Deciding what’s for dinner is a daily headache for many Mothers (and Mothers), who cook for the family.
Cara Richardson, senior editor at USA TODAY, is all too familiar with that struggle. After a long day of work is 45-minutes of simmering, browning and chopping. So, she’s become at meal preparation. It’s assisted her sanity and health. Plus, she’s stored money along the way.
Her tools are simple: Crock-Pot , deep freezer and a spreadsheet.
“The key to saving your weeknights is taking out the prep,” she said. “It requires a bit of planning. But once you get into a groove, I guarantee it’s simple. ”
One of rsquo & Richardson;s family favorites.
“it makes you feel gross and idle, & rdquo ; unhealthy and I hate takeout since it & rsquo; Richardson said.
Her solution? Pizza Soup. It packs the pizza flavor and it’s an make-ahead meal that is freezer-friendly. Actually Richardson’s 3-year-old daughter it is loved by Annica.
1 lb lean ground beef
1/2 cup Sliced onion
1/2 cup Sliced celery
1/2 cup chopped Lettuce
32 oz stock
8 Ounces pasta
Bay leaves (optional)
She preps her beef and vegetables ahead. Subsequently, packs the mixture (cooled browned beef, onion, celery and carrot) in a plastic bag labeled with ingredients she’ll include before serving (crushed tomatoes, beef stock and little pasta). Professional tip: Write serving suggestions and ideas for sides on the bag, also.
Then, evenings are easier: Pull out the mixture, heat it up (thawing in the microwave saves time), add three ingredients and TA DA. Dinner is served. #winning
When Richardson does make pizza, she bakes only the crust (generally Rhodes frozen bread dough), wraps it in foil and freezes it her freezer. Next, before dinner, she rubs it with olive oil and tops it with pepper, salt and her favorite toppings. This way the pizza only needs to be heated before meal time.
Other favorites that are make-ahead? Crockpot Red Pepper Chicken found on New Leaf Wellness (she awakens the raw chicken and vegetables together) and Sour Cream Noodle Bake from The Pioneer Woman (Richardson opts for low-fat cheese and fat-free cottage cheese and sour cream).