Let’s face it most of us have families that are very busy! With all the sports, games, performances, church and other activities it can be a huge challenge to prepare an appetizing meal for the kids after school? Believe it or not though, you have time if you serve an easy to cook kids’ meal.
I often find myself throwing a hotdog in the microwave or setting a tortilla in a pan on top of the stove, add some cheese and 90 seconds later have a simple quesadilla, but what’s the excitement in that? Instead I want to introduce the idea of experimenting with Casseroles or one-pot meals which in most cases go over well with the kids and are simple to whip together.
Here’s a quick kid’s meal made with ingredients many of us keep on hand:
1 lb. ground beef
1 – 16 oz jar spaghetti sauce
1 – cup water
1 1/2 cups uncooked elbow macaroni
1 – cup shredded mozzarella cheese
Crumble beef in a three-qrt glass baking dish and microwave for 4-5 minutes, or until beef is no longer pink. Mix & rotate part way through cooking time. Drain Beef. Stir in sauce, water and macaroni. Microwave another 12 minutes, stirring part way through. Sprinkle cheese on top and allow to stand covered approximately 5 minutes before serving. Serves a couple hungry kids.
There are many meals you can cook with hamburger, but did you know that any recipe that asks for hamburger will work just fine replaced with ground turkey, chicken or venison instead. The simple recipe below uses ground meat. It does take nearly an hour to bake but just a few minutes to prepare.
2 pounds ground meat
1 can condensed cheddar cheese soup
1 can condensed cream of mushroom soup
Crinkle Cut French Fries
Brown ground beef and drain the grease. Add both soups to strained ground beef and spoon into a 9×13 greased baking dish. Top off with cut French fries and bake at 350 degrees for 50-55 minutes or until French fries are light brown.
Taco salads are also very quick and easy to prepare.
Begin with lettuce, then add tomato, onion and cheese (if your kids will approve of it.) Fry up some meat and toss in an envelope of taco seasoning or just incorporate some taco sauce to the meat. Next add crushed tortilla chips or Fritos. Finish off with salsa or Ranch salad dressing. Remember the sour cream and guacamole too! Kids love this meal!
For a fast, on the go, healthy, cold meal try this recipe on for size:
A head of lettuce (not bagged lettuce)
Ham or Roast Beef slices
Step 1: Peel off a medium lettuce leaf.
Step 2: Assemble meat, cheese, and condiments.
Step 3: Roll up and stick a toothpick in the middle.
Step 4: Gobble Up.
Step 5: Wipe your face, there is a trace of mayo. on your cheek.
How about an interesting twist to the normal macaroni and cheese kids recipe?
1 (16 ounce) box macaroni (elbow, seashell, bowtie doesn’t matter, just not spaghetti)
1 c. cottage cheese
1/4 c. sugar
1/2 t. cinnamon
1. Cook macaroni according to package instructions.
2. Stir in cottage cheese, sugar, and cinnamon with drained macaroni.
3. Taste and add sugar or cinnamon, if required.
4. Serve right away. Delicious!
Incorporate a bit of creativity to create a twist on a tried and true recipe and even with the chaotic after school activities you will find time to cook a nourishing meal for your kids every night. I would love to know if you use one of these meals for your family and look forward to hearing how much they love them!!!
Did you know that you can get Kid Friendly Meals delivered to your email box every week? Just visit their site and sign up for the trial to check it out for a week!