If there has been one positive aspect of this COVID pandemic, it’s that we are now spending more time at home with our families. Much of that time is being spent in the kitchen cooking and serving meals for the people we love most.
After five months of quarantining—20 weeks of exhausting your tried-and-tested favorite recipes and scouring cookbooks and Pinterest for new dinner inspiration—it’s likely time to try some new recipes the entire family can help prepare. Here are three dinner ideas perfect for your next family night.
Try a Twist on a Favorite with Spaghetti-Stuffed Garlic Bread
Pasta is always a favorite for family dinner. It’s a quick, hearty meal with loads of options sure to please the entire family. Try this new twist on your favorite spaghetti and garlic bread dinner from Southern Discourse:
- 1 loaf of Italian bread
- 1 cube softened butter and garlic powder to taste
- 1 pound ground beef
- 1 pound ground sausage
- 1 16-ounce can tomato sauce
- 1 6-ounce can tomato paste
- 1 medium onion, diced
- 7 ounces uncooked spaghetti
- ½ cup Parmesan cheese
- ⅔ cup mozzarella cheese
- 1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon minced garlic
- ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. In a large saucepan, boil spaghetti. While it’s cooking, brown the beef and sausage in a large skillet, adding in the onion while browning. Once cooked, drain the fat and add in tomato sauce, paste, and all the seasonings. Mix well and simmer for five to eight minutes. Add pasta and mix again. Cut bread loaf in half lengthwise and carve out the middle of each half. Brush the hollows and sides of the bread with garlic butter. Toast in the oven. Once toasted, fill each half of the bread with spaghetti. Top with both cheeses. Bake at 375 degrees for 15 to 20 minutes, or until the cheese is melted.
Cook a Classic Tuna Casserole
Need a great recipe but don’t want to head to the store? Try the trending shelf-cooking method for your family dinner, used by Fun, Cheap or Free blogger Jordan Page to economically feed her family of 10. Try this classic casserole, for example:
- 4 ounces macaroni or any pasta you like
- 1 can cream of celery soup
- 1/3 cup milk
- 1/4 cup mayonnaise
- 1/2 teaspoon dry mustard
- 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
- 1 7-ounce can of tuna
- 1/4 cup breadcrumbs
- 1 tablespoon butter melted
- 1/2 teaspoon paprika
While boiling the macaroni, blend the soup, milk, mayonnaise, and mustard together in a large bowl. Stir in cheese and tuna. Fold in the cooked macaroni and pour into a greased casserole dish. Combine breadcrumbs, paprika, and melted butter together and sprinkle on top of the tuna mixture. Bake uncovered at 350 degrees for 45 to 50 minutes.
Don’t Forget Dessert. Maybe Peach Cobbler Dump Cake?
The best part of a family dinner is a great dessert, but instead of just serving up a bowl of ice cream, whip up a simple, delicious dump cake perfect with either fresh, frozen, or canned fruit, like this peachy cake from Flavor Mosaic:
2 (15-ounce) cans sliced peaches in heavy syrup
1 (15.25-ounce) box vanilla cake mix
1/2 cup butter, sliced into 24 very thin slices
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Dump the canned peaches into a greased 9-by-13 baking dish. Sprinkle the entire contents of the cake mix evenly over the peaches. Place very thin slices of butter on top of the mix to cover all of the cake, leaving no open areas. If you need more butter, add more slices. Bake at 350 degrees for 40 to 45 minutes. Let cool slightly, then top with ice cream.
While we continue to self-isolate in order to keep our families safe and healthy, take some time to fully enjoy your family mealtime at home by adding these three recipes to your collection.