I love to entertain and I love to cook but, unlike Ms. Martha Stewart, I don’t always have the time, energy or resources to do so. Sometimes, all I have is 5 minutes.
Sometimes, 5 minutes is all I need.
Before we begin:
The two pieces of essential kitchen equipment for a lightning fast dinner are a crockpot and a microwave. Yes, that easy.
Helpful make-ahead tips:
1. Always make extra rice (or make a large batch when you aren’t pressed for time, subdivide and freeze in microwaveable bags).
2. I slice veggies when I bring them home from the store. A vacuum sealer like this or like this is a very wise investment. I have both. Do yourself a favor and pick up a couple of containers to work with the hand-held sealer to keep deli meats and cheese slices fresh longer. Thank me when you are throwing out a whole lot less produce.
Here are 5 fast options:
1. Salsa chicken
Recipe: Enough chicken breasts or tenderloins to feed your family. One jar of salsa (Rotel works very well also). Combine in crockpot. 4 hours on high, 8 on low. To serve over rice, if you haven’t got leftovers, use something like this to make it FAST!
2. Mom’s Homemade Crock Pot Roast
Recipe: One 3Lb Beef Roast, One Can Cream of Mushroom Soup, one package onion soup mix. Combine in crockpot and cook 8 hours on low. This roast falls apart. Serve with your new friend microwaveable rice or noodles. To feed a larger crowd or to have planned leftovers, add a second roast. Try pork and beef together – delicious!
3. Easiest Burritos Ever
Recipe: 1 can black beans, rinsed, drained and mashed. 1 can Ro-tel, shredded cheese (I like cheddar) .1 package tortillas (I prefer flour but whatever floats your boat) Microwave 2 minutes, microwave tortillas as directed, assemble burritos. Easily multiplied.
4. Black Beans and Rice
This is just a variation on the above – tried and kid-tested by me: The above mentioned black beans and Ro-tel combined with leftover rice or the above mentioned microwaveable rice for a tasty and filling (vegetarian!)black beans and rice dinner.
Any manner of wrap makes a fast dinner the kidlings will love. Let them choose the meat, add veggies of their choice, roll up and add potato chips on the side and voila!