Wednesday, October 16, 2013

What I Cook When I Don't Feel Like Cooking

Some kind of special diet oftentimes just comes with the special needs kid territory.  In Lily's seven years of life, she (and as a result, we) have been on four specific eating plans.

In other words, I spend an enormous amount of my time thinking about food.  Meal planning.  Menu creating.  Grocery shopping.  Food preparation.  School lunch packing.  Healthy snack searching.

It's almost like having a full-time job.  But with no pay or benefits and some pretty demanding co-workers.

And while I know all the terrible, horrible, no-good, very-bad ingredients in most of our food today, I'll be honest and say there are many nights that I'd love to just whip up some hot dogs with a side of Kraft macaroni and cheese and call it supper.

So what's a mom to do when she doesn't feel like cooking?  When eating out isn't an option, nor is eating just any old thing?

Have a few tricks up her sleeve, that's what. 

Here's a few go-to meals for when Mama is pooped and the kids still insist on eating.  

These sloppy joes are the gold standard.  At one time in my life, I thought sloppy joes consisted of ground beef with canned Manwich sauce.  How wrong I was.  This recipe comes from my mother-in-law.  My non-paleo kid eats hers on a white bun (awful, I know) and the rest of us eat ours open-faced on this paleo bread.  Or my husband has been known to eat his with a spoon.  Even easier!

Vickie's Sloppy Joes

1 lb ground beef
1/2 cup chopped onion (or leave it out if you don't feel like chopping onion)
1/2 cup ketchup (will want to taste because odds are good you'll end up adding more)
1 tbsp yellow mustard
1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1 tbsp white vinegar
1/4 tsp celery seed (optional)

Brown beef and onion together.  Drain and put back in skillet.  Add the rest of the ingredients.  Taste.  Adjust as needed. Serve.

Chili is another easy go-to meal.  Try this Simple, Perfect Chili recipe but skip the masa harina and the beans to stay more on the paleo track.  This cornbread is sweet and super delicious.  Or forget paleo for a night and use this recipe and serve Frito Pie style.  Use either recipe to make chili dogs (sans buns) on another night when you don't feel like cooking.   

I know what you're thinking right about now.  "Hey Lana - you said these were recipes for when I don't feel like cooking.  Hello.  Browning ground beef = cooking."


How about buying this gluten-free salmon (I get mine at Costco), baking some sweet potatoes, and opening a can of green beans?  Voila!  Supper is served.

If I'm really feeling lazy, I buy a caesar salad kit along with a rotisserie chicken.  I plate the salad and add chopped up chicken to the top.

If you don't mind doing a tiny bit of prep work in the morning in order to have nothing to do at supper time, break out the crock pot and make this soup.  (I skip the potatoes in this one)

Breakfast for dinner is usually a treat for both the kids (because it's tasty) and mom (because it's easy) and here's a fun twist on an egg sandwich, omitting the bread if you're paleo.

And there you have it.  A nice little round-up of some of my quick, easy go-to meals when Mama has her mind more on putting her feet up and watching a little TV as opposed to whipping up a gourmet meal.

What about you?  What do you cook when you don't feel like cooking?
I'm sure every mom feels like this at some point in their life... right? I'm not the only one?! lol


  1. Love the crock pot! We also do breakfast for dinner occasionally but the hubs doesn't love it like the rest of us do. We are a left over house so when I cook big dinners I make sure to make plenty so they can be eaten again or easily turned into something else. :)

    1. I like doubling (or even tripling) up when I cook things like spaghetti sauce or the chili or sloppy joes from above. It's a great feeling to be able to just pull something out of the freezer and not do a thing to it. :)

  2. I never feel like cooking! And having to provide meals for my family every single day is becoming a burden & I completely relate to that picture. Guilty as charged! So when I don't feel like cooking I throw a chicken in the crockpot, throw some seasonings on it & go about my day. I could eat that chicken every single day. I should have married a chicken farmer or at least into the Perdue family. We can't even keep eggs in the house.
    So about the different diets you've been on and helping Lily, and the dr addressing a virus in her brain, I am reading a fascinating book right now called Grain Brain & I wonder how much of what Perlmutter says your dr would agree with. Looking forward to Lily's health progress!


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...