Whether you’re a working parent or simply have a busy schedule, finding meals that can be dished up in 30 minutes that the kids still love can prove difficult. It’s even harder to avoid those cheat meals and takeaways.
It is important to ensure that you balance and use a variety of food groups when planning a meal to make sure your little ones get the nutrients needed to stay healthy. Ensuring fruit and vegetables, as well as starchy food, take up 1/3 of a meal each.
Avoiding the question ‘What’s for dinner?’, and especially ‘when’s dinner ready?’, can be stressful. Therefore, we have come up with a few tasty selections to help your inspiration.
Here are seven ideas on easy and quick meal ideas that are great for when you need to create dinner in a rush.
1) A great solution is spaghetti bolognese. You can place beef/pork into the slow cooker, or alternatively, you could cook the mince during the same time as the pasta as it also takes around 15 minutes. Boil some spaghetti once you get in and enjoy a delicious meal which is full of protein and that the kids will love in under 15 minutes.
2) For a fish dish, try grilled salmon with poached egg and new potatoes. Instead of using eggs, vegetables such as green beans can be a simple switch to ensure little ones are getting a dose of greens.
3) Chicken fajitas are a super tasty 15-minute meal. Simply buy a fajita kit, add in some peppers, tomatoes and onions for nutrients and cook all together. For an added flavour, add in some salsa and sour cream to the wrap. Picking the food they wish to put into the wrap makes it fun for kids to make and enables them to engage with their food!
4) An alternative solution is a homemade pizza, a great quick and easy dish that can be healthy too. You can do this by adding grated carrots and grated courgettes into a chilled dough which can be brought from any local supermarket. Not only does this take only 15-20 minutes in the oven, but those fussy eaters can pick their toppings and be creative with it. You can also cook in batch and freeze the rest, making it easy for those busy days.
5) Using similar ingredients but with a completely different taste, you could cook up a stir-fry. Add in a variety of different vegetables for added flavour. A choice of meat can also be added, such as chicken or beef. For extra flavour to your dish, simply add in a sauce such as soy.
A large but common dinnertime struggle arises when you realise the minute you walk in the door after picking up the kids from school, that you have no ingredients. We’ve all been there staring at the fridge wide open with no idea what to make.
6) An easy solution is an omelette, all you’ll need is eggs and butter. Depending on the ingredients in your fridge/cupboard, you can combine a variety of different extras. An option could be peppers, bacon, cheese and ham to make it more of a meal. It can easily be dished up with a side salad for a quick and healthy dinner.
7) Another pasta dish is tuna pasta. All you’ll need are three key ingredients which are tuna, pasta and mayonnaise, making it easy to make from cupboard ingredients! With tuna helping improve the immune system, it’s a great source of protein for your kids.
At ELF we know that trying to get your child to eat a healthy and balanced diet can be difficult for many households. For additional ideas and inspiration read our guide to easy and nutritional lunches to try to reach that five a day. The NHS recommends that we should ensure that fruit and vegetables make up a third of what we eat each day as they are a good source of vitamins, minerals and fibre.
If you have any suggestions or any other quick delicious meals, send us a message or a photo on Instagram, Twitter or Facebook.
At Early Learning Furniture we are experts in early years’ education resources including classroom furniture, school dining furniture and school play equipment. For more information about our products please contact us or call us on 01733 511121.