It’s six o’clock on a Monday, you are just getting home from work and the first thing out of everyone’s mouth is: what’s for dinner?
A full day of work, kids practices, projects, and homework – who has the time to cook a full nutritious meal?
Our cooking expert Anna Carl knows a thing or two about busy schedules. As a wife, mother and consumer scientist she is always looking for ways to incorporate her love of cooking into her busy schedule. One of the best work week hacks Anna has discovered is to prep for your entire week in one day.
Anna says the first place to start is with your local supermarket circular. Look for items that are on sale and stock up. Chicken is frequently on sale and one of the easiest (tastiest) ways to make your meals stretch through the week.
DAY ONE – ROASTED CHICKEN
Start with one or more full chickens (depending on the amount of people you will be cooking for.
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. (If you have a convection oven, try the convection roast setting.)
Trim excess fat and clean out inside cavity.
Rinse outside and inside cavity with water, pat dry.
Lightly coat outside with oil.
Seasoned salt, rosemary, garlic & parsley.
Tuck wings back.
Place breast down into roasting pan.
Add meat thermometer into center of meat, away from the bone.
Roast for 10 to 12 minutes per pound or when the internal temperature reaches 165 degrees.
Store leftovers in airtight containers in the refrigerator for use throughout the week.
DAY TWO – CHICKEN FAJITA QUESADILLAS
Using leftover chicken from day one, you’ll need these additional ingredients for another delicious meal.
2-½ cups of leftover diced chicken.
1 ounce fajita seasoning mix.
1 bell pepper (Green, red, or yellow).
1/2 onions (sliced).
2 cups pepper jack (Shredded).
1/3 cups water.
4 flour tortilla shells.
DAY THREE – CROCKPOT HONEY GARLIC CHICKEN
Using leftover chicken thighs from your day one roast will make this a tasty and quick dinner. Here is what else you’ll need:
1/2 cups soy sauce (or low sodium soy sauce).
1/2 cups ketchup.
1/3 cups honey.
3 cloves garlic.
DAY FOUR – BANG BANG CHICKEN PASTA
Spice up your traditional pasta meal with 1 cup of leftover cubed or shredded chicken and these additional ingredients:
8 ounces pasta.
2 cloves garlic.
1/2 cups mayonnaise.
1/4 cups sweet chili sauce.
1/2 tablespoons honey.
1 tablespoon sriracha sauce.
1 tablespoon lime juice.
DAY FIVE – SLOW COOKER CHICKEN POT PIE SOUP
Soup is the perfect dish to use the rest of your leftovers. This slight spin on a traditional comfort food is not only easy to make but can be started during the day, making it ready for you when you get home and a lot of the additional ingredients you may already have in your pantry.
3/4 cups onions.
1/2 cups celery.
3/4 cups carrots.
7 ounces peas.
7 ounces corn.
3 1/2 cups russet potatoes.
3 cloves garlic.
2 1/2 teaspoons salt.
1 teaspoon ground black pepper.
1 teaspoon dried thyme.
1 bay leaf.
3 1/2 cups chicken broth.
1 1/2 cups heavy cream.
1/3 cups all-purpose flour.
Picky kids? Food allergy? You can find recipe and ingredient replacements at https://www.yummly.co/