Knowing what to cook for dinner can be a struggle for parents and After School Nannies alike. To help you out we’ve compiled 10 recipes to suit a variety of tastes, dietary requirements whilst also leaving plenty of time to play
This recipe is for a lovely, warming tagine perfect for vegetarians, vegans or even just a meat-free Monday. Packed full of veggies (one serving has four of their five-a-day), this tagine takes just 30 minutes and will satisfy both kids and adults when served alongside some wholegrain brown rice or couscous.
Tip: this recipe freezes well so any leftovers can be saved and reheated for a quick dinner. Get the recipe here: https://www.bbcgoodfood.com/recipes/butternut-squash-chickpea-tagine
This easy traybake will please children of any age (and adults too!), takes just 50 minutes and can be adapted with whatever veggies you have in the fridge.
Tip: try switching up the courgettes and peppers for butternut squash and cauliflower or swapping the new potatoes for sweet potatoes. Find the recipe here: https://www.bbcgoodfood.com/recipes/salmon-pesto-traybake-baby-roast-potatoes
This healthy macaroni cheese sneaks onion, cauliflower and courgette into the white sauce in such a way that even the pickiest eaters won’t know they’ve eaten 3 different veggies. It takes just 20 minutes to prep and while it cooks you can get on with homework, unwinding from school or playing with the kids.
Tip: make this recipe gluten-free by switching regular pasta for gluten-free Get the recipe here: https://mykidslickthebowl.com/healthy-macaroni-cheese-with-vegetables/
Getting kids involved with making dinner is a great way to teach them about food, eating healthily and improving basic kitchen skills. This pizza recipe is nutritious and allows children to get involved with kneading the dough, making the pizza sauce and creatively topping their pizzas. Allowing children to get involved with what they’re eating encourages them to try new foods and enjoy the process from start to finish.
Tip: be creative with your toppings! Think peppers, mushrooms, sweetcorn, fresh tomatoes, courgette, olives etc. Kids are much more likely to eat their veggies if they get to choose and arrange them to make faces and designs. Find the recipe here: https://www.persil.com/uk/dirt-is-good/recipes/an-easy-homemade-pizza-recipe-for-kids.html
This 20-minute dinner makes use of frozen fish fingers to conjure up some tasty and fun to eat tacos that are healthy too! Kids will love to load up their own tacos, encouraging them to eat more vegetables and try new flavours.
Tip: make this meal vegan by using Quorn fishless fingers Get the recipe here: https://realfood.tesco.com/recipes/fish-finger-tacos.html
This one-pot tomato basil pasta is a classic dish which children will love, it takes just 10 minutes and best of all you only have one pot to wash up! A quick & easy meal like this is perfect for days when you’re rushing back from after-school clubs or getting them ready to go somewhere in the evening. Find the recipe here: http://www.yankeekitchenninja.com/2014/06/one-pot-tomato-basil-pasta.html?m=1
Chicken nuggets served with chips is the epitome of child-friendly food which they all seem to love. Try this healthy spin on a classic which uses a crunchy quinoa coating on the chicken chunks and is a more nutritious alternative to frozen chicken nuggets in the supermarket.
Tip: try serving the nuggets with homemade sweet potato wedges and salad or vegetables on the side for a balanced and tasty meal. Get the recipe here: https://realfood.tesco.com/recipes/crunchy-quinoa-chicken-nuggets.html
Expand their knowledge of international cuisines with this Indian-style cauliflower and potato curry (Aloo Gobi). This vegan recipe is warming, healthy and will please the whole family. Serve with wholegrain rice and spinach for a nourishing dinner.
Tip: adapt the spice levels in this recipe to make it milder/spicier, for particularly sensitive tastebuds serve with a dollop of cooling plain yoghurt. Find the recipe here: https://www.thespruceeats.com/vegetarian-cauliflower-and-potato-curry-recipe-3378486
Nothing says hearty winter food more than a child-friendly Minestrone soup. This soup contains loads of vegetables, can be frozen or saved as leftovers and is easily adapted to the vegetables you have to hand.
Tip: serve the soup with their favourite crusty bread, dunking the bread into the soup is a great way to encourage them to try (and even like!) a new soup. Get the recipe here: https://www.superhealthykids.com/recipes/kid-friendly-minestrone-and-cook-book-review/
Some days it’s so sticky and hot that all you can fathom to eat (or cook) is a salad which isn’t always on the list of things which children like to eat. This pasta salad however is a firm favourite in lots of households and can be customised to suit their tastes with different herbs and vegetables.
Tip: choose fun pasta shapes to make the salad more exciting to eat and experiment with different pasta types such as spelt, buckwheat or red lentil pasta. Find the recipe here: https://littlesunnykitchen.com/kid-friendly-pasta-salad/