- Hi autumn, bye autumn. Lovely Texas Weather. Last week we were soaked to the bone. It was almost 80 degrees yesterday…this morning we are waking up to forty-four, and tonight it will be in the twenties.
Mamas, like it or not, cooler weather brings colds, the flu, allergies, and sick households. If you live in the south, it also brings ice days.
After days of being coughed on, puked at, and booger smeared, sometimes Mom succumbs to all of the germs, the cupboards quickly go bare, and we need help!
Do yourself a favor and prepare ahead. Stock the pantry with a few ingredients to make food on the fly. Buy a box of cereal, quick cook oats, a box of crackers, ginger ale, a box of Popsicles, and a few cans of soup. Dried pasta and jarred or frozen marinara sauce are always crowd pleasers. I try hard to keep some browned ground meat and cooked chicken in the freezer for a quick thaw and serve meal. Frozen or canned fruits and vegetables can be a lifesaver.
If you really want to be an overachiever, grab a plastic bin to stash in your closet or under your bed and fill it with supplies for a winter craft, ingredients for hot chocolate, new play-doh, a few games they haven’t seen in awhile, bathtub paints…basically stuff to keep their attention when you’re stuck inside for mist of the day. There are some cute ideas on my Snow Day! Pinterest Board.
Southwest Skillet or try this one from Damn Delicious
1 ½ cups brown or white rice
3 cups chicken stock
1-2 cups cubed cooked chicken or ground beef
1 can Rotel or other canned tomatoes with chilis
1 can black beans, rinsed
1 cup frozen sweet corn
1-2 cups sharp cheddar or Mexican blend cheese
Sour cream or cream cheese, optional – stir in ½ cup after removing from the heat for creaminess
*make it meatless by deleting the meat
Sauté rice in some oil or butter. Add chicken stock, Rotel, and corn. Bring to boil, cover, reduce heat, and simmer 20 minutes, or until rice is tender. Stir, add in meat and beans. Top with cheese, turn off, cover and allow to stand 5-10 minutes.
Thank you Gimmie Some Oven for the Easiest Crock Pot Tacos Ever
4 chicken breasts
1 jar of your favorite salsa
Off the Cuff Swedish Meatballs or Stroganoff
1 batch prepared & cooked/frozen meatballs (this one is my go-to) or 1 pound browned seasoned ground beef or turkey
2 Tablespoons butter
2 Tablespoons flour
1-2 cups warmed beef broth – add intermittently to achieve desired thickness
2 Tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
1 teaspoon prepared mustard
1 small package frozen peas
1 cup sour cream
Dried or fresh parsley
Bring a pot of water to boil. Salt water and cook egg noodles. Add parsley, set aside. In another pan, make a roux with flour and butter, add broth to create gravy. Season with salt, pepper, mustard and Worcestershire sauce. Add in peas, bring to gentle boil, and simmer 10-15 minutes. Turn off heat and stir in sour cream.
Toss It Together Southwest Chicken Soup
This soup can be easily assembled with pantry and freezer ingredients
32 oz (4c) carton low-sodium chicken broth
3 cups cooked chicken (rotisserie or leftover work great)
1/2 bag frozen sweet corn or confetti corn
1 can Rotel
juice of 1 lime
2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon Mexican oregano, dried
1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon fresh cracked pepper
Optional: pump up the protein and add one can of drained and rinsed black beans.
Bring all ingredients to a boil in a large saucepan. Reduce heat and simmer 15-20 minutes.
Garnish with: crispy tortilla strips, sour cream, pico de gallo, avocado, cilantro, grated cheddar
Easy to Keep on hand in the Freezer – Classic Chicken Pot Pie
I add fresh thyme to the sauce, use herb roasted chicken, and sometimes have homemade pie crust but this general guide is too easy!
Want some more pre-gathered meal ideas? Check out this post from Southern Plate!
Down for the count? Keep the kids busy with these ideas: