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There is no doubt about it, as food prices are going up, so is everybody’s stress level. This is often amplified for busy parents, who work hard to make money, are exhausted by the time they come home, but still want to make relatively healthy and affordable meals for the family. You need kid-friendly dinners!
So, here are some read quick and easy recipes that you can make in a pinch and on a penny that your kids won’t turn their nose up.
Doritos taco salad
Now, this was honestly one of my favorite meals growing up. Because honestly, who doesn’t love taco salad?
This is super easy all you’re going I need is the following ingredients, and a big bowl to mix them all up in.
- regular or nacho cheese tortilla chips
- lettuce (I prefer romaine, but any type of salad base like spring mix, iceberg lettuce, or fresh spinach will do the trick. Use what you have on hand or what’s on sale that week.)
- leftover taco meat
- black beans
- sour cream
- ranch dressing
- onions (I especially love green onions)
- anything else you may put on a taco.
Mix up all of your salad ingredients, and crush some chips on top, and – bam – you have a delicious taco salad that took minutes to prepare.
This is a great meal to get the kids involved with, and it’s super simple. It’s a great way to introduce your kids to cooking, and let the next what they do and don’t like. Here’s what you need:
- pizza sauce
From there, the topping ideas are endless. You can do anything from onions, peppers, mushrooms, or my personal favorite, broccoli, two great protein sources like chicken or pepperoni.
All you really need to do for this one is layout the tortillas, spread a bit of sauce of your choice on top, and start layering your favorite pizza toppings. Bake in the oven at 350 for 7 to 10 minutes, or until the cheese gets nice and melty.
The cool thing about this one is that you can also switch up the base. Don’t have tortillas? Try it on bagels or toast instead!
Slow cooker sloppy Joe’s
While this one may take a little bit longer, the prep time is fairly quick, and it just sits in the crockpot all day. When you get home from work it’s ready to go.
- 1 pound ground meat (I typically use ground beef, but whatever you find or have on hand will work be it ground turkey, chicken, or pork.)
- Half a cup of ketchup
- 1 can of crushed tomatoes
- 2 tablespoons brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon Worchestershire sauce
- 1/2 a teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon mustard
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- salt-and-pepper to taste
In a large pan, brown the beef until fully cooked, adding in the garlic powder, mustard, paprika, salt and pepper, and Worchestershire sauce, at about the five-minute mark.
Once fully cooked, put meat and at the remaining ingredients in the crockpot, and cook on low for six hours or high for three hours.
Serve on your choice of rice, buns, or bread.
Cheesy potato casserole
This one is so simple yet so tasty. Plus, you can cook it in both the crockpot and the oven.
- 1 can of creamy soup (try cream of broccoli, cream of celery, cream of mushroom, cream of chicken, basically whatever you have on hand.)
- 1 large bag of frozen hash browns. (You can totally use fresh potatoes for this, just dice them up first.)
- 2 cups shredded cheese
- half a cup of milk
- salt and pepper to taste
- half a cup to 1 cup of cooked diced meat. (A few that will go great in this cheesy potato casserole include; hotdogs, kielbasa, chicken, ground beef, 1 pound of bacon, sausage, etc.)
So, here’s the easy part. You literally just mix everything together and cook. If you’re cooking in the crockpot, cook on low for six hours or high for three hours. If you’re cooking in the oven, cook at 375 for 40 minute, or until potatoes are fork-tender.
So what are your go-to quick and easy kid-friendly dinners?
Do you have any quick easy meals that your kids just love and devour every time? Are there any that you’d like to see a recipe for? Share in the comments below, and your idea may just get featured in a future article!
About Chloe Morgan
Chloe Morgan grew up living with a tight budget. In her late teens and early 20’s all the lessons she’d learned started to slip, like it does for many college age students on their own for the first time, and with their first credit card. As she’s gotten older, she’s started to deal with the repercussions and has taken on a frugal way of living, keeping her costs low, as she pays off debt and saves for her future. Chloe lives in Northern Ontario, Canada, with her cute dog, Rhea.