Co-ordinating schedules with babies, toddlers and preschoolers is hard enough without having to figure out something to eat. Picky eaters, vegetarians, gluten free, gah!! Here’s my go to meal that can easily check whatever boxes you need with a timeline for getting it all done and keeping everyone happy.
No kids? No problem. It’s still the perfect thing to make when you don’t know everyones preferences and pickiness level while still keeping your sanity.
Pita Pizza Lunch Date
Let’s start with the crust. Of course you could make your own, but for this playdate we’re using pitas. You can use the smaller ones to give everyone a person pizza, or the larger ones to share. I like the larger ones, because usually the kids just want cheese, then the adults can hash out what toppings they can agree on.
Gluten free? You can usually find options in most grocery stores. If there are no gluten free pitas, look for gluten free naan bread, bagels, or even regular bread instead.
The beauty of the pita pizza lunch date is its flexibility. You can use any meat, cheese, or vegetables to your hearts content. I like to have on hand:
- tomato sauce
- cheddar cheese
- mozzarella cheese
- green peppers
- 1 or 2 sliced lunch meats
Make it a potluck and have each friend bring 2 or 3 toppings. You supply the pitas, sauce, and cheese. (This becomes important later in the timeline.) Or supply all the toppings and have your guests bring a salad, fruit tray, or dessert.
1 hour before: chop all vegetables, slice meat (if using) and grate cheese.
30 minutes before: set out plates, glasses, cutlery, & napkins
15 minutes before: preheat oven and prepare 1 kids cheese pizza.
10 minutes before: Put kids cheese pizza into the oven and check 10 minutes later.
Guests arrive, maybe on time. . . this is questionable especially with little people. No worries, the kids pizza needs to cool off anyway.
This way the kids can eat immediately and the grown up pizzas can be assembled while everyone chats. While the grown ups finish off their meal the kids can go play and come back in a bit when everyone is ready for dessert. Or maybe you have stricter table rules than I do. Either way, this meal is so flexible that you can easily adjust for your preferences.
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Kristen is a former farm kid turned urban gardener who owns the popular gardening website, Shifting Roots. She is obsessed with growing flowers and pushing the limits of what can be grown in her zone 3b garden. She also loves to grow tomatoes, but oddly enough, dislikes eating them raw.