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Story and Photos By Amanda Causey Baity

This time of year can be pure chaos if you have school-aged children to cook for. Even if you don’t have school-aged children as the fall months start and the last bit of summer is enjoyed, your evenings may be busy! I love cooking wholesome meals for my family but sometimes I just need something quick to cook and easy to clean.

Here are some easy recipes that will keep you out of the kitchen for hours and out of the drive-thru lane on your way home. Eating healthy meals at home will help keep your energy high during this busy time and save your money for the fundraising flyers that start pouring in from school!

Sour Cream Pancakes

Ingredients:

  • 7 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/ 2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup sour cream (I swapped some with yogurt when I realized I was short, to no ill-effect.)
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Butter
  • Maple syrup

Directions: Heat a cast iron skillet or griddle over medium-low heat; you want it to slowly get nice and hot. Stir the flour, sugar, baking soda and salt together in the bottom of a medium bowl. Dump the sour cream in on top and stir it together very gently; it’s okay to leave the texture a bit uneven. Whisk the eggs and vanilla in a separate bowl and stir them into the sour cream mixture, once again, being careful not to overmix.

Melt about a tablespoon of butter in your skillet or griddle and pour the batter in, a scant 1/4 cup at a time. Cook for about 2 minutes on the first side, or until bubbles appear all over the surface, flipping them carefully and cooking for about a minute on the other side. Repeat with remaining batter.

Cheeseburger Quesadillas

  • 1 lb. ground beef
  • Salt and pepper
  • Ketchup
  • Mustard
  • Worcestershire sauce
  • 4 large flour tortillas
  • Toppings: tomatoes, onions, chopped pickles/relish, shredded cheddar cheese

Directions: Add ground beef to a large skillet over medium-high heat and then lightly season with salt and pepper, and cook until no longer pink. Drain, then return to the skillet off the heat and stir in ketchup, mustard, and Worcestershire sauce to taste. A good ratio to follow is 3 parts ketchup, to 2 parts mustard and 1 part Worcestershire sauce.

Lay tortillas out and then spread 1/4 of the seasoned ground beef on one half of each tortilla. Top with toppings of choice and then fold over tortilla. Cook in a large skillet over medium heat sprayed with non-stick spray until golden brown on one side, then flip and cook until golden brown on the other side. Remove to a cutting board to cool for 5 minutes, and then slice into wedges with a pizza cutter.

Your Way French Bread Pizzas

Ingredients:

  • 6 whole deli rolls or crusty Italian rolls
  • Marinara sauce or pizza sauce
  • Pesto
  • 2 pounds Mozzarella cheese, grated
  • Grated Parmesan cheese to taste
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 whole onion, sliced
  • 1/2 pound sausage
  • Pepperoni slices
  • Canadian bacon slices
  • Pineapple chunks, fresh or canned
  • Roma tomatoes, sliced
  • Sliced black olives
  • Optional ingredients: sliced bell peppers, various cheeses, pepperoncinis, jalapeno slices, diced red onion, any other pizza topping you’d like!

Directions: Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.

Slice rolls in half and lay them, cut side up, on a large baking sheet.

Top each half with a generous portion of either marinara or pesto. Next, top with a generous amount of grated mozzarella and Parmesan, if you’d like.

Add whatever toppings you’d like on top of the cheese!

Once all assembled, put the pan in the oven on the lowest rack for 8 to 10 minutes. Then turn up the heat to 425 degrees and put it on the highest rack until the cheese starts to bubble a bit and turn golden.

Remove and serve immediately! You can cut the pizzas in half right across the middle, so there are mini-French Bread Pizzas for everyone.

Amanda Causey Baity ([email protected]) is Prince William Living’s director of operations and photo editor. You can find her recipes, crafts and more at vandorenfarm.com.

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