mater mea - Celebrating Motherhood and Women of Color

5 Time-Saving Dinner Hacks

Photo credit: Flickr user  Moyan Brenn

Photo credit: Flickr user Moyan Brenn

5 Time-Saving Dinner Hacks

Words: Patricia Joseph

These quick weeknight dinner ideas will help you save time and stress less in the kitchen!

Whether you’re a stay-at-home mom or a 9-to-5 mom, every minute counts when you’re trying to get dinner on the table. When the spotlight is on you to whip up dinner in a hurry, you have to become a kitchen ninja—a master of time and meal preparation.

If you need ideas for serving up meals in a flash, don’t worry—we got you! Try these five dinner hacks to save you time in the kitchen.


Skip the rice, cook couscous

A good pot of rice can take time and requires constant attention. For a quick and healthier alternative, try cooking couscous. It’s a great side dish with any meat, poultry, or seafood. And, the best part: it’s ready in about five minutes.


Buy quick-cooking meats and poultry

When your meals call for meats and poultry, it’s best not to use thick cuts of meat. Instead, use ground beef or turkey, thinly-sliced chicken cutlets, or chicken tenders. These selections cook quickly and will have dinner on the table in less than 30 minutes.


Cook extra ingredients for two meals

Hate cooking a new meal every day? Try cooking extra vegetables, rice, or pasta that will stretch for two meals. Using this tip, you already have cooked ingredients for another meal later in the week, which can be a real time saver.


Make breakfast for dinner

Breakfast for dinner is a no brainer! Most breakfast foods like eggs, bacon, sausages, pancakes, and grits cook quickly and are easy to prepare, leaving you time to tackle other weeknight chores.


Plan a “Do your own thing” dinner

All moms need a day off. Pick a weeknight and let your family choose what they’ll eat for dinner. (Of course, to make things easy on yourself, you should give them a list of menu choices.) The list could include simple meals like pita sandwiches stuffed with salad mix and lunch meat, grilled cheese sandwiches and soup, or a salad. This idea gets the whole family involved with making dinner, creates some family bonding, and gives you a break from weeknight cooking.

Spending less time cooking dinner takes some planning and creativity. But, less time in the kitchen can add up to more “me time” for you later.


Patricia Joseph lives in Georgia with her husband and two of her four children. As a public health analyst, she helps government clients with implementing web, social media, and mobile strategies. Joseph also blogs about healthy eating and wellness.


Related Articles

A New Take On Everyone's Favorite Comfort Food

A Recipe For Delicious, Guilt- (And Lactose-) Free Muffins

Step Your Brunch Game Up With These Crepes