Mom, Whats For Dinner?

With dance practice, basketball, cub scouts, and tae kwon do, who has time to cook a nourishing meal for the kids after school? You do! You can have time if you prepare a quick to cook kids' meal.

Of course it's easy to toss a hotdog in the microwave or set a tortilla in a skillet on top of the stove, add some cheese and ninety seconds later have a easy quesadilla, but what's the joy in that? Casseroles or one-pot meals generally go over well with the kids; and are simple to put together.

Taste this simple meal:

1 – lb. ground beef
1 - 16 oz jar spaghetti sauce
1 - cup water
1 1/2 cups uncooked elbow macaroni
1 - cup shredded mozzarella cheese

Set beef into a 3-quart glass bowl and microwave for 4-5 minutes, or until beef is no longer pink. Stir & rotate part way through cooking time. Drain Beef. Stir in sauce, water and macaroni. Microwave another 13 minutes, stirring part way through. Sprinkle cheese on top and allow to sit covered approximately 5 minutes before eating. Serves a couple famished kids.

There are numerous meals you can cook with lean ground beef. Any recipe that calls for lean ground beef will work just fine replaced with ground turkey, chicken or venison as an alternative. The simple recipe below uses ground meat. It takes close to an hour to cook but merely a blink to prepare.

Mix together:

2 lbs. ground meat
1 can condensed cheddar cheese soup
1 can condensed cream of mushroom soup
One bag of Crinkle Cut French Fries

Brown ground beef and strain the grease. Add both soups to strained ground beef and spoon into a 9 x 12 greased pan. Top with cut French fries and cook at 350 degrees for 50-55 minutes or until fries are golden brown.

Taco salads are very quick and easy to make. Start with lettuce. Add onion, tomato and cheese (if your kids will approve of it.) Fry up some hamburger and toss in a packet of taco seasoning – or just include some taco sauce to the meat. Next add smashed tortilla chips or Fritos. Top with salsa or Catalina salad dressing. Don't forget the sour cream and guacamole too! Kids love this meal!

For a simple, grab-it-and-go, healthy, cold meal try:

Large lettuce leaves (not pre-cut lettuce in a bag)
Ham or Roast Beef slices
Cheese slices

Step 1: Peel off a medium lettuce leaf.
Step 2: Layer meat, cheese, and condiments.
Step 3: Roll up and stick a toothpick in the center.
Step 4: Eat. S
tep 5: Wipe your mouth, there is a dab of mayo. on your chin.

What about a sweet twist to the standard mac 'n cheesekids recipe?

1 (16 ounce) box macaroni (elbow, seashell, bowtie – doesn't matter, just not spaghetti)
1 c. cottage cheese
1/4 c. sugar
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

1. Cook macaroni according to package instructions.
2. Stir in sugar, cottage cheese,and cinnamon with drained macaroni.
3. Nibble and add sugar and cinnamon, if required.
4. Serve immediately. Delicious!

Incorporate a little creativity to create a twist on a regular recipe and even with the chaotic evening activities you'll have time to prepare a nourishing meal for your kids evening meal.

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