PostHeaderIcon 25 Family Meal Ideas

Sometimes all you need for supper is an idea, instead of a full recipe. Instead of sifting through endless pages on recipe sites, why not just scan through this quick list for a few tasty suggestions? This list is composed of our family favorites, and foods we make on a regular basis. No actual recipes are included in this list, so as to leave room for variations and for you to use your favorite recipes for each of the ideas.

1. Cheeseburgers
Probably one of the easiest meals you can make for your family. All you need is hamburger, cheese, and buns. Condiments are optional, and everyone can add their own depending on preference.

2. Tacos
Similar to the cheeseburgers, but replace taco shells of some sort for the buns, and add seasoning to your meat.

3. Pizza
Here you can get creative, and make homemade pizza in any way you’d like. You can choose to make your own pizza dough, or use store bought crust. Any toppings you like can be added, and you can even try making a few different types of pizzas at the same time to see which one becomes your personal family favorite.

4. Chicken Strips
Making chicken strips at home isn’t difficult at all. Breading is optional, but you have quite a few options if you decide to bread and fry them. You can also grill them if you have a stove-top grill.

5. Roast
If you have a little time earlier in the day, toss a roast in the oven and let it cook all day. Add your desired vegetables, cook, and enjoy!

6. Biscuits and gravy
Not just for breakfast! These can be made any time of the day for an easy family meal. You can make your own biscuits from scratch if you are ambitious enough, or buy them in the store. Gravy can also be made from scratch or purchased.

7. Quesadillas
If you own a griddle, a few quesadillas can make an entire meal. Be sure to offer sour cream or salsa on the side.

8. Spaghetti
This is fantastically easy meal if you use sauce bought at the store. Making it at home is an option, too!

9. Burritos
Do you have taco leftovers? If so, make some burritos! Fried or baked, these are delicious.

10. Meatloaf
It may have a bad rep, but did you know meatloaf can be made with just about anything? Crackers, bread crumbs, cereal, and even potato chips can be added to ground hamburger and baked. For less greasy meatloaf, use a higher percentage of hamburger (such as 90% or higher).

11. Crab Cakes
We refer to these as “Krabby Patties” around our house. If you have younger children and want them to experience new foods, gift this one a shot with the more appealing name.

12. Pork Chops
Simple, yet can be cooked in a variety of different ways. Generally we purchase thicker cuts, fry them until browned, and bake.

13. Fettuccini Alfredo
Like spaghetti, you can “cheat” by purchasing the jars of Alfredo sauce and adding it to pasta.

14. Steak & Mashed Potatoes
You’d be surprised how many kids actually enjoy a nicely cooked steak and homemade mashed potatoes. It may not be something you can cook every night, but for special occasions or just once in a while, this makes a great meal.

15. Cheeseburger Casserole
There are multiple recipes floating around on the ‘net for this one. Basically you need hamburger, cheese, and Bisquick.

16. Beef Stroganoff
A simple meal made with hamburger, egg noodles, and sour cream. Other versions of this recipe use specific cuts of meat instead of hamburger, although we like it just fine the “poor man” way.

17. Chicken Noodle Casserole
Perfect for the crockpot, and easy to make! Add chicken, cream of cheese soup, cream of chicken soup, and egg noodles.

18. Pigs in a Blanket
Depending on what you are hungry for, these can be made with hot dogs or sausage, wrapped in a crescent roll or pancake of some sorts.

19. Beef Stew
This is similar to roast, but with a few added vegetables, and in stew form. Great if you have some time to cook or at least prepare ahead of time.

20. Breakfast for Dinner (pancakes, eggs, bacon, toast, etc.)
Who says breakfast foods can only be served in the morning? Treat your family to a “breakfast night”, where you cook all those foods typically eaten in the morning.

21. Homemade Mac & Cheese
It may be easy to just grab a box of mac & cheese at the store, but why not challenge yourself to make it from scratch? There are dozens of unique recipes on the internet for this one dish.

22. Fried Chicken
Egg, flour, and chicken pieces are basically all you need. Fry them all up in a pan, or bake if you want them a little bit more healthy.

23. Chili
Everyone has a unique chili recipe. Start with chili beans and hamburger, adding ingredients according to taste.

24. BBQ Pork Sandwiches
A great meal for the slow cooker! Add a pork roast and barbeque sauce, let cook, and enjoy.

25. Lasagna
If your family doesn’t much care for lasagna, try leaving out the “odd” cheese. We use lasagna pasta, hamburger, spaghetti sauce, and shredded cheese. Fantastic!

This list should give you a starting point for some ideas for dinner!

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Author Kara Kelso, also known as "The Idea Queen", has drawn inspiration from her eccentric family on since 2005. Raising a high-spirited girl, an Autism spectrum pre-teen boy, and a few random extras showing up for the food.
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2 Responses to “25 Family Meal Ideas”

  • Rob Qype says:

    It’s very handy to have those 25 on the list. I often find myself recycling the same few recipes and getting into the cycle “if it’s Monday it must be …… (fill in the blank”. Which all becomes a little bit uninspiring. I think I’ll broaden my repertoire and see if I can go a month before repeating a weekday meal.

  • Sally says:

    That’s a great list to keep handy for quick ideas. What I’ve been doing a lot is burritos which is pretty similar to the tacos. They are always a crowd pleaser at the dinner table. Another favourite is chicken parmigiana with vegetables.

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