Find easy dinner recipes for family meals that are fast, nutritious, and so yummy. These family meals take no more than 30 minutes, much of which is hands-off so you can live your life.
Easy Dinner Recipes for Family
I’m always looking for easy dinner recipes, especially when I want to keep my spending in check on takeout food, and having a list to refer to is such a help. This list includes my easiest recipes with minimal prep and cooking that are meant to be shared with the entire family.
(You can always just make these for the kids, but my goal is that you can eat them, too!)
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Easy Pizza Recipes
Below are quick and easy pizza recipes to share with the family. This is one of our favorite categories when we’re in need of a meal fast, but are low on time or energy (or both).
10-Minute Pita Pizza
Pick up regular or whole wheat pita bread at your store and use it as a base for this lightning-fast homemade pizza. Adjust the toppings as you like for your family.
Look for a variety of types of flatbread in your supermarket—check the bakery section if your store bakes bread in-house —and assemble this easy meal.
Pesto Pizza Rolls
Roll up pesto, cheese, and toppings your family enjoys in these fun pizza rolls. You can use homemade or store-bought pizza dough, too.
When I want a quick and easy kids meal using pantry staples, I often turn to Pizza Quesadillas. These are ready in about 6 minutes, have classic pizza flavor with a soft and easy-to-chew texture, and are endlessly versatile!
We love these with broccoli and cheese, but you can change up the fillings to make them exactly as your family likes.
Favorite Fast Pasta Dinner Recipes
Pasta, whether you prefer classic semolina, whole wheat, or one of the newer bean- or legume-based options, is always a fast dinner option. These are our very favorite dinners to share with the kids when we’re short on time.
Easy Avocado Pasta
With a creamy, veggie-packed sauce, this easy Avocado Pasta is packed with kid-friendly flavor and nutrients. And the whole recipe can be made in about 10 minutes of cooking time.
Butternut Squash Mac and Cheese
If your family loves creamy, cheesy pasta and you’re looking for a simple way to up their veggie intake—because aren’t we always?!—this super simple 5-Ingredient Butternut Squash Mac and Cheese needs to be on your menu ASAP.
One-Pot Broccoli Mac and Cheese
With a super easy method that only requires one pot, you can have this easy Broccoli Mac and Cheese ready for family dinner—or a kids meal. It cooks in about 20 minutes and has a solid dose of nutrients and deliciousness.
Stir Fry Noodles
For many kids, noodles and pasta are a favorite dinner option. This quick Stir Fry Noodles is a family dinner that plays off of that familiar starting point and introduces potentially new flavors in a safe way. It’s fast, delicious, and so versatile!
Mac and Cheese Bites
Start with a box of mac and cheese, and end with this super fun meal. It’s a fun way to change up dinner just slightly—and they’re really yummy, too.
Making soup has become one of my survival strategies for feeding my family, especially in the cooler months. The ones below are quick, have shortcuts for chopping, and are totally satisfying.
Quick Pastina Soup
Look for pastina, or tiny star pasta, in the pasta aisle of your store. Stelline or acini di peppe can work, too, as they are similar in size.
Cook up this cozy Alphabet Soup recipe the next time you want an easy meal that’s also fun! ABC pasta is a perfect addition to this kid-friendly soup—and you can tailor the veggies to the likes (or dislikes!) of your own kiddos. It’s so versatile!
Chicken Noodle Soup
There’s nothing like a bowl of cozy, comforting Chicken Noodle Soup—especially when it’s one that’s easy to make in about 30 minutes. This version is quick to make and is one of our very favorite soups for kids—and family dinners to share.
Butternut Squash Apple Soup
Start with precut or frozen butternut squash from the supermarket to reduce the prep time in this cozy soup recipe.
Try this one-pot soup for an easy weeknight meal to share with the kids. Top with Parmesan cheese or another shredded cheese you like for extra yum.
Crockpot and Instant Pot Family Meals
Instant Pot Butter Chicken
Shredded chicken thighs made incredibly tender in a rich tomato sauce with hints of Indian spices … oh yes! This Instant Pot Butter Chicken is an easy family dinner that everyone at the table (babies on up) can enjoy.
Slow Cooker Black Bean Soup
Use the slow cooker to make this easy dinner with lot of veggies and kid-friendly flavor. It’s easy, versatile, and a great freezer meal—and pairs well with toppings including cheese, guacamole, and sour cream.
Slow Cooker Chicken and Bean Tacos
With a super short ingredient list, no precooking before turning on the slow cooker, and a veggie-loaded sauce, these Slow Cooker Chicken Tacos with Beans and Veggies make such a delicious family meal.
Chana Masala with Rice
Try making a super easy Indian food recipe at home with this mild Instant Pot Chana Masala. It’s easy to make, freezes beautifully, and packs extra veggies tucked right into the sauce. Plus, it’s a delish family meal to share with babies and toddlers!
Instant Pot BBQ Chicken
With just two ingredients, you can cook up deliciously moist and tender Instant Pot BBQ Chicken to use over noodles or rice, or in sandwiches. So easy!
No-Cook (and Low-Cook) Family Dinner Ideas
Streamline dinner prep even more with these no- and low-cook family dinners. Each is meant to be quickly assembled or quickly cooked with minimal ingredients to keep it easy for you.
The next time you just cannot summon the energy to cook a meal … Snack Dinner to the rescue! I love this easy concept because it’s so easy to make one big platter for the whole family to share, or individual plates for each kiddo. And, you can use up so many items you already have in the house!
Easy Hummus Wrap
Rely on staples including tortillas and hummus to make the fastest dinner ever. Deconstruct this as needed for younger eaters.
With a heaping pile of spinach and a super simple method, you can make these bright green Spinach Eggs in less than 10 minutes to share with the kids. They’re packed with protein and a great source of iron. And they are just so yummy!
Spinach Grilled Cheese
Spinach Grilled Cheese is a veggie-packed variation on the classic sandwich that’s just so delicious. (This favorite kids sandwich is equally appealing to adults, too!) It’s also easy to make and packed with iron, which is a nice bonus.
With rice, beans, and any veggies you like, this easy meal is so versatile and satisfying. See below for the full information.
Best Tips for Success
- Round out any meal with a simple side of fruit, a salad kit, or another easy side your family likes.
- Keep portions small to start for kids to reduce food waste.
- Check out my favorite freezer meals for ideas that you can easily stash in the freezer to reheat quickly.
- Try serving meals family style to let the kids have some power in deciding what goes onto their plate.
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