I am a member of the Collective Bias® Social Fabric® Community. This shop for Kraft #FreshTake items and the recipe I created for Cheddar Jack & Bacon Mashed Potatoes has been compensated as part of a social shopper amplification for #CollectiveBias and its advertiser.
In my family, I am the entertainer. What that means is that anytime there is a gathering, I am the one who gets everyone together and prepares a meal fit for a king. I spend hours pouring over recipes and creating the perfect menu. I check with my guests for dietary restrictions to make sure I offer them something they can eat, and then I grab my daughter and we start preparing the meal. This year, Easter will be no different, but I am going to be adding Kraft Fresh Take to my cooking recipes.
My mother-in-law always comes to visit on Easter and we fix a huge meal. We tried once before to make life a little easier on me and go out to dinner on this special holiday, but honestly — it just did not feel the same. There is just something special about preparing a dinner together with family members. Doing so allows for laughter, love, and conversation to flow — which makes for a very relaxing meal prep time.
Because I love sharing ways that you make a big, special holiday like Easter more relaxing, I decided to share with you my 3 favorite ways to make the time more fun, and how to make it relaxing so that you don’t feel like you have to miss out on the conversation OR spending time together with your family.
3 Ways to Make Easter Dinner More Relaxing and Fun
1. Use items from the store that cut down on cooking time
While I was out shopping at WalMart and preparing for this menu to fix for our last family get together, I ran upon the Kraft Fresh Take Items at the grocery store. My mind starting clicking, and recipe ideas started flowing through my head.
I purchased the Parmesan Chicken and the Cheddar Bacon flavored Fresh Take pouches. I knew that I had family members coming over for a big game night, and I was in charge of preparing food, so I knew this would definitely cut down on the time I would have to be in the kitchen.
Right now, you can score a $1.00 off coupon by visiting this link. At my Walmart, these pouches were $1.98, which means — the price would only be .98!
2. Involve Your Kids in the Kitchen
My daughter loves to help me cook. In fact, she gets mad if I don’t tell her I am making supper so that she can help me. Since she has gotten old enough to take over the kitchen, it has made cooking much easier. She takes a lot of the prep work off my hands, and she and I have some amazing conversations over cooking food.
Seriously — if you want to get your teenager talking to you — GET THEM IN THE KITCHEN.
3. Use your normal recipes that don’t take a lot of time to prepare
One of my most loved recipes is homemade mashed potatoes, but they can get pretty boring quickly. So — how can this tip help you cut down on time? By making recipes that you are familiar with, you cut down on recipe reading time, prep time, and more — and — you can use foods like the Kraft Fresh Take pouches to bump up the flavor of a normal dish to an over the top dish — like I did with my mashed potatoes.
I took the Cheddar Bacon Kraft Fresh Take and topped my regular smashed potatoes with it and then broiled it in the oven. Now — my regular smashed potatoes taste like a delicious baked potato!
- 5 russett potatoes, diced with skin on
- ½ cup sour cream
- 1 pouch of Kraft Fresh Take Cheddar Jack and Bacon Mix
- Take diced potatoes and place them in a dutch oven. Cover with water and boil until tender, about 20 minutes.
- Remove from the stove and drain water. Smash potatoes using a potato masher.
- Mix in sour cream.
- Using a 9x13 dish, or whatever size you need, place the potatoes in the dish just like a casserole and sprinkle the Kraft Fresh take on top.
- Place under the broiler for about 5 minutes, until cheese is melted and topping has browned.
- Serve with your favorite Easter ham or with dinner one evening.
Putting this dish together was simple and easy. Start by dicing your potatoes up smaller than normal so that when you are boiling them, they cook up faster. Another quick option is to leave the skins on. They smash up beautifully once you get to that point.
Once you get your potatoes boiled, drain them and then with your potato masher, mash the heck out of them! Leave a few chunks of potato. That is the beauty of real smashed potatoes!
Then you need to add the secret ingredients — sour cream to the potatoes. Once you do that, place it in a casserole dish and top it with Kraft Fresh Take Cheddar, Jack, and Bacon to the top.
Broil in the oven for about 5 minutes until the top gets brown and crispy and then serve alongside that delicious Easter ham! Other sides you can make are green bean casserole, but instead of topping with those dried fried onions, try topping them with the other flavors of Fresh Take. The possibilities are endless!
What are your favorite ways to celebrate Easter dinner at your home? Do you have tips to make it fun and relaxing? I would love to hear!
Don’t forget about the $1.00 off coupon you can score. Grab it and go get a few of the Kraft Fresh Take pouches today.