It's 5 o'clock...the panic starts to set in as the kids start to surface and invade the kitchen for something to eat.
In the meantime, you are panicking, because who knows what's for dinner!
Well, pull it together because we've got some secrets to help you get dinner on the table quicker.
Our Kitchen Secrets...
1. Start with a clean palette. We're talking the countertops here! Even if you have to pile up last nights dinner dishes, just get them out of the way so you have some space to work!
2. You're going to want to skip this step, but read the entire recipe ALL THE WAY THROUGH before you start. Trust me, better to find out in the beginning if you have everything you "thought" you did!
3. Start preheating the oven right away!
4. Find and gather all the ingredients first and at the same time. Plop them down on the counter and if possible prep them before you start "cooking". The fewer the trips to the freezer or pantry, the more time you save.
5. Get all the equipment you need together before you start cooking. While you're grabbing your pasta bowl, also grab the colander.
6. Stay focused and don't try and multi task. Quick cooking requires your attention.
7. Timers are the best. Use them to remind you of when you should not just take things out of the oven, but also put them in! It's easy to lose track of time when you are trying to get a dinner put together on a busy night.
8. Get the kids busy helping. Sometimes an extra hand stirring can be a huge help and will speed up the process (depending of course, on how helpful your helper is!).
9. Finally, cook something easy! Don't set yourself up for failure by thinking you have to create a made from scratch dinner with mashed potatoes and gravy to top it off. Weeknight dinners are not the place to try out new recipes...save those for the weekend when you have a little extra time to enjoy the process.
Our Go-To Weeknight Dinner...
One of our families favorite go-to, make-everyone-happy weeknight dinners is something we refer to at our house as "Triangles".
Grab two flour tortillas, some refried beans, cheese, meat (if you have any), veggies and the pancake griddle.
Top a flour tortilla with beans and then layer on all the other ingredients. Finish off with the cheese. Add the second tortilla on top and lightly spray both sides of the tortilla with a little olive oil cooking spray.
Throw it on the hot pancake griddle and brown on both sides.
Remove from the griddle and cut into triangles...kind of like a pizza!
Easy to customize and tailor for those picky eaters and for your more adventurous people, they can continue to top the warm tortilla with lettuce, salad dressing and more.
Wishing you LOTS of weeknight cooking success!