Election Night Sheet Pan Dinner

It’s election night in America.  Which means a potentially crazy evening for a lot of people.  Kids are out of school since their schools are polling places, which either means they’re home and bored or you have to go somewhere to pick them up.  Maybe you have to vote on the way home.  Maybe that’s your only chance to hit the gym. The polls close at 7pm so returns, predictions, etc start at 7:01.  It gets dark at 5pm so it feels like all this happens at midnight anyway.  Whew.  Oh, and dinner?  Have you had 2 minutes to think about dinner?

Take out?  Entirely respectable.  Or you could throw your entire dinner on a baking sheet and put it in the oven for half an hour while you change clothes and have a glass of wine.  I opted for choice B tonight.  I did my chopping early in the day.  That helps things move along in the evening. (I work from home so this is a luxury I have).  Treat yourself to pre-cut fresh vegetables if that’s better for you. Or, if they’re old enough, assign this task to your kids.  They were home all day. =)

What do we love about sheet pan dinners?  Everything.  There are endless combinations of protein and vegetables.  Endless options for sauces.  And only one pan to clean up.  What do we not love about sheet pan dinners?  There are endless combinations of protein and vegetables.  Endless options for sauces.  The hardest part is figuring out what you’re making.  If you have odds and ends of vegetables, this is a great way to use them up.  I had one sweet potato, half an onion, and half a bag of Brussels sprouts. I had one chicken breast left from a pack I bought for the pups (don’t ask).  Sauce?  I considered balsamic vinegar.  I considered garlic and herb.  I landed on honey mustard because, I have a ton of honey in the cabinet and who doesn’t love honey mustard!

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One tip about these.  If you’re positive that all the vegetables will be done at the same time, go ahead and mix them up.  I usually find that the potatoes take longer than I think.  If you have the vegetables separated by type, it’s easy to remove some while leaving others on the pan to finish cooking.

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We’re halfway through the cooking and already I can tell that the sauce is too soupy.  I kind of wanted a glaze.  I could dump it in a pot and reduce it, but that defeats the purpose of the sheet pan dinner where everything happens on one pan.

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Ok, this didn’t go exactly as planned.  I should have put the potatoes in first.  I’ve now taken out the Brussels sprouts and the smaller piece of chicken and the sweet potatoes aren’t nearly done.  So that’s a bummer, especially since it’s after 7pm and I’m hungry.  Solution?  Eat in courses.  Protein and green vegetable course, followed by the potato course.  Sigh.

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On the plus side the chicken is wonderfully tender.  And with a little kosher salt sprinkled on top, this is a nice sauce with the sprouts.

So, this sheet pan dinner is a solid C, but the concept is still an A!  The next one will be better!  If anyone has a sheet pan dinner they really like, leave the info in the comments!

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