kids eating dinner at the table

Quick Dinner Ideas for Kids

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One of the hardest things about cooking for little people is planning options kids like too. These quick dinner ideas for kids are a lifesaver and having quick and easy dinner ideas that are healthy too is a dream come true!

child lifting up a fork full of spaghetti to eat it and smiling with a smudge of spaghetti sauce on his face

Easy Dinner Ideas for Kids

I know picky after caring for over 100 children in my daycare career, but I don’t have time to sweat in the kitchen for hours. Cooking for kids can be tough. They love what they love, and sometimes that can make cooking for them, to put it mildly, a challenge. Avoid the headache and check out our list of quick dinner ideas for kids!

These recipes aren’t all variations on mac and cheese or pizza but don’t worry, we’ve got some favorites in there too. We’ve found if you’re lucky, you can shake kids up by introducing something familiar but new into their meals.

Have them help you work on the meal, and they’ll quickly get on board! To make things easier on parents, a number of these recipes can be prepped ahead of time or in your slow cooker or Instant Pot. Less time stressing over what your kids will or won’t eat in the kitchen means more time to enjoy your family.

Healthy Easy Dinner Ideas

The other conundrum we have is that we want what our kids eat to be healthy! I know I do. I worry about giving them everything they need to enjoy great health throughout life. Not to mention that healthy food helps kids have better behavior.

If you want to really know how to get kids to eat healthy food, check this out. And remember that I have cared for over 100 kids and I’ve seen all kinds of picky eating for all kinds of reasons. Every child I work with learns to like more healthy food during their time with me. They may not like everything, but I can win them over to better eating than they had before.

What to Have for Dinner

So what’s a quick dinner idea for kids that you can make tonight? Every kid loves pasta, so these homemade hamburger helper recipes are always a winner. They come together in around 30 minutes and everyone loves them.

kids standing at the stove putting vegetables in a skillet for a pasta dish

My pasta dishes have hidden and visible veggies added in. If I have a child that balks at the sight of veggies, I still hide vegetable purees and green powder, and other things that can’t be detected. (Even by my 51-year-old husband). I keep pumpkin and squash puree and shredded zucchini, carrots, and yellow squash in my freezer year-round. I also keep jars of green powder in my cabinet.

This easy tuna casserole is one of the kid’s favorites. Again, I’m sure it’s just the noodles. Kids will eat most anything that has noodles.

Spaghetti is another favorite and here’s how to make the world’s best tasting spaghetti sauce that everyone will beg for more of. Or use leftover spaghetti to make a spaghetti pie in just a few minutes. I love leftover cooking, it’s a huge time saver.

Shredded bbq pulled pork on a plate

Kids love bbq and this bbq pork roast will make tons of kid-pleasing meals in minutes. Tacos are another crowd pleaser and these pork chop tacos have flavor for days.

What about a quick breakfast for dinner? Kids love these healthy pancakes and you will too.

All of my kids love meatloaf and meatballs. I cook bulk meatballs that are full of veggies and freeze them in batches.

bulk meatballs full of veggies on a sheet pan fresh from the oven

Everyone knows kids love pizza. It doesn’t take that long to whip up a homemade pizza for them. And it’s so yummy too.

Kid Friendly Dinner

Kids love soup and many of them can be tossed in the crockpot or thrown together in a few minutes. Check out these kid-friendly soup ideas for tonight’s kid-friendly dinner. These are super healthy dinner ideas for kids. Whip up some homemade bread for a side dish too.

bowl of taco soup topped with tortilla chips, sour cream, and shredded cheese

Their favorite soup of all time in daycare is this taco soup and if you use all canned ingredients, you can toss it in the crockpot in under 5 minutes and walk away.

Kids love these and for more kid-friendly chicken recipes, click here.

And don’t forget about these daycare freezer meals that can be made ahead and popped out for a quick meal any time. Or anything in the Ninja Foodi Air Fryer oven cooks quickly as well.

If your kids are super duper picky, these 40 healthy toddler meals for picky eaters will please even your pickiest kids. And here are more healthy dinner ideas for picky eaters, healthy breakfast ideas for picky eaters, and healthy snack ideas for picky eaters.

And don’t forget about meals that kids can make like these.

These quick dinner ideas for kids are going to save your bacon for dinner this week. And speaking of bacon, yummy. Now let’s go up our vegetable game!

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