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Featured: The Dinner-Mom with Back to School Strategies

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We were so thrilled to speak to Marjory Pilley also known as, The Dinner-Mom, about her techniques in making food healthy, fun and appetizing for her children. Find out the details along with her unique recipes, below.

What is your back-to-school meal time strategy?

I’ve always been a big fan of making two meals (or more) when you have everything out. The end goal can be to freeze the second meal and/or have a plan for the leftovers later in the week. For example, after enjoying grilled chicken one night, the extra chicken can be sliced and used in fajitas or wraps the next night. Or, you can top the chicken with barbecue sauce, tomatoes, bacon and cheese to make, Monterey Chicken:

key ingredient's featured back-to-school mommy blogger: the dinner-mom

Starting with cooked chicken will speed up the dinner preparation and cook time. If you made a ton of extra chicken, then you can make up batches of soup to freeze. Or, freeze the cooked chicken. I slice or cut it into cubes and pull it out as needed. The same process can be applied to pork tenderloin, shrimp, ground beef, you name it!

Don’t get me started on slow cooker recipes! They can be a life saver too.

What is your go-to recipe for a quick and healthy back-to-school meal?

Meatloaf muffins are my absolute favorite! When cooked in a muffin tin, they cook very quickly and kids love them! Add lots of cheese. It’s easy to sneak in healthy ingredients with the ketchup too (like pureed carrots or cauliflower.) Use lean ground beef, turkey or chicken to create.

 1. Gourmet Meatloaf with Sundried Tomatoes:


key ingredient's featured back-to-school mommy blogger: the dinner-mom


2. Buffalo Chicken Meatloaf Cups


key ingredient's featured back-to-school mommy blogger: the dinner-mom

3. Meatloaf Muffins with Mashed Potato Icing


key ingredient's featured back-to-school mommy blogger: the dinner-mom

Lastly, kids are known to be pretty picky eaters. What are some food hacks you use to get your kids to eat healthier?

Get them involved in the cooking process and build on what they already like. If they like carrots, then serve it with a yogurt based dip next time. Always include something that they will eat in the meal, but never stop including more options because you never know when their palates will evolve. Make it fun and appetizing! Kids might not like zucchini or sweet potatoes, but they just might give it a try if it looks like a spiralized noodle.


More About Marjory, The Dinner-Mom

key ingredient's featured back-to-school mommy blogger: the dinner-momMarjory is a writer, recipe developer, photographer and mom to two wonderful girls. On her blog, The Dinner-Mom, you'll find loads of information to simplify food preparation, the cooking process and her musing about her challenges to serve easy, healthy, tasty meals that everyone in the family can sit down and enjoy together.

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