The Edmond Sun

Food

July 22, 2013

Families can make nutritious meals in minutes

Food Network star Jamie Deen shares simple tips and tricks for family meal time success

Family Features — After a chaotic day of shuttling kids around from school to appointments to sports practices, finding time to prepare a delicious meal that the whole family will enjoy can be challenging. Getting everyone around the dinner table for a meal provides the perfect opportunity to encourage children to explore new foods and build healthy eating habits for life, but with busy schedules it's often easier said than done.  

Food Network star and father of two, Jamie Deen, has partnered with the makers of Hidden Valley  products  to offer some tips that help his family cut through the kitchen chaos and join together to enjoy nutritious and hearty family meals.

• Don’t give up: This is important to remember as your children grow. Don’t think that you've hit a wall when they say they don’t like something and that your recipe catalog is now reduced to only things they like. Give the “rejected” ingredients another try later on. Both you and your kids may be surprised at the results! For a new take on a veggie side that the whole family will love, try this recipe for Roasted Cauliflower with Creamy Ranch Sauce.

• Peruse the prepared: Most grocery stores offer prepared veggies. Chopping, slicing and julienning can be very time consuming. If you don’t have the luxury of time, veggies in bags are just as nutritious and can be huge time savers.

• Celebrate seasonings: Cooking with spices makes all the difference, but finding that perfect combination takes additional time. Don’t be afraid to explore ready-made seasonings and rubs, they’ll save you time and create flavors your family will love.

• Plan ahead: Menu-planning can also be a huge time saver. It requires more thinking at the start of the week, but will help you see what dishes can be remixed for later on in the week. Turkey and baked potatoes on Monday can be turned into turkey sliders and ranch mashed potatoes on Thursday!

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