Tuesday, April 2, 2019

Food Prep: Planning Family Meals In A Busy Household

There’s nothing better than sitting down with the ones that you love, and catching-up over food. Family mealtimes can be the ideal chance to see how everyone is doing, and what sort of day they’ve had. However, families tend to have pretty hectic schedules too, and, this can sometimes make it a challenge to know what and when to eat. You’ll often be lucky if you can get everyone together around a table at all during some days, but, when you do, everyone will leave full and happy. Therefore, it’s always worth ensuring that you can eat great food together more often, and, don’t worry; there are plenty of ways to make that happen, without too much time and effort (unless you feel like it). You’ll already know that the key to successful family life, if often preparation and prep; the same goes for your mealtimes. Getting organized beforehand will make calling everyone to the dinner table a breeze.

It’s worth taking some time each week, or fortnight, to meal prep for the rest of the week. It doesn’t matter what the food will be. However, it will always help to a have a daily plan in place; whether that means eating out, ordering-in, cooking from scratch, or heating something up. Giving yourself half an hour or so at the weekend, will allow you to write a list of meal ideas for each weekday, and even, the weekend ahead. You can then figure out a grocery list, or how much time you’ll need to prepare something, if you wish to do so. Charts, lists, and calendars for your meals will soon become your best friend, and nobody will go hungry under your roof. The following are some ideas, inspiration, and advice, for busy parents who want to ensure that they’re on top of meal times.

Know Your Days Out Of The Kitchen

If there are one or more kids in your family, you’ll be busy enough, without having to be tethered to the kitchen every single day. Therefore, for a well-functioning and happy home environment, make sure that you make things as straightforward for yourself as possible when it comes to feeding time (at the zoo). Better yet, know the days where you don’t need to step foot anywhere near the stove, and the washing-up can wait for another time. Perhaps it’s only one or two days out of the week, but eating out, ordering take-out, or ensuring someone else is cooking, will give you a little more breathing room, not to mention; a well-deserved break. Therefore, it’s time to plan and budget for those meals that lie outside of your usual set-up regarding food. 

A trip to eat out, or ordering something delicious to be delivered to your home, is always a treat, and a great way to get everyone excited to gather together. And you can still totally plan for such meals. Perhaps you need a speedy and affordable option on the way back from the school run. It’s worth taking a look at the following: Sonic Menu Price | Up To Date Sonic Menu so that you can get an idea of what you can order, especially for younger family members, and how much cash you’ll need. The same goes for any eatery; take a look at their menu and prices online, and if you think you’ll need to book a table, make sure that you give yourself enough time. A take-out dinner is also a lovely way to surprise the kids on the way home, or perhaps celebrate an achievement at school, or reward great behavior. And, you’ll be saving yourself the effort of cooking, and spending quality time with one-another; it’s a win-win!


Cooking-Up A Storm To Store

Maybe you’re a person who adores their kitchen space, and enjoys cooking for their family and friends. That’s great; however, it still doesn’t give you all those extra hours in the day needed to cook from scratch for each meal time. Therefore, it’s worth stocking up while you can, when you do have those (very rare) extra hours during a day, evening, or weekend. Having some nourishing homemade meals in the freezer is the perfect way to feed your family filling and healthy meals, quickly and with ease. Whether you’ve all come home a little later than planned, or you know that your days will be too busy to organize a meal; having something you can heat-up quickly, will take the pressure off a little.

Therefore, it’s worth gathering together some great recipes and family favorites, that you know will be easy to defrost and serve-up. One-pot dishes are a great options, and you can do a major supermarket shop, before cooking a few at the same time. Get all your pots and pans at the ready so that soups, stews, casseroles, pasta dishes, and the like, can be cooking simultaneously, before you pop them into portions, and into the freezer. A label maker will ensure that it’s even easier to grab something that everyone wants to eat. Check out the endless online ideas, from sites like Pinterest One Pot Freezer Meals for inspiration, write that shopping list, and allocate yourself some time to get stocked-up. 


Get The Family Involved

There’s no better way to tempt the kids to spend time with you, around the dinner table (aside from your delicious meals), than to get them involved in the preparation. Organizing regular times where your little ones help you cook, or better yet, create their own meals, is a great way to teach them some valuable culinary skills, and schedule-in more quality time. Talk to them about what they might like to create, and then have some fun with flavors and ingredients. Mini pizzas, tacos, loaded potato skins, and don’t forget the vegetable or salad, are all easy ways to create balanced, simple meals with your whole family. So, make sure you make some time to cook together as often as possible so that you can strengthen the family bond, and fill-up on tasty meals at the same time. 

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