Saturday, June 18, 2016

The Make-Ahead Kitchen by Annalise Thomas {Review}

The Make-Ahead Kitchen by Annalise Thomas
Paperback, 176 pages
Published June 14th 2016 by Front Table Books
Skip the hassle of last-minute meals and leftovers and replace them with simple, healthy, delicious, and easy-to-prepare make-ahead dishes! Your family will love these comfortable meals, new favorites, cozy drinks, and tantalizing desserts--all of them prepared ahead of time so you don't have to worry! Enjoy simple, soul-filling foods without the chaos of preparing them at the last minute.
My Review: 4 Stars
I'm always on the lookout for easy, healthy dinner ideas and was so excited to check this book out. There are some great recipes and many of them are "comfort foods," but there aren't a lot of low-fat options. There are a few substitutions to make some of these recipes healthier (such as quinoa and brown rice), which I did appreciate. 
I'm really excited to try these out in the fall/winter, because it seems that a lot of the recipes are geared more towards those seasons, at least for my family, since we like to eat lighter, "cooler" foods in the hot summer months.
That said, we did enjoy a few of these dishes. The maple nut granola (in a bowl with some cold milk poured on top) was a hit and we've made it several times for our breakfasts. The hummus is a great snack idea and paired with pita bread or cut veggies, is a healthy option. We loved the chicken broccoli quinoa casserole. It has a similar taste to chicken divan, but is a healthier alternative. I didn't care for the cashew chicken and brown rice as much as the rest of my family did, but I think that's because I made those two recipes back-to-back and they're similar. The slow cooker meaty spaghetti sauce tasted really good and anything in the slow cooker is perfect for this time of year because it doesn't heat up the house and really tastes good. I didn't make any desserts this time around, but there are several that sound very delicious. There is a gluten-free brownie that I want to try the next time I host book club. It seems that a lot of the main dish recipes are cheesy (my son can't eat cheese) and a lot of the desserts have coconut (my kids don't like coconut), but I can always modify.
The recipes are easy to follow and the pictures included are beautifully done. I liked the general notes at the beginning and the way each chapter is broken down into simple sections, with a good variety of recipes in each category. This will definitely be a big help in my home when school starts up again, as we are always crazy busy.
*I received a copy in exchange for an honest review*
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About the Author:

Annalise Thomas is a big city girl married to a small town boy. Every day is a joy and a challenge as she learns to live and love this small town life. Annalise is a foodie with a deep passion for everything edible and for sharing what she loves with others. Annalise is a wife and mom, a baker, a cook, and a blogger. She and her family live a very real life and eat as much real food as possible. 


  1. Thanks for the review Katie! I'm glad you got to try/enjoy so many of the recipes. Sorry about all the coconut (it is my favorite! Ha!)... :o)

    1. I don't mind coconut either, but it took me awhile to acquire the taste...or maybe it's the texture. :) Have a great day!