50 healthy meal and snack ideas that are kid-friendly and require minimal cooking and no recipe! Includes a free printable PDF!
So here’s the deal: I have one strict rule I’m asking Ted to follow with the arrival of a new baby + a house filled with hungry toddlers and company. When we have guests over, I’m asking he to be in charge of meals.
I not-so-fondly remember being asked my opinion for, “pizza or sushi?” once Joey was born and, “what should I feed Joey?” once Anthony was born, all while I was trying to get the hang of nursing a baby.
Now don’t get the wrong idea here in thinking Ted needs hand-holding or can’t make food decisions on his own. He most certainly can! But when it comes to food and our family, I most often make the decisions.
So now that I’m giving him full control while I’m recovering with baby sis I’m having to learn to let go and also not care so much if the boys eat the same thing two days in a row. I’m fairly certain they won’t be disappointed in the summer of pizza if you know what I mean….
In an effort to ensure we are all enjoying well-balanced meals while Mom is recovering, I’ve put together a list of kid-friendly meal and snack ideas for Ted, babysitters, in-laws, my parents, etc. to reference when that time of the day comes with my hangry little toddlers are ready for their next meal. Or the group in the room is trying to decide what we have to eat!
Note: My fridge, freezer, and pantry are well stocked with the ingredients to make each of these things. And this is more of a guideline vs. rule book. My hope is that it serves as inspiration for you or someone you know who needs a break from the kitchen while tending to a new baby!
→ Click here to download a PDF of all of these kid-friendly meal and snack ideas
Kid-Friendly Snacks: 18
[Try to include 1-2 food groups and always offer water first, then milk]
Cheerios + Raisins + Chocolate Chips
Goldfish + Dried Cherries
Hard-Boiled Egg + Raisins
Granola Bar + Nut Butter to Dip or Spread on Top [Optional]
Hummus + Crackers + Veggie Sticks
Cottage Cheese/Yogurt + Fresh Fruit
Cheese Slices + Whole Grain Crackers
Apple Slices + Nut Butter
Mini Rice Cakes + Nut Butter
Fresh Fruit + Cheese Stick + Pretzels
Banana Slices + Chocolate Milk
Whole Grain Cereal + Milk
Homemade Mini Muffin [2-3 Max]
Baby Carrots or Sliced Cucumbers + Ranch
Popcorn + Dried Fruit
Smoothie [with fruit + spinach + milk]
Whole Wheat Tortilla + Cheese
Frozen Yogurt Fruit Popsicles
Kid-Friendly Breakfasts: 7
[Always include 2-3 food groups and offer milk or water]
Whole Grain Waffle [topped with nut butter] + Fruit
Yogurt + Granola + Fruit Smoothie [with spinach + fruit + milk]
French Toast [topped with nut butter] + Avocado Slices
Whole Grain Cereal + Milk + Fruit
Egg and Cheese Toast + Fruit
Homemade Mini Muffin + Cottage Cheese + Fresh Berries
Freezer Pancakes + Fresh Berries + Sausage
Kid-Friendly Lunches: 8
[Always include 2-3 food groups and offer milk or water]
Hummus + Crackers + Banana + Crinkle Cut Carrots
Grilled Cheese + Sliced Apples or Veggie Sticks + Cottage Cheese
Hot Dog/Sausage + Fruit + Buttered Noodles with Parmesan Cheese
Peanut Butter Sandwich + Veggie Sticks + Ranch Dip
Turkey and Cheese Panini + Corn + Sliced Pears
Macaroni and Cheese + Sliced Peaches + Steamed Green Beans
Cheese Quesadilla + Salsa + Crinkle Cut Carrots + Yogurt
Pizza-Dillas [whole wheat tortilla + marinara + cheese] + Veggie Sticks + Ranch Dip
Kid-Friendly Dinners: 13
[Always include 2-3 food groups and offer milk; fruit NOT always necessary since they eat a lot of fruit throughout the day]
Frozen Meatballs + Pasta + Sauce + Green Veggie + Fresh Veggies
Chicken Burgers + Roasted Potatoes + Green Veggie
Stir-Fry + Brown Rice + Simple Peanut Sauce [peanut butter + soy sauce] + Avocado Slices
BBQ Grilled Chicken + Broccoli + Watermelon
Shrimp Tacos + Corn + Guacamole/Avocado Slices
Sloppy Joe’s + Green Beans + Pineapple
Italian Seasoned Ground Beef + Pasta + Sauce + Green Veggie
Sliced Chicken Sausage + Pasta + Sauce + Green Veggie
Taco Salads [deconstructed for the boys] + Fresh Berries
Grilled Sausages + Watermelon + Corn + Whole Wheat Buns
Pasta + Amitriciana Sauce + Crinkle Cut Carrots + Avocado Slices
Grilled Cheese + Tomato Soup + Fresh Berries
Tortellini Soup + Parmesan Cheese + Green Beans + Apple Slices
Carry-Out Favorites: 4
Pizza + Green Veggie + Sliced Fruit [at home]
Sushi + Egg Rolls [the kids will eat 2 egg rolls]
Chicken Fingers + Fries + Green Veggie [at home]
Veggie Pad Thai + Spring Rolls [the kids will eat the noodles and veggies in light sauce]
And here’s the Serbinski produce “KEY” that we mix n’ match sides and snacks from:
Veggie Sticks: Sliced red, yellow, or orange bell pepper, sliced cucumbers, and steamed crinkle cut carrots
Favorite Fruits: Watermelon, grapes, bananas, apples, oranges, strawberries, pineapple
Favorite Veggies: Bell peppers, cucumbers [with dip], steamed crinkle cut carrots or green beans, corn, asparagus
Phew! Think I covered it all? Are there any simple meals you tend to keep on hand that keep your family fueled and full when you aren’t in the mood to cook?!
This is so helpful! I feel like I feed my daughter the same thing every night, I’m so glad to have some fresh ideas for her.
So glad you found it useful!
What a great idea to give a list for dads to help! Do you possibly have a printer friendly version? Thank you!
Hi Dana! I do not. But now you’ve given me a project for the weekend!! I’ll have it updated Monday 🙂
Where did you get the plates from ?
They are Re-Play Recycled plates. Target carries them now but I bought mine online.
This is such a great idea to prepare in advance. I have some excellent Tupperware containers for sale that will help keep these meals organized too!
Thank you for making the PDF! I appreciate it so much.
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