3 Things I Keep on Hand for Easy Weeknight Dinners
I don’t know about you, but it’s so easy to get in the habit of eating out or picking up dinner several times a week. You’re tired, the kids are crazy, work is overwhelming….the list goes on and on. We have been trying really hard to eat more meals at home to save money and eat healthier. Plus, every time we go out to dinner with all of our kids we end up looking at each other like “why did we bring all of these wild banshees to a restaurant?!” Anyways, I’ve come up with a go-to system that saves me on those days where I don’t really feel like going all out in the kitchen and I don’t have to think about it too much.
1. Pick Your Protein
When I buy meat, I always come home and freeze it in individual portions. This makes weeknight dinners a breeze. Just pull out however much you need a few hours before dinner, thaw in cool water and you’re well on your way to dinnertime. You could also put frozen meat in the fridge the night before.
2. Frozen Veggies
I always keep frozen veggies on hand because you never know when you’re going to come up short in your crisper drawer. I buy fresh vegetables too, but sometimes we go through them really quickly and I won’t have anything for dinner. Keeping frozen vegetables stocked always gives me options without having to run to the store or worrying about the fresh stuff going bad too fast.
3. Starch on the Side
I pretty much ALWAYS have brown and white rice, potatoes, pasta and beans stocked in my pantry. It’s the third and final piece to a well-rounded dinner in our house. There’s so many directions you could go in with your starches, the flavor combinations are endless.
That’s it! This method is super effective as long as you keep your freezer and pantry stocked. Just make a habit of replenishing your stock with each grocery visit. I thought I would give you a few dinner ideas that incorporate these three components.
- BBQ Chicken + Green Beans + Potato Salad
- Sauteed Pork Chops + Broccoli + Wild Rice
- Grilled Sirloin + Creamed Spinach + Baked Potato
- Chicken & Stir Fry Veggies + Steamed White Rice
- Pan Seared Fish + Bacon Brussel Sprouts + Brown Rice
- Grilled Chicken + Corn on the Cob + Roasted Red Potatoes
I hope this method gets you re-energized for weeknight meal planning! It’s easy to get in a rut and make the same things over and over (I do it all the time). I’d love to hear your favorite weeknight dinners!