Did you know that there are several ways to “fake” a homemade dinner? With life getting in the way, sometimes we do not have time to make a “homemade meal,” but there are quite a few ways to put a well-balanced meal on the table without putting in too much time.

  • Step 1: Fill your pantry with shelf-stable, go-to ingredients like pasta sauces, whole-wheat pasta, polenta, rice, or quinoa.
  • Step 2: Stock your freezer with side dishes that you can feel good about: Frozen vegetables, mashed sweet potatoes, ravioli, edamame, veggie burgers, or frozen chicken breasts.
  • Step 3: Plan ahead: Be aware of what you have on hand. Once you use items, be sure to add them to your shopping list and replace them at your earliest convenience.
  • Step 4: You may need to hit the grocery store for a rotisserie chicken or fresh veggies to accompany your meal, but that will be the most challenging part of executing your homemade meal.

Examples of homemade meal options:

  • Grilled chicken Caesar salad with toasted bread
  • Frozen ravioli with a jar of sauce and a side of broccoli
  • Rotisserie chicken with frozen sweet potatoes and green beans
  • Veggie burgers with a side salad
  • Chicken stir fry with a frozen veggie mix, edamame, and rice

  For more meal ideas, visit https://www.thekitchn.com/100-easy-pantry-meals-23015866 

Rebecca Herrmann, RDN, LDN

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