BACK-TO-SCHOOL MEALS IN MIN­UTES

Mex­i­can menu ideas for sim­ple fam­ily din­ners

The Oakdale Leader - - NEIGHBORHOOD VALUES -

When the school year is back in full swing, fam­i­lies of­ten find them­selves bat­tling the meal­time crunch. Mex­i­can-in­spired meals burst­ing with fla­vor are known fam­ily-friendly picks that can be eas­ily pre­pared and put on the ta­ble on those fren­zied week­nights.

Th­ese sim­ple ideas from the ex­perts at Ortega can help make “taco night” and other Mex­i­can meals bet­ter than ever.

En­cour­age kids to get hands-on. It’s no se­cret that kids like fin­ger foods, and many Mex­i­can dishes are best en­joyed by hand. Ta­cos are an ob­vi­ous fa­vorite, but other op­tions like que­sadil­las, taquitos and Ortega Fi­esta Flats are also easy to en­joy sans sil­ver­ware.

Step out­side of tra­di­tion. If you’re look­ing for some­thing that makes meal­time feel ex­tra spe­cial, skip the ba­sic taco and choose a meal kit that lets you serve up a

restau­rant-style ex­pe­ri­ence at home. For ex­am­ple, Ortega’s Bake­able Tor­tilla Bowl Kits bring a new and sim­ple way to change up your Mex­i­can meals. Just bake and fill with your fa­vorite in­gre­di­ents. Of­fer a va­ri­ety of in­gre­di­ents. One of the ben­e­fits of a Mex­i­can meal is all the ways each fam­ily mem­ber can cus­tom­ize plates to their own tastes. Try set­ting out a wide range of in­gre­di­ents and en­cour­age the kids to ex­per­i­ment with top­pings they may not have tried be­fore, like olives and gua­camole.

Don’t for­get the sauce. Taco sauces can bring unique, un­ex­pected fla­vor to recipes. One to try is Ortega’s line of bold and creamy Fla­vor Craver Taco Sauces. Va­ri­eties in­clude Taco Ranch, Chipo­tle and Jalapeno Lime, all per­fect for ta­cos, taco sal­ads, dips, burg­ers and more.

Find more recipes and ideas to add a unique twist to any Mex­i­can meal at Ortega.com.

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