5 Tips for Busy Families to Get Dinner on the Table Fast
Do you feel like you and your family are always on the go? Trying to juggle work, school, and other activities can make it difficult to find the time to plan and prepare healthy meals. Don’t worry! With these five tips for busy families, you can get dinner on the table fast and make sure your family is eating nutritious meals. In this blog post, we’ll provide practical tips and advice on how to make meal planning and preparation easy for busy families.
1) Choose recipes that can be made ahead of time
For busy families, one of the most helpful ways to get dinner on the table quickly is to choose recipes that can be made ahead of time. Preparing ingredients or even entire dishes in advance helps cut down on the time it takes to make dinner on weeknights. This can be as simple as chopping up vegetables on the weekend and storing them in the fridge or making a big batch of sauce that you can use over the next few days.
Other meals that can be prepped in advance include casseroles, lasagnas, soups, stews, pot pies, chili, and more. All you have to do is assemble the ingredients, bake them, then store them in an airtight container in the fridge or freezer. When you’re ready to eat, simply heat the dish, and voila—dinner is served!
If you’re feeling ambitious, consider spending a few hours on a Sunday afternoon prepping multiple dishes for the week ahead. Having food ready to go in the fridge can take the pressure off having to prepare a full meal every night after work. This will also help you stay on top of meal planning, grocery shopping, and budgeting.
In sum, choosing recipes that can be made ahead of time can make life much easier for busy families trying to get dinner on the table fast. You can save time, money, and stress by prepping meals in advance.
2) Streamline your grocery shopping
One of the biggest time wasters for busy families is grocery shopping. However, there are a few ways to streamline the process. First, make sure to plan meals ahead of time and create a shopping list. This will help you stick to what you need and avoid buying unnecessary items. Secondly, try shopping online if your local store offers this option. This allows you to purchase your items quickly, without having to worry about navigating aisles and long checkout lines. Additionally, you can utilize curbside pickup if available to skip the in-store experience altogether. Finally, try using coupons and weekly sales to get the best deals on food items. By doing so, you’ll be able to get the most out of your grocery budget. By following these steps, you can save yourself time and money while grocery shopping!
3) Invest in time-saving kitchen gadgets
It’s no secret that busy families can benefit from some help when it comes to meal preparation. Investing in kitchen gadgets that make cooking faster and easier can come in handy for busy families who are short on time. These time-saving tools include:
1. Electric vegetable choppers – these devices make it easy to chop vegetables quickly and evenly.
2. Immersion blenders – these gadgets are great for pureeing soups, sauces, and dressings right in the pot.
3. Air fryers – they use hot air to cook food quickly with a fraction of the oil used in traditional deep-frying methods.
4. Kitchen robots – these all-in-one devices can knead, whisk, mix, and blend ingredients for a variety of recipes.
5. Food processors – these devices make chopping, slicing, and shredding vegetables a breeze.
Investing in these types of kitchen gadgets can save you time and energy when it comes to prepping meals for your family. Not only will they help you get dinner on the table fast, but they can also make meal planning easier. With so many options available, you’re sure to find a kitchen gadget that meets your needs and fits your budget.
4) Use your slow cooker or Instant Pot
When it comes to getting dinner on the table quickly, slow cookers and Instant Pots are your best friends. Slow cookers and Instant Pots allow you to prepare delicious meals with minimal effort and time. With a slow cooker, you can throw in all the ingredients in the morning, set the timer and let it do the work while you go about your day. Instant Pots are great for preparing meals even faster – they can cook a meal in a fraction of the time that it would take in a slow cooker.
Slow cookers and Instant Pots are especially helpful when cooking soups, stews, casseroles, pasta dishes, chili, and even desserts. You can find recipes online or in cookbooks specifically designed for these devices. There are also meal-planning services that provide slow cooker and Instant Pot recipes along with shopping lists and instructions.
Using your slow cooker or Instant Pot is one of the easiest ways to get dinner on the table quickly for busy families. It saves time and energy in the kitchen and the results are always delicious!
5) Utilize leftovers
One of the best ways to get dinner on the table quickly is by utilizing leftovers. Instead of wasting food, you can use leftovers to create meals that are just as delicious as when they were first cooked. Try adding new ingredients and seasonings to turn last night’s dinner into a completely different meal.
When you have a plan for your leftovers, it will make meal planning easier and help you save time. Here are some suggestions for incorporating leftovers into your weekly meal plan:
1. Use leftovers as an ingredient in a casserole or soup. Leftover chicken, steak, or pork can be chopped up and added to soups or casseroles. You can also mix in some vegetables for a more nutritious meal.
2. Create a new dish with leftovers. Take the basics of last night’s dinner and transform them into a new dish. For example, if you had grilled chicken last night, you could use the leftovers to make chicken tacos, wraps, or a salad.
3. Turn leftover sides into main dishes. Veggies and grains can easily become the star of the show if you add some extra protein. For example, you can turn cooked quinoa or roasted vegetables into a stir-fry with some chicken or tofu.
4. Freeze leftovers for later. If you can’t eat all the food you’ve cooked, simply freeze it for another day. Soups and casseroles freeze especially well and can be defrosted for an easy meal later on.
By taking advantage of leftovers, you can save time and money while still eating delicious meals. Next time you’re planning dinner for the family, remember to think about what leftovers you have available!