Everyone loves a fast and easily prepared meal, especially after coming home from a long day at work, not to mention all the other daily responsibilities from taking the kids to soccer practice to house cleaning. A recent case study published in the Nutrition Journal found that home cooking has increased in recent years, with both men and women spending more time preparing their meals at home.
While it was once the norm for women to be the family chef, with both men and women often having to work full-time jobs, it’s no wonder men are having to pick up some of the slack. To help make that job easier whether you’re male or female, consider some of these quick and easy dinner ideas.
Slow-cookers, or crockpots, are the perfect option for creating simple dump-and-go meals that any family can enjoy. All you have to do is toss your ingredients in before you go to work and you can come back to a delicious, ready-to-eat meal. Slow-cooker dishes are especially ideal for those cold winter days – you’ll come home to a warmer house with an enticing aroma that comes from the stews, soups, and other meals that have been cooking all day. You can even cook up a full rack of ribs, perfected with meat that is so tender it falls off the bone, all while you’re at work.
Instant Pot Dinners
Another fast way to cook in bulk is to use a pressure cooker called an Instant Pot. These cooking devices are ideal for soups, rice dishes, stews, shredded meats, and more. Whether you live in a home in Denver, a condo in San Diego, or one of the Woodland apartments in Northern California, having an Instant Pot is the perfect answer to time savings for home-cooked meals on busy work nights. Kids and adults alike are sure to love the delicious meals that can be made in them, like pulled pork for taco night, spaghetti with meatballs or chicken noodle soup, amazing with grilled cheese sandwiches.
One-Pot Casserole Dishes
You don’t have to have a pressure cooker or a crockpot. A one-pot dish is just what it sounds like, you can throw your ingredients into a casserole dish, bake and enjoy. It calls for relatively few prepping and cooking steps, just layered ingredients like macaroni and beef.
Stovetop cooking is a fast and easy way to make a meal in a rush. While baking can be a great method for preparing dinner that’s mostly hands-off, skillet meals can also be thrown together in a pinch. Think sauteed chicken with couscous, a skillet lasagna, or breakfast skillets with ingredients like eggs, sausage, potatoes, onions, and green peppers.
When all else fails, there are many prepared meals in the freezer section and produce areas of grocery stores, including meal kits that can quickly be microwaved. Freezer meals aren’t quite what they used to be; nowadays there are even organic, vegan, gluten-free, and other options. Or, if you have more time on the weekend, make some of your meals ahead of time and freeze them, a lifesaver with something on standby in case your week gets too busy for cooking.