Let me set the scene for you. It was 5:30pm, after a long day at work. I had just picked up my kids from daycare and shuffled them into the house. I was 8 eight months pregnant and EXHAUSTED. The house was a mess because we were packing to move in a few months (yes, I moved states with a newborn!) My kids were asking what was for dinner and like usual, I had no freaking clue.
But what I did have was a mental list of all the easiest meals I could throw together in literally 5 minutes for my 2 and 4 year old.
Now, I’m not saying these are awesome meals to have every day. Because to be completely honest, the nutritional quality of some of these meals is definitely questionable. But when you are in motherhood survival mode, then feeding them at all is a win.
In no particular order, we have:
5 Minute Meals You Need To Survive Mommyhood
Eggs and Toast – You will definitely see eggs on this list quite a few times. I thank my lucky stars that my kids will actually eat scrambled eggs because there is tons of protein and they take such a short time to cook.
Snack Dinner – This one is my fave! I am probably not the first mom to come up with snack dinner, but I am quite proud of the fact that I made it up all by myself. Well, really my kids did, sort of. They wanted a cheese stick, grapes and crackers one night and I was like, “You just want snacks!” Thus Snack Dinner was born. It can be anything you personally have in your pantry that is usually a snack, but when placed next to a few other snacks on a plate – it becomes Snack Dinner,
Bag Meal – I tell people about bag meals all the time and they don’t know what I’m talking about. Do you? They are literally meals in a bag in the freezer section. They’re usually some kind of pasta dinner. You dump it in a pan, cover and cook for ten minutes. I know it’s not technically 5 minutes, but you don’t do anything except dump it in the pan, so it is on the list.
Frozen Dinner – Slightly different than a bag meal, although still found in the frozen aisle. They used to be called “TV dinners” but I think that dates me. I don’t think people call them TV dinners anymore. They’re just frozen meals. They are quick and easy and there are even tons of healthy options.
Leftovers – This is an awesome option especially if the kids loved it the first night. You’re almost guaranteed a stress free dining experience.
Quesadilla – What could be simpler than a tortilla and cheese? You might get a little fancy by adding some chicken, veggies or salsa to the ‘Dilla too, but definitely not necessary. And don’t forget the easy-peasy microwave version if you really need a quick meal.
Chicken Nuggets – Once upon a time, I told myself I didn’t want to be the kind of mom who served her kids chicken nuggets and Mac n cheese at every meal. Of course, that was the pre-kids version of me. Now I know what a godsend microwave chicken nuggets are.
Delivery – When even eggs and toast seems like an impossible task, you can try calling someplace to deliver. Helpful Hint: be sure to call about 45 minutes in advance of when you usually have dinner to allow for the delivery window.
Pasta and frozen veggies – Most pasta can usually be boiled fairly quickly. Boiling the darn water usually takes longer than actually cooking the pasta! Add some jarred sauce and frozen veggies and you have yourself a pretty healthy and quick homemade meal. Score!
Ravioli – Similar to the previous meal option (pasta and veggies), we have a delightful Ravioli dinner. You can find heathy fresh packages in the refrigerated section of your grocery store. They usually have a longish expiration date and cook quickly in boiled water. Add some jarred sauce and you have another winner of a quick meal for the family.
PB&J – This one I call a desperation dinner. It’s so easy to slap some bread, peanut butter and jelly together. Add a cheese stick on the side and you’ve managed to hit some major food groups – dairy, protein, fruit, and starch.
Easy Mac – At least I know my kids will eat it.
Here’s a post I wrote about not wanting to be a “mac and cheese mom” and then it happened LOL.
What’s your go-to 5 minute meal? Let’s add it to the list.