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Thread: Meals at "home"

  1. #1
    Will work for Dole Whips. Brandie's Avatar
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    Meals at "home"

    I didn't see this question already posed. Please direct me to the proper thread if I missed it . . .

    What kind of meals do you make in the kitchen at your villa? I've seen reference to crock pot meals. Got any recipes for those? And, talking about crock pots, which brand/style do you have (and like)? I've got three crock pots and I'm not happy with any of them.

  2. #2
    the jeweled acrobats only perform amazing stunts for him DopeyRunr's Avatar
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    Oooh, can I tag on a little? Just to expand to include creative meals in a Studio (only a microwave) + crock pot or electric skillet.
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  3. #3
    THE RULES!!! vicki_c's Avatar
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    MK always says they have things like frozen lasagna and bagged salad. So cooking, but not *really* cooking. We never cook - don't think I have yet turned on an oven @ a DVC or even the stove top. We use the fridge, the toaster and microwave!
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    It's an amusement park, for goodness sake, how much planning could you need?

  4. #4
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    I can't afford to eat out every meal at WDW. It's not in the budget and it's more important that I stay on budget than eat over-priced, mediocre food (can you tell I'm not a big fan of most of the WDW restaurants?). So, yeah, we do a lot of "cooking" in the villa and splurge on a few TS meals on vacation.

    I meal plan for the vacation before we go. Like Vicki mentioned, I'm not so much "cooking dinner" when we eat in as "throwing it in the oven and waiting for the timer." We love fresh or frozen ravioli with pasta sauce and garlic bread--not a lot of work involved nor a lot of cleanup. Frozen pizzas. Frozen stuffed chicken breasts (Chicken Kiev, Chicken Cordon Bleu, etc.).

    I've found some great recipes on the Reynolds Oven Bags site that are pretty low prep. If I decide I want to do one of those on the trip, I pack a snack bag with the pre-measured spices so I don't need to buy or bring the spice jars nor do I have to worry about measuring spoons (or measuring--which saves some time, too).

    Our Owner's Locker has a waffle/sandwich maker in it so we sometimes do stuffed french toast (butter two slices of bread, put spreadable cream cheese and orange marmalade or jam on the inside--easy and YUM-O!) for breakfast or a hot sandwich for lunch (pizza pocket?).

    Love the roasted chicken paired with steam-in-a-bag veggies and microwave-in-a-bag rice!

    And there's always Giordano's--they deliver!

    mk

  5. #5
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    Doc, you might look at some recipe books like "A Man, A Can and A Microwave" for ideas. The biggest challenge to eating in at DVC Studios, IMO, is the lack of table space. That little hotel side table is always the place where the various flotsam and jetsam of the trip accumulates.

    mk

  6. #6
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    And while I'm busy talking to myself. . .

    This is also where the Owner's Locker comes in so handy. We keep a couple of cutting board "sheets " (the really thin ones), a pair of good knives and potholders in the OL because what's provided in the units is just not quite good enough. I'm currently working on how to make enough room for a good 10" skillet in one of them (thanks for the idea, Brian!). Salt & pepper, chip clips, aluminum foil, cooking spray (aka Pam)--all stuff we wouldn't want to buy new or cart back and forth, but want each trip.

    mk

  7. #7
    he's right
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    We also do pasta and bagged salad, as well as the pre-made chicken and a steamfresh veggie. Rather than microwave rice, we do garlic bread, but same principle.
    Tacos are another easy-peasy in-condo meal.

    I will say, though, that dinner in the condo works best when the parks are open somewhat late. With an 8PM or earlier close, it is tricky unless you do a 3/4 day. So, if we are offseason and want to cut down on expenses, we just stick to CS meals most of the time, and have one or two TS meals, total.

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    We will be down August 27 through September 3 (cast me, DH, DD8, DS5, DS4, DMIL, DSIL). We're planning 4 nights of dinner in the room. Sometimes it's not only a money thing but a "can they really handle a sit down meal right now?" kind of thing. LOL
    We were going to do:
    Frozen pizzas baked in oven, bagged salad / bottle of wine
    Chicken breast baked in oven with lemon juice and olive oil, parsley and paprika, bagged salad, baked potatoes from the microwave or if not frozen french fries, mandarin oranges, shredded cheese, Pillsbury crescent rolls (planning to bring the seasoning from home)
    Pasta with red sauce (can of Tuttoroso crushed tomatos) bagged salad and Italian bread
    French Toast or pancakes, bacon, fruit, coffee (using the last of the bread, eggs, bacon, fruit)

    The kids enjoy eating in the room too - we have a 3 bedroom lockoff Signature Collection Unit at Orange Lake.

    Can't wait to hear other ideas.

    Deb

  9. #9
    Senior Member hinkey's Avatar
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    When it comes to crock pot meal one of my favorites is a pork roast. The cut of meat is up to you (I like a shoulder or a butt.) Add a can or two of broth depending on the size. Doesn't have to cover it, but should fill the crock at least a third. You can add veggies such as carrots and potatoes if you have room. Cook on low all day (at least 8 hours) You can shred the pork if you want sandwiches. The meat will be very tender and juicy. If you want you can add some seasoning, I don't usually add anything other than a little pepper or galic.

    My crock pot is pretty simple. No timer, or thermastat, it has 3 settings: keep warm, low, and high.
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  10. #10
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    I made chili on our last trip - worked great. I have a Southern Living black bean chili recipe that we really like and it is easy. We had enough for leftovers the next day. Stoufers frozen lasagna is not bad, but Costco has a frozen lasagna that is much better. I'm not sure I will ever take the time for a Coscto run while on vacation, though. We'll probably try tacos at some point as well as frozen ravioli with a jar of spaghetti sauce and a bagged salad.
    Stacey

  11. #11
    does judge lisapennie's Avatar
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    Tuna Noodle Casserole is always a good option - you just need whatever cream of soup that you like (we use chicken), canned tuna, and noodles, and it cooks up on the stove top in about twenty minutes. I do a crockpot beef roast that's super easy - get whatever kind of roast you want and a jar of pepperoncini peppers. Put the roast in the crockpot and empty the jar (complete with juices) over it and cook for at least ten hours on low (it can be started before you go to bed). I like the meat on taco shells with cheese, DH and my mom both like it on rolls with mozzarella cheese.
    Lisa






  12. #12
    Will work for Dole Whips. Brandie's Avatar
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    Lots of great ideas!

    What kind of frozen pizzas are y'all buying? My husband can't stand frozen pizza. I'd like to change his mind.

    Stacey, is your Southern Living Chili recipe online somewhere?

  13. #13
    Senior Member loribell's Avatar
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    You can get gift certificates for Giordano's from restaurant.com too! We have a big group going in December so for $2 I got a $50 gift certificate. It requires that our bill total $100 but how hard will that be with 4 families? I would say $52 for pizza for 4 families isn't too bad. There are also $10 & $25 certificates available for them at times too.
    Lori





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  14. #14
    Member atlgator's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brandie View Post
    Lots of great ideas!

    What kind of frozen pizzas are y'all buying? My husband can't stand frozen pizza. I'd like to change his mind.

    Stacey, is your Southern Living Chili recipe online somewhere?
    Try this link: http://www.myrecipes.com/recipe/blac...0000001673163/

    We are not vegetarians, but I do use the Boca crumbles and my DH and kids all eat this chili. I use two cans of tomato sauce in pale of the diced tomatoes because I have this weird quality of not liking chunks of tomato in sauces or soups. We drive so I brought the spices and maybe the canned beans from home. I ordered the other items from Garden Grocer.
    Stacey

  15. #15
    Real Name: Charcoal Grills MichaelColey's Avatar
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    I missed this thread the first time around.

    We use a GE crock pot that we found at Walmart. Instead of a stock "crock", it has a nonstick insert. The cord retracts. It's lighter than a normal crock pot. The lid latches down. Perfect for travel (although we haven't tried to pack it in a checked bag yet - only driving).

    Some of our favorite timeshare meals:

    * Steaks (with baked potatoes, salad, mac and cheese, and/or green beans as sides)
    * Spaghetti (with salad and/or Texas cheese toast as sides)
    * Pulled pork (cooked in the crock pot)
    * Pot roast (cooked in the crock pot)
    * Tacos
    * For breakfast: Eggs, bacon (Costco precooked bacon) and cheese on toasted English muffins
    * For lunch: PBJ or Ham & Cheese sandwiches (either in the room or packed in a soft sided cooler to eat in the park)
    * For desserts: Baked cookies or jello

    Those are some of our timeshare staples.

  16. #16
    does anybody know how to change this? pfalcioni's Avatar
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    I will say, though, that dinner in the condo works best when the parks are open somewhat late. With an 8PM or earlier close, it is tricky unless you do a 3/4 day. So, if we are offseason and want to cut down on expenses, we just stick to CS meals most of the time, and have one or two TS meals, total.
    You can also bring food into the parks - I have a small insulated bag that stuffs inside my backpack which holds a few sandwiches, we also bring cookies and snacks. This works really well for short park hours with not enough time to really go back to the room for supper and then back to the parks. We augment with Disney treats.

    You guys have some mouth-watering dinner ideas - since we stay on-site at POP, I just bring stuff that is very quickly microwaved (in the food court) or eaten cold. I'm jealous of those "real food" meals!

  17. #17
    not going to be flippant...unless... peachygreen's Avatar
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    We cook a lot of our meals in our timeshare when we travel.

    Some of the things we have cooked include
    Spaghetti with salad
    Quesedilla or Taco night with rice and corn
    Baked Chicken and potatoes
    Meat Loaf
    Pork Tenderloin

    We also eat almost all our breakfasts in the condo and we bring lunch to the park or we eat lunch (either leftovers or sandwhiches) when we come back for our afternoon break. Some of those we do on a 1/2 day or 3/4 day as they would be hard to do on a RD/Break/Return day, but it depends on when we retun. If we do take a break we will eat dinner oftena round 5pm and so we are in teh resort for a while and go back to the park around 6:30pm.

    We have our share of Table Service meals too.

  18. #18
    what do we do when we're there?
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    Being that we are still trying to maximize our point by always staying in a studio- I do not have a lot of experience with actual "cooking"...but I have cooked Bacon/Bagles/eggs/Hot pockets/Hot dogs/pizzas in the microwave.

    Something I came across while doing food stretching research- uses for stuffing- was to make crab or fish cakes. If I had access to a 1brm or larger I think I would make home made Mac/Cheese, Ziti, enchladias(sp)(because all could be made in morning and baked off later). Other quick meals I would make are Asparagrass/potatoes/steak and any kind of wrap(chicken, beef, tacos,even coldcut).
    Another thing I love to make at home that I would make there(just pack the mini muffin tin) is eggs, bacon and cheese puffs( from tastefully simple-using the Bacon Bacon) very quick and my family loves them. The bisquick salsa chicken is pretty easy too.

  19. #19
    Real Name: Charcoal Grills MichaelColey's Avatar
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    All of the DVC properties have grills, so even if you're at a studio (or even a regular hotel room at one of the properties that have both!) you could grill stuff.

  20. #20
    the jeweled acrobats only perform amazing stunts for him DopeyRunr's Avatar
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    Has anyone here used those? At AKV it's so far away you'd have to eat outside, and bring all of your side dishes down with you. Doing that in 95+ degree heat doesn't seem like a whole lot of fun.
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  21. #21
    Real Name: Charcoal Grills MichaelColey's Avatar
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    I've used the grills at six of the Orlando DVC properties (we haven't stayed at BLT yet). I always take the steaks (or whatever I'm grilling), charcoal, lighter fluid, a lighter a platter, and tons/spatula down to the grill area, then return to the room when it's done. If you have two people, or a box (like if you shopped at Costco or Sams), that helps. At AKV, OKW and SSR, I drive to the grills. At AKV, there are parking spaces right across from the grill area. If I didn't have a car, I would walk but it's easier to drive.

  22. #22
    Senior Member loribell's Avatar
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    We have used the grills at SSR by the Grandstand pools. Have cooked steak, burgers & pork chops. It is super easy to do.

    Other things I just thought of are the bowls of precooked bbq meat for sandwiches and the precooked fajita beef for fajitas. There are the little frozen taquitos that are available in the freezer sections also. I really should do more in the room but most times it seems so inconvenient. Then again maybe I just don't want to be cooking on vacation no matter how sick I get of theme park food!
    Lori





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  23. #23
    not going to be flippant...unless... peachygreen's Avatar
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    I've actually never grilled before. I guess since I always fly I hate the thought of having to buy a bag of charcoal, lighter fluid etc for one meal and then have to leave everything behind. It would be nice to do a nice steak though.

    I'm thinking our next trip of doing a fondue night though.

  24. #24
    Will work for Dole Whips. Brandie's Avatar
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    Great ideas, everyone! Keep 'em coming!

  25. #25
    Real Name: Charcoal Grills MichaelColey's Avatar
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    A big bag of charcoal and lighter fluid last for 3 or 4 meals for me. Even if I just use it once, though, the charcoal and lighter fluid are under $10 total. I do wish they had a place where people could leave any extra they have rather than just throwing it away.

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