisphenol A in Soups, Juice and More." 2009. (Nov. 13, 2009).http://www.consumerreports.org/cro/magazine-archive/december-2009/food/bpa/what-we-found/bisphenol-a-what-we-found.htm
- Martinson, Suzanne. "Does Cooking Burn Off Alcohol?" Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. Sept. 3, 1998. (Nov. 13, 2009).http://www.post-gazette.com/magazine/19980903alcohol8.asp