Need quick meal suggestions

  1. Hi everyone!!

    I'm hoping you can help me out a little. Back in 1999, we lost our home in a fire. Don't worry - everything is going great now. However, I lost all my recipies - some that were handed down from dear family members who are no longer with us. Anyway, I am trying to get my recipie file built up again.(It took three years to get back my desire to cook - I thank Heather and her turkey for that:chuckle . Anyway, I am looking for some quick meal ideas for a family of six. We are extremely busy with soccer practices and band practices everyday, not to mention a 14 hour semester, so I do not have time to do any major cooking. If anyone has ideas for easy casseroles or dishes that do not require a lot of prep, I would really appreciate it.

    You guys are the best!!

    Deb
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  2. 31 Comments

  3. by   ageless
    I have an easy recipe that is a crowd pleaser for my family of 6-8.

    Easy Shepard's Pie
    -----------------------------------------------------------------------------
    1- 2 pounds hamburger
    1 onion
    1-2 cans cream of mushroom soup
    1-2 cans drained mixed vegetables
    3-4 cups of instant mashed potatoes (prepared by the box instruction)

    Brown meat with onion adding garlic and celery powder to taste. Mix with vegetables and pour in a 9 X 13 pan. Spread the potatoes over the meat mixture and bake (375 degrees) untill the top is golden brown ( about 45 minutes.
    Last edit by ageless on Jul 15, '02
  4. by   slinkeecat
    Now that I have totally disrupted my semblance of a normal life by adopting my 11 yo neice, returning to college after a 10yr hiatus, working as an LPN, taking care of my disabled hubby, i have found that it is the quicker the better....Here are some of my tried and true tricks:

    I buy frozen skinless chicken breast in a bag you get like 10 - breasts and it is way cheaper as apposed to non frozen...and
    I buy Cream of mushroom soup. I throw the chicken in the skillet and brown it then I mix up the cream of mushroom soup and pour it in the skillet and cover and cook on med for 30 minutes..... it is a family fav and so simple and yummy.... I make stove top stuffing in the micro and then I open up a veg of some sort and nuke it in a microwavwe bowl.....it takes me 30 minutes to make dinner from start to on the table and my hubby thinks I am the kitchen goddess......I used to make biscuits and roll them out and now I either make drop biscuits from Bisquik or I buy frozen bisuits from pillsbury and pop them in the oven.... no mess no fuss. I have been doing one skillet meals and I get raves from the hubby... I used to buy them prepared frozen.... but it is cheaper to buy a bag of broccoli and alfredo sause from a jar and some precooked chicken breast and a box of linguine.... I throw the sauce in a pot and I throw the precooked chicken breast in the sauce and heat thru then I nuke the broccoli and drain and add it to the sauce and I make linguine and serve the chicken-broccoli alfredo sauce over the linguine and usually make a salad and garlic bread.... total time about 30 minutes.... I also make breakfast at night...for dinner.... scrambled eggs, suasage and biscuits simple quick and the 11 yr thinks I am cool and cutting edge to go out of the norm... I also found that my crock pot is my best friend.... I get beef stew meat you know cut up hunks of beef and I put it in crockpot with salt pepper and 3 beef boulion cubes and I start the crock when I leave for work or school and then when I come back i will use some corn starch to thicken it into gravy and I serve it over minute rice or egg noodles. I make killer chili for cold nights in the crock.... and I stock my freezer with pot pies and totinos pizza so they will not starve when I am in finals lol.... I think I have cut the food bill by making stuff and watching for sales.. just wanted to give you an idea... I found that frozen popcorn chicken or chicken nuggets and fries are a quick life saver and I saw this idea on a thread and took frozen buritos and salsa and baked them in a baking dish and served it with sour cream and cheese and it was the bomb!!!!! i buy salad that is perpackaged and add cucumber and tomatos and alsways have an assortment of dressings and bacon bits and shredded cheese and let them do the salad bar thing and they like to make their own salad....... I make a huge pot of spaghetti sauce and freeze it in freezer bags and then take it out as needed and put it over frozen ravioli and top it with cheese and pop into oven for about an hour and bam!!!! dinner is served. I find that i have gotten pretty smart around the kitchen now lol
  5. by   Debbie5
    Wow! Thanks for the great ideas. This is getting my mind in gear. I used to be so creative and thought I'd lost my ability to function in the kitchen. I appreciate this so much.

    I have a question for ageless; do you drain the veggies? And, do you prepare the potatoes or just pour the flakes over the top? Also Slinkeecat, do you add water to the beef in the crockpot with the three beef cubes or just let it cook the juices out? I know I should be more familiar with crock pots but my hubby is old fashioned. Sounds great!
  6. by   slinkeecat
    I add water to the beef and bouillion and salt and pepper to taste and it is awesome... some times i use lipton's onion soup powder mix.... it is yummy.
  7. by   ageless
    I edited the recipe to make it more clear. Sorry for the confusion.
  8. by   slinkeecat
    Ageless i make that too but I add cheese on the top since my family are cheese freaks crazy for cheddar
  9. by   ageless


    sounds yummy!
  10. by   hoolahan
    If you have a gas grill, this is easy.

    Beef sirloin cubes (noy stewing cubes, may have to ask the butcher to cut it for you.)
    Cherry tomatoes, small onions or onions quartered, corn on cob in 1-2 inch pieces (have to cover the corn in foil) peppers, and whatever other veggie you like, I hate mushrooms, but they would work if you like them. Put on a skewer alternating a meat cube and a veggie. Brush A-1 steak sauce on as it cooks, from 20-30 minutes. Serve over minute rice.

    Or, if you like seafood, shrimp and scallops, w veggies. Do the same, excpet this time, use melted stick of butter (easy in mcrowave) w garlic sprinkled in a maybe a dash of basil or dill) Brush with butter sauce as they cook, serve over minute rice.

    You can always make up the kabobs earlier in the day, put them on a dish, and throw em on the grill when you are home.

    Otherwise, I like those skillte sensation meals in the frozen section. You can add beef, or chicken, and you have meat, veggies, and rice if you want to make it, some come with the rice and the meat.

    Another thing I've done is get skinless chicken thighs, dump 2 bottles of fav BBQ sauce and those into a crock pot, turn it on slow cook in the am, come home, and you have BBG chicken for dinner, just have to microwave a veggie, and maybe rolls or rice.

    Alos like thos estove top stuffing meals in a box, easy, fast, can do it ahead of time, and just stick it in the oven when ready.

    I also put bonelss chicken breats into ziploc bags filled w italian dressing. Can put that into freezer, and the day you want to make it, put on counter or into fridge to thaw as they marinate. Then get those Garden Fresh salads already made up in the bag, I like the Dole ceasar salad, comes w croutons and dressing and even a tiny packet of parm cheese, then throw the chicken onto a grill or george foreman grill, cut up and throw on the sald for quick Chicken ceasar salad. The chicken breasts come out so tender after marinating in the dressing.

    Another easy grill menu, your favorite fish, in doubles foil, a little white wine, and some veggies, like zucchini, squash, tomatoes, peppers, or whatever you like. Fold and seal the foil tightly, and this them poaches the fish and veggies, the wine gives great falvor and keeps it from drying out.
  11. by   CATHYW
    Debbie, this is very easy-almost TOO easy, LOL!

    Crock Pot Cacciatore
    1 3 lb frozen chicken (or 3 lbs. of pieces parts)
    1 Large Jar of Ragu or whatever brand/flavor you prefer Spaghetti Sauce
    1 Sliced Onion
    1 Sliced Green Pepper
    ***Put chicken, frozen, into crock pot. Sprinkle with salt and pepper, garlic salt, and a little Italian seasoning, if desired.

    Place sliced onion and peppers on, and around frozen chicken.

    Pour jar of spaghetti sauce over all.

    Cook on low for 6-8 hrs.
    Serve over spaghetti or rigatoni with a salad and garlic bread.
  12. by   hoolahan
    Mmmmmm Cathy, that sounds great!!
  13. by   Debbie5
    Cathy,

    Thanks, I think I'll try that one soon. I love chicken like that, sounds yummy!
  14. by   CashewLPN
    ok... Chix ala Bub...

    Make rice... white is good, brown is good... any brand... I usually use white...but, make sure not to forget the oil or the seasonings... I use Goya Adobo or saffron, if I can get it.
    While rice is cooking, take some skinned chix breasts or deboned thighs, and season with Goya Adobo con Pimenta (Lightly... and, its the one with the red top).... let sit.
    Cut one red bell pepper, one green bell pepper and a yellow or white(I prefer white but, any onion will do) onion into 1/2 inch squares... (AKA Small Dice)(you want to have about twice as much onion as peppers volume wise)(for family of 6, I might double this if they're hearty eaters) Finely chop some Garlic...(amount depends on if you guys like garlic)
    Cook chicken in little bit of oil (like a light coating on the bottom of the pan... a half dollar sized splat skooshed around) KEEP WARM, and Covered with Alum foil
    Add a little more oil... add pepper squares... cook till wilty. Add Onion. Cook over med-hi heat till onions are carmely and the peppers are soft.Splash in some OJ(literally, one splash... objective is to get the smell, and some sweet flavor). Add Garlic... Reduce till sweet, sticky, and not too wet. (Au Sec)(its supposed to be kinda marmalade-y)
    Make a pretty bed of rice on the plate. Put chix on rice. Top with some of the Pepper/onion sauce.
    I like this with some garlicky green beans, or a nice tossed salad.

    enjoy...
    --Barbara

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