Dump dinners save the day

By Nancy Zeman nzeman@prairiepress.net
Posted 11/4/19

I’ve been busy this week directing Mayo Middle School’s annual musical. I’m usually busy between the paper and other responsibilities, but I cannot even imagine how parents who don’t want to …

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Dump dinners save the day

Posted

I’ve been busy this week directing Mayo Middle School’s annual musical. I’m usually busy between the paper and other responsibilities, but I cannot even imagine how parents who don’t want to make runs thrugh the local fast food restaurants survive.

Between basketbal tournaments, gymnastics and other activities I don’t know how families do it.

I decided to share some recipes that I have for dump meals.

For those who’ve never heard of dump dinners it’s an unfortunate name for meals to literally toss into a casserole, stock pot, or slow cooker and wait. When families have a busy night, dump dinners are a complete godsend.

Some days one can make a multi-course meal, but other times? It’s a hassle to even place an order for takeout. Enter the dump dinner. For the uninitiated dump dinners are exactly what they sound like: Dump all of the ingredients into a casserole dish, slow cooker, sheet pan or pot — and dinner is just about done.

Even on crazy days, one can make Crock-Pot dump dinners happen fast. In the morning, just throw everything in the slow cooker — no browning, no sauteing, no searing.

On hectic weeknights, nobody has time to stand around and babysit multiple pans simmering away on the stove top — and that is exactly why we have dump dinners.

Dump dinners are one of the easiest — and most effective — weeknight meal strategies to deploy. Basically, these are recipes that involve gathering up a handful of ingredients, dumping them into a single cooking vessel — a slow cooker, casserole dish, sheet pan, or Dutch oven — and walking away until it’s time to eat. No stress, just delicious, hands-off meals the entire family will love.

Dump dinners are perfect for when one is extra busy, feeling extra lazy, or both.

While dump dinners originated with the slow cooker, there are Instant Pot and even oven or stovetop dump dinners.

Get on board the dump dinner train with easy recipes requiring little preparation and cook all by themselves with no stirring or fussing.

These foolproof recipes are so easy, even novice cooks can make them. They freeze beautifully, making them life-savers for busy families.

With busy schedules, a long list of responsibilities, and other interests to pursue, many of us just don’t have much time (or desire) to spend hours in the kitchen.