Things that I keep on hand to save me time on weeknights:
- Frozen stuffed pasta- usually ravioli or tortellini
- Frozen vegetables, usually green beans and spinach at a minimum
- A variety of dried pasta
- Thin sliced chicken breasts- these can be quickly marinated & thrown on the grill
- Salsa- a miracle condiment that tastes good on virtually everything
- Single servings of frozen meals- casseroles work especially well here
- Boxed rice- if/when it’s on sale and/or I have a coupon, I’ll keep a couple of boxes of yellow and wild rice on hand so it can simmer away while I get the rest of the meal ready
- Refrigerated dough- whether it’s crescents, biscuits, pizza dough or something else, I like having these on hand for calzones, tarts, pot pies, shortcakes, and of course, pizza
The trick for me when I know I’m in a time crunch, is to pick one of those items, and then use all the yummy fresh stuff I have on hand to make it awesome. For instance, you can elevate the flavor of canned veggies by simply rinsing off the water and juice before using them. Since I cook for two, those small cans of veggies on the top shelf for less than $1 are great for weeknights.
How do you make ordinary, ho-hum ingredients sing on weeknights?