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please help cure me - i always make too much food!

  • d

no matter if it's just eating at home for dinner or making food for a party, i'm always so worried "there won't be enough for everyone." a theme my mother repeated every time we had company.

now, however, i'm tired of always having leftovers. so what's the solution? should i make 4 oz servings of meat for each person and the serving size of pasta on the box or what? i feel like that just won't be enough! are those serving sizes real? i'm not overweight at all - but feel like the amount they "say" you should eat isn't what people really eat. for example - 2 servings of soup or chili per can? no way.

does anyone struggle with this or have any solutions?

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  1. ha it's a Jewish disease. There is no cure. My mother always said if there is nothing leftover she didn't make enough!

    3 Replies
    1. re: smartie

      Well, it's an Irish affliction as well. I always make extra, so I portion the extra out and freeze it for later meals for when I don't fell like cooking.

      1. re: MIss G

        well - i guess it's good to know it crosses all cultures b/c i'm a mut and it's just drilled into me. the freezer idea is good - but my apt. is super small, so sometimes, i don't have room to freeze. but - i maybe i can organize more efficiently!

      2. re: smartie

        LOL we have the same mother, and I'm not even Jewish, but Hungarian/Ukranian. My MIL is the opposite, she makes teeny tiny portions. I do think I'm the happy medium. When making pasta for my Dh and I for example, I make 3-4 box servings. For meat/fish I make about 8-12 ounces for us both. I actually don't mind leftovers for lunch the next day ( my husband won't really eat leftovers) so I do kind of overstimate. If i think we don't have much of the protein (i.e. only 8 ounces of fish) I will overcompensate with the sides by serving bread or making a potato/rice dish just in case Dh is very hungry that night.

      3. I really hate to waste food. I find that keeps me from making more than I care to eat later.

        1. Well, yeah, really, the "servings per can" is either misguided or idiotic (or both).

          Insurance against having too little: have an "extra" or two on hand that you can either serve or not serve, depending on whether the planned meal is really truly too small. A cheese course, perhaps, or a dessert wine, or good bread and butter, or berries (or cheese) to make the dessert more elaborate (picture cake or pie with/without ice cream and/or cheese and/or fresh berries).

          1. Part of my problem with making too much food is not cooking with a recipe - in which case, when I am at the store, I always purchase too much of each item (not wishing to run out of anything while cooking) - and then I go ahead and cook everything I have, not wanting to waste the raw materials. This happens no matter how many times I have cooked a particular dish - it's as if I have some sort of memory block that won't allow me to learn my lesson, and only buy the 1 carrot I need, instead of 4!

            1 Reply
            1. re: Morticia

              that's a good point. i rarely cook with real recipes - except baking type things - and so always just throw whatever i've purchased in.

            2. I have notheing to add except- a)- I feel your pain, and b)- it's not just a Jewish disease!

              My mother always made way too many different dishes, and I always make too much of whatever I make.

              I am blessed in that we all like leftovers here.

              1 Reply
              1. re: EWSflash

                Same here. I think I would get the bends if I didn't overcook. I welcome leftovers, and if I was reallllly excessive, I freeze the food.