Today I want to share super easy meal ideas to help you in the current times. These ideas are super versatile and can be enjoyed by using ingredients you have on hand. I’ve linked to recipes here on RAISE where applicable so you have ratios to work with.
Know that I will personally be relying on easy meals for the next few weeks. One of the many reasons: to protect my mental health. Please make sure you’re taking care of your needs through all of this as well.
1. Steamed Veg + Air Fried (or baked) Chicken + Optional Starch
I rubbed seasonings all over a whole chicken and put it in the air fryer. The steamer was going on the stove top with carrots. Done. Add crackers or toast to the plate if you want to get fancy.
Seasonings I used: Sea Salt, Ancho Chili, Maple Sugar, Turmeric, Black Pepper, Smoked Paprika, Liquid Smoke. I also used a little extra virgin olive oil.
The next time I do this, I’ll use an herb + lemon flavor profile.
Place your ingredients into a pot on your stove or in your pressure cooker. Soup can be made with all sorts of odds and ends. I’ll be making a soup this week with an onion, fresh carrot, frozen veg, and a protein.
Easy Cooking Video: Chicken & Onion Soup
3. Pasta & Red Sauce
I’ll be serving this a few times in the coming days. We have some freezer sauce I made up a while back that the kids love. I only have to remember to thaw it.
Easy Cooking Video: Chicken Thigh Pasta
Sandwiches are versatile and customizeable, and can be nutritious as well. If you have little kids who are picky, you can use cookie cutters to make fun bread shapes. For older kids and adults, you can toast the bread for extra texture and crunch. Some of our favorite sandwich fillings:
- Spread + Jelly
- Fancy Tuna (see this episode of Monday Night Live)
- Lunch Meat + Lettuce (you can add onion, bacon, tomato, and more)
- Leftover Taco Meat + Cheese (toasted sandwich so cheese melts)
5. Pantry Chili
Another easy and versatile meal that you can jazz up, or make simple. If you have produce, onion and bell pepper are great additions. I’ll be making pantry chili very soon and it includes:
- Bell Pepper
- Canned Beans
- Ground Meat
- Tomato Sauce
- Tomato Paste
6. Potato Stew
I make this in our pressure cooker. It’s similar to what I showed you on this episode of Monday Night Live. I add cubed potato, onion, frozen peas, and tomato products. Super simple, very filling.
Another versatile meal that can be made with what you have on hand. If you have flavoring agents (especially chocolate chips) now is a great time to use them.
Waffle Recipes (GF, V, Top 8 Free) | Pancake Recipes (GF, V Top 8 Free)
Easy Cooking Video: Lemon Raspberry Waffles
Freeze What You Can
Batch cooking is always on my mind. If you have leftovers, or are able to double batch anything right now, keep adding to your freezer stock. The biggest benefit to freezing (right now) is that you won’t have the pressure to eat leftovers while you still have fresh produce to consume.
Once you run out of fresh items, break into your freezer stock to keep chugging along (this is our current plan).
Do what you can to keep moving forward, one day at a time. While there is no food shortage, the logistics of such high demand is not something the world was ready for. I imagine that in a couple of weeks stores will be much more able to meet needs quickly.
I’m also advising allergy families to stay on top of their online orders right now. If you normally purchase 4 of something, make your next order when 2 are left. I found that even Amazon is struggling to keep up with orders at the moment. Orders that normally take 1 day with prime are now 7 days. Again, I’m sure this will get better in a few weeks, but for now, if you can only have specific brands (like us) don’t allow your stock to get too low.
At the same time, I’m also being mindful of others. I’m assessing what we NEED and reminding myself that I can go to the store again in X amount of days for more basics. I want to make sure I’m doing my part to ensure that there’s safe food for everyone.
We’re all in this together, and we CAN do this.