I've always had dreams of enjoying a big breakfast together as a family every Saturday or Sunday morning. Waking up to the smell of pancakes and eggs on the weekend was one of my favorite parts of growing up. We also had hot cereal every Sunday morning because it was quick and kept us full through church meetings. Unfortunately, rotating church times and our Saturday work schedules over the years have prevented this from becoming a regular tradition in our little family. Every so often I'll cook something big on Sundays before church or randomly on a Saturday morning, but I'd love for breakfast to be a more regular occurrence in our family. Then a few weeks ago I saw someone mention that they have one night a week set aside to eat breakfast for dinner and I realized that was the answer to all of my problems!
Unfortunately, I already had May's menu plan put together and our meals are based on emptying out our fridge, freezer and pantry so that we can stock up, and add fresh frozen meals to our artillery. We did have one night planned this month for breakfast, and we enjoyed that, but I plan to add breakfast foods to our regular dinner rotation starting next month. We already celebrate Taco Tuesday, now we'll also have Breakfast _______ (I haven't decided what day of the week that will be yet).
One of my very favorite things growing up was the fact that my mom always made pancakes and waffles from scratch, never from a mix. This Buttermilk Pancake recipe is one of my very favorites. I love how light and fluffy they are and there is just a little bit of bite from the tart flavor of the buttermilk. These pancakes are so delicious!! I usually enjoy them plain, but we had some cooked bacon and ripening bananas that needed to be used, so I decided to make pancake night just a bit more fun. We even threw in a few chocolate chips for good measure!
When I was living away from home during college, one of my roommates introduced me to peanut butter and syrup on pancakes and it was a game changer!!! I also love to top my pancakes with pecans, bananas and caramel sauce. Share with me some of your favorite pancakes add-ins! Obviously we'll have other things like waffles, French toast, toast with eggs, smoothies, etc. for dinner but I imagine we will need some more variety if we're going to make this a weekly tradition that we don't get tired of!
Now that I've decided to add a breakfast night to our meal plan each week, I'm tempted to make themed nights a tradition. Taco Tuesdays consist of anything "taco"; Taco Salad, Taco Soup, Chicken Tacos, etc. I've always thought it would be fun to have a regular pizza night, maybe on Fridays, and order from different pizzerias or try out a new recipe/topping combination at home. Tell me what some of your weekly dinner themes are! I'd love to steal some ideas from all of you :)
A hint for those of you looking for quick and simple mealtime solutions. Mix up a double or triple batch of pancakes, bake them all, and set aside any leftovers after your meal is over. Once the pancakes are cool, place them in a gallon freezer bag and lay them flat in the freezer. You can pull one or two out for quick breakfasts, or use them all for a family meal later down the road. That's exactly what we did with this batch. The leftovers have been used for mine and Bensen's breakfast once this week and then we pulled them all out for breakfast as a family this morning. I pop the ones that I plan to eat in the microwave for 30-45 seconds on high, then toast them for a couple of minutes so that they aren't soggy.
Tip: If you don't have buttermilk on hand, search for "buttermilk substitutes" online. Most of them involve milk, and lemon juice or vinegar, all things that I'm willing to bet you have on hand in your kitchen. Until recently, when I discovered cup size cartons of buttermilk at our local grocery store, I would often avoid purchasing buttermilk. It was hard to find enough recipes to use all of it in before the carton expires. I've frozen the leftover buttermilk in ice cube size portions before, but those only last so long in the freezer and I've ended up throwing the majority of them away in the end as well.
I'm looking forward to adding this simple tradition to our family dinners. Family dinner is something that I feel strongly about and it's something that Bensen already looks forward to. We will often set him in his chair to start eating because he gets hangry before everything is completely put together. While Joe and I are finishing getting dinner on the table, Bensen will often be asking us to sit by him and only picks at his food until we're all at the table eating together. As our kids get older and schedules get busier, I hope that these traditional dinner themes will help bring our family together to spend quality time together a couple of times a week!
What are some fun family traditions that you have in your family?