With school in full swing, extracurricular activities to drive the kids to and Christmas coming up, you’ve likely got your plate full and unfortunately that means you might not always have time to make dinner. But there are some tricks you can follow that will save you time and still ensure that your family is eating well.
The first trick we use in our own homes is, if you’re going to cook up some ground beef for tonight’s lasagna or spaghetti sauce, then cook more than you need. Season the meat, maybe add some veggies; then let it cool, separate it and freeze it in a few smaller batches. Then, the next time you make chili or pasta sauce, you just have to thaw and heat up the pre-cooked and seasoned beef instead of having to completely start from scratch.
Or, if you have a Sunday afternoon free, you could go even further with pre-cooking and make the full dish. For instance, when we make casseroles, shepherd’s pie and pasta sauce, we make double (sometimes triple) batches. Then we put each batch in its own freezer-friendly container and put it in the freezer once it’s cooled. This way, on a night when you have to quickly rush home from work and make dinner before taking the kids to soccer or dance practice, it’s already made – you just have to pop it in the oven. And, you may even have leftovers for lunches tomorrow!