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How often do you prepare a proper evening meal?


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#1 flowerrose

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Posted 01 August 2013 - 08:16 PM

The 'what's for tea tonight' thread makes it painfully obvious that there are a lot of families eating a lot better than mine.

If I'm honest, I only prep a proper evening meal a couple of times a week. Otherwise we eat whatever we can grab from the fridge; an omelet, beans on toast, salad. DH cooks at least one weekday night and we probably get take out one other night.

I used to be better but I find the school run is throwing me off, peak meal prep time is now spent driving, doing home readers, etc.

The kids eat before DH gets home and, unless it's something that will keep, I'm pretty much over cooking two evening meals a day.

So;
How often do you cook a proper evening meal?
When do you prep it?
If you have kids, do they eat with you or before? How do you manage it either way?


#2 flowerrose

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Posted 01 August 2013 - 08:31 PM

My two have just eaten three rounds of peanut butter and jam sandwiches!
Seriously, mother of the year going in here!

#3 SEA

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Posted 01 August 2013 - 08:37 PM

We have a proper meal most days, but they're all very quick to cook. The things that take the longest to actually cook would be a quiche or a roast (which we have some weekends).

I'm not a gourmet chef, so most meals are pretty simple. Meat/veggie substitute with veggies, stir fries, burritos/fajitas/nachos, pasta, cottage pie, salads in the summer.

Prep is done when I get home from work, or in the afternoon if I am at home.

#4 aChocLover

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Posted 01 August 2013 - 09:03 PM

Well if I wasn't in a foul mood before, I am sure as shit about to explode now!

7pm and I have DH asking what's for dinner, an adult step son who is unemployed sitting on his A pretending to be busy (is playing games on his tablet) and the kids are in the shower fighting! Gah!

And no freaking dinner!

Normally I would have something either defrosted and prepared to go. Recipe/ingredients sorted. I opt for one easy meal per week which either includes take away or bbq/salad.

Tonight will be toasted sandwiches or baked beans!


#5 ~AnA~

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Posted 01 August 2013 - 09:07 PM

We cook a proper meal maybe 5 times a week? Most a quickly prepared and um well, DH cooks most nights! I cook maybe 2 nights at the moment and have done so since Dd was born.

On the lazy days we either eat out, have take away, or chick something frozen in the airfryer smile.gif

DD will usually eat dinner about 45 mins before we do, but she ends up eating more when we sit down to eat as well.

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#6 flowerrose

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Posted 01 August 2013 - 09:09 PM

ACL - or (evil twin coming out here) you could call a mate to meet in a wine bar/bistro in 15 mins, head out for a lovely meal and let DH sort the beans out for everyone.
It sounds like you could use a break love. x

#7 Angel_Elle

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Posted 01 August 2013 - 09:15 PM

Even though I'm a SAHM we have had heaps of quick simple meals just as it was easiest but then I got sick of feel rundown as I wasn't getting enough veggies.

My worst days are when DH is on shift as from the time kids are up I'm on the go until he gets home at 7pm and the kids are nearly ready for bed.
Add to that a 5.5 yr old has become fussy from too many simple meals.

I now in DH work days I put together a slow cooker meal (anything to accompany it is also preped) whilst kids are having brekkie and getted dressed - I have brekkie after (unless its a school day and I wait til I get home) in the afternoon is usually chaos as DS2 is a monster into everything every second so I tend to give the kids afternoon tea and then sit and do reading with Milly whilst I watch the others play - I cheat and throw on low the bit to go with Dinner so its ready by 5/5.30. Dinner time for the kids I'm putting together ther lunch boxes for the next school day and getting anything out of the freezer for the next nights dinner. We eat once kids are in bed so I just put the extra potato/rice in a bowl covered in airfoil on keep warm in the oven - unless DH is on nights and we eat together before he heads off.

Only variation is I make Pizzas Friday nights regardless if DH is on shift i just prepare in the afternoon and my weapon for peace with the kids is its movie night(aka popcorn/lollies) so if the play up too much they miss out on mivie night til the next week.

Any meal that requires a lot of Prep waits til DH isn't working so he can occupy the kids.


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#8 jantastic

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Posted 01 August 2013 - 09:24 PM

ACL - sounds like you're a bit taken for granted. sad.gif Adult 'kids' tend to do that I think.


I am another of those 'whoops, it's dinner time... oh, I have no meat out... ummm.....' type of parents. I don't think I've ever posted in the 'what's for dinner' thread. I probably never will.

I would like to be more organised, but life is far too important for measly things like being organised tongue.gif

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#9 em2007

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Posted 01 August 2013 - 09:39 PM

QUOTE(jantastic @ Aug 1 2013, 09:24 PM) View Post

ACL - sounds like you're a bit taken for granted. sad.gif Adult 'kids' tend to do that I think.
I am another of those 'whoops, it's dinner time... oh, I have no meat out... ummm.....' type of parents. I don't think I've ever posted in the 'what's for dinner' thread. I probably never will.

I would like to be more organised, but life is far too important for measly things like being organised tongue.gif


Sometimes I ask the kids what they want, and when Will answers 'plain pasta' I do an internal 'yay!'.

I'm not good at meal prep or planning. I can cook, but really suck at the planning ahead part.


#10 ~MG~

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Posted 01 August 2013 - 09:42 PM

We have pretty much a fully home cooked meal every night...other than Friday night - it is help yourselves to 2 min noodles, eggs on toast etc etc....And if you call leftovers proper meals we have that once a week as well!

We have takeout maybe once a month.

I am one of those meal planners! I used to plan a month menu but now I am down to every couple of weeks. I buy meat in bulk and shop every 2 weeks (with bread, milk, F&V when needed).



#11 *Ms Jessica*

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Posted 01 August 2013 - 10:07 PM

We usually have a proper meal every night and at least 1 left overs night a week. When I make things like spaghetti bologanse, curries, soup etc I always make enough for 3-4 meals that I stash in the freezer for quick easy meals on the days where I work.

If I didn't meal plan, we'd be eating toasted sandwiches and baked beans every night.

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#12 Guest_Windsor_Guest

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Posted 01 August 2013 - 10:09 PM

I meal plan so we tend to have a proper dinner 5 nights per week. One is down as toasties or something similar (DHs specialty...) and one night on the weekend is down as 'whatevers' so if we're out at lunch that day it's baked beans or 2 min noodles for dinner or vice versa, we manage to scrounge something for lunch at home if we're heading out for dinner.

I LOVE my slowcooker in winter, it does wonders to the (very) roughly chopped veggies and meat I throw in while we're having breakfast in the morning. Otherwise, it's just easy to prepare stuff like meat and steamed veg if it's a night we're later home and more elaborate stuff when I have time.

#13 Tigridia

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Posted 01 August 2013 - 10:20 PM

Pretty much every night. Although we tend to cook for 2-3 nights and then do left overs when a few accumulate in the fridge. We meal plan on a weekly basis so I do the meals for the week and we decide on a daily basis what is for that day. The things that need the longest prep time get done on the weekend and things that need the freshest ingredients get eaten earlier in the week (we usually shop on a Friday).

The meal planning includes breakfasts and lunches too since we try not to eat too many carbs so tend to have cooked (egg based) breakfasts most days and protein lunches. I usually eat something from a dinner as a lunch leftover, hubby pre-cooks a heap of meaty stuff for his work lunches on the weekends (I am vego so he eats more meat for breakfast/lunch and tends to eat more veg based dinners).

We also cook separate meals for DD. She eats a lot of what we eat but we always have a stack of roast vegies, roast meats, home made sausage rolls, vegie patties, pastas etc in the freezer for her to supplement when our dinner is not suitable. She eats at 5-5.30 so either has left overs from the night before or something out of the freezer we have made for her. We eat once she goes to bed.

I try to prep alot of dinner while Miss A is eating. We tend to do fairly quick and easy meals many nights - warm salads, asian dishes, BBQ'd/grilled things. Anything that is more time consuming was usually prepped on the weekend so just needs finishing off. Hubby usually finishes off dinner as I get DD off to bed so we eat 7-7.30ish.

We often freeze excess portions of things like soups/casseroles/lasagnes etc so we can always grab stuff out of the freezer to supplement for nights when we don't want to cook.
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#14 ----

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Posted 01 August 2013 - 10:28 PM

I meal plan weekly so we have a proper cooked meal 6/7 days.
Thursdays is usually sausages after netball training for the kids and I cook salmon and steamed veg when I get home.

If I didn't meal plan, every afternoon at 5/5.30pm I would be still staring into the fridge/freezer/pantry deciding.
Meal prep is usually before/after school pick up depending on the dish and how much prep is required.
I/we eat with the kids all every night, I don't want to have to do 2 meal preps/wash ups or eat reheated food.

#15 la_jeune_mariée

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Posted 01 August 2013 - 10:29 PM

Most nights. More out of guilt than any great commitment to nutrition.

I was going through a period where I really resented shopping and cooking. Then my food processor broke and rather than get a new one I got a Thermochef. Now I'm a member of the Thermo-cult. It's like One Direction for the middle aged.
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