Are you the kind of mom who doesn’t really want to spend hours in the kitchen every day? Do you find yourself desiring to pick up dinner most nights? I’m that kind of mom too.
Think about what takes the most time when preparing dinner. Usually it is the meat you’re having.
Figure out how much meat you will need for the month ie. ground beef, chicken, roast, whatever meats you use. Choose one day to prepare all of your meats. I would make 15 – 20 pounds of gr. beef in my giant roaster. Four chickens in a large stock pot or two, and two roasts in my big crock pot. Most of these just cooked on their own. Of course I would have to season and stir some things. But generally I could let it go for several hours.
I rinsed the ground beef under cold water to get most of the fat off of it. I packaged the ground beef in freezer bags in quantities that worked for our family.
I would debone the chicken, and package the meat in freezer bags too.
I would also take the roast and shred it so I would have meat for things requiring shredded beef such as chimichangas, shepard pie, etc.
Any meal that had meat, usually took less than 20 minutes to prepare.
Another way to make meal time fast and easy is to already have a plan.
Sit down with the family and make a list of everything you want or like to have for meals. Be sure to include breakfast and lunch.
Take all of those items and put them into weekly menus. I like having six weeks of menus available. That way we can easily rotate and don’t get bored with the same thing day after day. Create a book of recipes to go along with each item. Be sure to include the ingredients for the week. Which makes it very easy to plan your monthly shopping trip.
I would go shopping once a month for my staple items, then once a week for the perishables.
When you have older kids like I do, you can assign them certain days to plan the menu and prepare the meals. I don’t do any of this myself anymore. When it’s my day to cook – I buy pizza! 🙂
Some of my favorite resources:
Dinner’s In the Freezer – Jill Bond
Mega Cooking – Jill Bond
Base Cooking – Donna Zito This was a recipe book of meat recipes that used the meats I had already prepared.
Hearth and Home – Karey Swan