The other night for dinner I made this Tex-Mex Chopped Salad. It was amazingly delicious! We pretty much gobbled it down; even the three year old loved it! It was amazing, but it was also A LOT of chopping, A LOT of ingredients, and A LOT of time! Maybe I’m exaggerating a little here, but I am now feeling the need to SIMPLIFY. Simplify…ahhh, that word just sounds so wonderful!
Anyone out there believe that less is more?
This winter, my son had nine outfits in his drawer…total! At first, when I realized he only had nine outfits, I panicked a little and thought I better hit up the thrift stores and find him some more clothes. Then, I realized nine outfits for him was plenty. I’m a laundry every other day kind of gal, so he really didn’t need any more than that. It was really liberating for me because I didn’t have to sift through his drawers to find something that matched and looked cute. This summer is another story, now because he fits into his big brother’s old clothes. His drawers are full again and he doesn’t even wear half of it! I know it’s overwhelming because whenever my husband dresses him he always puts him in the same outfit. I guess I have some work to do!
Sorry for the tangent, but you get my point.
Recipes can also be simple. Here are a few of my family favorite, FOUR ingredient meals. I can honestly say that on days when I’m planning to make one of these meals, I’m a little happier because I know I won’t have to spend half of nap time doing meal prep. Instead, I can get other things done, play with my older son, maybe even sit down and read a book or take a short nap. Imagine that…a nap! ☺
Quick and Easy Four Ingredient Meals
Easy Hawaiian Chicken Bake by The Pinning Mama
This one is my absolute favorite! It literally takes about five minutes to throw together and you have a delicious and healthy home cooked meal. It really doesn’t get any easier! It will likely take you more time to go through a drive through than it does to prep this meal. I like to serve it over some rice with a bag of frozen veggies and dinner is served!
Baked Ravioli Casserole by Recipes, Food and Cooking
My friend gave this meal to me as a freezer meal when we were both about to have babies. She gave it to me labeled as “Lazy Girl Lasagna.” That name fits perfectly because that is pretty much what it is. I think it’s actually better than lasagna. It’s the perfect comfort food! The prep time is more like ten to fifteen minutes for this one, because you have to brown the hamburger first. If you like lasagna, spaghetti, or ravioli, you will like this meal.
Pesto Chicken Bake by Simply Sissom
My husband loves this meal so much! I actually had to stop making it for a while because I had made it so much, I was getting sick of it myself. This one is another five-minute meal. It’s super easy, very healthy, and is delicious…everyone wins!
BBQ Chicken Tostadas by Cupcakes and Kale Chips
To make it even easier, I cook the chicken in the crockpot until it falls apart on its own and I bake it on a foil lined baking sheet, which makes clean up a breeze. This meal takes about five minutes to put together and six-seven minutes to bake in the oven.
Ham, Egg, and Cheese Wafflewiches by Southern Bite
This meal is more like a fifteen minute meal from start to finish, but still very simple. Who doesn’t love a delicious homemade breakfast sandwich? I’m pretty sure I could eat one any time of the day! Ok, this is making me hungry now!
Here’s the best part about these meals: You can make extra and freeze them for another day! For the first three, you simply make a second dish in a foil pan, cover it and freeze. To freeze the tostadas, freeze the meat mixture and assemble the rest after thawing. Finally, for the Wafflewiches, wrap the individual sandwiches in foil and grab as needed. They are perfect for on the go breakfasts!
When you’re meal planning, make sure to include at least one of these meals or another super simple meal. Give yourself a break and choose something SIMPLE. Enjoy the down time that you would be spending doing meal prep. I guarantee your family will love you just as much if you spend an hour making dinner or five minutes.
*Special thanks to our Guest Blogger, Kara Bowman! About Kara:
Kara is the mama to two rambunctious, wrestle loving, slobber kissing little boys and wife to Jason of five years. Easton is four and loves to run with “jet speed” and Caden is sixteen months and is trying to keep up! Originally from the mitten state, Kara moved to Iowa in 2009 for her first job teaching fourth grade. Now she lives in Marion staying home with her boys. In her downtime you can find her scouring Pinterest for new recipes to add to her meal planning blog Give Thanks and Eat. Follow her on Instagram @givethanksandeat.
Make sure you never miss out on a parenting or community-related blog post: sign up to receive CRMB posts in your inbox. While you’re at it, join our VIP List to ensure you’re one of the first to know about upcoming Cedar Rapids Moms Blog events and promotions!!