What to Eat at the End of a 12-hour Day?

by Kat on July 20, 2010

Sunset

The downside of this awesome view: no one delivers way out here!

As I’m sure I’ve mentioned, both my husband and I have hellacious commutes. Mine is anywhere from 1.5-3+ hours, depending on the whims of traffic and/or the train/Metro system, his is usually about 1.5-2 hours. Each way. So, add that to our normal 8-hour work days, and we’ve got about 12 hours spent each day getting to work, working, and getting home again. That doesn’t leave a lot of time in the evenings to do much of anything, let alone cook a wholesome, healthy meal.

So what’s a girl to do, when she has no time to cook, and exactly one restaurant delivers to her house?

Lately, in addition to my plans for canning whatever leftovers I have from my garden, I’ve been browsing the Intarwebs for make-ahead meals.

One of the ideas that has caught my attention is highlighted in this post from the kitchn: Mix and Match Bagged Meals. You know those rather expensive (and usually fairly bland) frozen meals-in-a-bag you can get at the supermarket? Where you just toss the whole thing in a skillet, heat, and eat? Not surprisingly, it’s not all that hard to make your own, and you get the bonus of using only the ingredients you actually like. Sounds like a bit of a PITA to freeze everything separately, but I can imagine it’s incredibly handy on nights when you want a nice stir-fry but just don’t have time to make one from scratch.

Martha Stewart annoyance and extremely unfortunate name aside, this recipe for Irish Beef Hand Pies also sounds intriguing. Basically, it’s beef stew in a pastry shell. The comments make it sound like it could use a bit more pizazz, so whenever I get around to trying it, I might add some more spices. Or onions. Everything’s better with onions!

And last on today’s list, from the “Why Didn’t I Think of That?!?” files: Freezer Burritos. Make burritos. Wrap in foil. Freeze. How simple is that?!? Only put in the bits that you like, use lower-fat ingredients, personalize to your heart’s content. I would seriously love to claim I thought of it.

Anyone have any other suggestions for what to eat when we don’t want to cook?

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Tracy J. July 21, 2010 at 6:43 pm

I think The Kitchn was reading your mind yesterday: http://www.thekitchn.com/thekitchn/good-questions/help-me-find-healthy-balanced-meals-that-freeze-well-good-questions-122396

I’m keeping these bookmarked! We don’t have 12-hour workdays to contend with but we have a Leifmonster always underfoot and demanding our attention. It makes cooking a little challenging.

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Kat July 21, 2010 at 7:37 pm

Yep, that’s actually the post that spawned this one. :) I love The Kitchn. (And all of their affiliate sites, actually – if you haven’t, I highly recommend checking them out. They have a parenting one that you might find useful.)

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