Adapted from Secrets of a Busy Cook by Lynn Nelson, used by permission
Level IV: Fast Ingredients
There are certain ingredients that are the busy cook’s best friends and should always be on hand in your cupboard, freezer or refrigerator for quick meals. These staples have several advantages in common. They are basic, but very versatile, so they can be dressed up or down. They are popular with young and old alike. As a bonus, they generally tend to be inexpensive. Most important, they are quick and easy to prepare. Make sure that your pantry is stocked with these items at all times. For me, they include chicken broth, rice, pasta, canned or frozen meat and vegetables, cheese, and cream of chicken or mushroom soup. With items like these on hand I can put together a pot of soup or a casserole that will go from preparation to table in 20-30 minutes.
The Busy Mom Menu plans fast ingredients into your dinner menus so you don’t even have to think about it. Just… Print. Shop. Cook.
Cooking with Fast Ingredients
This is one of my go to recipes for delicious chicken. We’ve been making it for years but recently discovered by way of the Six Sisters website that it’s a great freezer dish as well. [Read More...]
This super easy recipe is a quick stovetop meal with just 5 ingredients. Creamy Balsamic Meatballs: 1 Lb cooked meatballs, homemade or purchased, 2 Tbsp butter, ¼ cup onion, chopped, 1 cup heavy cream, 2 Tbsp balsamic vinegar, Prepared egg noodles [Read More...]
Like almost everyone else, I look for cooking inspiration on Pinterest. When I saw this post with the title “The Easiest Dinner Ever” with some of my favorite ingredients listed, I knew I had to try it. While it isn’t the prettiest meal I’ve ever made, it was delicious and couldn’t be easier. We will definitely have it again! [Read More...]
One of the basics of Menus4Moms menus is having food prep already done before dinner time. One way we accomplish this is by bulk cooking meat and freezing it in meal-sized portions. Here is a wonderful recipe for cooking chicken in bulk. Have grilled chicken for dinner the night you cook it, then chop and freeze the leftovers in dated freezer bags. The longer the chicken marinates in this mixture, the more flavorful it will be. [Read More...]
Why is it that, even though we have faster methods of cooking our meals, they seem to have become more frenzied and hurried than years ago? Then it dawned on me — With the introduction of the microwave and the idea that meals can be prepares in 30 minutes, most people do nothing to prepare or plan their meals until 30 minutes before they are going to eat. So 30 minutes before dinner you find yourself trying to thaw something, cook it, and slap it on the table and at the same time talk and deal with tired, hungry, cranky ... [Read More...]
Stocking up on often used pantry items when they are on sale is the perfect way to not only save money on item you know will not go to waste but also to ensure that you will have enough ingredients on hand at all times to throw a meal together in a matter of minutes. Here is a list of my top ten pantry items that will help you add that all-day cooked flavor to quick cooking meals. [Read More...]
One of my favorite quick fix meal preparation methods is stir-frying. Including the prep time of chopping up meats and veggies, I can usually have a stir-fry meal on the table from start to finish in about 15 – 20 minutes. It’s just a simple process where you rapidly cook meat and vegetables in a small amount of oil. Stir-frying is similar to sautéing, except you use less oil, hotter temperatures, and usually a wok. I do most of my stir-frying in my large heavy skillet on the stovetop because I don’t have enough storage in my kitchen to keep ... [Read More...]