Like I said before...I am a very impatient person! Here are a few things I have found to cut down on my time in the kitchen...but not cut down on quality!
Onions- First of all...I haven't met a person yet who just loves cutting up onions. I have tried every trick in the book to keep my eyes from watering...to no avail. Also, without fail, I always SLICE my finger open! :( Onions are super messy to clean up too! Well, here ya go. I use frozen chopped onion. You can find this in just about any supermarket...and let me tell you...I haven't noticed any difference in taste. I'm just saying...if it keeps my mascara from running...I'm all about it!
Green Peppers-Alright...so green peppers really don't pose much threat other than once again chopping up your finger. I use frozen chopped green pepper too! Works for me...there is nothing cute about walking around with your kids "Dora" band-aids all over your hands!
Garlic- Okay, so I occasionally use whole garlic...but many times if I am trying to cut down on a time (that requires the garlic to be minced, crushed etc., I just use jarred minced garlic. You can get a HUGE jar of it for no more than $6 at Wal-mart. Be sure and check the directions on the back...I have found several different brands have different amounts that equal a clove.
I have all of these things in my kitchen at all times. When I am running low, I go ahead and replace them the next time I am at the store. Generally, I am only buying a new package of onions or green peppers every 3 weeks or so. You cut down on produce going bad, throwing out what you don't need, and about 5 minutes of prep time! The cost isn't anymore than buying a couple onions or green peppers (about $2 a bag.)
Hope those tips give you a little bit of time to relax...remember the kitchen doesn't have to scare you!