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  • Writer's pictureAnnamarie Stedjan

Easy As Pie; Winning Back Your Weeknights With Meals That Are As Easy As They Are Delicious!

Wow! So this past week has been an eye opener for many of us, hasn't it! We were all just plunged into a new space and new routine that no one was prepared for. Some of you are still working, but I am sure many of you are currently home trying to get your job done, while all of sudden having to schedule, help, teach and homeschool your children, simultaneously. That is enough for anyone to panic. Seriously, all you parents out there. Moms, Dads, working, working from home, stay-at-home, whatever one of these you identify with these days.... I see you and feel you. Even now, with all the after school activities that have come to a stand still there is still so much on our preverbal plates. The weekly struggle is real!

I know the last thing you want to think about these past few days is cooking dinner.... but I also know how awesome you feel when you put a homemade meal in front of your kids, how great it feels to sit down as a family and talk. To share laughs and daily stories, even help each other through some difficult times, like the ones we are going through currently. I hold family dinners very close to my heart. I believe they are the center of every home and every relationship in it. In our home, we try to do this as many days a week as possible. When we do sit down as a family, I try to make dinner easy, so that I can not only enjoy my dinner but enjoy my family's company too. These recipes are super yummy and literally "easy as pie" to put together. Give them a try during one of the nights this week. Sit down, enjoy the food, and the company around you and forget about the outside for awhile.

Side note, before I dive into these "easy as pie" dinners..... I have to apologize for anyone who quickly looked at the subject of this blog post and thought about dessert recipes. I promise, even though these pies are not sweet, they will be a savory success. You might even find that your kids have a new favorite dinner... #parentingwin!!

So, first recipe out of the box is a very well-known dish that I have been making in individual portions for years. The traditional and always delicious Individual Chicken Pot Pie. I think I started making this in individual portions when my daughter and I would eat later then my son (who was a baby at the time) but earlier than my husband who didn't come home until 8:30pm. I didn't want the crust to be all mushy by the time he got home so I was able to make them in individual portions, and keep my husbands refrigerated until he would be on

his way, then pop it in the oven and voila! dinner on the table when he walked in the door. Ever since then, I always made them in individual portions and now that my son is older, it's one of his favorites! He loves that he has his own mini pie to himself, and bonus... it is so much neater then trying to cut and serve a slice of a larger Chicken Pot Pie and have all the insides flop out as you are desperately try to transfer the slice to your dinner plate. The cooking time is cut down tremendously too...added bonus!! This recipe is chockfull of veggies like carrots, peas and corn and loaded with lean protein in a delicious sauce that is creamy but not full of fat. It's a one pan meal that is healthy, delicious and filling. As a side note, if you want to add mushrooms to this recipe, go right ahead. I only keep the mushrooms out because my little guy is not a fan.

Next up.... Sausage and Kale Hand Pies....yes, I said hand pies! These are so awesome. Easy to make and fun to eat. You can wrap them in parchment paper and eat with your hands or serve them up on a plate with a little herbed sour cream or Greek yogurt dip.

This recipe comes together in just about 45 minutes and that includes baking time. If you have a favorite homemade savory dough recipe, now is the time to break out the flour and butter and make it! If you are trying to pull this dinner together quickly, and have clean up be a breeze, go right ahead and use your favorite ready-made pie crust. I love Pillsbury ready-made pie crusts in a pinch!

Everything in this recipe can be made with one pan and the mixture comes together in one mixing bowl. So there is very little clean up....bonus!! If you are looking to lighten this dish up with lean protein or you are just not an eater of pork sausage, you can substitute out the

pork sausage for chicken sausage. I really love kale for this dish. It is hearty and a super healthy veg, but if you are not a lover f kale, go ahead and substitute it with another favorite veggie. broccoli rabe, spinach or even Swiss chard would be great. Just make sure when using leafy vegetables like spinach or Swiss chard that have a higher water content, that you drain or squeeze out as much of the water as you can, otherwise the your mixture with be water and in turn will make your dough mushy... and no one likes mushy dough!

Head over to this link and check out the recipe for these delicious Sausage and Kale Hand Pies and enjoy a quick and easy weeknight meal with your family. These can also be made ahead of time and cooled completely. Then before you leave for your busy afternoon and night out with he kids, heat the hand pies up and wrap them in aluminum foil for an "on-the-go" dinner.

If you need any sides to go with these weeknight meals whip up a batch of Coleslaw as a side for the hand pies or a Hearty Winter Salad to go with your Individual Chicken Pot Pies.

I hope that you enjoy these recipes as well as your time with some of your favorite people!

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