Friday Favorites: September 24 2021-Favorite Things to Have on Hand for Easy Meals


Happy Friday Besties. This week was a little odd. It wasn't bad, there was just a little bit of oddness in the air and a few things that made me just go "huh." Since we had such a Good weekend last weekend with Running Daddy safely and successfully completing his first Iron Man race and a fun Sunday at the Premier Lacrosse League championships, I am just going to roll with the oddness of the rest of the week.

Today I am linking up with Erika and Andrea, but taking a little twist on my Friday Favorites this week. Today I am sharing the food items that when I have them on hand make dinner prep much Better

Full disclosure, I am struggling a little bit in this area lately. I am having a little bit of a hard time getting our new schedule down which now includes school every day (thank heavens), one of us working from home all the time, one of us in a hybrid work model, a lot of hockey and all of the other fun things that life throws us. Part of this post is a reminder to myself and part of this is a way to help those of you who stop by this space every week who may be struggling with the same thing.

One of my biggest challenges lately is what I call procurement. The last few weekends have been so busy it has been a little bit of a challenge to get to the grocery store. Running Daddy literally went to the small store in our neighborhood the other day at 6:30 am. I also feel like the fridge is either so full we are playing edible Jenga because the fridge is so full or there is nothing but milk and almond coffee creamer left 48 hours later. This is the part I am probably most struggling with lately and I welcome any Good ideas from the readers out there in the comments below.

Ok, when things are rolling in the meals department in the Good Better Best household it is usually because the following items are on hand.

1) Amylu Chicken Burgers (Costco)

I typically buy these two at a time when I go to Costco. They are in the refrigerated section and sometimes they are only available in the spring/summer. They are pre-cooked and you can grill them quickly or even microwave them. When I have them on hand, all three of us enjoy them for lunch or a quick, light dinner. They come in several flavor combinations but they seem to have the kale and mozzarella version in stock lately. 

2) Kirkland Pesto (Costco)

This is another item that I typically buy two at a time when I hit Costco. It's honestly the Best pesto in my opinion and Hockey Guy dips all kinds of things in it. It is so good for a pesto chicken and pasta, on grilled chicken and of course caprese salad.

3) Burgers and Dogs

We eat a lot of burgers and dogs in the Good Better Best household. Hockey Guy is pretty easy and will eat a hot dog with shredded cheese almost any night.  I buy the Hebrew National (the only brand I buy) in bulk at Costco. I also always have turkey and beef burgers on hand. 

4) Chicken Chili Lime Burgers and Mahi Mahi Burgers (Trader Joe's)

Speaking of burgers, Running Daddy and I love the Chile Lime Burgers from Trader Joe's. They are quick and light and so Good with topped with a little avocado.

I also like the Mahi Mahi burgers from Trader Joe's and top either with avocado or a spicy mayo.

5) Frozen Meatballs 

Premade refrigerated or frozen meatballs are a really Good thing to have on hand. Wegman's makes a really Good gluten free meatball that is in the frozen section that we all like. I use them for meatball subs, pasta and meatballs and just even heat and eat in a pinch.

6) Cucumber and Hearts of Palm

For an easy side, when I am super tired, like too tired to make a real salad tired, I love to open a can of hearts of palm, slice up some cumbers and add a little salt, pepper, olive oil and white balsamic vinegar. Sometimes, I open an extra can and add some chickpeas to the party.

7) Pork Tenderloin, Green Beans and Potatoes Gratin

This is a meal we love and always feel fancy when I make it, but it takes little to no effort. We love pre-marinated pork tenderloin in our house. It's easy and light and you can roast or grill in no time. Wegman's has a rosemary and balsamic vinegar one that is our total favorite. I serve with green beans that you can steam right in the bag and then the rosemary and thyme potatoes gratin that are also the Wegman's brand.

If you don't have a Wegman's in your area, they are kind of a northeast/mid Atlantic store, then you can easily do something similar from any local grocery store. 

For wine, I would serve with a chardonnay, sauvignon blanc or viognier when you really want to feel fancy with this meal.

8) Three Easy Good Better Best Recipes

These three recipes that have been published over the years on this site are truly still staples at our house. They are probably made at least once per month in our house and are pretty foolproof but Best of all, I can get them on the table in about 25 minutes.

I hope I helped inspire you a little bit if you are in a rut or a busy dinner season. Now it's your turn, leave me your Best on hand grocery items or recipes in the comments below. List them, link them and share away. I need all the help I can get right now.

Before I go off and write my grocery list and figure out when the heck I am going to get to the store, we have an out of town hockey tournament this weekend, just a reminder that this Thursday is the last Thursday of the month. Holly and I will be hosting Monthly Musings again and the topic this month is Fall Fashion. We will post the questions early next week so be on the lookout for those and join us Thursday as a writer, reader or both!

Have the Best weekend!


  1. I would agree on this week and you know what I am chalking it up to? The FULL MOON- easy to blame it all on that! ;) Your meals sound fabulous-thanks for sharing your ideas- have a great weekend friend!

  2. These are great things to have on hand for a busy week night meal! Those black bean tacos sound delicious!

    Jill - Doused in Pink

  3. What a fantastic list! I love the Trader Joe's Mahi Mahi burgers, too. And I definitely want to try those Amylu chicken burgers... they look delicious!


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