Time with friends and family is a privilege in a modern and busy world. Cooking for them is even more so. Think back to your childhood and how many dinner table memories were made as you enjoyed a family meal with parents, grandparents, aunts, and uncles. Everyone enjoys mealtime, especially dinner.
In our busy-ness, it’s easy to resent cooking for our families. We tend to rush through our meals and on to the next thing. I spend a lot of my energy sharing ways to reduce the mental and time “load” of meal preparation so you can invest those into your family’s memories instead. Meal times are a great time to reflect together, remember together and even cultivate gratitude in your children.
A recent survey found that only 32% of families eat dinner together regularly. Lack of time is a leading cause. But with some quick and easy cooking methods, there is no reason you can’t feed your family nutritious meals every day with minimal effort. But even using these time saving meal strategies, don’t just fill the extra time they buy you with more work or scrolling. Sit down and TALK to each other with screen-free meals!
When you need to cook for your family or a large group, it isn’t always as simple as you would like. And as life gets in the way of things, you might want to look for convenient methods that quickly cook nutritious food with minimal effort on your part.
Trendy gadgets to have in your kitchen these days include low-oil devices and pressure cookers. The best air fryers for large family will cook fantastic food in minutes. They also offer a healthy alternative to traditional methods as they require minimal oil for foods like fries. I have been loving my VitaClay fast slow-cooker, as well!
While not the quickest way to cook your favorite meals, you can get a lot out of a one-pot shot. Such tantalizing tastes include dishes like meatballs, curries, and pot pies. The great thing about these recipes is that they can be made with minimal effort once prepared.
For example, you might need to spend some relaxing time in your kitchen sanctuary. You might be chopping onions, slicing beef cuts, and carrots for a steak and ale pie. And that’s pretty much it. You can even make dishes like this early and leave them in the fridge until you’re ready to feed hungry mouths. So if you find you have time for prep earlier in the day but are always rushing around to actually COOK the meal, consider this option.
Shaking and Baking
You will undoubtedly have heard of Shake ‘n Bake. The popular brand from Kraft Foods that makes creating delicious food very easy indeed by combining an ingredient mix such as breadcrumbs and spices. I personally prefer Epicure’s healthier gluten-free coatings and crumb mixes!
This concept can also be applied to meats and vegetables for preparing delicious meals in minutes. Try this quick tip:
- Place all ingredients in a freezer bag.
- Add your meat, oil, herbs, and spices.
- Shake the ingredients to evenly coat the meat.
Sometimes called Dump & Go meals, they can be left to marinate until later or baked right away in a casserole dish for a healthy and hearty meal that requires almost no effort at all.
Fire and Forget
Another family favorite, and not least for simplicity, is the delectable home-cooked stew. Bringing together beautiful organic ingredients such as autumn root vegetables, hearty beef cuts, and independent brews is a wonder to behold. And a warming drink helps things along.
Although this cooking method takes a long time, it is well worth the wait on a low and slow simmer. And the best part is once it’s on the job, you simply fire and forget for a few hours. This can work IN the oven, on the stove top, in your pressure cooker, your slow cooker or your VitaClay fast slow cooker or VitaClay Stock Pot. Excellent for a lazy OR extra busy weekend.
A Roast to Boast
While Saturday might be a wonderful day for a slow stew, Sunday is the undisputed king of the roast dinner. In much the same way, you can forget a roast once it is in the oven. The key is in the preparation, yet almost everything for a Sunday roast can be prepared in advance.
Potatoes can be par-boiled, meat can be left to marinate, and brassicas take no time at all to blanch. Of course, there are many methods of roasting. You can roast the vegetables with the meat as a trivet or separately using meat oils. And then you have leftovers on Monday!