I think you’ll agree with me when I say that finding one meal that everyone in the family likes is a challenge!
But as busy parents we also don’t want to have to make separate meals for the kids either. The good news is there are some amazing healthy family meals out there that are:
- Easy top prepare
- Great tasting
- Sure to please kids and parents alike
There are a lot of food and recipe sites out there, but we’ve whittled down the thousands of recipes to these top 15.
These healthy family meals are sure to please even the pickiest of eaters and will make a great addition to your dinner table. More importantly, these winning recipes meet the challenge of today’s busy families.
Let’s review the best healthy family meals for your picky eaters!
1. Chicken Pot Pie Turnovers
This recipe, courtesy of Melissa d’Arabian of The Food Network is delicious, healthy and surprisingly easy to prepare. It’s no wonder it has over 100 reviews and rates 5 stars!
Melissa is the host of Ten Dollar Dinners and The Picky Eater’s Project. She’s also a mother of four and recent first-time cookbook author.
This amazing recipe features:
- Store-bought puff pastry saves a lot of time
- Only 20 minutes prep time
- Kids will love the “hot pocket-style” but the flavor of a traditional chicken pot pie
2. Mini Meat Loaf
This healthy family meal, courtesy of Susie Cover’s book The Supper Club: Kid-Friendly Meals the Whole Family Will Love and published on Parenting.com is a healthy option in that it can be prepared with either ground beef or turkey.
Kids will love that these fun-sized mini meatloaves are easy to dip in ketchup. They are also perfect for packing for a school lunch or picnic.
Susie has over 15 years as a professional chef, cookbook author, and founder of a series of prepared food companies.
This future family staple:
- Tastes great warm or at room temp
- Can be formed to any size – no wasted food!
- Can easily be made gluten-free by using gluten-free panko breadcrumbs
3. Cheesy Cauliflower Pasta
This delicious and healthy mac ‘n cheese alternative comes to us from Hillary Smith over at Bon Appétit.
Hillary is the associate marketing director at Bon Appétit, but clearly knows her way around the kitchen too. Here, Hillary does the unthinkable and gets picky eaters come back for seconds on cauliflower!
This new family favorite:
- Is easy to make
- Features delicious parmesan and pine nuts
- Roasts the cauliflower to get it tender with a deeper flavor
4. Barbecued Chinese Chicken Lettuce Wraps
This 5 star recipe is from Rachael Ray, courtesy of The Food Network’s 30 Minute Meals.
This amazingly flavorful dish:
- Can be made in 25 minutes
- Is so delicious kids won’t even question eating lettuce
- Is packed with veggies
5. Eggplant Parmigiana in a Pasta Sauce
This amazing recipe re-do comes from Ole & Shaina Olmanson and Babble is a much healthier, but just as tasty a version of traditional eggplant parmesan.
This fantastic dinner option:
- Cuts the fried eggplant and lengthy prep stages
- Calls for ground beef but could easily be made vegetarian
- Tastes even better the next day!
This creative reinvention of the classic taco comes from Weelicious founder Catherine and her friend Joanna. The idea is to use a baked potato split down the middle as the “shell” for your taco.
Of course a baked potato is healthier than a fried taco shell or fat-laden tortilla. But she also gets incredibly creative with the topping options, going far beyond a typical taco.
This new classic:
- Has endless filling possibilities from pesto veggies to pulled pork
- Could easily be made with sweet potatoes instead
- Only take a whopping 10 minutes prep time!
7. Crispy Chicken, Ham, and Swiss Roll-Ups
This tasty addition to our healthy family meals comes from Jiselle Basile over at Cooking Light. Jiselle has taken the classic ham and cheese sandwich and reinvented it as a roll-up.
This “meaty, cheesy, moist and crunchy” treat gets healthy by going in the oven instead of into a frying pan.
This amazing recipe:
- Is only 351 calories per serving
- Uses all white meat chicken and ham
- Is low in sugar and saturated fat
8. Easy 30 Minute Orange Chicken with Rice
This amazing redo of everyone’s favorite Chinese takeout comes from Kristen over at A Mind “Full” Mom.
Kristen has crafted a recipe that is not too spicy or sweet. That makes the kids happy. But it’s has enough complex flavors to have the adults coming back for seconds.
Healthy family meals never tasted so good!
This fantastic recipe:
- Is ready in under 30 minutes!
- Uses fresh orange juice
- Skips the fryer and the unnecessary calories
9. Noodle Pudding
This creative recipe, courtesy of Barbara Wener and Country Living is a great way to get kids to eat cottage cheese and cut the fat from traditional baked pasta dishes.
Country Living features the best food and drink recipes that are delicious and easy to prepare. The recipe was handed down to Barbara from her mother and remains a family favorite.
This tasty treat:
- Has under 400 calories per serving
- Will have kids gobbling it up like mac n’ cheese
10. One Pan Chicken and Potatoes with Garlic Parmesan Spinach Cream Sauce
The key to truly healthy family meals is getting picky eaters to eat their vegetables.
This fantastic recipe, courtesy of Christina Cherrier, editor at Eatwell101, does just that.
Christina has crafty a yummy cream sauce that packs a flavor punch of garlic, tomato, spinach, and cheese. Even the pickiest of eaters will be back for more.
This amazing dish:
- Lightens the fat with half and half instead of cream
- Gets kids to eat their spinach
- Saves on clean up by using just 1 pan
11. Super Easy Skinny Veggie Crockpot Lasagna
This no-hassle lasagna recipe, comes to us from Lindsay over at Pinch of Yum.
Lindsay and her husband Bjork run both Pinch of Yum and Food Blogger Pro and are here to save us a boatload of time, cutting calories in the process.
This amazing dish:
- Is all done in the crockpot
- Is loaded with veggies
- Calls for uncooked lasagna noodles
12. Crispy Baked Parmesan Chicken Strips
All kids love chicken strips. Thankfully this classic recipe redo skips the fryer and still delivers a delicious healthy family meal.
Amy Roskelley, of Super Healthy Kids, walks us through the simple steps to get extra crispy chicken without the deep fryer. Amy is mom of 3 and has a background in health and nutrition and in shows!
This amazing dish:
- Skips the salt, fast & preservatives of fast food chicken nuggets
- Are amazingly crispy
- Packs 36 grams of protein per serving
13. Sausage, Brocolli & Rice One Skillet Meal
This delicious weeknight staple comes to us from Kasey Schwartz over at All Things Mamma.
With a hungry husband who helps parent their 3 kids, Kasey knows a thing or two about healthy family meals. Her recipes are designed for busy parents looking for quick, easy and healthy meals during the school week.
This tasty mealtime option:
- Is ready in under 30 minutes
- Is a great way to get kids to eat their broccoli
- Can be made with turkey or chicken sausage to cut the fat
14. Baked Chicken Chimichangas
This simple, yet tasty Mexican-themed dinner staple comes from Christy Denney over at The Girl Who Ate Everything.
Christy makes healthy family meals for her husband and their 5 kids. And with 5 kids, you can bet Christy knows how to please even the pickiest of eaters.
This awesome dinnertime staple:
- Are oven baked instead of fried
- Can be prepared in under 15 minutes
- Goes great with guac and low-fat sour cream
15. Baked Gnocchi with Sausage, Kale, and Pesto
This delicious baked pasta dish comes from Maria & Josh over at Two Peas and Their Pod.
Maria & Josh love cooking, entertaining and creating healthy family meals that are simple, fresh, and kid-friendly. We think you’ll agree!
This delicious dish:
- Is a great way to sneak kale into kid’s diets
- Can be prepared in under 15 minutes
- Cut even more fat with lower fat sausage and cheeses
Did you find some new favorite healthy family meals here?
In this post, we looked at the challenge all parents face in creating healthy family meals that everyone in the family will actually eat.
Finding ways to overcome picky eating habits with our kids can be a challenge.
To help, we researched and found 15 amazing recipes that even the pickiest eaters will love and want more of. So if you’re getting resistance at the dinner table and aren’t sure where to turn, the recipes above will quickly get you what you need.
All the winning recipes linked above were hand-selected.
They are the answer to your dinner-time problems and will help all parents by removing a little bit of that stress at the end of a long day.
Make sure and bookmark your favorites as you’ll assuredly be back for more.
At the start of the year, if you had asked anyone if they could do their work from home, many would have said no. They would have cited the need for team meetings, a place to be able to sit down and get on with their work, the camaraderie of the office, and being able to meet customers and clients face to face.
Almost ten months later, most of us have learned that we can do our work from home and in many ways, we have discovered working from home is a lot better than doing our work in a busy, bustling office environment where we are inundated with distractions and noise.
One of the things the 2020 pandemic has reminded us is we humans are incredibly adaptable. It is one of the strengths of our kind. Yet we have been unknowingly practicing this for years. When we move house we go through enormous upheaval.
When we change jobs, we not only change our work environment but we also change the surrounding people. Humans are adaptable and this adaptability gives us strength.
So, what are the pros and cons of working from home? Below I will share some things I have discovered since I made the change to being predominantly a person who works from home.
Pro #1: A More Relaxed Start to the Day
This one I love. When I had to be at a place of work in the past, I would always set my alarm to give me just enough time to make coffee, take a shower, and change. Mornings always felt like a rush.
Now, I can wake up a little later, make coffee and instead of rushing to get out of the door at a specific time, I can spend ten minutes writing in my journal, reviewing my plan for the day, and start the day in a more relaxed frame of mind.
When you start the day in a relaxed state, you begin more positively. You find you have more clarity and more focus and you are not wasting energy worrying about whether you will be late.
Pro #2: More Quiet, Focused Time = Increased Productivity
One of the biggest difficulties of working in an office is the noise and distractions. If a colleague or boss can see you sat at your desk, you are more approachable. It is easier for them to ask you questions or engage you in meaningless conversations.
Working from home allows you to shut the door and get on with an hour or two of quiet focused work. If you close down your Slack and Email, you avoid the risk of being disturbed and it is amazing how much work you can get done.
An experiment conducted in 2012 found that working from home increased a person’s productivity by 13%, and more recent studies also find significant increases in productivity.
When our productivity increases, the amount of time we need to perform our work decreases, and this means we can spend more time on activities that can bring us closer to our family and friends as well as improve our mental health.
Pro #3: More Control Over Your Day
Without bosses and colleagues watching over us all day, we have a lot more control over what we do. While some work will inevitably be more urgent than others, we still get a lot more choice about what we work on.
We also get more control over where we work. I remember when working in an office, we were given a fixed workstation. Some of these workstations were pleasant with a lot of natural sunlight, but other areas were less pleasant. It was often the luck of the draw whether we find ourselves in a good place to work or not.
By working from home we can choose what work to work on and whether we want to face a window or not. We can get up and move to another place, and we can move from room to room. And if you have a garden, on nice days you could spend a few hours working outside.
Pro #4: You Get to Choose Your Office Environment
While many companies will provide you with a laptop or other equipment to do your work, others will give you an allowance to purchase your equipment. But with furniture such as your chair and desk, you have a lot of freedom.
I have seen a lot of amazing home working spaces with wonderful sets up—better chairs, laptop stands that make working from a laptop much more ergonomic and therefore, better for your neck.
You can also choose your wall art and the little nick-nacks on your desk or table. With all this freedom, you can create a very personal and excellent working environment that is a pleasure to work in. When you are happy doing your work, you will inevitably do better work.
Con #1: We Move a Lot Less
When we commute to a place of work, there is movement involved. Many people commute using public transport, which means walking to the bus stop or train station. Then, there is the movement at lunchtime when we go out to buy our lunch. Working in a place of work requires us to move more.
Unfortunately, working from home naturally causes us to move less and this means we are not burning as many calories as we need to.
Moving is essential to our health and if you are working from home you need to become much more aware of your movement. To ensure you are moving enough, make sure you take your lunch breaks. Get up from your desk and move. Go outside, if you can, and take a walk. And, of course, refrain from regular trips to the refrigerator.
Con #2: Less Human Interaction
One of the nicest things about bringing a group of people together to work is the camaraderie and relationships that are built over time. Working from home takes us away from that human interaction and for many, this can cause a feeling of loss.
Humans are a social species—we need to be with other people. Without that connection, we start to feel lonely and that can lead to mental health issues.
Zoom and Microsoft Teams meeting cannot replace that interaction. Often, the interactions we get at our workplaces are spontaneous. But with video calls, there is nothing spontaneous—most of these calls are prearranged and that’s not spontaneous.
This lack of spontaneous interaction can also reduce a team’s ability to develop creative solutions—there’s just something about a group of incredibly creative people coming together in a room to thrash out ideas together that lends itself to creativity.
While video calls can be useful, they don’t match the connection between a group of people working on a solution together.
Con #3: The Cost of Buying Home Office Equipment
Not all companies are going to provide you with a nice allowance to buy expensive home office equipment. 100% remote companies such as Doist (the creators of Todoist and Twist) provide a $2,000 allowance to all their staff every two years to buy office equipment. Others are not so generous.
This can prove to be expensive for many people to create their ideal work-from-home workspace. Many people must make do with what they already have, and that could mean unsuitable chairs that damage backs and necks.
For a future that will likely involve more flexible working arrangements, companies will need to support their staff in ways that will add additional costs to an already reduced bottom line.
Con #4: Unique Distractions
Not all people have the benefit of being able to afford childcare for young children, and this means they need to balance working and taking care of their kids.
For many parents, being able to go to a workplace gives them time away from the noise and demands of a young family, so they could get on with their work. Working from home removes this and can make doing video calls almost impossible.
To overcome this, where possible, you need to set some boundaries. I know this is not always possible, but it is something you need to try. You should do whatever you can to make sure you have some boundaries between your work life and home life.
Working from home can be hugely beneficial for many people, but it can also bring serious challenges to others.
We are moving towards a new way of working. Therefore, companies need to look at both the pros and cons of working from home and be prepared to support their staff in making this transition. It will not be impossible, but a lot of thought will need to go into it.