Coming up with seasonal, tasty ideas for dinner that can be enjoyed by adults PLUS kids is tricky business. Preparing and cooking those dinner ideas for your family, night after night, is even more challenging. Add two working parents to the mix, and that’s a recipe for take out. MENUbility was created very simply, to share our family meals, recipes and ideas in the hopes that it will spark an idea or opportunity to make something from the heart for your family and/or friends to enjoy together.
Now, to be quite honest, I don’t always have my act together. I’m human, and some days are just harder than others to put something delicious on the table. On those days, we either improvise or throw in the towel (i.e. eat at a restaurant or get it to-go). When I do have my act together, I’ll share those victories with you in the form of a menu or a recipe. For those days when things are just falling apart, well, I’ll find a way to share those too.
Enjoy the journey!
- Family-friendly dinner menus + ideas for dinner (and sometimes lunch and breakfast).
- Reliable recipes (some original, some derived, and some straight from vetted sources) – I promise you’ll be proud to serve, share and want to make these dishes again.
- Practical kitchen tips, advice and tricks
- Printable menus and grocery lists to make meal planning easy.
- Recommendations for the best cookbooks, multi-purpose kitchen tools, and gifts (via the “SHOP” links)
In addition to the concepts I’ll be building on above, I promise to be conscientious of the following:
Mostly Healthy Ideas for Dinner – not every family meal you’ll find on MENUbility will be low fat or low calorie. MENUbility is not gluten-free, Paleo, or diehard vegetarian. However, the recipes will feature fresh, wholesome ingredients, some of which will be meat-free or can be made that way. Sometimes, I’ll indulge and sometimes I’ll restrain. The published menus will be sensible, delicious, and healthy, overall.
Mostly Affordable Family Meals – some of the family dinners will be extremely affordable, dare I say “cheap”. At other times, they may be more expensive. On average, I spend between $100 and $125 at my local grocery store. This is based on preparing 4 to 6 meals each week for a family of 4. That’s roughly between $18 and $32/night. This tally does not include pantry staples, breakfast or lunch items not on the menu. All said and done, my family groceries (dinners-at-home, pantry staples, breakfast, lunch, beverages) average $150-$175/week.
Mostly Quick & Easy Meal Ideas – Some meals can be done in 30 minutes or less. Others might take 45 minutes to an hour. If this is a deal-breaker for you, please feel free to provide feedback in the comments section. Crockpot recipes are also fair game and can take all day, but they are hands off, of course.
Mostly Kid-Approved Dinner Ideas: I strongly believe that your children should eat what you eat and vice versa, generally discouraging making something separate for kids. Special occasions, such as birthdays and holidays, are an exception, of course. Pleasing picky eaters is easier said than done, I know, so I plan on showing you ways to get creative with your dinner presentation to increase that your kids will try (and enjoy) the food you serve them. MENUbility’s ideas for dinner have all passed the test with our own kids, nieces, nephews, etc… but we can’t promise that your kids will eat or enjoy these meals!
Lastly, the family menus that are published are my family’s menus, too. We’re either eating them that week or have eaten them recently. Honestly. Take comfort in knowing that my family is in this with you!
Established May 2015
MENUbility was launched in May 2015. I appreciate your patience as this site grows and welcome your suggestions and feedback!