Episode 37 Surviving a Kitchen Renovation
Surviving a kitchen renovation can be a challenge. Feeding your family takes extra planning and effort. Here are a few tips to make it a little easier.
-Start by purging your current kitchen. Donate unused kitchen gadgets and recycle your cottage cheese and yogurt containers. Get rid of chipped plates. Clean out your old spices. Look in the back of your cupboards. If there are foods that you bought but your family didn’t like them, donate them or pass on to a friend. You want to start your new kitchen with food you enjoy.
-Make ahead some freezer meals. Cooked chicken and taco meat, ground beef, and casseroles are all good things to prepare.
-Start packing up your kitchen early. Do not leave this task for the day before the contractor arrives. As you pack, separate into 3 categories.
Toss and donate
-Store things for the temporary kitchen in clear plastic tubs. Things you want in your temporary kitchen include:
Electric Griddle or Skillet
Microwave (if it is a countertop style)
Blender (ONLY if you are a big smoothie family, otherwise pack it away)
Cutting Board (The biggest one you own)
Basic utensils – Tongs, vegetable peeler, spatula, serving spoon, slotted spoon, ladle
-Pack up food processor and large stand mixer and blender, (unless you are a regular smoothie family)
2. Set up a temporary kitchen in a place away from the construction dust. You want to be as close to a sink as possible. Basement bars, laundry rooms, or even the dining room can all work. Try to have your refrigerator close to the temporary kitchen.
3. You are in food survival mode. Now is the time for simple meals. Use your slow cooker with liners to eliminate cleanup. BBQ Beef is a good recipe. You can use your Instant Pot to boil pasta, but you will need to use a slotted spoon tongs to remove it from the pot. Consider getting a hot plate, just make sure it is not induction unless you have magnetic cookware.
4. Use paper goods. Buy paper plates, silverware, cups and napkins in bulk. It is hard enough to wash the cooking dishes without a kitchen sink. Eliminate the need to wash more dishes by using disposable.
5. Buy pre-washed veggies. Buy lettuce that is pre-washed and get pre-washed and cut up veggies. Frozen veggies are great too. They are cleaned and chopped too. Use the salad bar at your grocery store for cleaned and chopped fruit and veggies.
6. Use your grill. Simple grilled meats and veggies are great even in the winter.
7. Keep your food very simple. If your family can survive on cereal and yogurt for breakfast, do it. Simple soups in the slow cooker and sandwiches and salads. So often when we eat out we are getting sandwiches and salads. Eat those at home and eat more complicated food out.
8. Plan to eat out. Budget for it and put it on your meal plan. Maybe you have “pizza Fridays” and “Sunday Dinner Out.” Rather than getting takeout, go to the restaurant and eat there. Your life will be a little chaotic and having time to sit together as a family around a table will be a nice break from the construction and the dust.