Sheet pan-amania

Sheet pan dinner photo by christine-siracusa-065eGbVSNOE-unsplash

Are you noticing the number of recipes for sheet pan dinners? Maybe it’s the nod to comfort foods, maybe it was the long winter but regardless, those recipes are everywhere!

Since I am the clean-up crew most every night at home, using only one pan has great appeal for me.

So, the first thing I do when reading recipes for inspiration (since I never follow directions or ingredients exactly as written) is to weed out the ones starting with the protein cooked in a skillet first! Admittedly, I was intrigued by the sheet pan recipes for cinnamon rolls and fried chicken with waffles…but those recipes are skipped over too.

Thinking of the clean up means I’ll line the pan with parchment or foil and, likewise, I’ll use a plastic bag for a marinade instead of another bowl.

We don’t typically enjoy mixed up foods or casseroles; we want are veggies distinctive, our meats (primarily fish) cooked and not over cooked and our starches in small quantity. Though, we can certainly make exceptions for chicken fajitas or jambalaya where we do want the flavors to meld.

So in our case, with a bit of mathematical calculation we can accomplish all our goals. The math goes into the timing and sometimes the size cut among vegetables if there are several. Starting various elements at different times, with planning, is pretty straightforward.

The conventional recipes are often animal protein focused which isn’t quite our eating style so, again, altering quantities is easy.

If you’ve got some pretty selective eaters at your table, perhaps, sheet pan dinner nights might include one favorite food from each person/meal. Could it even be a teaching lesson about what goes into a balanced meal?

There are many ways sheet pan meals can work for you to be well,


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Your kitchen

Did anyone feel like a groundhog who popped up out of the ground on the 2nd? Apparently we are NOT to come out of our hole just yet. We’ll need to spend a while longer in home lockdown.

I’m certainly grateful to have a safe home. And electricity, especially this week! But, on top of those blessings, I am grateful to have a kitchen. There’s both a physical and emotional comfort in one’s kitchen, often the center of the home, right? The psychological comfort that you know you will be fed is another blessing. Nourished is perhaps a better word than fed as it conveys more than just food.

As I think about children (of all ages), who are home, I truly hope the kitchen has been a wonderful educational resource. Measuring with little ones helps explain math application. Heat conduction with metal and glass pans might stir some scientific thought in an older child. Have we taught our children what a balanced healthy meal looks like? Have we taught them how to cook?

And for we slightly older students, we might choose to use our brains in the kitchen! For a birthday cake recipe, I needed to convert metric measurements and temperatures and my immediate default was to use my phone (not to order out but to do the conversions). WAIT! Let’s get that brain exercised. Once we stop thinking for ourselves and solving our own questions we will lose the ability to do so.


  • How many teaspoons in a tablespoon?
  • How many cups in a gallon?
  • How many ounces in a pound?
  • What is the Fahrenheit equivalent of 177 ° Celsius?
  • How many bottles will be filled from a barrel of wine? Now, obviously, we’re getting serious!

Join me and my college students and stretch that brain.

Eat well to be well,


PS Happy birthday to my February birthday boys!

PPS OK, a bit of help – 300 bottles!




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