Providing healthy meals is the ultimate challenge for busy parents. Your kids are hurrying up to school in the morning, and you and spouse have many demands to fulfil at your workplaces. Family meals can sometimes become hurried affairs, but that doesn’t mean the family should be deprived of nutritious meals. Here are some simple tips to get you eating at home more and order take-outs less.
- Prepare Your Fresh Produce ASAP
This might be the last thing you want to do when you get home, but when it comes to time-saving cooking, it’s excellent advice for busy weekdays. Nothing eats up time more than lengthy food preparations and dealing with hungry tots at the same time. After grocery shopping, wash and dry your produce right away and put them on storage. This way, they’re ready to use when you need them.
- Keep Ready-to-Eat Snacks Around
If it’s not too much of a hassle, cut up some of your produce into bite-sized pieces after washing them. Store them in an air-tight container and put them in the fridge. This isn’t only a quick and after-school snack, but also doubles as a healthy lunchbox snack for everyone. For a fun and delicious treat, pair your pre-cut fruits with chilled melted chocolate for a kid-friendly snack.
- Stock Up on Vegetable Puree and Freeze Them
Purees aren’t just for babies—they’re for adults too. If you have a blender or food processor, just cut up some veggies, add a bit of water and then puree them to a consistency of your liking. Transfer the mixture in an ice cube tray, and then pop them in the freezer. When you make pasta, baked goods, soups or even meatballs, sneak in carrot, broccoli or zucchini puree in the sauces. Your little ones won’t notice it.
- Re-Use Leftovers
This is a strategic part of cooking. When planning your meals, try to plan for recipes that can make good leftovers. When you have the right dishes, you can use the leftovers to create new meal—the children won’t even notice! Leftovers can save so much time. If you know how to strategize well, leftovers can be your best friend for your family weekday meals.
- Freeze Your Meals
Laksa for dinner? It doesn’t take much time to double or even triple the recipe for more extras you can pop in the freezer. Go for family favourites that can be frozen, and whenever you make one, double the amount and freeze a few. Cookie dough is another great example. You can freeze them in scoops, and then directly pop in the oven.
Meal planning is the ultimate tip to save time on food preparation during busy days. While it can sound intensive, you’ll be amazed how much time, money and effort is saved. No more frequent take-outs or settling for junk foods and feeling guilty afterwards.