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Large family meals for picky eaters!
15 replies to this topic
Posted 09 April 2018 - 06:23 PM
On so I have 4 kids all under 10 and they're getting so fussy with meals in that they're completely over budget meals with mince like spag bol, shep pie, tacos ( when packs are on special) meatloaf, etc they don't mind chicken salad wraps but again they'll just get sick of it and won't eat. They're over pasta based meals as well. I'm just finding it hard to cook meals which are affordable and also serve enough in the family plus an extra for my lunch the next day. I guess I'm after other ideas on what works in your family meal wise that isn't mince or pasta based
Posted 09 April 2018 - 06:31 PM
Diced beef or lamb slow cooked is delicious and economical. Indian variants are often nice. Would they be open to this?
Vegetarian based meals?
Mushroom risotto is pretty cheap. Can be any kind of risotto though.
Today I cooked a whole chicken - it was $6 for the whole chicken and I fed the family of four and got 2 jars of stock. If I’d been better prepared I would have made a broth from the carcass to make into a soup.
Homemade rissoles? Make burgers? Or With veges? It’s mince but doesn’t taste to me like spaghetti bol etc.
Homemade vege sausage rolls?
Home made pizzas?
Boiled eggs and soldiers
Baked beans and grilled cheese on toast
Edited by SplashingRainbows, 09 April 2018 - 06:32 PM.
Posted 09 April 2018 - 06:33 PM
Its coming into winter and if you have a slow cooker or a pressure cooker you could try stews and curries, served on sweet potato or regular potato mash, rice or couscous (not sure if their pickiness is certain foods or styles of food. So not sure if this advice is good).
If you don't mind cooking after work, you can make paella (just omit expensive seafood and use chicken instead) or risotto's.
If you want to involve the kids in food prep you can do a lot of thai and vietnamese dishes, where you "make" the dinner at the table. Such as Pork Pho (they can add their ingredients to the base soup bowl). Or they can help make Minced Chicken Lettuce Cups.
Posted 09 April 2018 - 06:39 PM
Veggie/ potato back with a cheap as you can get cut of meat (Like bbq lamb chops maybe, pretty good baked in gravy)? Stew? Stir fry. Soup and toasted sandwiches lol.
Eta: omelette/ quiche. sausages. Chicken drumsticks can make some pretty tasty oven bakes
Edited by Kallie88, 09 April 2018 - 06:43 PM.
Posted 09 April 2018 - 06:52 PM
Our cheap meals include risotto (we usually do mushroom or chicken, spinach and pumpkin) soups (pumpkin, chicken noodle and potato and leek are popular right now) bulk out with crusty bread, frittatas (use any left over veges, some bacon or chicken for extra bulk) do a big roast one night and make leftovers into pies the next night with some puff pastry, works out quite cheap. Baked potatoes with build your own toppings, we usually do cheese corn beetroot avocado carrot and cabbage. Curried sausages with mashed potato.
Posted 09 April 2018 - 07:06 PM
Homemade fried rice and chicken
Homemade chicken, cheese and sweet corn sausage rolls
Slow cooker beef or lamb casserole served with mash and veg or couscous
Chicken and leek pie
Minestrone soup- lots of veggies and the butter beans-quite filling
Chicken or beef stir fry
San Choy bow
Posted 09 April 2018 - 09:52 PM
Rice paper rolls
Anything based on lentils/ beans ( mild vegetarian chilli with rice is yum)
Chicken fried rice
Mild curry or casserole with rice or mashed potatoes
Fish tray bake ( use frozen BASA or similar and flavour by cooking it with onions, garlic, herbs, lemon and tomato.
Posted 09 April 2018 - 10:18 PM
I find meals where people can all make it the way they like it are best for picky eaters, when I have all the kids over I find tacos (I do beef, fish and beans as protein and then a variety of extras like lettuce, tomato, guacamole, pickled cabbage, salsa, cheese, sour cream ect) so they put on it what they want, same with kebabs, I do lamb or falafel , with pita bread and they can add whatever they want (tabouli, lettuce, tomato, cheese, hommous, onion, tzatiki ect) or pizza and just let them choose
Posted 09 April 2018 - 11:45 PM
Op, when I'm over it my kids find they get cheese and salad rolls, with whatever meat I've got from the deli or roast chicken.
Scrambled eggs and toast with salad veggies such as carrot sticks, cucumber, cherry tomatoes - any form of breakfast for dinner - is another winner.
Give yourself a break a couple of nights a week. Dinner just needs to be relatively healthy, not some 1950s 'proper' dinner served up to smiling angelic children every night.
Posted 10 April 2018 - 07:17 AM
I agree with PP that customized foods are a good option.
Pizza (homemade dough is budget-friendly) with a variety of toppings they can pick and choose from. If you make the dough, the pizza crust can be as big or small as the appetite. Fold it in half for a lunchbox-friendly calzone.
Omelettes. Approx 1 dozen eggs and some toppings; it's a good opportunity to use up leftover veggies (mushrooms, spinach, etc) and meat, with a sprinkle of your favourite cheese folding it in half.
Nigella Lawson has a good recipe for a veggie lasagna (tortillas, beans, veggies, cheese, and salsa) that is very filling and ingredients can be substituted for less expensive ones.
You can bulk up a soup with flour-based dumplings, and use leftover meats in a pot pie or quiche.
Involving the kids helps too. I do one large grocery run on the weekend and the kids are asked to supply one or two meal suggestions, which I accommodate as much as possible.
ETA: Regarding pasta: Sometimes it helps to vary the type of pasta. Some catch the sauce better than others, which can change its (perceived?) taste.
Edited by overlytired, 10 April 2018 - 07:20 AM.
Posted 10 April 2018 - 10:37 AM
4 kids under 10 here too, with varying levels of pickiness.
Meals that they'll all (mostly) eat:
A roast whole chicken (leftover meat then used for sandwiches etc) with roast potatoes and steamed veg.
Steamed rice (for some reason unknown to me they won't eat fried rice) with honey soy chicken wings or drumsticks, and steamed veg.
Nachos, served with a plate of cut up veggies to eat as well, which seems to be more successful than expecting them to add veggies into their nachos. Go figure.
Breakfast for dinner: pancakes, scrambled eggs, hash browns, sausages, fruit salad.
Burgers with homemade patties- either vegetarian or meat, grated carrot, tomato, beetroot etc and a tray of homemade potato wedges.
Meatballs, mashed potato, and steamed veg. You can make a vegetarian version if they're really that over mince.
Homemade pies with either leftover meat, or slow cooked chuck steak. Or homemade sausage rolls- if you want to keep it really simple, you can use sausages wrapped in a sheet of puff pastry. Wrapping food in pastry greatly increases my children's chances of eating it They seem to really like dipping sausage rolls in a mix of sour cream and seeded mustard.
Homemade honey chicken is also a winner here- I coat chicken pieces in an eggwash and flour, brown in a pan, then pour honey over and bake in the oven. Often you can get big packets of spring rolls from the supermarket on special for $7, which they love.
Toast/buttered crusty bread/toasties and whatever variant of soup they'll eat.
Posted 10 April 2018 - 11:18 AM
Following this thread with interest!!
Definitely the situation here too. I find that customisation is awesome (although often messy!)
Posted 10 April 2018 - 11:52 AM
My picky eaters (with almost opposite tastes *sigh*) like
Rice paper rolls
Lentil and sweet potato/pumpkin soup - as long as it's orange and slight swt potato tasting, they will eat it so pack full of whatever veg you have
Homemade fish and chips with veg
Broccoli and cauliflower mac n cheese
Homemade yellow dahl (proper name escapes me but uses red lentils and is mild)
Edited by spr_maiden, 10 April 2018 - 11:53 AM.
Posted 10 April 2018 - 12:35 PM
Fried rice is always a winner with my picky eaters. (A winner with me too because it's cheap, easy and I can load it up with finely diced veges.)
I use diced bacon as a base for mine, just because I have one small person who LOVES bacon, and will it anything as long as there is bacon involved. But I have done it before with either leftover chicken, or even leftover roast pork.
Posted 10 April 2018 - 12:37 PM
Your other cheap options are beans/lentils, rice, eggs, and spuds. Oh, and sausages.
Potato and leek soup
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