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Busy moms all over the world have, probably for millennia, come up with ways to make their lives easier. Call them lifehacks, timesavers, or shortcuts – we all have them.
I’m a pretty simple gal when it comes to meal planning. My formula for dinner tends to include a main dish, a vegetable, and a starch. Sometimes I’ll go a little crazy and make an extra side dish, but those are pretty special days.
Many times the starch takes the form of some kind of home baked bread. Some time back, I started writing my most used recipes on sticky notes and putting them up inside my cabinet door so I could reference them easily.
About a year ago I typed them all up on one sheet and taped it up. It looked a little neater, and it saved me from having to keep re-sticking my sticky notes.
FREE Printable of my Bread Recipes Cheat Sheet at the bottom of this post
I crafted my list to be recipes that I make often, but also pretty basic recipes that didn’t require me to take up space writing out detailed instructions. For most of them, I just listed ingredients and baking instructions.
This meant that I chose to leave off my favorite yeast bread recipes. Those require more time anyway, which means I make them earlier in the day.
This is my “I’m in the middle of making dinner and I don’t want to dig out a recipe” list.
The only yeast bread on the list is an overnight recipe, which requires very little attention during dinner prep.
Here’s what’s on my sheet: Buttermilk Biscuits, Cornbread, Breadsticks, Overnight Crusty Bread, Pancakes & Waffles.
You might be asking yourself, “Susan makes pancakes and waffles as frequent sides to her main dishes?”
I do not.
I do, however, reference these recipes often enough to merit them a place on my list.
In case you are a beginning baker, and aren’t familiar with some of the methods for these breads, click the links in the list below and you will find some basic tutorials.
Let me give you a brief rundown of each recipe:
Buttermilk Biscuits – Brushing the hot biscuits with melted butter sends these flaky gems over the top. I bake these either on my baking stone or in a large, cast iron skillet. These are a regular alongside my chicken & sausage jambalaya and pulled pork. (Find the ‘biscuit’ method here.)
Cornbread –I like my cornbread sweet. I grew up on Jiffy and still buy it occasionally. If you like it less sweet, just decrease the sugar. I usually pour this batter into my cast iron skillet, but you could use a pie plate or square baking dish..buttered, of course. I used this cornbread when we had our Gone With the Wind themed Girls Movie Night. (Find the ‘muffin’ method here.)
Breadsticks – Chewy, delicious, and so fast! No long rising time required. Top with whatever seasonings you like—I usually do garlic and salt. This recipe shows up frequently alongside italian dishes like my lasagna bolognese with bechamel.
Overnight Crusty Bread – this recipe is adapted from the one at this link. She gives fantastic detail on this method, I encourage you to check it out. I decreased the salt significantly per our taste.
Pancakes – I’ve been making pancakes for decades and just feel like I put together the perfect recipe last year. Fluffy and tender. The addition of the yogurt or sour cream really makes them rich. (Find out how to know just when to flip a pancake here.)
Waffles – Crispy on the outside – tender on the inside and a really good flavor. (Find out how to use a waffle maker here.)
Note: Several of the recipes call for Buttermilk. If you don’t have buttermilk in your fridge, you can make your own by adding 1 Tablespoon of white vinegar to a cup of milk and letting it stand for a few minutes.