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It's 5 o'clock...what's for dinner?

Updated: Friday, May 10 2013, 09:23 AM CDT

Hy-Vee dietitian Susannah LeVon was "In the Kitchen" to show you how to make delicious meals despite your busy schedule.

It’s 5 o’clock! What’s for Dinner?


This is a common lament in families all over the country. It leads people to go through the fast food lane, or pick up anything at the grocery store. Lack of planning leads to dinner time despair. But wait there is a fast solution! Once a week take 10 minutes to look at the upcoming week and plan meals around your family schedule. This leads to a well-planned grocery list so that you can have the ingredients handy for each meal. Start with the top easy & quick meals that are family favorites: spaghetti, grilled cheese sandwiches with tomato soup, and tacos! Then add in some new ideas. Be sure to add in fruits and vegetables each meal, try precut fruits/vegetables, eat them raw, and dip in yogurt or light salad dressing.


Try the recipes below or go to the Hy-Vee website for weekly meal plans and recipe ideas. Go to www.hy-vee.com and click on the “Meal Solutions” heading to open many options. You can choose to open the “Weekly Menu” section. You will see menu choices for regular, heart-healthy, diabetic friendly and weight control. There is also a section for Budget Friendly Menus and 30 meals for $30! You can even sign up for a FREE Hy-Vee account and be able to plan meals online where it automatically makes up your shopping list! Meal planning actually saves time and makes “eating healthy” easier!

Spinach Mango Wraps     Serves 6  (1 wrap each)        Source: www.hy-vee.com

For the nights you need a very fast, almost no preparation time, meal!


All you need:
2 fresh mangos, peeled and sliced
1/2 bag (10 oz.) spinach leaves

12 oz. cooked chicken breast strips
1/4 cup Hy-Vee sliced almonds
1/4 cup light raspberry vinaigrette
6 (8-inch each) Hy-Vee flour tortillas

All you do:

In a large bowl, combine mango slices, spinach, chicken, almonds and vinaigrette. Toss gently.

Place mango mixture down center of each tortilla. Roll-up tightly. Cut each in half diagonally to serve.


Serve with mini sweet peppers or baby carrots and apple slices.




Chicken Tortilla Soup   6 to 8 servings

Set this meal up quickly in the morning using your crock pot and dinner is ready when you get home! Almost like having a personal chef!


All you need:

4 chicken breast halves, cut up in chunks

2 15-oz. cans black beans, drain and rinse

2 15-oz. cans of stewed tomatoes

(can use Rotel brand for hot & spicy or Fire Roasted diced tomatoes)

1 cup salsa (use mild, medium or hot as you prefer)

4 oz. can of chopped green chilies (optional)

141/2 oz. can of tomato sauce

Tortilla chips

2 cups grated cheese

Reduced fat sour cream (optional)


All you do:

Rinse chicken and put in bottom of crock pot. Add all other ingredients, except tortilla chips, cheese and sour cream. Cover and cook on low for 8 hours (longer is OK) To serve, put a handful of chips in individual soup bowls and ladle soup over the chips. Top with cheese and sour cream.


Serve with Southwest Salad mixture with avocado chunks.




Oven Sweet and Sour Chicken          4 – 6 servings

On those precious days you get home an hour before dinner. This goes together in 2 minutes, then put it in the oven for 45 minutes to an hour while you exercise or take a bubble bath!


All you need:

4 chicken breast halves

1 cup Apricot jam

1 cup Catalina salad dressing

1 package of onion soup mix

Summer squash (green and yellow) chunks (optional)

Pineapple chunks (optional)

Onion, sliced (optional)


All you do:

Rinse and place chicken in a small glass baking pan. Mix apricot jam, Catalina dressing and onion soup package together and pour over chicken. Mix in summer squash, pineapple chunks and onions if you prefer. Or serve uncooked squash and pineapple chunks with the meal. Bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes to an hour.


Serve over Instant Brown Rice with chunks of summer squash and pineapple chunks.


It's 5 o'clock...what's for dinner?

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Jen Heringhausen
Julie Gallagher-Edgewood
Collins Road/Lindale
Oakland Rd
Mt. Vernon Road
Johnson Ave
1st Ave
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