Weeknight dinners require planning in order to happen effectively. Due to the busy lives people lead, throwing together a healthy, fresh weeknight meal is likely impossible on the fly. Follow these tips for cooking a weeknight dinner to make it easier and less stressful on yourself!

Prep Dinner in the Morning

An easy way to get ahead in cooking weeknight dinners is by prepping a little bit in the morning. Pull your frozen meats out in order to allow them to de-thaw throughout the day. Not only does this help with it comes to cooking the actual meal, it helps by putting the food you need to cook right in front of your face when you open your refrigerator. Anything else that can be made ahead of time and still taste good ten hours later, should also be made in the morning. You will thank yourself later.

Double or Triple Recipes

If you really want to get more bang for your buck, double the recipe so you’ll have plenty to bring for leftovers. Not only does this allow for leftovers the next day, it also gives you the opportunity  freeze and eat at a much later date.

Use a Slow Cooker

Invest in a slow cooker so that you can toss ingredients in the pot in the morning, forget about it, and then have a warm meal ready by dinnertime. There are plenty of crockpot recipes online, as well as books filled with recipes. Not only that, but often times you can create your own concoction using whatever you may have in your refrigerator. Using a crockpot once a week will make you feel like you have the night off from cooking!

Make a List of Favorites

Make a list of recipes that you and your family enjoy and that you feel comfortable cooking. Not only does this guarantee taste satisfaction, it also makes dinner less stressful because you are working with a familiar recipe. To keep things fresh, change the recipe from time to time and see which variations your family enjoys the most.

Weeknight dinners don’t have to be stressful. By preparing in the morning, doubling recipes, utilizing your slow cooker and going back to the tried and true favorite recipes, you will set yourself up for success on weeknights!