Family-Friendly Dinners Everyone Will Love

One-Pot Spaghetti Bolognese

Spaghetti Bolognese is a classic dish that’s always a hit with both kids and adults. This one-pot version simplifies the cooking process, making it perfect for busy weeknights.

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb ground beef or turkey
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 can (28 oz) crushed tomatoes
  • 1 can (14 oz) tomato sauce
  • 1 can (6 oz) tomato paste
  • 2 cups beef or vegetable broth
  • 1 lb spaghetti
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Grated Parmesan cheese for serving

Instructions:

  1. In a large pot, brown the ground beef or turkey over medium heat until fully cooked. Drain any excess fat.
  2. Add the chopped onion and minced garlic to the pot and cook until the onion is translucent.
  3. Stir in the crushed tomatoes, tomato sauce, tomato paste, and broth. Add the dried basil, dried oregano, salt, and pepper.
  4. Bring the mixture to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 15 minutes.
  5. Add the spaghetti to the pot, breaking it in half if necessary to fit. Stir to combine and ensure the spaghetti is submerged in the sauce.
  6. Cover and cook for about 10-12 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the spaghetti is al dente and the sauce has thickened.
  7. Serve with grated Parmesan cheese on top.

Chicken and Vegetable Stir-Fry

This chicken and vegetable stir-fry is a quick and nutritious dinner option that’s packed with flavor. Customize it with your family’s favorite vegetables.

Ingredients:

  • 2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, thinly sliced
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 red bell pepper, sliced
  • 1 yellow bell pepper, sliced
  • 1 cup broccoli florets
  • 1 carrot, sliced
  • 1 zucchini, sliced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon fresh ginger, grated
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch mixed with 2 tablespoons water
  • Cooked rice for serving

Instructions:

  1. Heat the olive oil in a large skillet or wok over medium-high heat.
  2. Add the sliced chicken to the skillet and cook until browned and fully cooked. Remove the chicken from the skillet and set aside.
  3. In the same skillet, add the bell peppers, broccoli, carrot, zucchini, garlic, and ginger. Stir-fry for about 5-7 minutes until the vegetables are tender-crisp.
  4. Return the chicken to the skillet. In a small bowl, mix the soy sauce and honey, then pour over the chicken and vegetables.
  5. Add the cornstarch mixture to the skillet and stir until the sauce has thickened.
  6. Serve over cooked rice.

Taco Night

Taco night is a fun and interactive way to get the whole family involved in making their own meals. Set up a taco bar with various toppings and let everyone create their own tacos.

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb ground beef or turkey
  • 1 packet taco seasoning
  • 1/2 cup water
  • Taco shells or tortillas
  • Shredded lettuce
  • Diced tomatoes
  • Shredded cheese
  • Sliced olives
  • Salsa
  • Sour cream
  • Guacamole

Instructions:

  1. In a large skillet, cook the ground beef or turkey over medium heat until fully cooked. Drain any excess fat.
  2. Add the taco seasoning and water to the skillet. Stir to combine and cook until the sauce has thickened.
  3. Set up a taco bar with the taco shells or tortillas and all the toppings.
  4. Let everyone assemble their own tacos with their favorite toppings.

Baked Chicken Parmesan

Baked chicken Parmesan is a healthier version of the traditional fried dish. It’s crispy, cheesy, and sure to be a family favorite.

Ingredients:

  • 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 1 cup breadcrumbs
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 1 cup marinara sauce
  • 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
  • Fresh basil for garnish
  • Cooked pasta for serving

Instructions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 400°F (200°C).
  2. In a shallow dish, mix the breadcrumbs and grated Parmesan cheese.
  3. Dip each chicken breast in the beaten eggs, then coat with the breadcrumb mixture.
  4. Place the chicken breasts on a baking sheet and bake for 20 minutes.
  5. Remove the chicken from the oven and spoon marinara sauce over each breast. Sprinkle shredded mozzarella cheese on top.
  6. Return to the oven and bake for an additional 10 minutes, or until the cheese is melted and bubbly.
  7. Garnish with fresh basil and serve with cooked pasta.

Homemade Pizza

Making homemade pizza is a fun and customizable way to enjoy a classic family dinner. Use store-bought dough or make your own, and let everyone add their favorite toppings.

Ingredients:

  • 1 pound pizza dough
  • 1/2 cup pizza sauce
  • 2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
  • Assorted toppings (pepperoni, bell peppers, mushrooms, olives, etc.)
  • Olive oil for brushing

Instructions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 475°F (245°C). If using a pizza stone, place it in the oven to preheat.
  2. Roll out the pizza dough on a lightly floured surface to your desired thickness.
  3. Transfer the dough to a baking sheet or preheated pizza stone.
  4. Spread the pizza sauce evenly over the dough, leaving a small border around the edges.
  5. Sprinkle shredded mozzarella cheese over the sauce.
  6. Add your favorite toppings.
  7. Brush the edges of the dough with olive oil.
  8. Bake for 10-12 minutes, or until the crust is golden and the cheese is melted and bubbly.
  9. Slice and serve hot.

Beef and Bean Chili

Beef and bean chili is a hearty and comforting dish that’s perfect for family dinners. Serve it with cornbread or over rice for a complete meal.

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb ground beef
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 can (28 oz) diced tomatoes
  • 1 can (15 oz) kidney beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 can (15 oz) black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 can (8 oz) tomato sauce
  • 1 cup beef broth
  • 2 tablespoons chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Shredded cheese, sour cream, and chopped green onions for serving

Instructions:

  1. In a large pot, brown the ground beef over medium heat until fully cooked. Drain any excess fat.
  2. Add the chopped onion and minced garlic to the pot and cook until the onion is translucent.
  3. Stir in the diced tomatoes, kidney beans, black beans, tomato sauce, beef broth, chili powder, cumin, paprika, salt, and pepper.
  4. Bring the mixture to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  5. Serve with shredded cheese, sour cream, and chopped green onions on top.

Sheet Pan Sausage and Vegetables

Sheet pan dinners are a convenient way to prepare a complete meal with minimal cleanup. This sausage and vegetable dish is colorful, nutritious, and easy to customize.

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb sausage links (chicken, turkey, or pork)
  • 1 red bell pepper, sliced
  • 1 yellow bell pepper, sliced
  • 1 zucchini, sliced
  • 1 red onion, sliced
  • 1 cup baby potatoes, halved
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Instructions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 425°F (220°C).
  2. Place the sausage links, bell peppers, zucchini, red onion, and baby potatoes on a large baking sheet.
  3. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with dried oregano, dried thyme, salt, and pepper. Toss to coat evenly.
  4. Spread everything out in a single layer on the baking sheet.
  5. Bake for 25-30 minutes, or until the sausage is cooked through and the vegetables are tender and slightly caramelized.
  6. Serve hot.

Chicken and Rice Casserole

Chicken and rice casserole is a comforting and satisfying dish that’s perfect for family dinners. It’s easy to prepare and can be made ahead of time for busy evenings.

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups cooked chicken, shredded
  • 1 cup long-grain rice
  • 2 cups chicken broth
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 can (10.5 oz) cream of mushroom soup
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 cup frozen peas and carrots
  • 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Instructions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F (175°C).
  2. In a large bowl, combine the shredded chicken, rice, chicken broth, milk, cream of mushroom soup, chopped onion, frozen peas and carrots, salt, and pepper.
  3. Pour the mixture into a greased 9×13-inch baking dish.
  4. Sprinkle shredded cheddar cheese on top.
  5. Cover with foil and bake for 30 minutes.
  6. Remove the foil and bake for an additional 10-15 minutes, or until the cheese is melted and bubbly.
  7. Let cool slightly before serving.
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