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adding side dishes...ideas?

post #1 of 16
Thread Starter 
In trying to stay w/in food budget, but eat healthy all organic, i end up cooking 1-dish dinners. The result is often that what i'd planned as leftovers gets eaten the first night i make it. So, i'm thinking if i add in a side dish, the main dish would actually last as leftovers. But, how do you do this within a budget (main dishes are already mostly beans & rice concoctions)? and how do you have the time when already preparing the main dish is sometimes hard to do with nearly year old ds?

TIA!
post #2 of 16
Thread Starter 
any ideas, mamas?
post #3 of 16
No ideas but ready to take notes... :
post #4 of 16
I have the same problem. What I have decided is that I just need to make a bigger batch of whatever it is I am cooking- however I keep the meat /protein level the same and add more filler- rice/ grain, veggies. Dh will not hardly eat side dishes, so it is a waste of time anyway. I do like to keep some lettuce on hand for quick salads, or some frozen veggies that can be nuked real quick. I like to make bread to serve and dh loves that, with a bread machine it is super easy, 5 min of prep and a delicious, warm loaf of bread.
post #5 of 16
Homemade bread and salad are STAPLES at our house!

I have a HUGE bowl in the fridge that is always filled with salad, we eat it most everyday.
post #6 of 16
We always do salad, but not always with lettuce. Often it is whatever veggies we have with oil, vinegar, lemonjuice, oregano, salt and pepper. Then you can use the bread to sop up all the juice at the bottom.
post #7 of 16
I always do a spinach salad, usually with avaocado to encourage dh to eat it. But, I agree I'd like some other ideas. I didn't have ANY leftovers last week and had planned to eat l.o. 2 days!
post #8 of 16
Potatoes. I love red potatoes, you could fry them, mash them etc.. Add onions, peppers or green beans.
post #9 of 16
Oh, another thing is sweet potatoes. I haven't done this but have been meaning to because they are one of the super foods you should eat weekly....too bad they aren't easier to cook....wish they were as easy as red potatoes...

Anyone know if you can leave the skins in sweet potatoes?
post #10 of 16
what I love as a side dish and dh loves it too, is roasted sweet potatoes---
I cut them up when they are raw into about inch sized pieces, throw some spices and some olive oil in a freezer bag (salt, garlic, curry, oregano, chili powder, whatever)...then spread them on a large sheet and bake at 350 until pretty soft, say about 45 minutes maybe?

They are REALLY healthy for you, taste awesome, a bit sweet but salty/flavored too, and they make a great side dish!

Take care!

Oh and for the last question, the skin is almost as healthy as the rest! I leave it on, they turn out great!
post #11 of 16
Thread Starter 
thanks so much! Homemade bread is so good, but unfortunately that's one of those things i always mean to make & end up running out of time. potatoes & salads are great ideas too.
post #12 of 16
Leomom, have you tried baked sweet potatoes they are very easy- just 5-10 min in the microwave- don't forget to poke holes and voila!
post #13 of 16
my favorite way to have sweet potatoes is smashed with roasted garlic.

i cut it up into 1-inch cubes (skin on or off, doesnt matter),roast at 450 for 20-30 minutes (or until very tender), then mush up.

pan-roast a bunch of garlic in lots of oil until it is very lightly browned, then add the garlic and oil into the taters and mash it up. add more oil/milk, salt etc if needed.


it sounds so simple, but something about the combination of sweet potatoes and roasted garlic is beyond describable (is that a word?). SOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO good.
post #14 of 16
Yum..all those ideas sound soooo good! I've got to go buy some tomorrow! Thanks.
post #15 of 16
I was a cook at a nursing home for a few years (a couple of years ago!) and I'd just slice the sweet potatoes in half lengthwise and place them sliced side down on a baking sheet and bake. I'm not a fan of sweet potatoes, but everyone seemed to love them there (and they could top them as they wished...some with salt and pepper, others with brown sugar, some plain).
post #16 of 16
We are probabaly a little strange... but I make 3 day meals. The main dish( I make a very large amount) lasts for the full three days. I find this to be very economical, and there is way less waste. This way, the two off days, I can make a side dish for the fridge. I often will have hummous, tortillas, or a tabbouleh salad made with quinoa.( these are all great cold) Salads or bread are great suggestions too. This way the meal seems much different every night. On sat I made a huge tray of lasagna. First night we had it by itself, last night we made a cesar salad to have with it, tonight maybe a spinach salad.
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