Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Tips for Stress-Free Family Dinners

We've never done a dinner blog post before, but we think guest post has some good tips! Enjoy!

When you have kids, simple things like getting dinner on the table can seem downright impossible. Luckily, there are steps you can take to make dinnertime a little less stressful. The following tips can help you feel confident about mealtime so you can spend less time in the kitchen and more time with your family:

·         Meal plan each week
Spend some time on Saturday or Sunday coming up with dinner ideas for the week. Knowing what you’re going to make ahead of time will save you lots of stress during the week.

·         Take pantry inventories
Regularly check your pantry to be aware of what you have and what you need. Knowing what you have on hand can help prevent last minute scrambling or grocery runs.

·         Cook more than you need
Cooking in large batches means you’ll have lots of leftovers, which are great to save for nights when you need an easy dinner to reheat.

·         Use precut frozen foods for shortcuts
Having precut fruits and veggies in your freezer can save you a lot of time making dinner. Instead of having to chop, slice and dice, you can simply toss in whatever frozen produce you need.

·         Clean as you go
Instead of saving dishes for later, clean your pots and pans as you cook. This way, you won’t have to spend as much time scrubbing dishes at the sink after dinner.

This Asian Chicken Noodle Bowl is one of those easy chicken recipes that’s perfect for a busy weeknight; it can be on the table in 25 minutes, so you can prepare dinner stress-free.

Quick Weeknight Recipe: Asian Chicken Noodle Bowl
Total Time: 25 min
Serves: 7
·         1 9 oz pkg refrigerated linguine, uncooked
·         PAM® Original No-Stick Cooking Spray
·         1 pound boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1-inch pieces
·         2 cups frozen bell pepper and onion strips
·         2 cups frozen sugar snap peas
·         3/4 cup water
·         1/2 cup Peter Pan® Creamy Peanut Butter
·         1/2 cup La Choy® Teriyaki Stir Fry Sauce-Marinade
·         2 tablespoons lime juice
Cook linguine according to package directions, omitting salt. Drain and return to pan.
Meanwhile, spray a 12-inch nonstick skillet with cooking spray; heat over medium-high heat. Add chicken and cook for 5 to 7 minutes or until no longer pink, stirring occasionally. Add vegetables and cook for 4-6 minutes or until crisp tender. Move to side of skillet.
Add remaining ingredients to skillet and stir to blend. Move chicken and vegetables into sauce and stir until coated. Pour chicken over linguine and toss to coat.

Author Bio: This is a guest post by Meredith K. on behalf of ReadySetEat®. For easy recipes for dinner and other cooking tips, visit www.readyseteat.com

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