If you've ever gotten a casserole from me, cookies from me, or something made from my kitchen, you can without a doubt know that you are someone I really find special. When it comes to showing people that I love them, I've come to realize that time and time again my go-to demonstration of that love is through food. There really is something special about creating a home-cooked dish from scratch for someone you love, whether as a frozen meal after a baby or hospital stay or it's a fresh meal prepared for a dinner party. Forming a meal with your own hands, with the thought of bringing joy to another, is one of my favorite things to do!
So, when you find yourself wanting to say "I love you" to someone in your life, try out these 5 meals, all of which have been tried and approved by yours truly! These really are great dishes and are sure to bring joy to that someone in your life who you really care about.
This one is a huge favorite in our house. Paired with mashed or potatoes and a vegetable, it's a classic meat and potatoes savory meal.
I was first introduced to this one by my sister-in-law after we had our first baby. She brought over this yummy dinner as a gift to us so we wouldn't have to cook. Frozen meals after babies is truly one of the best gifts you can ever give, in my opinion. Those first few weeks are hard as everyone adjusts, and not having to worry about cooking is helpful. This recipe is also extremely versatile- instead of ham, try using pepperoni. Want more veggies? Add them in! The options are endless (and delicious!).
If you're freezing, before to mention to the recipient to thaw it first before baking.
Sauerkraut and Dumplings
Ahh....sauerkraut. This is really one of my favorite meals. Growing up, my grandma would sometimes bring over a dish of this as a treat for us and it was always a super exciting event. This is best with homemade kraut, but if you can't make your own, then store-bought would work just fine.
To make the sauerkraut, you have to follow my grandma's recipe. She really does make it the best.
Start by preparing dumplings. Boil potatoes until they are soft, but not mushy. Remove from heat and drain. Once cooled, shred the potatoes. Add the flour, one cup at a time, to form a thick dough. Dough needs to be thick or the dumplings won't stay together. Just ask my family and hubby about that sometime ;)
Form the dough into balls (they'll grow in the water, so not too large) and boil for about 10 minutes in water. The dumplings will start to rise to the top when they're done. Remove dumplings from the water and place in the refrigerator until sauerkraut is almost ready to be served.
For the sauerkraut, start by searing the pork ribs on each side. Then, place the ribs and drippings on the bottom of a crockpot. Dump the jar of kraut into the crockpot on top of the ribs. Cover with water, then sprinkle sugar on top. Let it cook on low for 6-8 hours. As Grandma says, "The longer it cooks, the better it tastes!"
About 1 hour before serving, place dumplings in the crockpot to warm up. The refrigerator helps them to firm up before you eat them.
Enjoy this wonderful German classic!
This pizza is amazing. It really does taste like a pizza straight from a restaurant and is quick and easy to put together. If you're not up for grilling it, it can definitely be made in the oven! Simply bake at 425 degrees for 10 minutes or until the crust is brown and the cheese is melted. It's just as good as a frozen meal, too- simply thaw before you bake it.
This is another family classic at our house. My mom makes this one often, and it is always a hit with everyone who tries it. I like to make this homemade cream of mushrooms soup so that it can be completely from scratch, but it's not necessary if you don't mind the store-bought stuff. These can be made in a crock-pot, too, for those busy weeknights!
I love making food for others. To take the time to make something for someone else really shows that you love them. It's an act and gift of love!
Don't forget dessert! These are sure to please:
What is your go-to meal to bring to family and friends?
If you like it, share it! It's the best way you can support me!