Phew! These last few weeks have been catching up to me. I mean, really meeting me right at my heels as I try to get a decent and healthy dinner on the table, before the inevitable melt down – yawn fest – face plant on the dinner plate moment.
I started playing around with the idea of the “one-pot” and “one-main” dinners recently, prepping different toppings ahead of time so that it just takes a few moments to distribute fresh and healthy toppings into cute little bowls and eventually on to everyone’s plate.
DIY Sweet Potato Bar
- 4 Sweet Potatoes or Yams
- Olive oil
- Fresh lime
- Black beans
- Fire roasted frozen corn, pan fried or reheated
- 1 Avocado, sliced
- Feta cheese
- Sour Cream or Greek Yogurt
Other options: Fried egg, Rice or quinoa, Mexican shredded cheese, Mango salsa, Green onions, Cilantro, Parsley, Cannellini beans
Step one? Roast your sweet potatoes. I bake mine straight on the oven rack (remember to put a sheet of tin foil on rack below) I do coat mine with a bit of olive oil and fresh grind of sea salt. This isn’t necessary but it’s the way I was taught and I think it encourages a crispier skin. I prick them with a fork, and roast them at 350-375 for 1 hour depending on their size. You can EASILY do these ahead of time, wrap in foil whole, and refrigerate. They are simple to just reheat for a few minutes before serving either in a toaster oven or a microwave. I always roast a few extra to keep on hand for a super quick and nutritious snack or addition to dinner.
Once your sweet potato is roasted and you are ready to serve, the possibilities are endless!! We generally stick to what we know everyone likes but you may have more adventurous eaters that are interested in trying a whole new approach.
Our favorite combinations at the moment are:
Fresh lime juice
Frozen roasted corn
Sour cream or Greek yogurt
You can throw green onions on top; add Mexican shredded cheese instead of feta, sautéed cannellini beans, chopped parsley, and even a fried egg. You really can play around with the basics here.
What I really LOVE about this dinner is that it’s easy but also, it’s never bland. If your kids choose to do the toppings that feel safe to them then that’s fine! They are still getting a nutritious dinner, but you’re not stuck with that same (ahem: boring) flavor that may make more than one weekly appearance at your dinner table. You can really dress this up to your own liking without having to make multiple dinners in one evening, because let’s be honest… who has time for that!?
Give this a try and tweak it to your own family’s taste buds! Enjoy!