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Party Plan: Weeknight Wins with National Family Meal Month

Fall comes and you’re back at it – school, a schedule and busy nights! Dinner needs to fit in somewhere, and we’ve got a great selection of recipes for your whole family to try together. Whether you’re looking for new inspiration, time-saving meals or just a way to mix things up, check out these sure ways to win on weeknights.

For starters, how about breakfast for dinner? Treat the gang to Bacon and Eggs Breakfast Pizza, or try Savory Bacon Cheddar Waffles for a fun twist on a favorite. Plus, these Breakfast Taquitos are a super simple way to please even the pickiest of eaters!

Here’s an idea: Choose a country or a region and serve their cuisine for dinner, and share some facts about the culture, for engaging mealtime conversation! You could try Italy with some yummy pasta dishes like Spinach and Artichoke Lasagna Rolls, Family Pasta Bake Three Ways or a DIY Pasta Bar. We’ve also got a Mini Denver Omelet Breakfast Pizza, Asian-Inspired Beef Noodle Bowl or a Mediterranean Salad – all mouthwatering and ripe for conversation.

Finally, check out more fun ways to get everyone engaged with Personalized Placemats, Teaching Kids How to Set the Table and Family Kitchen Cleanup. With all these tips and recipes, you can make every night a winner!

Southwestern Chili

Southwestern Chili

Created by: Krissy Allori, Self Proclaimed Foodie

Chili…rarely do you find such a comforting, filling meal that’s not only really good for you (depending, of course, on how you make it and the toppings you choose), but so versatile in terms of how different it can taste based on the recipe you choose. This one is delicious!

Ingredients:
  • 1 lb. ground beef
  • 12 oz. chorizo
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 bottle (12 oz.) beer (try a Mexican beer)
  • 1 can (28 oz.) unsalted plum tomatoes, with juice (break up tomatoes into pieces)
  • 1 cup roasted green chile, diced
  • 1 Tbsp. kosher salt
  • 1 Tbsp. tomato paste
  • 1 can (15 oz.) black beans, rinsed
  • 1 can (15 oz.) pinto beans, rinsed
  • Freshly ground pepper, to taste
  • Garnish with freshly grated cheese, sour cream, and/or diced avocados
Directions:
  1. In large skillet over medium high heat, brown ground beef and chorizo with chopped onion until meat is slightly browned and crumbly, about 10 minutes. Add minced garlic, stir, and cook for a couple more minutes. Add mixture to large slow cooker.
  2. Empty beer into pan and scrape the bottom of the pan to release anything that stuck to the pan. Pour that into the slow cooker.
  3. Add remaining ingredients and set slow cooker to low. Cook for 4-8 hours. Serve with freshly grated cheese, sour cream and diced avocados if desired. Refrigerate any leftovers.

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5-Cheese Pizza with Arugula Salad

5-Cheese Pizza with Arugula Salad

Created by: Sharon Garofalow, Cupcakes and Cutlery

A pizza dinner is a great way to get kids involved, especially during National Family Meal Month. From shredding the cheese to dressing the simple salad, your kids can take control of putting this meal together. It’s cheesy and flavorful, and the peppery Arugula salad becomes the perfect topping and side dish in one!

Ingredients:
  • 1 can Pilsbury Pizza Crust
  • 1 clove garlic, cut in half long-ways
  • 5-cheese Italian blend shredded cheese (or pick up individual packages of mozzarella, fontina, Parmesan, asiago and provolone and have the kids grate about ¼-½ cup each)
  • 1 block Parmesan (have the kids grate ¼ cup of this)
  • 1 bag arugula salad greens
  • 2 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice
  • Dash fresh ground pepper
Directions:
  1. Preheat the oven per package instructions.
  2. Stretch out the dough on an oiled cookie sheet.
  3. Partially bake the pizza crust approximately 4 minutes.
  4. Remove and let cool for a few minutes. Taking care of the hot pan, give children half of the garlic and have them rub the cut side on the still warm dough. (This will leave some flavor without leaving big chunks of garlic that kids might not enjoy.)
  5. If you bought the Italian blend cheese, have your kids sprinkle it over the dough. If you bought individual packages of cheese, have your kids grate them and mix them together in a bowl, then put on top of the dough.
  6. Top with the remaining ¼ cup Parmesan cheese. (Parmesan browns really nicely!)
  7. Bake in oven for approximately 8 minutes, until crust is golden brown and the cheese is completely melted, then remove.
  8. In the meantime, in a small bowl mix up the olive oil, lemon juice and pepper.
  9. Add arugula to a bowl and toss with the dressing.
  10. Top pizza with arugula. Cut pizza and enjoy.

View Party Plan: Weeknight Wins with National Family Meal Month

Asian Inspired Beef Noodle Bowl

Asian Inspired Beef Noodle Bowl

Created by: Becky James, The Crafting Chicks

Looking for an Asian inspired dinner that’s not only easy but healthy too? This simple beef noodle bowl provides a well-balanced meal quickly…the perfect dish to prepare for National Family Meal Month.

Ingredients:
  • 8 oz. linguine, uncooked
  • 3 cups broccoli florets
  • 3 medium carrots, peeled and sliced
  • 2 tsp. vegetable oil
  • 1 lb. beef sirloin steak, cut into strips
  • ¼ cup Kraft Zesty Italian dressing
  • ¼ cup teriyaki sauce
  • 1 tsp. ginger
Directions:
  1. Cook pasta as directed on package, adding broccoli and carrots to the cooking water for the last 2 minutes of pasta cooking time. Drain pasta mixture.
  2. While the pasta is cooking, heat oil in a large nonstick skillet. Add meat, cook until browned on all sides, stirring occasionally. Stir in dressing, teriyaki sauce and ginger; cook until sauce thickens, string occasionally.
  3. Toss pasta and meat mixtures in large serving bowl.

View Party Plan: Weeknight Wins with National Family Meal Month

Bacon and Eggs Breakfast Pizza

Bacon and Eggs Breakfast Pizza

Created by: Laura Franklin, Food Fun Family

This breakfast pizza combines two favorite breakfast foods – scrambled eggs and bacon – with pizza crust and cheese. The result is absolutely delicious and the perfect way to get everyone around the table for National Family Meal Month.

Ingredients:
  • 1 pizza crust dough (homemade or store bought)
  • 1 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 3 cups shredded mozzarella cheese, divided
  • 6 Simple Truth Organic Eggs
  • ¼ cup milk
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 6 slices of bacon, cooked crisp and crumbled
Directions:
  1. Flatten pizza dough on pizza pan or pizza stone by rolling, stretching or spreading the dough gently with your hands until it fills the baking pan. Let sit for 10 minutes. Preheat oven to 450°F.
  2. Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, whisk together 6 Simple Truth Organic Eggs and ¼ cup milk. Add salt and pepper to taste. Pour egg mixture into a hot skillet and cook, stirring frequently, until eggs are cooked through.
  3. Cook 6 slices of bacon until crisp.
  4. Spread olive oil over pizza dough and top with 1 cup mozzarella cheese. Crumble eggs and bacon on top. Add remaining cheese.
  5. Bake pizza for 15-20 minutes. Let cool for 5 minutes before slicing.

View Party Plan: Weeknight Wins with National Family Meal Month

Sausage Breakfast Taquitos

Sausage Breakfast Taquitos

Created by: Erin Sellin, Dinners, Dishes, and Desserts

September is National Family Meal Month, so get in the kitchen with your family and make these easy sausage, egg and cheese breakfast taquitos!

Ingredients:
  • 12 whole large eggs
  • 1 can (4 oz.) diced green chilies
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 cup cheddar cheese, shredded
  • 24 breakfast sausage links, cooked according to package directions
  • 12 small flour tortillas (soft sheet or fajita size)
  • Non-stick spray
Directions:
  1. Preheat oven to 450°F.
  2. Beat eggs together, and pour into a large skillet over medium heat. Stir and cook until scrambled. Stir in can of green chilies. Season with salt and pepper.
  3. To form the taquitos, put about 1 egg’s worth down the center of the flour tortilla. Top with 1-2 tablespoons of cheddar cheese, and 2 sausage links. Roll tightly, and place seam side down, on a baking sheet. Continue until you have 12 taquitos.
  4. Spray the taquitos well with non-stick spray. Bake for 10-15 minutes until golden brown. Depending on the oven, you might want to use the boiler for a few minutes.
  5. Remove from the oven and serve with salsa, sour cream or guacamole.

View Party Plan: Weeknight Wins with National Family Meal Month

Chana Saag

Chana Saag

Created by: Julia Mueller, The Roasted Root

In celebration of National Family Meal Month, this classic vegetarian Indian dish can be made easily in 30 minutes or less. Plus, when you have help from family members in the kitchen, the cooking process is a breeze.

Ingredients:
  • 3 Tbsp. coconut oil (or olive oil)
  • ½ small yellow onion, diced
  • 1 small jewel yam (or Yukon gold potato), cubed
  • 3 large cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 Tbsp. fresh ginger, peeled and grated
  • 1 cup Kroger Canned Coconut Milk
  • 1 Tbsp. curry powder
  • ½ tsp. ground cumin
  • ½ tsp. red pepper flakes, optional
  • ½ tsp. sea salt, to taste
  • ¼ tsp. ground turmeric
  • 1 can (14-oz.) Kroger Diced Tomatoes, drained
  • 1 can (14-oz.) Simple Truth Organic Garbanzo Beans, drained and rinsed
  • 3 cups Simple Truth Baby Spinach
Directions:
  1. Heat the coconut oil over medium-high in a medium-sized non-stick skillet. Add the onion and chopped yam and cook, stirring frequently, until potato is cooked through but still al dente, about 8-10 minutes.
  2. While the potato and onion is cooking, combine the coconut milk, curry powder, cumin, red pepper flakes, sea salt and turmeric in a small blender. Blend until completely smooth and set aside.
  3. Add the garlic and ginger to the skillet with the potato and onion and cook another 2 minutes.
  4. Add the diced tomatoes and cook until any excess water has evaporated, about 2-3 minutes.
  5. Add the coconut milk mixture and chickpeas to the skillet and heat to a full boil. Reduce the heat slightly and add the spinach. Cover and cook until spinach has wilted, about 2 minutes.
  6. Serve Chana Saag with cooked white rice.

Tips

  • I enjoy eating Chana Saag with white basmati rice, but you can have multiple grain options handy, such as brown rice and quinoa when you sit down to dinner with your family.
  • You can make this dish with or without potato. Leaving the potato out will shorten the cook time by about 10 minutes. While I used jewel yam (white sweet potato) for the recipe, you can use a Yukon gold or a russet potato. For those family members that eat meat, grilled chicken can easily be added to the Chana Saag.

View Party Plan: Weeknight Wins with National Family Meal Month

Chocolate Peanut Butter Chip S’mores Cookiewiches

Chocolate Peanut Butter Chip S’mores Cookiewiches

Created by: Carrie Robinson, Frugal Foodie Mama

A sweet marshmallow crème buttercream is stuffed between two soft and thick chocolate cake mix cookies studded with peanut butter chips in these Chocolate Peanut Butter Chip S’mores Cookiewiches - a delicious way to enjoy s’mores with your family any time of the year!

Ingredients:
  • 1 box (16.5 oz.) Kroger Devil’s Food Cake Mix
  • 2 eggs
  • ⅓ cup vegetable or canola oil
  • ½ cup peanut butter chips
  • ¼ cup unsalted butter, room temperature
  • ⅔ cup Kroger Marshmallow Creme
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 2 cups Kroger Confectioners 10-X Powdered Sugar
  • 1-2 Tbsp. milk
Directions:
  1. Preheat your oven to 375°F. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat. Set aside.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, combine the cake mix, eggs, and oil. Mix well. Fold in the peanut butter chips. Cover with plastic wrap and chill the dough in the refrigerator for at least 20 minutes.
  3. Roll the dough into generous 1 ½ tablespoon-sized balls. Place on the prepared baking sheet about 1” apart, slightly flattening the cookie balls with the palm of your hand. Bake for 8-10 minutes or until set around the edges. Cool on the baking sheet for at least 5 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.
  4. While the cookies are cooling, prepare the marshmallow crème buttercream. In a medium mixing bowl, cream together the butter and marshmallow crème with a hand or stand mixer until light and fluffy. Beat in the vanilla extract, and then gradually add in the powdered sugar. Continue beating until fully incorporated. If the buttercream is too thick to pipe, feel free to add 1-2 tablespoons of milk until it is the right consistency.
  5. Once the cookies have cooled, place the buttercream in a pastry bag fitted with a tip with a wide opening. Pipe the frosting into the middle of one of the cooled cookies topside down. Place another cookie over top of the frosting and press down gently. Repeat this for the remaining 9 cookie pairs.
  6. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. Enjoy!

View Party Plan: Weeknight Wins with National Family Meal Month

Classic Club Wraps – a Kid-Friendly Twist on Sandwiches

Classic Club Wraps – a Kid-Friendly Twist on Sandwiches

Created by: Laura Franklin, Food Fun Family

Sandwiches for dinner can be a fun twist for mealtime during National Family Meal Month. Change things up a bit with these kid-friendly classic club wraps. They’re easy to make, fun to eat, and can be made with an endless variety of ingredients.

Ingredients:
  • Flour tortilla
  • Sliced deli turkey
  • Bacon, cooked (not crispy)
  • Tomato, sliced thin
  • Avocado, sliced thin
  • Lettuce
  • Ranch dressing
Directions:
  1. Place a tortilla on a flat surface. Add deli turkey, bacon (not crispy), sliced tomato, avocado and lettuce. Drizzle a small amount of Ranch dressing on top.
  2. Roll tortilla, burrito-style. Secure with toothpicks or wrap in aluminum foil.

Variations:

You can make an endless variety of kid-friendly wraps by substituting different ingredients. Use your imagination and enjoy! Here are a few of our favorites:

  • Caesar salad wraps - roll a chicken Caesar salad in a tortilla. It’s a salad on-the-go!
  • Peanut butter and Nutella wraps - Spread peanut butter and Nutella over a tortilla for a fun twist on the peanut butter sandwich.
  • Ham and Cheese wraps - Keep it simple with ham and Swiss cheese wrapped in a tortilla.
  • Lettuce Wraps - Skip the tortillas and wrap your meat and cheese in a large piece of lettuce.

View Party Plan: Weeknight Wins with National Family Meal Month

Creamy Turkey Enchiladas

Creamy Turkey Enchiladas

Created by: Ana Frias, Muy Delish

These turkey enchiladas are the perfect recipe to make traditional Mexican food while keeping it healthy. Keep frozen turkey stocked in your freezer for your healthy meal inspirations!

Ingredients:
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil, divided
  • 3/4 cup diced red bell pepper
  • 1/3 cup diced onion
  • 2 teaspoons minced garlic
  • 4 ounces spinach - chopped
  • 5 ounces cooked turkey breast (1.5 cups) - shredded
  • 1/3 cup frozen corn kernels -- thawed
  • 1.5 Tablespoon flour
  • 2/3 cup skim milk
  • 1 Tablespoon 1/3 less fat cream cheese
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 cup salsa
  • 6 corn tortillas
  • 1 oz queso fresco - crumble (Kroger brand)
  • 2 tablespoons sliced scallions or cilantro for garnish (optional)
Directions:
  1. On a medium skillet, add 1 tablespoon olive oil and sauté bell pepper in oil over medium high heat for a minute.
  2. Add the onion and garlic and continue to sauté for 2 more minutes, or until vegetables are softened.
  3. Add spinach, turkey, and corn. Cook until the spinach wilts, about 2 more minutes.
  4. Sprinkle the mixture with the flour. Add the milk and simmer until the mixture thickens, about 2 minutes.
  5. Add the cream cheese, salt & pepper, stirring until the cream cheese melts.
  6. Remove turkey mixture from heat and set aside.
  7. Pour the salsa in a small pot and keep warm over low heat.
  8. Brush the other 1 tablespoon of olive oil on both sides of the corn tortilla.
  9. Heat the tortillas on a hot skillet until they soften up making sure they don't get too crispy.
  10. Spoon 1/6 of the filling into the center of the tortilla. Roll tortilla over the filling and position it seam-side down on a plate. Repeat with the other 5 tortillas placing them on two different plates.
  11. Spoon the salsa down the length of each enchilada and sprinkle cheese on top.
  12. Garnish with scallions and cilantro.

View Party Plan: Weeknight Wins with National Family Meal Month

DIY Pasta Bar

DIY Pasta Bar

Created by: Julia Mueller, The Roasted Root

While my siblings and I all have very different personalities and hobbies, we always agreed on what we loved to eat for dinner: pasta. When celebrating National Family Meal Month, a DIY pasta bar is the perfect way to get the whole family together for an easy evening of delicious eats and great company.

Noodles
While some folks have no preference when it comes to noodles, there are certain individuals in my family that are crazy about certain shapes, and not so into others. For this reason, we always cook up at least two pasta shapes, and/or spaghetti or angel hair pasta. Because there are a couple people in my family who are sensitive to gluten, I always make at least one type of gluten-free pasta.

Sauces
When it comes to sauces, my family loves them all. My brothers and I love meaty red sauces, while the kids in the family enjoy plain marinara sauce without meat or pesto sauce, and my sister loves alfredo sauce. Because everyone enjoys massive quantities of sauce, but opinions vary on which ones are the tastiest, I always offer at least two options: typically, basil pesto sauce and turkey Bolognese using store-bought marinara sauce and ground turkey. We always pick up an extra jar of marinara sauce so that those who want meatless sauce can simply drizzle the sauce on their noodles.

Meats
In my carnivorous family, having multiple meat options at a DIY Pasta Bar is just as important as having multiple sauce options. Grilled chicken and turkey Bolognese are always family favorites. Both are so simple to prepare. For grilled chicken, simply marinate boneless chicken breasts in olive oil, herbs and vinegar for at least an hour (up to 12 hours), then grill the chicken until it reaches an internal temperature of 165°F. Chop the chicken into cubes, or cut into slices and place the chicken on a serving plate. To prepare turkey Bolognese sauce, pick up your favorite jar of red sauce from the grocery store, brown up some ground turkey meat, then add the sauce and allow it to simmer for 30 minutes (or longer for more flavor). Transfer the sauce to a serving bowl, and you’re ready to go! Other meat options would be baked salmon, grilled pork or sautéed shrimp.

Vegetables
In order to lend some freshness to a pasta dinner, I recommend steaming, roasting or sautéing seasonal vegetables so that those who are craving greens can easily add them to their bowl of pasta. Broccoli is always a winner in my family, and you can also sauté kale, spinach or chard, and/or grill or roast zucchini or even winter squash.

Cheeses
Topping pasta with freshly grated cheese is a brilliant way of making the meal extra comforting, and infusing it with additional flavor. At a minimum, I always recommend having a hunk of fresh Parmesan that can easily be grated over every plate or bowl of pasta. I also like having a bowl of ricotta cheese on hand, and even cheddar cheese for the kids who enjoy plain noodles with cheese. It’s hard to go wrong with multiple options!

And that’s it! Simply arrange all of your pasta bar ingredients on a table in bowls with serving spoons, and set out plates and bowls so that everyone can serve themselves buffet-style. Once the evening is over, each person is almost guaranteed to have sampled and mixed and matched various types of pastas with sauces, meats, cheeses and veggies. And of course, everyone goes to bed satisfied!

View Party Plan: Weeknight Wins with National Family Meal Month

Family Dinner Conversation Starters

Family Dinner Conversation Starters

Created by: Jamie Bare, The Crafting Chicks

Hide those smart phones, tablets and devices, and make these adorable Family Dinner Conversation cards.

Things You'll Need:
  • White cardstock paper
  • Markers or Pens
  • Scissors
  • A bowl or container to hold the convo cards
Directions:
  1. Cut white cardstock into 3” x 4” cards.
  2. Have your family members brainstorm fun questions or conversation prompt ideas on the cards. You can have each family member write several so that you have multiple questions for dinners.
  3. Have your family members write their questions/conversation ideas on the cards.
  4. Place the cards in a bowl, jar or can to display on your dining room table, or whereever your family gathers to eat.
  5. Take turns choosing a Dinner Conversation card.
Tips:

You can come up with your own questions and conversation starters, but here are 24 ideas we came up with that you can use! The possibilities are endless for these fun conversation cards!

  1. If you could be invisible for a day, what would you do?
  2. If you could open a present today, what would you like to find inside?
  3. What makes you the most happy?
  4. If you could have a super hero power, what would you choose?
  5. What would happen on your “perfect” day?
  6. If you could change one thing in the world, what would it be?
  7. If you could travel anywhere, where would you go?
  8. If you had one wish, what would you wish for?
  9. If you had wings, where would you fly?
  10. What is the hardest thing you ever had to do?
  11. What is your favorite time of the day and why?
  12. Who do you most admire and why?
  13. What are you looking forward to this year?
  14. What is your favorite family tradition and why?
  15. What would you like to be doing 10 years from now?
  16. If you could only keep one item of your own, what would you choose?
  17. If you were an animal, what would you be?
  18. Say something nice about the person across from you.
  19. What is something you would love to learn how to do?
  20. What do you want to be when you grow up and why?
  21. Tell us about your favorite vacation memory.
  22. Say something nice about the person to your right.
  23. Say something nice about the person on your left.
  24. Name 3 things you’re thankful for today.

View Party Plan: Weeknight Wins with National Family Meal Month

Family Kitchen Clean-up – Tips for Cleaning as a Family

Family Kitchen Clean-up – Tips for Cleaning as a Family

Created by: Julia Mueller, The Roasted Root

While the best part about celebrating National Family Meal Month is enjoying a feast of a dinner, there’s always the post-meal tidying that’s bound to take place. Rather than leaving all of the dishes to one person, the mantra, “many hands make light work,” rings true when it comes to the post-feast cleanup. Each person can be assigned a job once family mealtime is over, and in this way the task of cleaning the kitchen can be a fun bonding experience, rather than daunting for the host.

Everyone has a role after the meal is finished, which helps the evening carry on rather than everyone going their separate ways. During the tidying process, the conversation continues and everyone works as a team to make sure all of the tasks don’t fall onto one person.

I find doing one big round of cleaning before dessert helps give everyone a break to digest, and also allows everyone to relax to enjoy the sweet treats, coffee, and/or after-dinner drinks without having a messy dining and kitchen area. This way, your company has a clean slate for another round of eating, and all it takes is putting the dessert dishes in the dishwasher when the evening is over.

Starting with bringing dirty dishes to the sink, each person can be given one task. One person can collect dirty dishware, while a couple of people can tidy up the dining space, and everyone else can be given kitchen-specific cleaning tasks. Even getting small children to participate with simple tasks like putting sauces or condiments back in the refrigerator can save time and get everyone involved. Young children or teens can be in charge of transporting dirty dishes and packaging up leftovers, while those who are seasoned kitchen cleaners can handle the cleaning supplies.

Having cleaning resources and multiple sponges, washcloths and rolls of paper towels is helpful when multiple people are in the kitchen cleaning up. In this way, one person can rinse and put dirty dishes in the dishwasher, another person can wash pots and pans, while one person wipes down the table, another person wipes down the countertops, and another person sweeps or mops.

For those of you who like to keep your household as sustainable and natural as possible, you can easily prepare homemade cleaning solutions using a combination of water and white vinegar, or even kombucha! The water and vinegar solution cleans and fights bacteria by inoculating it, whereas the probiotics in kombucha fight bacteria and also temporarily create an environment where harmful bacteria cannot grow.

The fun doesn’t have to stop when it’s cleanup time. You can put on some music, or even make a game out of it for those families that have a competitive edge. No matter who does what during the cleanup process, everyone lends a helping hand, which helps create family unity to ensure the evening is a memorable, bonding experience.

Family Pasta Bake Three Ways

Family Pasta Bake Three Ways

Created by: Carrie Robinson, Frugal Foodie Mama

Whip up a flavorful and cheesy pasta dish that every member of the family can agree on and love, with this impressive and easy-to-make Family Pasta Bake Three Ways. Layers of rigatoni smothered in marinara sauce are sandwiched between chicken Alfredo and a creamy basil cheese layer in this family-pleasing pasta bake.

Ingredients:
  • 16 oz. of rigatoni, cooked al dente
  • 3 cups Private Selection Hearty Traditional Marinara Sauce
  • 1 cup Private Selection Alfredo Rich Cream Sauce
  • 2 cups cooked chicken, chopped
  • 1 cup Kroger Ricotta Cheese
  • ½ cup Private Selection Basil Pesto
  • 1 ⅔ cup shredded mozzarella cheese
Directions:
  1. Preheat your oven to 350°F. Spray a 13”x 9” inch baking pan with cooking spray. Set aside.
  2. Set out 3 medium mixing bowls. In one bowl, toss together 2 cups of the marinara sauce with ⅔ of the cooked rigatoni. In a second bowl, combine the cooked chicken with the Alfredo sauce. In a third bowl, mix together the ricotta cheese, basil pesto and 1 cup of the shredded mozzarella.
  3. Now you’re ready to layer your pasta bake in the prepared baking pan, in this order: Evenly spread half of the marinara/rigatoni mixture in the bottom of the baking dish. Then spread all of the chicken/Alfredo mixture over top. Top with ⅓ cup shredded mozzarella. Spread in the remaining half of the marinara/rigatoni mixture. Top with the pesto/cheese mixture. Finish it off with the remaining cup of marinara sauce and then ⅓ cup shredded mozzarella.
  4. Baked, uncovered, for 35-40 minutes or until heated through and the cheese is bubbly. Allow to rest for 10 minutes before serving. Serve with a salad and fresh-baked Italian bread, if desired. Enjoy!

View Party Plan: Weeknight Wins with National Family Meal Month

Fruit and Veggie Gummy Snacks

Fruit and Veggie Gummy Snacks

Created by: Emily Buys, Clever Housewife

Get your fruit snack fix, but in a much healthier way with these homemade Fruit and Veggie Gummy Snacks. A gummy snack you can feel good about feeding to the kids.

Ingredients:
  • 1½ cups juice (purple carrots, beets and apple) or (carrots, sweet potato, pineapple and nectarine)
  • 6 packets, or 4 Tbsp. unflavored gelatin
  • 3 Tbsp. honey
  • ¼ cup almond coconut milk
Directions:
  1. In a small saucepan, combine juice and gelatin. Whisk over medium-high heat, until lumps are removed and mixture is runny.
  2. Stir in honey and pour into an 8”x8” glass dish. Allow to cool 5-10 minutes.
  3. Slowly pour coconut milk into fruit mixture, until desired color is reached. Stir with a spoon.
  4. Refrigerate 2-3 hours, or until firm. Cut into small squares or shapes.

View Party Plan: Weeknight Wins with National Family Meal Month

Garlic Bruschetta

Garlic Bruschetta

Go meatless tonight with a dinner full of fresh, bright flavors! Your family will savor every moment together over delicious bruschetta and a satisfying pasta meal made with crisp red peppers, herbs, and creamy alfredo.

Ingredients:
  • 1 box Keebler® Town House® Flat Bread Crisps Tomato Basil Mozzarella OR Spinach Artichoke Feta
  • 1 cup diced ripe tomatoes, fresh or canned
  • 2 Tbsp. chopped fresh basil leaves
  • 2 tsp. olive oil
  • 1 tsp. minced garlic
  • Salt and ground black pepper
Directions:
  1. Combine tomatoes, basil, olive oil, garlic, salt and pepper in a small bowl.
  2. Mix thoroughly and place a small amount on top of each cracker.

View Party Plan: Weeknight Wins with National Family Meal Month

Italian Meatballs

Italian Meatballs

Created by: Britni Vigil, Play. Party. Plan.

With fall quickly approaching, everyone is looking for great recipes that can be used both as a quick weeknight meal and as something they can bring as a football party appetizer. Meatballs are perfect because they work for both.

Ingredients:
  • 1 lb. Harris Teeter Rancher ground beef
  • ½ cup Harris Teeter shredded Parmesan cheese
  • ¼ cup Harris Teeter bread crumbs - plain
  • 2 tsp. Harris Teeter garlic powder
  • 1 tsp. Italian seasoning
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • 1 egg
Directions:
  1. Preheat the oven to 400°F.
  2. Combine all the ingredients in a medium bowl.
  3. Mix the ingredients until they are incorporated together, being careful not to overwork the mixture.
  4. Roll a teaspoon-sized amount of the mixture into small balls.
  5. Place the meatballs on a lightly greased baking sheet.
  6. Bake the meatballs for 10 minutes.
  7. Remove from oven and carefully flip the meatballs using a large spoon.
  8. Bake the meatballs for an additional 10 minutes or until meat is baked through.
  9. Serve hot on toothpicks as a party appetizer or make into sliders.

Tip:
If serving as a slider, try adding fresh mozzarella, arugula and tomato sauce.

View Party Plan: Weeknight Wins with National Family Meal Month

Jalapeno Macaroni and Cheese

Jalapeno Macaroni and Cheese

Created by: Laura Franklin, Food Fun Family

Enjoy this exciting and tasty twist on a family-friendly classic during National Family Meal Month!

Ingredients:
  • 16 oz. package of dried elbow macaroni
  • 4 Tbsp. butter
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • ¼ tsp. pepper
  • ½ tsp. dry mustard
  • ¼ cup all-purpose flour
  • 2½ cups milk
  • 1 cup white cheddar cheese, cubed or grated
  • 1 cup Colby Jack cheese, cubed or grated
  • 1-2 jalapeno peppers, stems and seeds removed, and diced
  • 1 can (14.5 oz.) creamed corn
  • ½ cup cheddar cheese
Directions:
  1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  2. Cook macaroni according to package directions; drain and rinse with cool water. Pour cooked macaroni into large casserole dish. Set aside.
  3. Meanwhile, in a medium saucepan melt butter over medium heat. Add salt, pepper, mustard and flour. Cook, stirring constantly, for 2-3 minutes.
  4. Slowly stir in milk, and whisk sauce for 5-7 minutes, until sauce thickens.
  5. Remove pan from heat and stir in 2 cups of cheese, diced jalapeno pepper, and creamed corn. Stir until cheese has melted.
  6. Pour sauce over macaroni and stir. Sprinkle additional cheese on top.
  7. Bake at 350°F, uncovered, for 25-30 minutes.

Tip:
You can adjust the amount of jalapeno depending on your tolerance for spice. One jalapeno will add some good flavor. Two jalapenos will heat up family dinnertime!

View Party Plan: Weeknight Wins with National Family Meal Month

Mediterranean Salad

Mediterranean Salad

Created by: Crystal Owens, A Pumpkin & A Princess

So delicious and easy too. Consider making a little extra for a light, veggie-packed salad that’s perfect for weekday lunches!

Ingredients:
  • 1½ Romaine lettuce heads
  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes, quartered
  • 1 large cucumber
  • 1 small red onion
  • 1 small can sliced olives
  • ½ roasted red bell peppers
  • ½ cup feta cheese
  • Salad dressing
Directions:
  1. Chop lettuce, tomatoes, cucumber and red onion.
  2. In a large salad bowl combine lettuce, tomatoes, cucumber, onion, olives and peppers.
  3. Sprinkle feta cheese on top and refrigerate until ready to serve. Drizzle your favorite salad dressing on top.

View Party Plan: Weeknight Wins with National Family Meal Month

Mini Denver Omelet Breakfast Pizza

Mini Denver Omelet Breakfast Pizza

Created by: Nicole Leggio, Cooking for Keeps

Breakfast for dinner! These super easy Denver omelet-style breakfast pizzas will make you feel like a kid again during National Family Meal Month!

Ingredients:
  • 1 lb. pizza dough
  • 7 eggs
  • ½ cup milk
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • 1 Tbsp. unsalted butter
  • 1 cup shredded mild cheddar cheese
  • ½ cup chopped green peppers
  • ½ cup chopped ham
Directions:
  1. Preheat to 500°F. Place a large pizza stone in the oven and heat for at least 15 minutes.
  2. Split pizza dough into four balls. Roll or stretch out on a heavily floured pizza wheel, into a 4” circle.
  3. In a bowl, whisk eggs, milk and salt. Heat a medium skillet to low heat. Add butter, when butter melts add eggs. Use a spatula to stir the eggs until soft-cooked, about 3-4 minutes. Set aside.
  4. Evenly divide eggs between four pizza crusts. Sprinkle with cheese, green peppers and ham. Use floured pizza wheel to slide pizzas onto stone. Bake until crust is golden brown and cheese is melted, about 12 minutes.

Tip:
If you want to skip the mini pizzas, this can easily be made into a larger pie. Just up the cooking time a bit, and throw on a little bit more cheese.

View Party Plan: Weeknight Wins with National Family Meal Month

One-Pot Beef Stroganoff

One-Pot Beef Stroganoff

Created by: Erin Sellin, Dinners, Dishes, and Desserts

Busy weeknights call for quick and easy dinners. This one-pot beef stroganoff is a quick and easy version of the classic, so you can have it on your busiest night. Plus it’s more budget friendly than the original because you use ground beef to make it come together.

Ingredients:
  • 1 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 package (8 oz.) baby bella mushrooms, thinly sliced
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 1 lb. ground beef
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • ¼ cup flour
  • 4 cups beef stock
  • 1 package (12 oz.) egg noodles
  • ½ cup sour cream
  • Salt and pepper
Directions:
  1. In a large skillet heat olive oil over medium-high heat.
  2. Add mushrooms, and cook for 5 minutes, until light golden brown. Season with salt and pepper. Remove from the pan, and set aside.
  3. Add onions and ground beef to skillet, cook for 5 minutes or until beef is cooked and onions are soft, breaking apart. Stir in garlic and cook for 30 seconds until fragrant. Add flour, and stir until beef is well coated.
  4. Pour in beef stock, egg noodles and mushrooms. Stir and bring to a boil. Cover and reduce heat to low. Cook for 8-10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  5. Once the noodles are cooked and the sauce has thickened slightly, remove from heat and stir in sour cream. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Serve immediately.

View Party Plan: Weeknight Wins with National Family Meal Month

Oven Roasted Turkey Sandwich with Tomato Soup

Oven Roasted Turkey Sandwich with Tomato Soup

Serve up a classic lunchtime pairing that’s also perfect for dinnertime! Wholesome turkey and hearty bread team up with rich tomato soup to bring a homey, cozy meal to your family’s table.

Ingredients for sandwich:
  • 1 Tbsp. fig jam
  • 2 slices Pepperidge Farm® Harvest Blends Seeded Grain Bread, toasted or Pepperidge Farm® Whole Grain 15 Grain Bread
  • 2 slices (about 2 ounces) Simple Truth Oven Roasted Sliced Turkey
  • 1 ounce Brie cheese, sliced
  • ½ small pear, cored and sliced (about 1/3 cup)
  • 1/3 cup baby arugula
Directions:
  1. Spread the jam on 1 bread slice. Layer with the turkey, cheese, pear, arugula and remaining bread slice.
Ingredients for soup:
  • 1 can Campbell’s® Condensed Tomato Soup
  • 1 cup of 2% milk
  • Croutons, for garnish
Directions:
  1. Place soup and milk in a pot.
  2. Stir until thoroughly mixed.
  3. Heat on medium heat for 5 minutes until hot, stirring occasionally.
  4. Pour into bowl and top with croutons.
  5. Serve with the turkey sandwich.

View Party Plan: Weeknight Wins with National Family Meal Month

Penne Alfredo with Roasted Peppers and Parmigiano-Reggiano

Penne Alfredo with Roasted Peppers and Parmigiano-Reggiano

Try this delicious and easy Penne Parmesan Alfredo recipe for dinner tonight. It’s a meal the whole family will love.

Ingredients:
  • 1 box Barilla® Penne
  • 1 jar roasted red peppers, sliced thin
  • 1 jar Barilla® Creamy Alfredo Sauce
  • 1 Tbsp. chopped parsley
  • 1/2 cup Parmigiana-Reggiano cheese, grated
  • Salt and black pepper
Directions:
  1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil and cook the pasta according to the package directions.
  2. Meanwhile, in a large skillet, heat the Alfredo sauce over medium heat.
  3. Add the roasted red peppers and cooked pasta; toss with sauce.
  4. Remove skillet from heat and garnish with parlsey and cheese.
  5. Serve immediately.

View Party Plan: Weeknight Wins with National Family Meal Month

Personalized Placemats That Double as Placecards

Personalized Placemats That Double as Placecards

Created by: Lauren Saylor, A Fabulous Fete

There are easy ways to spruce up your decor besides complicated flower arrangements, even fun projects you can let the kids take over. And this placemat project is a great way to get your whole family in the kitchen working together on something, fitting for National Family Meal Month.

Things You'll Need:
  • 11”x14” poster board
  • Water color paint
Directions:
  1. Purchase a package of 11”x14” poster board and a set of watercolor paint.
  2. Once you have your guest list ready to go and seating chart set, add your guests’ names in watercolor to the bottom of the poster boards.
  3. Add additional touches with the watercolor paint, or keep it as minimal as you’d like (this is where you can let the kids get creative!).
  4. Set your table with these pops of color under a palette of simple white dishes. Add a bit of candlelight and you’re set!

View Party Plan: Weeknight Wins with National Family Meal Month

Poblano Lime Chicken Nachos

Poblano Lime Chicken Nachos

Created by: Nicole Leggio, Cooking for Keeps

Tender, citrusy chicken breasts are layered between crispy chips, smoky poblano peppers, sweet onions and a bevy of healthy veggies. Spicy pepper jack cheese covers each layer, making these guys irresistible!

Ingredients:
  • 2 medium chicken breasts (about ¾ lb.)
  • 2 Tbsp. olive oil
  • ¼ cup fresh lime juice + lime wedges for garnish
  • 2 garlic cloves, grated
  • 2 poblano peppers, roughly sliced
  • ½ medium onion, sliced
  • 7 oz. tortilla chips
  • 1 cup black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 4 oz. can diced green chiles
  • 1 ear of corn, steamed or grilled, kernels removed
  • 8 oz. pepper Jack cheese, shredded
  • 1 cup chopped tomatoes
  • Sour cream (optional)
  • Salsa (optional)
Directions:
  1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  2. In a shallow dish, toss chicken with olive oil, lime juice and garlic cloves. Let marinate for 15 minutes. Once the chicken has marinated, transfer to a small baking sheet. Scatter poblano peppers and sliced onions around chicken, toss together and then lay chicken and veggies flat. Bake until chicken is cooked through and veggies are softened, about 15-18 minutes.
  3. Remove chicken from oven and shred with two forks.
  4. Place 1/3 of the chips on the bottom of the same pan you cooked the chicken and peppers on. Sprinkle with a 1/3 each of the chicken, veggies, black beans, chiles and corn. Cover in shredded cheese. Repeat process two more times.
  5. Pop nachos in the oven until cheese has melted, about 10 minutes. Once the nachos come out, sprinkle with chopped tomatoes, squeeze with lime juice and serve with salsa and sour cream.

Tip:
Try serving with chopped cilantro, tomatoes and sliced jalapeno for additional spice. Sour cream and salsa are optional, but totally recommended to dollop on top. Enjoy!

View Party Plan: Weeknight Wins with National Family Meal Month

Repurposed Tin Can Vase Centerpiece

Repurposed Tin Can Vase Centerpiece

Created by: Laura Franklin, Food Fun Family

Whether you’re preparing for a get-together with friends or simply setting the table for a weeknight family dinner during National Family Meal Month, a colorful centerpiece – especially a repurposed vase made by the kids – will set an inviting atmosphere.

What You'll Need:
  • Empty tin cans, washed and labels removed
  • Washi tape
  • Flowers
Directions:
  1. Parents: Before letting kids handle cans, make sure there are no sharp edges on your can from where the lid was removed. Troublesome spots can be covered with washi tape before giving to kids.
  2. Thoroughly wash out cans and soak in water for 5 minutes to remove label easily. Dry.
  3. Cover the cans with washi tape, leaving at least ½” or more to fold over the top and bottom of the can. Create patterns with multiple coordinating tape colors, alternate colors, or create different types of designs. Let the kids get creative! The only rule is that the outside of the can gets covered completely in washi tape.
  4. Attach a piece of washi tape to the top inside of the can, which helps cover up any folded-over ends of tape to give the vase a more finished look.
  5. Fill your vase about 3/4 full of water and add any wild flowers, garden flowers or store-purchased flowers to finish your centerpiece.

View Party Plan: Weeknight Wins with National Family Meal Month

S’mores Popcorn Mix

S’mores Popcorn Mix

Created by: Laura Franklin, Food Fun Family

During National Family Meal Month, gather the family together for a fun family movie at home – complete with a delicious twist on the traditional bowl of movie popcorn.

Ingredients:
  • 6 cups air popped popcorn
  • 1 Tbsp. butter, melted
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups graham cracker cereal
  • 2 cups mini marshmallows
  • 1 cup chocolate chips
Directions:
  1. Preheat oven to 400°F and cover a baking sheet with aluminum foil. Set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, pour melted butter over popped popcorn and sprinkle with salt. Toss to mix well.
  3. Mix in graham cracker cereal, mini marshmallows and chocolate chips.
  4. Pour popcorn mixture onto the baking sheet and toast for about 5 minutes, or until marshmallows are lightly toasted. Remove from oven and let cool slightly before enjoying.
  5. Store any leftovers in a sealed bag or container at room temperature.

View Party Plan: Weeknight Wins with National Family Meal Month

Savory Bacon Cheddar Waffles

Savory Bacon Cheddar Waffles

Created by: Krissy Allori, Self Proclaimed Foodie

These homemade Savory Bacon Cheddar Waffles with poached eggs are a great way to enjoy breakfast for dinner…perfect for National Family Meal Month!

Ingredients:
  • 1¼ cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup medium grind cornmeal
  • 1 Tbsp. granulated sugar
  • 1 Tbsp. baking powder
  • ½ tsp. baking soda
  • ¼ tsp. salt
  • 1½ cups cheddar cheese, freshly grated
  • ¼ cup fresh chives, minced
  • 16 oz. bacon, cooked and chopped
  • 1¾ cups milk
  • 6 Tbsp. melted butter
  • ½ cup (from 4 whole eggs) egg whites
Directions:
  1. Place flour, cornmeal, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a large mixing bowl and stir to combine. Add shredded cheddar, chopped chives and cooked bacon pieces. Stir to coat.
  2. In a separate bowl, mix the milk and melted butter. Combine with the dry ingredients but do not over mix.
  3. Whisk the egg whites until soft peaks form. Gently fold them into the batter, doing your best not to deflate them. Let batter rest 5 minutes before using. Preheat your waffle iron to medium according to the instructions.
  4. Pour enough batter into the center of the lower grid so that it covers about half the surface area. Allow the batter to spread toward edges for 5 seconds, then close the lid of the waffle iron. Cook until the green indicator light turns on again. Remove the waffle and repeat with the remaining batter. For best results, serve immediately. You may keep waffles warm until ready to serve in a 200°F oven.
  5. Serve with wilted spinach, fresh tomato, poached eggs and hot sauce.

View Party Plan: Weeknight Wins with National Family Meal Month

Shredded Chicken Mini Tacos

Shredded Chicken Mini Tacos

Make your family meal a celebration of authentic flavor! Everyone can customize their own fiesta-ready taco to build a tasty, well rounded taco that’s easy to fill and fun to eat!

Ingredients:
  • Old El Paso® Mini Taco Boats
  • 1 lb. shredded cooked chicken
  • 1 16 oz. jar of Pace® Medium Chunky Salsa
  • Shredded lettuce
  • Shredded cheddar cheese
  • Pace® Medium Picante Sauce or Pace® Mild Picante Sauce
Directions:
  1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  2. Place taco boats on cookie sheet and heat for 10 minutes.
  3. In skillet on top of stove, on medium heat, mix chicken and chunky salsa.
  4. Cook for 10 minutes until thoroughly heated.
  5. Fill each taco with one tablespoon of chicken mixture.
  6. Top with one teaspoon of shredded lettuce and one teaspoon of cheddar cheese.
  7. Top your taco boat with one teaspoon of the medium or mild picante sauce.
  8. Enjoy with your favorite Jarritos®!

View Party Plan: Weeknight Wins with National Family Meal Month

Slow Cooker Chicken Alfredo Soup

Slow Cooker Chicken Alfredo Soup

Created by: Nellie Tracy, Butter With a Side of Bread

This delicious soup is perfect for sitting down and enjoying each other, especially during National Family Meal Month. Enjoy!

Ingredients:
  • 3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 3-4 Tbsp. minced garlic
  • ¼ cup butter
  • 3 tsp. chicken bouillon
  • 1 cup water
  • ½ cup flour
  • 8 oz. bow-tie pasta
  • 4 cups milk
  • 2 cups whipping cream
  • 1 cup mozzarella cheese, shredded
  • ½ cup Parmesan cheese, shredded
Directions:
  1. Place chicken in slow cooker.
  2. In a medium skillet, sauté minced garlic in the butter for about 2-3 minutes over medium heat. Spread bouillon and garlic over the chicken. Add the 1 cup of water, cover and cook on high for 2-3 hours or low for 5-6 hours.
  3. Once chicken is cooked, cut into bite-sized pieces. Sprinkle flour over the chicken and stir well.
  4. Cook bow-tie pasta according to package directions and drain. Add the pasta, milk, whipping cream and cheeses to the chicken and stir until combined.
  5. Cook for 30 more minutes on high or 60 minutes on low before serving.

View Party Plan: Weeknight Wins with National Family Meal Month

Spinach and Artichoke Lasagna Rolls

Spinach and Artichoke Lasagna Rolls

Created by: Britni Vigil, Play. Party. Plan.

These spinach and artichoke lasagna rolls combine two popular comfort foods – spinach and artichoke dip and lasagna – in one quick and easy dish. It’s a simple dinner you can make in under an hour that is sure to be a new family favorite!

Ingredients:
  • 1 cup parmesan cheese
  • 12 oz. frozen spinach, thawed and drained
  • 1 can artichoke hearts
  • ¼ tsp. salt
  • ⅛ tsp. ground nutmeg
  • 1 package (8 oz.) cream cheese, softened
  • 2 tsp. unsalted butter
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 lb. white mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 tsp. ground thyme
  • ¾ cup vegetable broth
  • ½ cup heavy cream
  • 2 Tbsp. all-purpose flour
  • 12 lasagna Noodles, cooked
Directions for the lasagna rolls:
  1. Preheat oven to 450° F.
  2. Cook lasagna noodles according to package.
  3. While lasagna noodles are cooking, make your sauce and filling (recipes below).
  4. Once noodles are cooked, lay each individual noodle out flat on a large baking sheet lined with parchment paper or sprayed with non-stick spray.
  5. Place ½ tablespoon of filling on one side of each lasagna noodle and spread out across the lasagna noodle using a butter knife or flat spatula.
  6. Start at one side of the noodle and roll into a tight roll. Place the roll on top of the sauce in the 9”x13” baking dish.
  7. Repeat with all 12 lasagna rolls then cover rolls with remaining half of the sauce.
  8. Top sauce with remaining ½ cup grated Parmesan cheese and cover with foil.
  9. Bake for 30 minutes covered in foil then remove from foil and bake for another 10-15 minutes or until sauce is bubbly and slightly browned.
Directions for the sauce:
  1. Heat large saucepan on medium-high heat.
  2. Add butter and garlic and stir around for 30 seconds or until butter melts.
  3. Add mushrooms to garlic butter mixture. Sprinkle thyme over mushrooms and stir for 5-6 minutes or until mushrooms are lightly browned.
  4. Add salt and pepper to taste.
  5. Add flour over mushroom mixture and stir briefly then add vegetable broth and cream then stir until well combined.
  6. Bring to a boil then decrease heat to low and simmer uncovered for five minutes or until sauce thickens.
  7. Pour half the sauce in a 9”x13” baking dish that has been sprayed with non-stick baking spray.
Directions for the filling:
  1. Combine spinach, ½ cup grated Parmesan cheese, artichoke hearts, salt, nutmeg and cream cheese in food processor and pulse until all ingredients are mixed into a thick filling

View Party Plan: Weeknight Wins with National Family Meal Month

Swirl Baked French Toast

Swirl Baked French Toast

Switch things up and watch them smile! Have the most important meal of the day at the end of the day—packed with delicious breakfast-time favorites and finished with rich maple syrup.

Ingredients:
  • 1 loaf (16 ounces) Pepperidge Farm® Cinnamon Swirl Bread, cut into cubes
  • ¾ cup fresh blueberries
  • 6 eggs
  • 3 cups half-and-half or milk
  • 2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 Tbsp. cinnamon sugar or confectioners’ sugar
  • 2 Tbsp. whipped butter
  • ½ cup pure maple syrup
Directions:
  1. Place the bread cubes and blueberries into a lightly greased 3-quart shallow baking dish. Beat the eggs, half-and-half and vanilla extract in a medium bowl with a fork or whisk. Pour the egg mixture over the bread cubes. Stir and press the bread cubes into the egg mixture to coat. Refrigerate for 1 hour or overnight.
  2. Bake at 350°F for 45 minutes or until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean. Sprinkle with the cinnamon sugar. Serve with the butter and syrup.

View Party Plan: Weeknight Wins with National Family Meal Month

Teaching Kids How to Set the Table

Teaching Kids How to Set the Table

Created by: Emily Buys, Clever Housewife

My mom taught me how to set the table when I was young, and now as an adult, I still like to make sure the silverware is on the right side of the plate! Family mealtime is so important, and I believe the more nights per week when we can sit down and eat a meal together, the better.

September is National Family Meal Month, so before getting to the delicious food and excellent conversation, teach the kids how to set the table properly with a printable color-by-letter placemat.

 

While mom or dad are cooking dinner, the kids can color the table setting placemat, and get familiar with the location of all the dishes. When it’s time to set the table, the kids can use the placemat as a guide for where to place everything! To reuse over and over again, I’d recommend expanding the printable to a proper placemat size of 12”x18” and laminating it.

The kids will be occupied with coloring while dinner is being made, and the table will be set by the time dinner is ready to eat…a win-win for everyone!

Turkey & Brie Puff Pastry Pockets

Turkey & Brie Puff Pastry Pockets

Created by: Lena's Kitchen

Lately I have been trying to keep our meals during the week quick and simple for my family. This simple pop tart recipe is easy to make and fun to involve kids too. I always keep a box or two of frozen puff pastry in my freezer for last minute meal ideas like this pop tart recipe. This is also a great appetizer idea when last minute guests come to visit or you need to go to a party and bring something tasty with you.

I love working with Kroger and Fred Meyer and coming up with family friendly recipes like this one, using cooked frozen turkey and all the other ingredients that can be found in their stores. Thank you for sponsoring this post. The first thing that came to mind when I thought of making something different using turkey were puff pastry pockets, savory ones to be exact. This is so easy and fool proof to make, that I bet your kids will have fun making them with you too. I also thought this would be perfect for leftovers for any meat or veggies as a substitute, especially during the holidays when turkey is abundant.

I hope you give this recipe a try and enjoy it. Get creative with your fillings if the ones I’m using are not your favorite, but I promise you will love this combination. They are great on their own for breakfast, lunch or dinner. Add more mustard or any other favorite sauce to them to add a bit more spice if you prefer it like me. Served with a side salad or soup.

Ingredients:
  • 1 box of frozen puff pastry, thawed
  • 1 package of cooked frozen turkey breast (your brand of choice), thawed
  • grey poupon mustard
  • triple cream Brie cheese
  • chives, chopped
  • 1 egg for egg wash
  • flour for dusting your work surface
Directions:
  1. Take your frozen puff pastry out of the package and let it thaw out on a cutting board with a dusting of flour. Also thaw out your turkey.
  2. Preheat oven to 400 F.
  3. Dust the surface you are working on with a bit of flour and open up the pastry once it’s thawed out so it creates three parts (which will be created with the folds in the dough). Roll it our with a rolling pin a bit on each side to make the dough area larger.
  4. Cut the dough in thirds on the lines that were created by the folds, and then cut in half again across so you now have 6 rectangles.
  5. Chop your turkey into small pieces, then chop the chives and slice the brie into 1/4 inch thick slices.
  6. Using a small spoon, spread the grey poupon mustard on the bottom rectangles, leaving about 1/2 inch around each rectangle so there is space to close the pop tart.
  7. Add a thin layer of the chopped chives, then a layer of chopped turkey and a slice or two of cheese, depending on the slices of cheese you make.
  8. Separate your egg into two small bowls, one for egg yolk and one for egg whites, add a tiny bit of water and whisk with a fork in both.
  9. Using your finger add the egg white and water mixture to the edges around each pop tart.
  10. Roll out the top three rectangle pieces to make them a bit larger than the bottom, place them on top of the filled bottom pieces and with your fingers press all the way around to seal them, using a fork seal the edges a bit more, see pictured.
  11. Use a pastry brush and brush on the egg yolk on top of each pop tart.
  12. Repeat for the other sheet of pastry to make 6 pop tarts altogether.
  13. Place these on your baking sheet with parchment paper, unless your baking sheets are non-stick like mine.
  14. Bake for 15 minutes in the middle rack. Place on a cooling rack and let them cool for about 5 minutes, until ready to eat.

View Party Plan: Weeknight Wins with National Family Meal Month

Walking Taco Pizza

Walking Taco Pizza

Created by: Carrie Robinson, Frugal Foodie Mama

Turn that usual family pizza night into a tasty fiesta with this easy to make Walking Taco Pizza.

Ingredients:
  • 1 lb. lean ground beef
  • 1 packet (1.5 oz.) Kroger Taco Seasoning Mild
  • 1 can (10 oz.) Kroger Diced Tomatoes & Green Chiles
  • 1 can (15.5 oz.) Kroger Pinto Beans, drained & rinsed
  • 1 (12 oz.) Kroger Original Pizza Crust
  • 1 cup shredded colby jack or cheddar cheese
  • 1 cup Kroger Corn Chips, coarsely crushed
Directions:
  1. 1. Spray a large skillet with cooking spray and heat over medium-high heat. Once heated, add in the ground beef and brown for 6-8 minutes. Add in the taco seasoning packet, diced tomatoes and green chiles, and pinto beans. Turn the heat to medium-low and simmer for an additional 12-15 minutes.
  2. While the beef/bean mixture is simmering, preheat the oven to 450°F. Lightly brush the pizza crust with olive oil and place on a baking pan.
  3. Evenly top the crust with the beef/bean mixture. Top with the shredded cheese. Bake for 10-12 minutes until the cheese is melted and bubbly and the crust is golden brown.
  4. Top with the crushed corn chips. Serve alongside your favorite taco toppings like sour cream, salsa, lettuce, etc., if desired. Serve immediately and enjoy! Refrigerate any leftovers.

View Party Plan: Weeknight Wins with National Family Meal Month

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