Interested in some quick-fix, no-recipe-required meals for your children and family? Try any one of these super-fast ideas:
– Quick Chick: Season thinly-sliced chicken (or turkey) cutlets with McCormick’s Montreal Chicken seasoning. Heat a little olive oil and/or butter in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat, just enough to thinly coat the bottom of the pan. When hot, add as many cutlets as will fit without crowding. Let cook for a few minutes, until golden brown on the underside. Flip with tongs and cook the second side until cooked through, about 3 more minutes. Repeat with remaining cutlets. Top with a sprinkle of shredded cheese if you’d like. Serve as is or over salad, pasta, or in a sandwich.
– Muffin Tin Lunch: My kids loved this! All you need is a 6-portion muffin tin for each child. Line each tin with paper muffin cups. Fill each cup with something from the fridge or pantry (grapes, carrot sticks, mini-bagels, chicken strips, cheese, nuts …), and lunch is served.
– Quesadilla: Grab a package of tortillas or flatbread. Take all the odds and ends out of your fridge and slice or chop bite-size, then combine in a big bowl (leftover cooked meat, bits of cheese, cooked vegetables, etc.). Season the mixture with spices, such as McCormick Perfect Pinch Mexican. Heat a nonstick skillet or griddle over medium heat. Spray one side of a tortilla with olive oil spray and place, sprayed side down, in the skillet. Place some of the chopped mixture on half of the tortilla. Add a little more cheese if you’d like, and fold the “naked” half of tortilla on top of the filled half. Cook for a minute or two on each side. Serve with salsa.
– Themed Salad: Another creative use of leftovers. Start with greens (lettuce, spinach, kale) as a base. Then scour the fridge and pantry for toppings: create a Fajita Salad with leftover fajita fillings, avocado and tomatoes; a Pizza Salad can include shredded mozzarella cheese, sliced turkey pepperoni, olives, bell peppers; create a Cobb Salad with leftover grilled or roasted chicken, blue cheese, bacon and hard-boiled eggs. Before you know it you have a hearty, healthy lunch or dinner. Shake up a fast vinaigrette dressing in a clean jar: 1/4 cup olive oil, 1/4 cup canola oil, 1/4 cup red wine vinegar, a spoonful of Dijon mustard, salt and pepper.