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Do you struggle with family dinners?

FamilyDinnerIn the fall, I enjoy getting back into healthy routines but dinner time can be a struggle.  Between work, sports, school pickups, and homework, it can be challenging to make healthy dinners for the family.  If you can relate to my scenario, then read on because I am going to share with you my strategies and key dinners that work!

#1.  Meal Planning.  Planning ahead doesn’t have to be hard – here is a simple plan.

  • Food Shop 1-2 times per week.
  • Before going to the supermarket, grab a piece of paper and jot down 3-5 dinners that you would like to make.  Get organized and print up recipes if needed.
  • Make a complete shopping list.
#2.  Food Prep.  This is not mandatory but it sure makes your life easier.  Here are some foods that I usually prep ahead of time.
  • Pot or brown rice or quinoa.  Takes 2 minute to prep in the rice cooker!
  • Pot of soup.
  • Baked chicken tenderloins.  They are much quicker to cook than breasts.
  • Remember to thaw meats the day before in the frig.
BETSY’S GO-TO DINNERS:
  • Soup & Salad Night:
We do soup and salad at least 1-2 times/week because it is so easy on those really hectic evenings.  I usually prep the soup ahead of time.  Also, Brian and I might have leftover soup for lunch.  Most of my soup recipes are super simple.  Look for my favorites: Chicken & Rice, Tortilla Soup, Lentil, Minestrone, Chili, and Squash Soups.

 

  •  Taco Night:
My family loves tacos so I make this dinner weekly.  The only prep required is remembering to thaw the meat.  To make this dinner a little healthier, I usually make myself a big Mexican Salad with my favorite add-ons – avocado, olives, black beans, and cabbage.  If you prefer tacos, buy organic corn tortillas over flour.  Also, are a fun alternative.

 

  • Stir-Fry:
I like stir-fries because they are quick and healthy. Sometimes I skip the meat and top with nuts.  Here are my favorite stir-fry recipes: Ginger Shrimp & Veggie, One Pan Mediterranean, Chicken & Kale, Fried Rice, and Thai Veggie Peanut.

 

  • More Favorite Recipes:
Turkey Burgers – I eat them in a lettuce wrap.

 

  • Final Tip:
If you are stuck and make mac-n-cheese or pick up a pizza, just add a big side salad. Make sure everyone eats a healthy portion of salad or veggies first.

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