How Working Parents Cook For Kids (And Sometimes Don’t)

How Working Parents Cook For Kids (And Sometimes Don’t)

Pete Wells wrote for two years in the New York Times Magazine about his efforts to cook dinner for his four-year-old son after working a full day. Here’s the rare bit: he admits now that he never figured it out. But his lessons learned, and the advice of sympathetic commenters, are both inspiring and practical.

Image via _Dinkel_.

A few examples from the comment thread on Wells’ semi-farewell post. This from LK in Houston, TX:

I am of the opinion that eggs, fruit and toast are totally acceptable dinnertime fare and far better than takeout. So are nice sandwiches with all the trimmings that don’t often make it into the lunch bag (tomatoes, avocado, pickles etc.) When we do cook on the weeknights, I try and make enough for two meals and then we have it the next night too.

Followed by more hard-nosed reality from “Hmmmm” in Arlington, Virginia:

Abandon the notion that you can commute, work full-time, and cook from scratch each workday – but you don’t have to settle for processed food either. Cook half of the day either Saturday or Sunday. Make several types of big meals – for example, a soup or stew, a casserole, veggies and pasta, meat and veggies. Shop so that you have fresh-but-perishable-after-five-days produce to make something new mid-week, whatever day your energy levels permit. Keep frozen veggies and meat on hand for a quick stirfry, if you feel up to it, but if you don’t, they won’t go to waste.

What kind of compromise or corner-cuts have our working parents made in their own kitchens?

How Do Working Parents Do It? []


  • i cook for my parents and brothers after work… i do 8am til 7pm.. and can still cook a lovely meal…

    throw pasta in a pot, get one of the kids to start copping lettuce and put some diced bacon on…
    once the bacon is crispy, take half out (for cesar salad) and put tomato tins, spinach leaves, and sliced salami in the “sauce” when its bubbling put however much parmesan cheese in it, and put some more in the salad, do a hard boiled egg and add dressing to the salad, put the pasta in with the sauce and mix…

    lovely spaghetti meal with salad and takes about 20 minutes to cook…

    another thing is head over to stonesoup, they have AMAZING quick easy CHEAP recipe’s

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