There’s nothing a new mom doesn’t need like the worry of preparing meals when you’ve just brought home your new little one. But, as you can imagine if you’re a new mommy, finding the time to make these meals for you and your family are usually at the bottom of the list. (Typically right next to sleeping!)
Trust me, cooking up meals and strategically stocking your fridge before the big day is incredibly important. When I brought Rainbow home for the first time, our family and friends graciously filled our refrigerator with meals, which made a world of a difference. This time around, I’m taking the time to make my favorite quick and healthy, yet satisfying dishes that will make our welcome home that much sweeter.
Here are a few easy, freezer-friendly dishes that I’m preparing before the baby comes:
When You’re Craving Something Rich
- Mac and cheese. I posted this vegan mac and cheese recipe on my Facebook wall a few months ago and it was heavenly! This would fill any late-night craving I’m having if my husband or I are up with the baby.
And with this recipe, the sky’s the limit when it comes to veggies — you can easily add your favorites (or whatever you have in the fridge) to make this dish your own. I’ve even mixed in of my homemade tomato sauce before! And it only takes 10 minutes in the oven to cook. So easy!
- Crustless Quiche. Another great, freezer-friendly dish that can serve as a breakfast, lunch, or dinner meal is crustless quiche. While you can certainly make regular quiche, I love the crustless version, so I found a mushroom, bacon, and shallot recipe and a spinach one that will really hit the spot when you’re looking for something rich to heat up. Plus, with our backyard chicken coop, we never run out of fresh eggs so this is the perfect way to make use of them!
When You Only Have One Hand
- DIY burritos. Okay, so you guys may have heard me talk about my runs to Taco Bell, which is because tacos are high on my favorite foods list. But, with a new baby in the house, finding time to run out is much harder. That’s why preparing your burrito ingredients ahead of time will make it so easy to just throw it all together when you only have a few minutes to spare. I love bean and cheese burritos, but I also like to mix in some lean meats like shredded chicken or beef and put them in a few organic corn tortillas.
And for a low carb option, I grab a head of lettuce and make lettuce wraps! Those are a super easy way to enjoy this dish without the extra calories.
- Grilled skewers. Another really easy and healthy one-handed meal is grilled skewers. This takes a bit longer to assemble, but also a good one for your husband to help out with! Simply cube up some veggies, your favorite protein, pile on wooden skewers, and grill away. I love to drizzle a little bit of barbeque sauce or homemade dressing once they’re done, too. To avoid messing with the grill, you can also just throw them in the oven.
When You’re Craving Something Sweet
- Protein balls. With these little bites, they can serve as dessert and fill you up at the same time. Having a batch of protein balls on hand will help satisfy your sweet tooth without any work — most recipes don’t even require an oven! Plus, you can make a month’s worth by sticking half the batch in the freezer (although between my husband, Rainbow, and I, there usually aren’t any left to freeze). I love this carrot cake and peanut butter cup version.
- Frozen fruit bag. This sounds super simple, and it is! Having a bag of frozen fruit that I can thaw whenever I’m craving something sweet will keep me from grabbing ice cream every time. Though, don’t get me wrong, there’s a pint of dairy-free vanilla coconut ice cream in my fridge that I will make sure to have on hand, but having some nutrient-dense alternatives is always a good idea. Plus, if you haven’t tried frozen blueberries, they really hit the spot!
I can’t tell you how helpful it is to have a well-stocked refrigerator when you come home with your little one. And with a little bit of planning, you can whip up a number of healthy options that will last you all month long.
What are you favorite go-to foods to prepare when you’re short on time? I’d love to hear from you!