Home Parenting On-The-Go Recipes & Meal Prep Tips For Busy Weeknights

On-The-Go Recipes & Meal Prep Tips For Busy Weeknights

On-The-Go Recipes & Meal Prep Tips For Busy Weeknights

In a few short weeks, our “break” from sports will end and we will be back to busy weeknights in between various practices and activities. I love taking my kids to their activities and watching them play; that’s not the issue for me. In the past, I’ve hit the drive-thru or stopped for a quick dinner at a restaurant (nothing wrong with that!), but I’ve begun to start preparing more to-go meals at home. Here are a few tips, ideas, and recipes I have picked up over the past seasons of sports and activities:

Gather Your Supplies

Having a collection of supplies makes it easier to put together on-the-go meals. I use most of these for packing school lunches, too!

  • Divided individual containers like these or these
  • Larger divided containers for “family style”
  • Condiment cups like these
  • Parchment paper, foil, paper bags (I aim for reusable things as often as I can, but sometimes you have to do what’s convenient!)

Prep the Meals

Let’s talk about meal ideas! My kids are still a little bit young (read: too messy) to manage harder things like soup, etc., so I stick to meals they can eat mostly with their hands. Here are a few of our favorites:

Sub Sandwiches

My kids love Jersey Mike’s, and it’s a frequent request when we are out and about for activities. They’re pretty content with my homemade version too, and it is super simple! All you need is:

  • Sandwich rolls (you can buy sub sandwich rolls at the grocery store—a must to recreate a Jersey Mike’s sandwich in my kids’ opinions)
  • Shredded iceberg lettuce (bagged in the produce section)
  • Sliced tomatoes
  • Sliced cheese (make it easier on yourself and buy the cheese already sliced!)
  • Mayo
  • Favorite lunch meat (turkey and ham over here)

Assemble the sandwiches with all your favorites, wrap in parchment paper, and secure with tape for extra authenticity. Add the sandwich, a bag of chips, and fruits or veggies to a paper bag (or lunch box) and be on your way!

Chicken Taquitos

A family favorite for years! This recipe comes from Our Best Bites. Since I know it so well, I hardly use measurements anymore, just mix everything in until it looks nice and creamy and yummy (taste test to get it to your liking!).

Print Recipe
Chicken Taquitos
You can prep these at the beginning of the week for an easy grab and go option on a busy night!
  1. Preheat the oven to 425 and cover a baking sheet with foil. Lightly spray the foil with cooking spray. In a mixer, mix all the ingredients (except for tortillas and salt) in a mixer. In the middle of each tortilla, spoon a few tablespoons of the chicken mixture. Wrap up each tortilla like a taquito and place on the baking sheet. Continue with all the tortillas. Lightly spray the taquitos with cooking spray and sprinkle with salt. Bake for 15-20 minutes. Freeze in a plastic bag or refrigerate until ready to use.
  2. When ready to use, heat up the taquitos and wrap in foil. Bring along condiment cups of salsa and sour cream for a tasty on the go dinner!

Family-Style Charcuterie

Growing up we called these a “snack plate” dinner. Nowadays, it’s charcuterie. Whatever you want to call it, this is an easy way to have a simple dinner. I use two containers and fill with items similar to these:

  • Container #1: Fill with fruits, veggies, dips (using condiment cups), pretzels, etc.
  • Container#2: Fill with cut up string cheese, lunch meat roll ups, chicken nuggets (warmed up of course!), or whatever sounds good to you!

Premade Ideas

If eating out less is your goal, a few premade (but still more cost-effective) ideas I like to have on hand:

  • Lunchables-style boxes: I like the Good & Gather brand from Target or the Simple Truth brand from Kroger.
  • Corn dogs from Trader Joes: Heat up, wrap in foil, and bring along your extra ketchup packets from Chick-Fil-A (anyone else have a container for extra sauces in your fridge?) plus a side of fruit or veggies.
  • PB&J!

While I can’t guarantee I will never stop at a drive-thru during this upcoming sports season (I definitely will.), a little bit of prep will help me meet my goal of fewer trips!

What are your tips and ideas for busy weeknight meals?

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Amanda moved to the Dallas area as a child, moved away for college, but then returned “home” with her husband and new daughter. Now five years later, she and her family are putting down roots in Collin County. Her educational background is an undergraduate degree in Elementary Education and a graduate degree in Early Childhood Studies. Most days you can find her doing her best to put her knowledge to work with 3 of the sweetest students around- born in 2010, 2014 and 2015. Once bedtime hits, you can find her doing some instructional design work, blogging, or finding the next great series on Netflix, usually with a cookie in hand. You can read more about her collection of thoughts on everything from motherhood and parenting to DIY and fitness, and whatever else is on her mind at her new blog <a href "http://www.thiscollectivelife.com/" This Collective Life </a>.


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