A fun and tasty cookbook... The Make Ahead Kitchen by Annalise Thomas (Blog Tour Review & Giveaway)

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The Make-Ahead Kitchen: 75 Slow-Cooker, Freezer, and Prepared Meals for the Busy LifestyleThe Make-Ahead Kitchen
75 Slow-Cooker, Freezer, and Prepared Meals for the Busy Lifestyle
by Annalise Thomas
Paperback & ebook, 176 Pages

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.

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My Review

THE MAKE AHEAD KITCHEN was a very fun and tasty cookbook! With a good range of recipes with sections including breakfasts, soups & salads, appetizers, snacks & sides, main dishes, cookies & bars, desserts, and drinks, there's something for everyone and for just about every occasion. Each recipe includes a full-color picture and simple instructions. There were also nice notations for recipes that were gluten-free or could be made so and tips on freezing or completing steps of a recipe ahead for days when time is short. Simple, flavorful, and fun.

So let's talk about the recipes we tried... 

Coconut Spice Zucchini Bread

Maple Bacon Overnight Cinnamon Rolls

Slow Cooker Cabbage Patch Soup

Mexican Chicken Corn Chowder

Peanut Butter & Jelly Puffs

Make-Ahead Pepperoni Pizza Rolls

Butterscotch Marshmallow Chocolate Chip Blondies
And the Salted Caramel Frosted Dark Chocolate Brownies, which were to die for, but were all gone by the time I remembered to take a picture (oops!). All of the recipes turned out fairly well and received kid and husband approval, which is a big deal in our house. All of them were requested to be made again in the future.

The Zucchini Bread turned out really moist and yummy. They work as four smaller loaves as well. The family devoured these within two days (could have been one but I restricted them). The Cinnamon Rolls were extremely sweet. I mean lay-on-the-sugar sweet. The bacon was an interesting addition. I don't know that I'm sold on them, but I do praise the creativity and I do have to say that the boys thought it was fabulous to have the bacon.

Both soups were really, really good. My youngest, who is five, drank them both to the last drop from her bowl when she couldn't' spoon the rest. I'm not a huge tomato-base gal, but my husband requested I try the Cabbage Soup and I'm glad we did. It was hearty and so easy. The Mexican Chowder was my favorite. This one is definitely not healthy per se (with 4 cups of cheese and half & half), but it was divinely creamy and with the fresh salsa (especially that cilantro) it was so flavorful. I'm craving it just describing it. Lol! Both of these will definitely be back especially when summer ends.

The PB&J Puffs were really fun and the kids loved them! They weren't overly filling and it would take some time to do small appetizer sized ones. Still, fun idea. We also tried some with cream cheese and jam and those were super good too.

The Pizza Rolls were really easy and fun. My kids devoured them too. Both these and the Cinnamon Rolls used a different recipe than I'm used to with yeast and baking soda. You also cook part of it in a dutch oven on the stove. They turned out, but it was a little more work than just using my mixer. They did rise really well though, and I think if you make them ahead or freeze them that this dough works better for that.

Now for the last... Desserts. Which is also the best, right? ;) Both of these were really good and very rich. They were fairly easy as well and completely from scratch, which I really like because those are the best. Both were worthy of being gifted (I see them on Christmas treat plates in the future...) and shared.

In the end, was this what I wished for? There were a few things that could have been better but everything was easy to follow, simple, could be frozen after being prepared or prepped ahead in some way, and there was such a good variety of things. Definitely a cookbook we'll be using on a regular basis in the future.

Source: Received a copy from the publisher, which did not affect my review in any way.

About the Author

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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.


ebook of The Make Ahead Kitchen
Open internationally
Provided by the publisher
Ends July 12th

a Rafflecopter giveaway
Do you have some recipes you always go to when you need to use your slow-cooker or prep a meal for the freezer to pull out later?

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