It is no secret that I love to cook. I really do. It relaxes me, makes me happy, and I really enjoy making meals for people that I love. What I don’t love is the getting-dinner-on-the-table-every-night struggle. You know what I mean – the cooking that goes on during a busy week when you have lots of places to go and things to do, and not a lot of time to enjoy the process of cooking. The cooking that is more about survival. I am lucky that I work from home, and coincidentally my work occurs in a kitchen, and even I have the weeknight dinner struggle. How do I make it easier for myself?
Well, I am big fan of a meal plan. I know what we are having for dinner for the week starting on Sunday. I usually do my planning on Friday or Saturday, do the grocery shop, and have everything in the house to start a new week. I have tried doing for longer than a week, but it never ends up working out the way that I want it to. However you do it, it needs to work for you. For me, that means a pen and paper plan and one week at a time. Here is a simple sheet that I made for you to print out.
Second, I try to get some of the things on the plan done ahead of time. For instance, this buffalo chicken taco can be started the day ahead of time, or earlier in the day. I tend to do a lot of my dinner prep in the morning while everyone is at school. In fact, for this post, I just cooked enough to take these pictures and made the rest later for dinner. You can cut up the chicken and get it marinading, make the blue cheese dressing (or buy it, no judgement here), and the buffalo sauce if you have extra time the night before. So when dinner rolls around, you have about 10 minutes worth of cooking and assembling to do.
These tacos are the marriage of my husband’s two favorite things, buffalo wings and tacos. The buffalo sauce is not hot, very kid-friendly, so if you want it hotter, use less honey and more hot sauce. A little cayenne pepper will heat it up too.
4 chicken breasts, cut into very small pieces
2 Tablespoons buffalo seasoning
1 Tablespoon olive oil
3 Tablespoons butter
1/2 cup hot sauce
2 Tablespoons apple cider vinegar
4 Tablespoons honey
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
Blue Cheese Dressing:
2 cups sour cream
1/3 to 1/2 cup buttermilk
2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar
Salt and pepper to taste
1 cup blue cheese crumbles
1 Tablespoon chopped dill
1 Tablespoon chopped parsley
Add the chicken to a Ziploc bag, sprinkle buffalo seasoning over and coat the chicken with seasoning. Let sit for 30 minutes, or up to 1 day.
If you are making the blue cheese dressing yourself, whisk the sour cream and buttermilk until smooth. Add vinegar, salt, and pepper. Whisk until smooth. Fold in blue cheese, dill, and parsley. Transfer to a container. This keeps for a week in the fridge.
To make the tacos, heat a skillet over medium high heat, add olive oil to pan. Add chicken and cook until cooked through, about 6 to 8 minutes. Meanwhile, add butter, hot sauce, vinegar, honey, salt and pepper to a saucepan. Heat until the butter is melted and whisk until smooth. Toss chicken with buffalo sauce.
Heat the tortillas and assemble tacos. Layer tortilla with shredded lettuce, cheese, celery, carrots, chicken, and blue cheese dressing. Serve with a cold beer. And some napkins.
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