I was trying to think of the last time we had unexpected company stay for dinner and I can’t. See, I told you I randomly came up with these blog topics for the challenge without thought to what I was also going to post. lol I wonder if it’s because if people come over any time after lunch I expect them to stay for dinner? Unsure about that or if it’s because we plan so many dinners with friends I just don’t notice if they stick around. It also helps that we have teens so I’m always making enough for about 6 adult portions. You just never know when the kids are going to be in a growth spurt and eat two or three helpings.
That said, I have to say my honest statement would be running to the store and we’d be grilling burgers. Doesn’t really matter what time of year. But if it’s not completely last minute and I have a couple of hours of visiting to plan for it, then this is why I keep spaghetti sauce in the freezer at all times. My slow cooker spaghetti sauce was the post for day 1 of the cook easy foodie blogger challenge. I try to keep at least 1 bag of it in the freezer at all times because it’s so easy to cook up ahead and freeze. It’s also incredibly fast to thaw.
I can throw the freezer bag in a bowl or sink of hot water. After 10-15 minutes I can usually get the sauce out of the bag and can then set it on low in a sauce pan. Depending on the amount of company and also what pasta I have on hand will depend on how I cook it. If I have a lot of people over then I cook up penne or elbow macaroni in a large quantity. Toss it together with the sauce and then bake it covered for a few minutes. 4 cups of the sauce and 4-6 cups of cooked noodles will make a ton of food for a last minute crowd. Don’t be afraid to uncover it and throw some shredded cheese to melt on top.
A green salad and/or some frozen veggies and you are done. Quick and easy. You still have plenty of time to visit with your company and there’s very little cleanup.
Never worry about what's for dinner again. I've got you covered with the meal plans in the Once a Week Cooking Club. Cook once, eat all week.
Please be aware that some links used are to affiliates. They are almost always to products I use and love.