Meal trains are all the rage lately. I understand why. New babies, deaths, and sickness all have an enormous impact on families. It’s nice for the community to be able to rally behind them. Admittedly, there was no train when I had my son. But the meals and visitors still came, albeit organized via text message. I soaked up the company while I chowed down on foods that did not come from my freezer stash. Unaware of the protocol, I had made and frozen more than a month’s worth of meals in advance, so it was a pleasant surprise when they came pouring in day after day!
However, that doesn’t mean that these deliveries didn’t come with a certain amount of angst. Do you invite generous visitors to stay and eat with you? Can you survive waiting until after bedtime before eating if they don’t? Are they coming during feeding time? Etc. etc. And now, on the other side, the same questions in reverse, in addition to new ones. What do I make? When do I have time to make it? What do I make it in? Full disclosure, I own a catering company and still struggle with these questions!
There are many factors to consider when choosing a meal to deliver to a family. Dietary preferences, portability, and when the meal will actually be consumed are probably the top three. I’ve delivered a fresh out of the oven, warm, plated meal to a family just to learn that they had already eaten that night. Don’t let this be you! Now, if I deliver something freshly made, I make sure that it will also reheat (and freeze) in case they decide to put it in the fridge (or freezer!) for a later date.
I know many people that can barely get food on their own tables, much less their neighbors. To ensure everyone goes to bed well-fed I’ve compiled these favorite finds to take the stress out of your next meal delivery.
DIY Recipes – All of the recipes below pack a little something special, can be made in advance, reheat well, freeze well, and can be easily scaled up to feed your family too! I like to package these with a bottle of wine and an early-morning snack like biscotti or lactation cookies (ONLY IF you know the new mama is breast feeding) since her days just got a lot longer.
- Chorizo, white bean, & butternut squash soup
- Heart-stuffed shells in a lemon ricotta sauce
- Over-the-top mushroom quiche
- Squash & short-rib enchiladas
Grab & Go! – Make things easy on yourself with any of these prepared food options. None of which are pizza and many of which are also available with free delivery via Uber Eats!
- Storico Fresco Alimentari – stop by this Buckhead pasta shop & restaurant for a variety of lasagna options or their timballo “pasta pie.”
- Gio’s Chicken Amalfitano – get any of their Italian-style chicken dishes family-style with roasted potatoes and a salad.
- Community Q BBQ – their family meal comes complete with 1.5 pounds of meat, two sides (one of which MUST be macaroni & cheese), and buns.
- Tazikis Cafe – check out one of their many locations for a healthy Dinner for Four. The pork loin is my personal favorite. Note that it must be ordered 2 hours in advance of pickup.
- Mom’s Table – if you’re in Roswell check out Mom’s Table for “home-cooking to go” available in 2 and 4 serving packages.
What are your favorite meal train recipes and take-out spots?