As our children grow, teaching them the basics of the kitchen and meals that they can cook are both essential. They will eventually move out and have to fend for themselves, so sending them out with a few great, inexpensive meal ideas outside of Ramen Noodles or frozen dinners is necessary.
Rather than just showing them how to make something, having them pitch in with dinners is a terrific way for them to get the hang of making the meals as well as helping out the family!
In our house, we take turns making dinner. That way, no one person is always responsible since everyone works and deserves a break. Here are a few easy dinners that your teen can prepare:
Healthy Chef’s Salad – this is a great meal idea for any family. Not only is it healthy, but easy to create without any cooking or baking. Simply cut up some lettuce, tomato, and onion, if desired. Layer these ingredients in a large bowl with your favorite salad meat (we use both turkey and diced ham) and shredded cheese. Everyone can then take as much as they like, add their own salad dressing, and top with hard-boiled egg, bacon pieces, or croutons. Healthy and filling!
Simple Spaghetti – instead of cooking a sauce from scratch, let your teen know they can make a very easy spaghetti in a few short steps. Brown a pound of ground beef and drain. Poor in any canned or jarred spaghetti sauce. Add mushrooms, diced onions, or diced green pepper if desired and simmer for an hour. Next comes your family’s favorite type of pasta – simply follow the instructions on the packaging. Easy peasy!
Manwich Sandwich – it is a pretty easy main dish to make and some may prefer homemade, but a can of Hunt’s Manwich can always come in handy! Brown a pound of ground beef and drain. Poor in a can of Manwich, simmer for 20 – 30 minutes, and serve on hamburger buns. Done!
Even different packaged meals can be great for your teen to prepare such as Hamburger Helper, Kraft or Velveeta Macaroni and Cheese, or Zataran’s.
As much as I would love for my daughter to go to culinary school and practice her creations on the family, that is just not going to happen. So, I try to teach her how to make really simple things, that will not cost her a lot after she moves out, but will provide her with something outside of fast food drive-thru-s.
Do you have any easy meals that your kids help create for dinner? If so, please leave a comment to share with others!