Meal Planning Done for You
My kids start school in two days. As much as I enjoy the less structured days of summer, I’m ready to get into a routine again. My son will be in 8th grade and will be playing football so I know when he comes home from practice in the evening, he will be hungry! Therefore, I want to be sure to have a plan for what we will have for supper. I do meal planning regularly but sometimes my brain just doesn’t want to think about what to have. Does anyone else feel the same way? On our Spend Smart. Eat Smart. website, we have sample meal-planning calendars that do the thinking for you! The week-long meal plans include 3 meals and 2 snacks per day and recipes are linked. If you eat vegetarian or are just interested in more plant-based recipes, there is a whole calendar of vegetarian meals and snacks.
“Go-To” Meals and Quick Recipes
If your schedule is so hectic that a trip to drive-up seems like the only option, consider stocking your shelves with “Go-To” Meals. These are meals that satisfy hunger, take minimal effort and time, but maximize taste. Nutritional value is fulfilled when you plan for at least one food from each group in MyPlate. Only a few ingredients are required, so preparation and clean-up is a snap. Plus, they save money on your food bill!
Plan for Healthy Eating for Kids this Summer
Families in Iowa are getting ready for summer vacation. I’ve heard several discussions concerning how old children should be to stay home by themselves part or all of the day, household rules, and how to get siblings to get along when the parents are gone.
Time Management – Finding Ways to Find Time
How much time do you think it takes to prepare a family meal? How much time do you actually have to spend?
Feed 50 People for $50!
Need recipes that will feed a crowd (e.g. a club, relatives, or a post-event gathering) for $50 or under?
Meat and Veggie Mac – SUPER QUICK AND EASY
Everybody is extra busy during May. It’s the beginning of outdoor sports such as soccer, softball, and baseball. Spring celebrations abound such as graduations and Mother’s Day, plus it’s time to get the vegetable and flower gardens going. Whatever the reason, it seems no one wants to be in the kitchen.
Sweet and Sour Rice Dinner
My daughter shared with me that she spent the afternoon helping her friend make meals to put in the freezer. Her friend has young children, a new job, and a husband who has to be out of town a night or two each week. It sounded like the girls had a great time working together plus they came up with several meals that will be ready to go on hectic nights.
Quick Garbanzo Bean Soup
I make lots of soup in the winter. It’s easy to do, lasts for several meals, and I can freeze small containers of it to take to work for lunch. Most of the soup I make is broth or vegetable-based without lots of cream or cheese so it is low in calories.
Fiesta Skillet Dinner, Easy and Inexpensive
Our feature recipe for March is Fiesta Skillet Dinner. Fixing up the recipe was easy while following the simple directions. The recipe calls for 2 cups of cooked chicken. I decided to cook boneless, skinless chicken breasts, but you can use packaged, precooked chicken or precooked canned chicken.
Try Canned Salmon in Wraps
I can’t remember ever having salmon when I was a kid. The only canned fish we ate was tuna. As an adult I love to order grilled salmon, but I was not familiar with canned salmon until a couple of years ago. I started actively trying to get fish into my diet a couple of times a week, as advised by the 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans to increase my intake of omega-3 fatty acids, and discovered canned salmon in the process.
It’s Worth a Little Mess
My 3 ½ year old son Parker loves to help me in the kitchen. When he realizes I’m cooking, he quickly goes and gets his stool so he can stand and help me. Even though cooking takes longer, and we make more messes, I enjoy spending time with him in the kitchen. He is a picky eater, so when he helps me prepare different foods, he is more likely to try them.
It’s Not Just School Lunch. It’s Bigger Than That.
This year my daughter started kindergarten. And honestly one of my biggest concerns was if she was going to be hungry throughout the day. Going from daycare and preschool to kindergarten is a huge adjustment for various reasons. I was particularly concerned about the change in foods available to her and how much time she would have to eat. The thought of her having fifteen minutes to eat lunch and no snacks was a little scary!