Episode 141 [Coaching] Fixing Dinner While Working Full Time with Emily
How do working moms do it all? I don’t have all the answers, but my guest, Emily, and I explore some ways to get dinner on the table while juggling work and home.
With four kids ages 6-5 months, Emily is one busy mom. Juggling work and home is a challenge many face. We talk about the importance of thinking about time as you plan your meals. Working from home means that Emily can do 10-15 minutes of prep during her lunch break. She could even get everything in the liner of her instant pot, refrigerate it until she gets ready to pick up the kids from daycare, and then start the instant pot before she leaves.
Thinking about how much time a recipe really takes is a key step to weeknight dinner success. I encouraged her to download my Master Meal Planning Sheet and add the amount of time each recipe takes. For the next few weeks, she could even set a stopwatch on her phone to get a better idea of the amount of time it really takes to make a recipe.
Emily is working on improving her cooking skills and expanding the foods in her regular rotation. We talked about the concept of “Base Ingredients.” When looking at new recipes, decide if the recipe uses familiar flavors with new ingredients, or familiar ingredients with new flavors. You don’t want to change both. Episode 115 talks about how base ingredients can help you expand your family’s palate.
One of the best ways to up your weeknight dinner game is to “cook once, eat twice.” Making double the protein and freezing it for another day is a great way to make dinner easier. We talked about the best storage containers for freezing foods. (Hint, I think zip top bags are the easiest.)
Finally, we talked about quarterly deep-dive grocery shopping. My Holiday Planning Guide has several sheets for planning for a deep-dive shopping trip. I suggested that Emily print out the planning sheets and start making notes on the products she is using, and how much she needs for one month. This will help her plan her next deep-dive shopping trip with actual data about the products they are using in their home.
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Marie Fiebach is a married mother of four active kids. She helps busy families plan and execute weeknight dinner so they can recapture a little calm in the crazy. You can see her every week on KAKE TV’s Good Morning Kakeland or listen to the Feed Your Family Tonight Podcast.
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