It’s totally an adulting fail when your fridge only has leftovers, mustard, 9 sticks of butter and some OJ. There’s more to life than ramen noodles. Cooking your own meals saves you cash and saves the gym-time needed to keep off the pounds from high-calorie take-out meals.

#Adulting: Using your kitchen for more than a bowl of cereal
#Adulting: Using your kitchen for more than a bowl of cereal Created By:

Cook your own meals rather than eating out

It’s budget-friendly to cook at home. In fact, cooking at home can save you $585 per month.

It’s also healthier. On average, a week of home-cooked meals has 959 fewer calories, 21 fewer grams of fat, 112 fewer grams of sugar per week. So that means that cooking at home can save you 1 ½ to 4 hours of time on the treadmill.

If you don’t want to miss the social aspects of eating out, host a potluck at your apartment. It’s nice to have a luxury apartment that was built for entertaining, but even acheap apartment can be the setting for a great party if you have friends, music, laughter,and food. (And maybe a little wine too.) Plus potlucks are on-trend, with 27% of millennials enjoying cooking with friends and family around.

How to get started in the kitchen

Start by learning the basics and working your way up to that showstopper meal. Making good coffee is a great start, and it’s so important. Learn to cook eggs in any style you choose. Practice putting together a quick salad. Grilled chicken is a good starter recipe because it works in so many recipes. A pasta dinner is quick and it can feed a crowd. For a meal that’s convenient and delicious, try crock-pot chili.

Have at least one go-to recipe

A reliable dish you can cook well is a great way to impress a date or your parents. It doesn’t need to be complicated and it may not taste good right away — be patient.

Start by picking a meal that you like to eat that’s relatively easy, and then watch all of the YouTube videos and demonstrations. Practice making the recipe until you’re ready to invite friends over to your apartment.

Use technology to help. Look up recipes, cooking demonstrations and how-to videos right from your kitchen. 59% of 25 to 34 year olds head to the kitchen with their smartphones or tablets.