As a millennial parent, you’re probably staying busy all the time. You’re not only having to be a parent, but you’re also having to work, run the household, keep up with personal relationships, take time for self-care, and it can go far beyond that too. Needless to say, you’re probably overwhelmed with things that need to be done on a daily basis, and this can become pretty overwhelming, right?
Meals, whether it’s breakfast on weekends, dinners, or special meals for the holidays, can all be fairly overwhelming too. So, how can you make this easier on yourself? Better yet, how can you keep a routine of cooking and food preparation that is instantly easier for yourself? Keep reading on to find out!
Use Cookie Cutters to Remove Crusts
Do you often need to prepare lunch for your kids? Whether it’s to pack it in their lunch boxes or on the weekend, chances are, your little one has some demands for their food, right? Kids oftentimes seem to dislike crust on bread. Plus, children (girls in particular) also tend to love shapes, especially when they see them in food. So instead of using a knife to cut crust or food into intricate shapes such as stars or flowers, why not use cookie cutters instead?
There are plenty of cutters on the market that make intricate details. Those are often the best options for creating festive designs for holidays and special occasions. While clear-cutting stainless steel models are ideal for professionals, plastic cutters may be better for home cooks with little ones. But in general, these can get plenty of use from cookies, sandwiches, and the tiny ones can be used for veggies too.
Set Up the Slow Cooker the Night Before
Slow cookies are going to be your best friend! Every busy parent, no, every busy person who needs to cook could use this! Whether you have a busy schedule or simply want to avoid the fuss of cooking dinner when you get home from work, set your slow cooker the night before is a smart idea. This means you can leave it on while you go to bed and have it ready for you when you wake up in the morning.
A slow cooker cooks food by simmering it slowly for hours. This helps to tenderize and break down meats and create delicious dishes. You can use a slow cooker to prepare just about any dish. But it’s best to choose meats that are a bit tougher and have a higher fat content, as these tend to hold up better in long cooking. In fact, one of the tastiest cabbage soup recipes is right here and you can even test it out with your slow cooker. Treat yourself to a slow cooker; whether you buy a brand new one or purchase one second-hand one from the thrift store, you’ll love this option.
Freeze Fresh Herbs in Oil
You know how frustrating it can be if you’ve ever been stuck in a kitchen with wilting fresh herbs. Wilted herbs lack the flavors that they had when they were happier. Plus, when they’re wilted, it usually means it’s time to throw them out. It’s far from ideal to have to waste food or money, but there’s a simple solution: freezing them!
You can freeze herbs in water or oil in ice cube trays or freezer bags. Either method is quick, easy, and will save you money in the long run! Herbs frozen in oil are ideal for sautéing and blending into soups. The oil protects them from browning and freezer burn and gives them a deeper flavor that’s more consistent in texture than frozen herbs without oil. So, how can this help busy parents in the kitchen? Well, this food hack isn’t so much about helping when you’re busy; it’s about helping you stay eco-friendly.
Use a Waffle Iron for More Than Just Waffles
Waffle irons can be the next secret appliance that you can use on your busy schedule. While yes, they’re ideal for waffles, that’s not the only thing you can use them for! They’re also a versatile tools for making a wide variety of foods. You can use your waffle iron to make hash browns, tater tots, mini calzones, and more. And it’s great for making breakfast food that normally takes a long time to cook or would need to be pressed (such as a panini).
You can even use your waffle iron to make a quick quesadilla. Just spray your iron with oil, then place a tortilla on it, sprinkle it with cheese, and close the lid. If you need extremely quick dinners for the whole family and are limited on ingredients or lack time, this could be the perfect option.