our everyday life

Dinner Menu Sample

by Kathryn Hatter, studioD

An imaginative and nutritious dinner menu will keep the family happy as you gather around the table together. Although life can be hectic, making time to dine together as often as possible is important for strong family relationships. The meal need not be fancy, especially when you have kids to feed. Try a few different dinner menus to see what suits your family.

Meat and Potatoes

Mix a tasty meatloaf using ground turkey or lean ground beef. Use crushed croutons or quick oatmeal as the meatloaf binder, adding other ingredients such as beaten egg, tomato sauce, shredded zucchini or carrot, mustard or diced onions. Make scalloped potatoes or mashed potatoes using creamy ranch dressing instead of butter or cream. Add a steamed green vegetable such as asparagus, broccoli or green beans and a colorful fruit like papaya or watermelon and the meal should please the whole family.

Cool Salads

Make a tuna salad with a generous assortment of colorful vegetables. Use cherry tomatoes, red onions, cucumber slices and cannellini beans as the main ingredients. Drizzle creamy bleu cheese dressing over the salad to make it pop with flavor. Create a fun pasta salad using pasta shapes that will appeal to kids like bow ties, wagon wheels or alphabet letters. Add diced chicken, steamed broccoli flowerets, green onions, peas or cheese chunks. Season the salad with fresh chives, tarragon and parsley and pull it all together with your favorite creamy salad dressing. Add a crusty loaf of Italian bread and a salad featuring several different berries and mandarin oranges for the finishing touch.


Prepare an easy paella dinner using peeled shrimp and assorted vegetables like peppers, onions, tomatoes, artichoke hearts and peas. After simmering the goodness to blend the flavors, serve it over rice for a satisfying entree. A loaf of sour dough bread and a bowl of bing cherries can complete the meal. Wrap cod fillets and fresh vegetables like peas, baby carrots and asparagus in aluminum foil and dust them with dried seasoning mix. Pop the ingredients in the oven just until the vegetables are tender and the fish flakes. Serve the fish and vegetables with baked potatoes and sour cream.


Create a cool salad featuring cooked rice and black beans. Add green or black olives, diced red or white onion, diced green or yellow pepper, grape tomatoes and diced celery. Mix in herbs like flat leaf parsley, cilantro and parsley. Use creamy Parmesan dressing to pull the salad together perfectly. Stuff tomato or pepper halves with a vegetarian mixture that should please everyone. Mix up a combination of ingredients such as lentils, breadcrumbs, corn, shredded carrots, onions and hardboiled eggs. Use herbs like basil or oregano to flavor the mixture. Round out the vegetarian fare with a colorful fruit salad and whole wheat biscuits.

About the Author

Kathryn Hatter is a veteran home-school educator, as well as an accomplished gardener, quilter, crocheter, cook, decorator and digital graphics creator. As a regular contributor to Natural News, many of Hatter's Internet publications focus on natural health and parenting. Hatter has also had publication on home improvement websites such as Redbeacon.

Photo Credits

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