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Mouthwatering recipes made with ranch dressing

I am a cookie-maker, baker-faker, food-taker. Errr! Picture-taker! I started to blog about food with the intent to inspire others to get back into the kitchen and start cooking.

This is a story all about how I had two kids... and dinner became so hard to even think about.

An all too familiar story... long day at work, two hangry kids, and a hubby that just wants to "watch the news." With the hubbub of daily life, somewhere in the mix, there's also a mom that just wants fed children and a clean house.

Remember when french fries dipped in ranch dressing were dinner? The good ol' days...

While we're on the topic of dipping food into ranch... Isn't ranch every Mom's answer to appetizers, salads and leftovers? Or is that just me?

Fun comes first for my kids, so I try to get their attention with kid-friendly meals: homemade chicken nuggets, homemade macaroni and cheese as well as fun salads and veggies that they can easily dip into their favorite sauce or salad dressing.

One of my husband's favorite sandwiches is my homemade chicken nuggets on sandwich bread with Swiss cheese and drizzled with hot sauce and Hidden Valley's Ranch Dressing. He requests it all the time.

You know what else is great? Leftovers. Bonus?? Leftovers that get to go to work with the husband.

I also like to get creative and make a fun appetizer with cream cheese and Hidden Valley's Ranch Dips. I mix both of those together and stuff the mixture into sweet mini peppers wrapped in bacon. Just a few minutes in the oven and ding! Appetizers for dinner are served! Apps for dinner; the reason I like being an adult.

Dinnertime is ever evolving in our house, and I remain convinced of the importance of eating together at the dinner table. The process of cooking in order to eat, and sitting down together as a family were things that I learned in my upbringing. In recent years I also learned that kids have a mind of their own, as well as a palate, thus making them eat raw green broccoli is just not acceptable. What is acceptable, though, is raw broccoli paired with Hidden Valley's Ranch Dressing.

To my kids, ranch is why vegetables exist. If the carrots and tomatoes aren't accompanied by Hidden Valley's creamy ranch dip, they will run. Literally.

However, it's important to me that my kids eat their vegetables. And, since I feel that dinner is the one meal of the day that we should all try to eat together as a family, at home, pulling out the ranch bottle is no difficult task.

Healthy proteins and green veggies are important staples for the little ones, so I always try to work those good-for-you foods in there, no matter what.

Dip away my little children, dip away...

Disclosure: This post is part of a collaboration with Hidden Valley and SheKnows.

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