I have a lot of discussions with other parents on the topic of meal time and about getting smaller children to eat a healthy meal. There are a number of things that we do as a family to make meal time more enjoyable, but I think the most important from that list is having the children involved in creating the menu plan and ensuring that there tastes are incorporated into the family’s meals.
The food that I cook on a regular basis is not fussy or overly complex, but is healthy, easy to cook and appealing to the children. I have collated a list of family meals that our children love and eat readily and may give you some new ideas for you family dinners.
(1). Fried Rice
It is not an actual fry up dish, but contains steamed rice. It can be cooked in advance and is a great meal to feed a large group.
A little more timely to cook (needs to go in the oven for 45 mins) and would be a healthier meal without the tub of sour cream! It is however an incredibly tasty dish and usually covers dinner for more than one night. A number of readers of this blog have tried this and have found it a winner with their family too.
(3). Pasta with Chicken and Spinach
Ultra quick and tasty meal. Tony on his blog Anthony Malloy Between Coffees, posted a photo from when he tried this recipe and his presentation of this meal is impressive.
(4). Spicy Chutney Chicken with Mixed Rice
A tasty dish, that you can easily play with the ingredients to give more variety. For example we have used cous cous instead of rice and other times added some dired fruit to the rice to mix it up a bit.
(5). Chicken Schnitzel and Salad
There is definitely nothing fancy about this meal, but the children love it. I love it from the aspect that I get the children to help me prepare it. They can grate the carrot, slice the cheese, cut the cucumber etc. It is also a meal that they can serve themselves, which is always a big hit in our house.
(6). Baked Penne With Bacon
Simple dish to cook and one that can be made earlier in the day, for nights when we have after school activities.
(7). Chicken Stir Fry With Seasonal Vegetables
The big issue for us with this meal, is whether it is accompanied with rice or noodles! The family is split about half and half with its preference. We have now agreed on alternating between the two, to keep everyone happy.
(8). Porcupine Meatballs
I loved this meal as a child. I have to say that I love it less as an adult, but genetics has played a part – all my children love this dish and always have multiple helpings.
(9). Spaghetti Amatriciana
Having Matriciana in its name is probably a little generous given that I am the only one in the house who eats anything spicy (hot), so there is only minimal chili in this dish. It is copied from Matriciana styled dishes and my children love anything with bacon in it.
(10). Beef Strogonoff
Now we are in the warmer months here in Australia, this will be off the rotation for a while, but it is a great winter dish. It is also a great slow cooker recipe, which is I can start cooking earlier in the day on those nights when we have after school activities.
Looking forward to seeing what are the favourites for your family!