A hot meal brought to your door. There are few things better than that.
At some point in life, most of us have been on the receiving end of a meal brought to our house by a friend. Maybe it was because you had a baby, experienced an illness, a death in the family, or moved. There are so many reasons why you may have been blessed through a meal that you didn’t have to cook.
Meals can be an amazing thing! I 100% acknowledge that they are a tremendous blessing. As a teen, my mom had breast cancer, and now as an adult, my brother is terminally ill. I have benefited from many meals and been brought to tears by people’s above and beyond kindness.
Now, when I am able, I love to bless others with meals!
Unfortunately, I’ve also experienced or had others share with me not so awesome moments, from people who are truly trying to help but don’t quite get it. It’s okay, most of us have been there too.
Along the way, I realized that it’s simply because if you haven’t been there, you don’t get it. Or perhaps it is just out of your comfort zone.
These 8 tips for bringing meals to friends is a great place to get you started if you are unsure of what to do!
8 Tips for Bringing Meals to Friends
1. Set up Plan
No one wants to get the same meal three days in a row. Believe me, you’re talking to the gal that ate pasta of three different variety for about a week straight as a teen, and still had leftovers.
If someone is sick or just had a new baby, calling to check to see what they want can be overwhelming.
Sites like Meal Train are amazing! They take the think work out for you. If you know of a new mom or a family in need of meals, set up an account, and have people sign up to bring meals. There is a calendar that allows people to sign up for a specific day and the dish you are bringing, no more repeat meals!
As an added bonus you can put a preferred time for the meal to be dropped off, bringing me to the second tip, list your food needs.
2. Listen to Their Needs
If there are things the family you are cooking for can not eat or dislikes, be sure to find that out, so that your meal will be a blessing.
There were a couple times in my teen years where we had to give a meal away and scrounge for food because what we were given made us sick. Our bodies didn’t handle rich or highly processed meals well.
Please don’t scoff at their list, there are so many people with food allergies and intolerances. Know that when there is something on their “do not bring list”, it could be because of a serious health concern.
It’s not about you, it’s about blessing them.
3. Embrace Disposables
I am an eco-conscious woman but there is a time and place for disposables. The last thing a family who has a new baby, or is sick needs is to wash dishes. If it helps your conscious, find disposables that can be recycled. They will love you for it, believe me!
4. Have a few Set Tried and True Recipes
Bringing a meal to a family is not the time to test out that new recipe you found on Pinterest. Stick to meals that you know how to make well, and that are not full of “experimental” or unusual ingredients and technics.
If you don’t have time to cook don’t feel guilty about take-out. In fact, it might be a special treat to the family you are bringing the meal to!
5. Don’t Forget the Extras
Make it a meal. If you sign up don’t forgot sides, maybe even add in dessert. (As long as the family on the receiving end wants sweets.)
A well-rounded meal stretches further and leaves the family feeling satisfied. If you don’t have the time to make all the extras don’t feel bad about picking them up at the grocery store.
6. Think Beyond Dinner
Maybe you work nights and can’t bring dinner. People have to eat three times a day. Check to see if you can drop by foods that are good for breakfast, lunch, or a snack instead.
You might just bless their socks off!
7. Add Something Special
A simple bouquet of mixed flowers, a book, or a family friendly movie might be that special touch that makes their day.
If you sign up for a few meals, you don’t have to do this every time but on occasion, it is a thoughtful gesture.
8. Don’t Overstay Your Welcome
You care about the people you are bringing food to. They know that otherwise, you wouldn’t be bringing them food in the first place.
Whatever the circumstance is, the fact that they need a meal brought to them means that they are emotionally, physically, and mentally drained.
Don’t stay more than a few minutes, unless they specifically ask you to stay for awhile. There will be other times you visit when they are feeling more like themselves.
Know that you are a blessing!
You are such a rich, and wonderful blessing that it brings me close to tears thinking of all the times our family has been so blessed by receiving meals when we were going through difficult times.
What are you best tips for bringing meals to friends?
Do you find it hard to get nourishing real meals on the table? Let Tradishen help take the guess work out of menu planning for you! Find recipes like this one and more at Tradishen.