With such busy lives and families running to different activities it is hard to have a consistent, healthy family meal to share. With planning and prep ahead, you can still feed your family healthy meals that they will enjoy. Check this Choose MyPlate site for Healthy meal planning tips https://www.myplate.gov/tip-sheet/meal-planning. If you are able to set aside a day for cooking for the week it is easy to make a large batch of food that can be reheated, or even recreated for the rest of the week.
Chicken or turkey would be a great start. Sunday night dinner could be baked or roasted chicken with potatoes and other vegetables. Use the leftover chicken to make other meals for the week such as chicken and gravy, chicken stir fry, chicken stew, chicken noodle soup or chicken salad. There are so many possibilities and chicken will last up to 4 days in the fridge. You can even use canned chicken in any recipe that requires cooked chicken.
Ground beef or ground turkey can be cooked in large batches to make tacos, chili, spaghetti or beef and noodles. You can also cook a large batch of lasagna or baked pasta and sauce and separate it into freezer containers for easy reheating. Try this Beefy Macaroni and Cheese recipe and other healthy suggestions at go.umd.edu/eatsmart-recipes
Some of our previous blog posts give great resources for cooking ahead or menu planning.
- Simple Weeknight Dinners for quick and easy weeknight dinners.
- Making Homemade Soup. Soup is easy to make ahead and freeze in muffin tins, then pop them out and store in freezer bags. Reheat two muffins per serving.
- Serve Lean Proteins and Use Leftovers for ways to cook protein foods and use them for leftovers. With some planning you don’t have to rely on fast food options during your busy times!