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Kid-Friendly Dinner Favorites

Kid-friendly dinner recipe favorites

If you’ve ever found yourself cooking one meal for the grown-ups and another for the kids, we’ve got a better idea. From spaghetti and meatballs to chicken fingers to sloppy Joes, these kid-approved classics are fun and appealing, but flavorful enough for the whole gang to enjoy.

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Spaghetti & Meatballs

A kid-food classic. Kids who won’t go near a slice of lasagna, scarf down spaghetti & meatballs by the swirled-up spoon- and forkful. We know kids (no names!) who’d eat this for every meal if we’d let them.

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Grilled Sliders

Kids love it when their food is kid-sized. These sliders are perfect for little hands and everyone can dress them up with whatever toppings and condiments they like.

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Crispy Oven Fries

These oven fries are every bit as irresistible as their deep-fried counterpart, and they’re simple to make: Just rinse, parboil, and roast. They make for a truly happy meal. Serve them with a homemade dip or ketchup.

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Quick Chicken Parmesan

Crisp chicken cutlets are topped with two cheeses and a super-fast tomato sauce in this easy take on an Italian favorite. Kids who say no to everything else, say yes to this go-to dish.

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Grilled Cheese with the Works

Creamy mozzarella combined with salty, smoky bacon and fresh spinach makes this the ultimate grilled cheese for kids who negotiate terms for eating their veggies.

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Classic Margherita Pizza

Every kid looks forward to pizza night, and most are eager to help with this one: They can shape the dough, whisk the no-cook pizza sauce, and of course, add pepperoni or other toppings.

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Chicken Noodle Soup

When you are looking for a straight-ahead chicken noodle soup, this recipe fits the bill beautifully. Light and soothing, it will please just about everybody.

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Ham, Brie & Apple Sandwiches

It’s the Granny Smith apple wedges that set this ham and cheese apart from the rest of the lunch bag sandwiches. Use ham steak for more meaty flavor and texture.

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Crisp & Spicy Chicken Tenders with Blue Cheese Dip

These chicken tenders have two things going for them: You can dial back the cayenne and hot sauce for kids who can’t handle heat, and there’s a dipping sauce. Kids will eat almost anything if it comes with dip.

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Farmers’ Market Quesadillas

Kids will gladly eat their vegetables when they’re stuffed in a cheesy quesadilla. Fresh chiles and chipotle powder add heat and give the dish some smokiness, so dial both back for heat-averse eaters.

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Macaroni and Cheese with Peas & Ham

Even kids who don’t like their peas to touch anything else on the plate will gobble up this irresistible mac & cheese.

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Soft Chicken Tacos with the Works

Make dinner feel like a party: Set up a taco bar and let the kids assemble their own tacos with their favorite fillings and toppings.

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Sloppy Joes

The mix from the can’s got nothin' on these tasty sloppy Joes. They have a rich, meaty filling smothered in tangy-sweet, thick tomato sauce that just refuses to stay inside the bun.

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Buttermilk Pancakes

The key to stress-free dinnertimes is making them fun, and no dinner is more fun than breakfast! Kids love pancakes for dinner. Add berries or pile on sliced fruit for a nutritional boost.

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Honey-Crisp Oven Fried Chicken

Glazed with honey, coated in crushed cornflakes, then baked to crisp golden perfection—this is a “fried” chicken you can feel good about serving to little ones.

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