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6 easy dinner recipes to cook with the kids

Girl cutting capsicum with her mother supervising“What’s for dinner?”

“I’m hungry, when’s dinner ready?”

Sound familiar? Well the next time one of the kids starts complaining about dinner, grab this list of recipe ideas and get them to help out!

These easy dinner recipes are great for the kids to learn about cooking, handling food, and cleaning up the benches. Plus you get an easy, yummy meal at the end of it!

If the kids are a bit older and know what to do, you can even let them do the whole thing, and sit back with a cuppa or glass of wine while they do all the work!

Sushi Ham Balls

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup sushi rice, rinsed
  • 1 1/4 cups water
  • 2 tablespoons sushi vinegar
  • 1/2 small avocado
  • 1/3 lebanese cucumber
  • 100g shaved smoked ham, cut into 3cm strips

Method:

  1. Place rice in a saucepan and cover with water.
  2. Bring to the boil on high, then reduce heat to low. Cover and simmer for 15 minutes.
  3. Remove from heat and set aside, covered for 10 minutes.
  4. Line a baking tray with baking paper.
  5. Transfer rice to a bowl.
  6. Stir through vinegar and spread rice on tray to cool.
  7. (kids can do these parts) Using wet hands, shape rice in to tablespoon sized balls
  8. Poke your finger into the centre and insert a piece of avocado and cucumber, then reshape the rice around the filling.
  9. Wrap a strip of ham around each rice ball.

Sausage Rolls

Ingredients:

  • 250g sausage mince
  • 250g beef mince
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 1 small carrot, coarsley grated
  • 1 small zucchini, coarsley grated
  • 1/2 cup fresh breadcrumbs
  • 1 tablespoon BBQ sauce
  • 1 tablespoono tomato paste
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 3 sheets frozen puff pastry, thawed

Method:

  1. Prepare all the vegetables for the children unless you feel they are old enough to do this for themselves with supervision.
  2. Preheat oven to 200C.
  3. Lightly grease and line 2 baking trays.
  4. In a large bowl, combine both minces, onion, carrot, zucchini, breadcrumbs, tomato paste, BBQ sauce and half the egg. Season to taste.
  5. Cut each sheet of pastry in half.
  6. Roll sausage meat mixture into 6 long sausage shapes.
  7. Places each sausage along the edge of pastry sheet and roll up tightly to seal.
  8. Cut each sausage into 3 even-sized pieces.
  9. Place the pieces on prepared trays about 3cm apart. Brush with remaining egg. Score tops of pastry in a few places.
  10. Bake in oven for 20-25 minutes until golden and cooked through.

Make sure that children wash their hands thoroughly and don’t eat any of the raw meat mixture. Parents should always take care of any jobs that involve the oven. These sausage rolls will freeze for up to 2 months in airtight container.

Pizza Faces

Ingredients:

  • 2 small prepared pizza bases (can use pita bread or wraps)
  • 1/2 cup tomato paste or pasta sauce
  • 8 stuffed olives (for eyes)
  • 4 slices cabanossi/sausage (for noses)
  • 4 slices red capsicum
  • 8 slices button mushroom (for ears)
  • 1/3 cup chopped rindless bacon (for hair)
  • grated cheese – as much as you want to use on the bottom

Method:

  1. If you have very young children, cut up the ingredients as required for them first.  Older children can do this for themselves with supervision.
  2. Preheat oven to 200C.
  3. Line baking tray with baking paper.
  4. Cut 2x12cm rounds from each pizza base.
  5. Spread each base with pasta sauce, place on prepared tray and sprinkle with cheese.
  6. Arrange ingredients on bases to make faces.
  7. Bake in oven for 5-10min until golden brown and bases are crisp.

Scrumptious Chicken Drumsticks

Ingredients:

  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 2 tablespoons sweet chilli sauce
  • 2 tablespoons tomato sauce (or ketchup, what ever you have)
  • 2 tablespoons of dark soy sauce
  • 2 table spoons of soy sauce
  • 1.5kg of skinless chicken drumsticks
  • sesame seeds to sprinkle on the top

Method:

  1. Put the honey, chilli, tomato, and soy sauces in a large bowl and stir together.
  2. Cut 2-3 slits in the drumsticks on the meat so the sauce can get into the meat
  3. Coat the drumsticks in the marinade and put in the fridge for as long as you like. Turn them in the maranaide if you leave it there for over 2 hours.
  4. Preheat the oven to about 180C.
  5. Line a tray with baking paper.
  6. Sprinkle the tray with sesame seeds, lay out the drum sticks, and sprinkle sesame seeds again over the top.
  7. Bake in the oven for around 40-45 minutes, turning the drumsticks 2-3 times.

Annabel Chicken

This recipe is named Annabel Chicken after a Bub Hub forum member’s daughter (who loves to make it) and because it’s an adaptation of a recipe by Annabel Karmel.

Ingredients:

  • Large packet of chips – cheese & onion, sour cream & chives, your choice
  • (not crinkle cut, thins are best)
  • Chicken tenderloins
  • Mayonnaise

Method:

  1. Put the chips into a large bowl and bash them with the end of a rolling pin until they are crushed into small pieces (kids loving doing this and invariably sample a few pieces in the process). Alternatively, place the chips in a plastic bag and ‘roll’ them with a rolling pin.
  2. Pour some mayonnaise onto a plate.
  3. Put the smashed up chips onto a second plate.
  4. Coat each piece of chicken with mayonnaise and then roll it in the smashed chips.
  5. Place on a baking tray lined with baking paper.
  6. Bake in the oven (approx 180C) for approx 10 minutes. Cooking time depends on the size of your chicken pieces – allow more time for larger pieces and make sure you cut one piece open to check it’s cooked before serving.
  7. Serve with salad and anything else of your choice!

Very important to teach the kids to not put their hands near their mouth once they’ve handled raw chicken until they’ve washed them very thoroughly. And even though it’s tempting, any left over chip crumbs that have been near the raw chicken must be thrown away and NOT eaten.

Impossible Pie Mini-Quiches

Ingredients:

  • 3 eggs
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped onion
  • 1 cup grated zucchini
  • 1 cup grated carrot
  • 1 cup chopped bacon (or cooked chicken)
  • 1 cup grated cheese
  • 1 cup self-raising flour
  • 1 1/2 cups of milk

Method:

  1. Tip all ingredients into a big bowl and mix together.
  2. Spray a 12-muffin tin tray with olive oil and dust with flour.
  3. Spoon mixture into the tray.
  4. Bake at 150C for half an hour, or until set.
  5. Leave to cool in tray before trying to remove.

Depending on their age, kids will need help with grating, chopping, and getting the baking tray in and out of the oven.

 

Test these out with your kids – you never know when their favourite meal may be lurking in your next recipe! Find more cool activities for kids in our Things to Do Hub.

Image credit: racorn/123RF Stock Photo

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