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Dinner in 5 Minutes

Dinner in 5 Minutes - All About Learning Press

What do you do when there’s no time to make dinner?

I have to admit…I’ve been really spoiled.

My daughter has made dinner almost every night for the past eight years. But now she is working full time and has a busy social calendar, so if dinner is going to happen, it’s up to me.

After I had a short pity party for myself, I pulled out my trusty old crock pot: the one that got me through the early years of homeschooling.

I love this crock pot.

Once I saw it, I actually got excited about preparing dinner again. And I happened to run across a friend’s pin on Pinterest (thanks, Sue!) featuring chicken tacos.

Crockpot Chicken Tacos

It’s really simple, and calls for just three ingredients:

  • Boneless skinless chicken breasts (I used 1.75 pounds)
  • A jar of salsa (I used a 16oz jar of Newman’s Own)
  • A packet of taco seasoning (I used Ortega)

You can find the original recipe here.

It honestly took less than five minutes to put the ingredients in the crock pot, give it a stir, and turn the dial to low. I got it started at 7:00 this morning, and when I came home tonight, there was delicious chicken taco filling waiting. A quick stir with a fork, and the chicken shredded perfectly.

We had friends over, and we all built our own tacos, adding our favorite combination of sour cream, lettuce, avocado, and cheese.

My son announced that he could eat this for dinner every night.

So, what do you do when you know you won’t have time to make dinner?

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Amy

says:

I love my crockpot, bread machine, pressure cooker, and air fryer! As long as I have my menu plan the week before, I am less stressed and able to cook in less time. Less time in the kitchen means more time helping or playing with my children. This school year will be my first year of homeschooling so I believe this will also make things easier.

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

Sounds like a great plan, Amy! I do menu planning weekly too, and I find it makes a huge difference.

Tracy

says:

Aldi’s has cheap large pizzas that I keep in the freezer. I try to make double of meals that take some effort (lasagna, enchiladas, meat loaf) or that I can make big batches of (taco meat, Runza filling, spaghetti sauce) and bag it up and put it in the freezer. If I think ahead, I use the crock pot, but I’m usually thinking of dinner around 4 pm.

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

Tracy,
Great ideas! One tip that I have found useful over the years is to think about tomorrow’s dinner as I am cleaning up from tonight’s dinner. I don’t always remember to do it, but I’ve gotten pretty good at remembering to take things out of the freezer the night before.

Bethel

says:

I make this all the time except I also include a cup of corn and two slided bell peppers (one red, one green is pretty). Then once in awhile I also add black beans and pinto beans as well. I do a boil pack of brown rice…and viola! A dinner everyone loves. It can be eaten on tortillas as burritos, with chips as a dip, or just topping the brown rice. It is delicious with sour cream and cheese.

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

This sounds delicious, Bethel! Thanks for the ideas on how to change this up.

Kellie

says:

Did you add the water that you would typically add for the Ortega Seasoning packet?
Thanks,
Kellie

Robin E. at All About Learning Press

says: Customer Service

Kellie,
No. The salsa and chicken provide just the right amount of moisture for the seasoning packet.

We had these for dinner on Sunday this week. Just throw everything in first thing in the morning, and Sunday dinner is waiting for us when we got home from church (well I did have a chop some tomatoes, lettuce, and avocados).

Kellie

says:

Thank You! We had them for dinner last night! It was a winner for our family of 8! It’s nice to find things that everyone loves! I did add the water (oops)! It was still good but extra moist. I plan to leave it out next time.

Robin E. at All About Learning Press

says: Customer Service

Kellie,
That’s great! I understand how hard it is to please everyone. I have a family of 7. :D

Julie

says:

Having great and easy meals is one of the key ingredients to successful homeschooling. There has to be a balance between Super Teacher and Super Mom! Thanks for the yummy recipe :) It will go in my plan for next week!

susan clark

says:

Love it, will try it this week! Simple and yummy!

Maureen

says:

What a great idea……tonight’s dinner is going into the crockpot now. I added green peppers, onions and cilantro with tomatoes previously frozen from our garden (we didn’t have a jar of salsa). My biggest organizational challenge is dinner. I like to cook wholesome, made from scratch dinners but that can be difficult on busy homeschool days. I am going to look for more recipes like this one that will please my whole family…..thanks!!!!

Betsy

says:

My favorite thing, when time is short, is to be able to pull good leftovers from the freezer. We never make a single batch of soup, just so we can freeze several more meals. Another favorite is ham slices; pull them from the freezer, simmer in water until warmed through. Easy and quick.

Rebecca

says:

I so have to get better about using the crockpot at our house. I just wish my girls would eat tortillas then this would really work. :)

Tracy

says:

It could work on a “taco salad” with chips.

Alison

says:

Love my crockpot and we make this same recipe at our house. Quick and easy!

Jenny Kurtz

says:

Your post is just what I was looking for! I needed a chicken recipe for the crock-pot for tomorrow & now I know what to make! My family loves tacos so this should be a hit!

My crock-pot has been my time saver when it comes to meals. I also try to do some batch cooking like frying extra ground beef, cooking extra chicken to shred, make ahead meatballs, breakfast burritos, make extra pancakes or waffles & freeze them. It has really helped me to get the food on the table on those busy homeschool days!

Thanks for the recipe! :)

Krystal

says:

I love chickens breasts with salsa! I got a lot of other great ideas from the comments above – so thanks to all who shared!

Ellie

says:

I love the crockpot, chicken breasts and a jar of salsa. So easy!

Becky Milstead

says:

I have been inspired to use my crockpot for dinner tonight! :-)

Kristen

says:

So great, tried it last week – thanks!

Hannah W.

says:

The slow cooker is a fabulous invention but, sadly, it is one that I have neglected. =( I have used it but my recipes have always ended in disaster. I am hoping to change that now and start using my slow cooker more often now that I am expecting my third baby and starting to homeschool my little boy. Thanks for this post!
-Hannah W.

Shelley

says:

We always have leftover rice. Whatever we have on hand we stir fry with garlic and olive oil into the rice. It comes in handy for those small amounts of leftovers that is not enough for a full portion.

Stephanie Whitt

says:

we LOVE our crockpot! i dont use it nearly as often as i should, but i always love when i think ahead and dinner is not only on time, but super easy!! thanks for reminding me about this, i think i’ll be pulling out my crockpot cookbook sometime soon :)

Dawn

says:

Our homeschooling is often made busier by our farm animals, so meals like this and ones that we can freeze and throw in the oven are a life-saver when Mom has to be in the barn before supper.

rose

says:

Thanks for this post. This was delicious and so easy.

Keriann

says:

Going to do this tonight! We love crockpot cooking! We do BBQ sandwiches….one pork loin with a cup or more of BBQ sauce. YUM.

Nikki

says:

Oh yum! We are going to try this sometime this week!

Angela

says:

I make breakfast for dinner! I frequently make a big batch of either pumpkin or sweet potato pancakes. I freeze them, which enables me to pop them in the microwave for a quick delicious breakfast (or dinner in these cases). My girls and hubby LOVE them. I also make scrambled eggs and omelettes packed with tons of veggies. It’s so easy and healthy, and my hubby LOVES me for it!

Heather Reich

says:

Thanks for sharing the recipe. Like others, we do lots of bulk cooking… and many of the recipes can be finished in the crockpot, which is a great way to “double dip” the time savings!

Cari

says:

Love the ideas! I need meals that are quick and easy!!

Paige

says:

Thanks for this! I needed a new recipe for my crock pot. For far too long we end up getting fast food if I don’t have time for dinner or need one in a pinch. I’m trying to change that and I love using the crock pot to help with that.

Jess McCarthy

says:

Thank you, I really appreciate this blog post! I’ve been in such a dinner rut, not wanting to cook. I need to use the crockpot more. It makes my life easier when I do. I love all the hints in the comments, too!

Treasure

says:

Thank you for sharing a great, simple recipe. This is wonderful!

Heather

says:

Thanks for the great recipe! (And for all of the others that have been posted too!) We love using our crockpot…so I can’t wait to try some of these new ideas!

Beth

says:

If I am with-it enough to do something in the morning, I throw dark meat chicken (leg quarters or thighs) in the crockpot with a little water. Set it on low and 8 hours later, it falls off the bone, literally. We then put the chicken on some bread, add barbecue sauce, and shredded cheese to make easy, delicious chicken bbq!

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