Weeknight dinners are my nemesis… Just when I think I’ve got it all under control, I sometimes find myself getting derailed, and you know what that means — I’m calling up our local pizzeria for delivery. So what’s a mom to do? Get right back in the saddle with an easy recipe like the One Pot Cilantro Lime Chicken With Corn & Black Beans pictured above, of course!
If you often find yourself in the same situation, here are five more tips that will help simplify your weeknight meals:
Meal planning involves mapping out a plan for your meals on a weekly or monthly basis. It can be as detailed or loose as you’d like, but it allows you to plan meals around sales to save money at the same time. I’ll be completely honest, though — meal planning is not my strength. It definitely works if you’re disciplined enough to stick with it, though! I’ve shared some thoughts on meal planning on Unsophisticook, so you can get more info there.
Have A Go To Plan
I find that a “go to plan” is a better method for my family. We have some basic main dishes and sides that all pair well together, and we keep the ingredients for them stocked at all times. Our plan looks something like this: a main protein (burgers, veggie burgers, grilled chicken, grilled pork chops, etc.), a grilled or roasted veggie side (grilled veggies, roasted asparagus, roasted potatoes, grilled avocado, etc.), and a grain or pasta side like coconut milk rice, quinoa, or a fluffy couscous.
Use Your Slow Cooker
There are a number of tools in my kitchen that I consider essential to getting dinner on the table quickly on busy weeknights — my immersion blender, kitchen scissors, and Le Creuset French oven to name a few. But my slow cooker tops them all! here are six of my favorite tried and true slow cooker recipes to get you started.
I love the concept of preparing meals ahead of time that can be easily frozen and reheated or cooked upon thawing. Not all recipes are conducive to this treatment, but with a few substitutions, most can be adapted to become a freezer meal. The easiest way I’ve found to stock the freezer is to simply double all of my freezer compatible meals when I make them — one for that evening and one to be frozen for later use. Or if a freezer cooking day to stock your freezer for a month sounds appealing, check out Once A Month Meals, where my friend Tricia has put together an amazing resource for freezer cooking fanatics!
When all else fails, it pays to have some healthy snacks on hand to tide the family over through homework and sports practices, allowing you more time to figure out the all important dinner menu. Find five of our favorite recipes here, including an amazing recipe for healthy homemade granola bars!
What is your favorite tip for getting dinner on the table in a hurry? Share in the comments and you could win a U by Kotex prize package valued at $50!
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This post is brought to you by Kimberly-Clark. All opinions are 100% mine.