October is National Eat better Eat together month. What better way to enjoy a meal eating together than with family and friends. Eating together as a family seems like the natural thing to do but these days with very busy schedules and activities here and there, this age old tradition is gradually fading away. But you know what? We can't let that happen because eating together as a family has many great benefits that can't be underestimated.
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Why eating together as a family is gradually fading away.
• The days are getting busier and 24hrs seems like zero hrs.
• Technology: TV, phones etc
• Everyone may not be at home at the same time- altering busy schedules can stand in the way.
• Some members of the family may prefer to eat at a particular time. For instance some diet programs prefer an earlier meal time than usual.
Because of the reasons above, many people argue that it's not possible to have a family meal together, or in doing so, it adds stress to their life. I am of the opinion that family is everything and that lasting relationships and bonds can be built at the table over a meal. Whether it is having picnics together or dinners in the living room together. As long as you are intentionally sharing a meal and enjoying it together then you are good to go!
Why you should start eating together with your family.
• It builds lasting memories.
• You get to know each other better because it encourages interaction with one another.
• It helps to encourage little ones and everyone to eat healthier.
• It keeps you accountable to one another.
I love that meatballs are a great addition to high protein snacks for pregnancy!
Tips on how to have more family meals.
These days if you want anything, you need to be intentional about it. Meaning you have to intentionally create time for what ever it is you desire.
How can we be intentional about family meals? We plan...
1 Plan: Try to note various activities in your daily lives that may be making it impossible to eat together then figure out a way to fix it.
2. Start with one day a week and it doesn't have to be dinner. It can be a weekend breakfast or lunch.
3. Save time by picking up your groceries in a shop that has great products at an affordable price. For instance, I bought all I needed to make this recipe from ShopRite, one of my favorite grocers.
4. Prepare meals ahead of time, especially on weekends, so you have food available during the week. Also try to have pantry staples that need minimal prep and can compliment any dish like sauces (in my recipe I utilize Frontera Skillet Sauces).
5. Get your kids involved in prepping for the meals and setting the table. Make it fun!
6. Enjoy positive discussions (not with your mouth full of course) and encourage everyone to participate.
This chicken meat balls in fajita sauce is an example of a fast prep yet delicious meal which I made with Wholesome Pantry ground chicken and Frontera fajita sauce from ShopRite.
I prefer Wholesome Pantry products because it contains real food, free from artificial flavors, colors and preservatives. Food good enough to feed your amazing family. Food that is 'better for you'. Guess what? It all started with a simple idea with you and me in mind which was to eave .
Did you know that at participating ShopRite store locations?? It's awesome! You can get a guide to products and recipes from a registered dietitian all for free (but be sure to call ahead to enquire if your local ShopRite is participating).
The chicken meatball recipe I'm sharing with you today, wouldn't be complete without a sauce. I decided to use Frontera Chicken Fajita sauce because of its rich flavor and fast and easy prep. Frontera uses premium ingredients with no short cuts. Frontera cooking sauces can be easily combined with a protein for a quick flavorful meal. They pay close attention to time because Frontera sauces don’t take long- in 15 mins or less you are enjoying your meal. I even bought extra for more easy and quick mid week meals. You should too because they are delicious.
Wholesome Pantry and Frontera have a wide range of products you need to check out so you can create delicious meals you and your family can enjoy together in little time. Below are the products I used for this chicken meatballs in Fajita sauce I bought them all from ShopRite. Talk about one-stop, hassle-free shopping.
Hope this recipe encourages you to try something fun with your family. You should head over to ShopRite and shop #WholesomePantry and #RootedInFrontera and whip up something fast and easy yet wholesome. I can't wait to see what you make.
PIN! PIN! PIN!
Chicken Meatballs in Fajita sauce
For the meatballs
- 1 lb Wholesome Pantry ground chicken
- ¾ cup bread crumbs
- ½ cup Parmesan cheese
- 1 egg
- 1 tablespoon oil
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- ½ teaspoon chilly pepper
- 1 teaspoon bouillon powder
For the Fajitas Sauce
- 1 pouch Frontera Fajita sauce
- 1 small onion chopped
- 1 medium green bell pepper chopped
- 1 medium red bell pepper chopped
- 1 tablespoon cooking oil of choice
- Salt to taste
For the chicken meat balls
- Preheat oven to 400 F
- Wash your hands clean
- Dump all the ingredients for the chicken meatballs into a clean bowl
- With your clean hands mix all ingredients in the bowl until well incorporated.
- Scoop out tablespoon by tablespoon to the onto a parchment paper lined baking sheet
- After all the ground chicken mix has been scooped out, I like to grease my hands a bit then roll the scoops in my hands to form smooth balls.
- Arrange 2 inches apart on the baking tray
- Bake in the oven for 25 mins
The Fajitas Sauce
- Sauté onions in 1 tablespoon of oil for a min
- Add the green and red bell peppers stir till slightly softened
- Add the Frontera Fajita sauce and the chicken meat balls. Taste for seasoning, adjust to taste.
- Let simmer for about 4 mins
- Turn off heat and serve over jasmine rice.. YUM!