Easy cooking for early recovery

Many people who are newly clean and sober struggle with eating properly. The reason is often quite simple—as anyone who has spent years drinking or using drugs heavily will tell you, healthy eating tends to fall by the wayside. Dinner is more likely to be fast food or a bag of chips than a home cooked meal. For younger people in recovery, they may not have ever even learned basic cooking skills beyond how to make boxed mac and cheese.

I remember having a conversation once with a client at Malibu Beach Recovery Center. He had come in only a few weeks before, and was starting to come alive again. I think of myself as having heard it all, but I admit I was almost shocked when he described how until rehab, he’d been living on a diet of grilled cheese sandwiches that he’d cooked using an iron and ironing board. He really didn’t know what else to do. We started holding weekly cooking classes soon after that. 

For those of us at home, cooking can sometimes seem similarly daunting. But it doesn’t have to be. It’s really just a matter of starting to practice a few simple recipes, and then branching out as our confidence grows. 

As a good place to start, I want to share two recipes that were popular with our clients. These were created by my friend Chef Licia Jaccard, and can be made by someone of any skill level. Together, they make an easy, healthy and delicious dinner, perfect for any night of the week. 

Easy Chicken with Mushroom Cream Sauce

Easy Salad with 1-2-3 Dressing

Bon appetit!

Joan Borsten