July 11, 2014

From CFF to QSS

For those of you who have been following me for awhile you've probably heard me use the term 'CFF', short for Convenience Food Friday.  Because by Friday I'm so fried that even saying 'Convenience Food Friday' is just too much of a mouthful.  Before my meal planning journey, this often meant 'FFF' (we would say "triple F" in our house) or Fast Food Friday.  We eat out a lot less now that I'm in the routine of planning ahead but I still like to make sure Friday takes minimal effort - leftovers, make-ahead, or quick and EASY! 

This summer has brought us a new acronym theme night, QSS... Quick Soccer Supper.  Prior to this summer Marin's activities were always on the weekends but we now have soccer on Wednesday evening... at 6.  So I have a 30+ minute commute, pick-up from daycare, and have to squeeze in a meal before getting changed, snacks packed and out the door in time to make it to the soccer field... all with a tired 5 year old.  This gives me about 15 minutes max to get supper on the table.  We could hit a drive-thru on the way to the field (it's an option, and I judge no-one who takes that route) but so far we've managed.  Here are some 'QSS' ideas if you're faced with the same challenge, or even if you just want to spend less time in the kitchen so you can get out enjoy your evening!


Slow Cooker

It's not just for the winter!  Last week we had this Chicken Coconut Curry, served over couscous.  I loved it the most but everyone ate it and as a bonus, most slow cooker meals will leave enough to pack up for a leftover lunch, meaning you have nothing to do when you get home from soccer!  And this meal was actually better as leftovers.  This week we had Lasagna Soup - another hit and extremely easy!!  For more slow cooker ideas check out my Slow Cooker Favorites on Pinterest.

Wraps

I love having homemade tortillas on hand in the fridge or freezer, and if you make sure you have some fillings at the ready this can be a really quick meal.  One of our favorites is sour cream, avocado, black beans, cheese and cherry tomatoes... but the sky is the limit here, anything goes really!  As a bonus, this is an assemble yourself meal, so all you have to do is haul everything out of the fridge.  You could also wrap the wrap to eat on the go if you're really pressed for time.

Marin's masterpiece


Dips

I had Layered Nacho Dip on the menu a few weeks ago to use up leftover Re-fried Beans I had in the freezer.  Everyone seems to have their own method of assembling a layered nacho dip but this is mine from bottom to top - re-fried beans, sour cream mixed with a small amount of Mexican Spice Blend, salsa, avocado and diced peppers, shredded cheese.  Dips can be made ahead and ready to go when you walk in the door.  Hummus is another good choice... perhaps hummus, cheese cubes, pre-cut veggies and pita triangles?  Who said supper had to be warm?

Eggs

Eggs cook up pretty quick, so you could make an omelette if you had time but perhaps some hard boiled eggs that you made the night before would also do the trick.  Serve with veggies and dip.  I have Ranch Spice Blend on hand at all times for a quick dip.

Entrée Salad

Many salads can be made ahead of time and if you top them with things like leftover diced chicken, beans, nuts & seeds, quinoa, bulgar, etc... they'll also keep a little soccer player full of steam.  Check out my week that was dedicated to salads or my Favorite Salads on Pinterest for more salad inspiration.  I also have a handy Salad Dressing print-out!

Summer Berry Salad - we had this with Raspberry Vinaigrette and Shrimp


Cold Pizza

Make it the night before and grab a slice on the way out the door!  That's actually quicker than a drive-thru!  As a twist this month I made Naan and we used the leftovers as a base for pizza.

A Naan Pinwheel


Leftovers

Plan ahead and make enough the night before to get you through two nights.  Or even throw on an extra piece of chicken to dice up and throw in the salad, on top of that pizza or in that wrap we've already talked about?  My favorite leftover chicken for this purpose is this Maple Dill Chicken - delicious warm or cold and would go great diced up and tossed in this Arugula Salad with Honey Lemon Dressing!


Hope you're all having a great summer!

Sandra

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