A simple barbecue recipe.

A thought hit me last week as I watched my 10-year-old play baseball with his team: My boy is getting fit while the rest of the family gets fat.

With so many practices and games starting at 5 p.m., it is a challenge to get a meal on the table and eaten before we leave for the ballpark. Plenty of evenings we end up snarfing down dinner in the bleachers, many times fast food grabbed on the way. Or concession cuisine. The season just started and I am embarrassed to admit how many times my supper consisted of a hot dog and a licorice rope.

Thankfully, help has arrived in the form of Phyllis Pellman Good's new book, "Fix-It and Forget-It, 5-Ingredient Favorites."

The book offers more than 700 slow-cooker recipes with five ingredients or fewer. That means throwing dinner together in lightning speed and having something hot and ready before or after a game.

Pellman Good collected the recipes from at-home cooks around the country, moms and dads just like us who frequently need to feed a family on the go.

Pellman Good then tested the recipes to ensure easy step-by-step procedures.

She also includes preparation and cooking times.

This book is priceless for the hurried, as well as for beginning cooks.

Barbecued beef sandwiches takes just 15 minutes to prepare. Throw it into the crock pot, and dinner is hot and ready before or after a game.

Taste-wise, it's a home run.

BARBECUED BEEF SANDWICHES

4-pound round steak, 3/4 inch thick, cut into 3-inch cubes

2 cups ketchup

1 cup cola

1/2 cup chopped onion

2 cloves garlic, minced

Spray slow cooker with nonstick cooking spray. Place beef in cooker. Mix remaining ingredients in bowl and pour over meat. Cover and cook on high 5-6 hours.

About 30 minutes before serving, remove beef and shred with 2 forks. Return to slow cooker and mix well with sauce. Spoon onto sandwich buns.

Canton (Ohio) Repository