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I work full time as a teacher.   I love to make my family home made meals but on work nites i get home about 5 pm, then we relax,  ds does homework, everyone seems to be starving by 6/6:30 and i have fallen into making dinners that are either frozen,  pre packaged dinners,   delivery, or overly simple stuff.    I have a crock pot but i really only make slow cooked chicken with different soups or shredded bbq chicken sandwiches.   i NEED some new ideas.   i have seached online but everything i find sound like something my family wouldnt want to eat.   if you have any ideas of recipes to make that are quick and simple please share them!! 

by on Feb. 1, 2014 at 12:08 PM
Replies (11-20):
by on Feb. 2, 2014 at 2:24 AM

My SO and I both work. One thing that I have started doing that REALLY helps is...

I do 1 big grocery shopping trip a week (on Saturdays) and then I prep a ton of food for the week on Sundays. I prepare all of SO's and my lunches for the week and I store them in tupperware containers. Then during the week SO can just take his lunch to work and I can eat my lunch without worrying about having to cook or prepare anything.

In addition to making lunches in advance I try to prep dinners as much as I can. I will cut veggies for salads, roast cut potatoes and keep them in the fridge, get taco shells ready, put food together in the crock pot (un cooked) to store in the fridge and then start cooking in the morning before I head off to work. I will cook quinoa and cauliflower rice in advance so I can heat it up during the week.

If you want ideas I can definitely help you create a grocery list or meal plan. I know how hard it is to come home exhausted from work and just want to pop something in the microwave. For me, I am STARVING at 4pm so if i don't have a plan for the evening I will resort to ordering take out or something.

by on Feb. 2, 2014 at 2:25 AM

Try pulled pork in your crock pot.  Good for dinner, and perfect for lunch the next day.  Roasts are great too.

Join  if you are looking for more variety, they send you a 'daily recipe'.  I forget how much the premium membership is to the site but it is worth it!

by on Feb. 2, 2014 at 2:30 AM
I haven't read the other replies so I'm sorry if this was already said. You can spend a few hours prepping on the weekend and be set for the week. You can make lasagna to the point of baking, then cover and freeze. You can make a huge pot of chili, divide it and freeze it. Another good freezer meal is pizza pockets. Take raw pizza dough, cut into 6x8 rectangles, fill with pepperoni, sauce and cheese, and fold in half to make a 6x4 pizza pocket. Freeze, then the morning you want them cooked, put in the fridge to thaw through the day and pop in the oven when you get home. Serve with salad.
by on Feb. 2, 2014 at 7:01 AM
I'm a full time mom and high school teacher, too. I know that we don't have much time to cook on weekends because we're doing lesson plans and grading papers, going over and beyond what is expected of us for our students. Trust me when I say: Get a PRESSURE COOKER. Throw a bunch of food in there for 15-20 minutes and viola. Stuff some ribs or chicken legs and sauce , toss chicken and carrots and broth in that pot, and so much more. Cooks a small roast with potatoes in 20 minutes. I can help with homework or just breathe for a few minutes while dinner cooks. One night a week you should order delivery because we have the hardest jobs in the world and deserve a break occasionally.
by Ruby Member on Feb. 3, 2014 at 7:42 AM

i get home around 5 too

i usually start dinner right away though, i might get a glass of wine or pour a beer while i'm doing it, then I'm "relaxing" and making dinner, LOL

but i love to cook

whatever meat i'm making, i take out that morning so it's thawed, you can braise chicken breasts in about 30-40 minutes

on the nights dh works, he gets home at 615 and we eat dinner shortly thereafter, on other nights, we eat by 6

by Member on Feb. 3, 2014 at 7:48 AM
I do this- works great!

Quoting mom2devin11005:

what I always did when I worked full time was pre-make meals on my days off.... I would make lasagna, manicotti, meatloaf things like that so all that had to happen was it was put in the oven when I got home.  If I was making stirfry I would cut up all the veggies and put them in a ziploc and put the cut up meat in another with a marinade.  I found if I cut out all the prep work it didn't take as long to get dinner on the table.

by on Feb. 3, 2014 at 9:46 AM
I have cooked pulled pork, beef stew, ham and even an entire turkey breast in the slow cooker! Once you get the main meat cooked, side items take 30 minutes at most, which is more than enough time to have ready by 6:30pm. Cook in bulk so some days you can just have leftovers.
by Emerald Member on Feb. 3, 2014 at 10:29 AM

I cook on weekends and have leftovers (or freeze and have leftovers later on in the week.) For crockpot meals, veggies can be cut up and frozen on weekends, too and then thawed as needed. Containers of spaghetti sauce or chili. 

by Emerald Member on Feb. 3, 2014 at 10:31 AM

Here's an easy hamburger casserole that can be frozen ahead, thawed during the day in the refrigerator, and baked when you get get home.

Easy Hamburger Casserole

1 lb extra lean ground beef  (or brown ground beef or turkey and drain fat)

1 small chopped onion

½ tsp salt

½ tsp pepper

1 pkg (16 oz) frozen mixed vegetables

1 can cheese soup

1 (16oz) pkg tater tots

Heat oven to 375°. Mix beef, onion, salt, and pepper in ungreased 2 qt casserole. Arrange vegetables on meat. Pour soup over, cover with tater tots. Bake uncovered 1 hour or until potatoes are golden brown.

Note:  if doubling this, then bake about 2 hours.

by on Feb. 3, 2014 at 10:32 AM
I meal plan around Pinterest. I don't work now but I still use mine at least 3x times a week.

Pinterest has some really great quick and healthy week night meals along with a million and a half crock pot recipes. Breakfast for dinner is a good one too.
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