These nourishing quick and easy family dinner recipes take 30 minutes or less to cook and make 4 servings or more. Sitting down to a family dinner is a great way to build lasting memories!
Growing up, my family ate dinner together. Every single night.
My mom thought it was important that we did so. And I’m glad we did because not only do I think it brought us together (literally and figuratively), but now as an adult, some of my favorite childhood memories are of our family dinners.
Like laughing so hard with my sister that we both spit out our milk and got sent to our room. Or stealthfully sneaking our mushy, watery green beans into our napkins so we could head to the bathroom after leaving the dinner table to flush them.
Even though we’re all so busy, I still think family dinners are important. And I also think it’s important to make family dinners doable time-wise so that you’re not stressed about them.
Here are 35 fast family dinner recipes. Each of these recipes serves 4 or more people (or makes 2 servings and is very easy to double), and comes together in 30 minutes or less. That’s less time than it takes to order takeout, and cooking at home is much more budget-friendly! Cheers to sitting down as a family and enjoying a meal together.
Bookmark this post to make your life easier so you can refer back to it for inspiration!
Easy Family Dinners Everyone Will Love
There’s something here for you whether your family likes international flavors or takes a more traditional American approach to mealtime.
If your family is low carb, keto, or gluten free, there are several options given here as well. (And there are also a few paleo dinner recipes!)
And even though all of these dinner recipes take less than 30 minutes to make, there are several that actually only take 15 minutes.
Check out this collection of family 30 minute dinners and find a few new things to try!
Above: Healthy Orange Chicken
Chicken Dinner Ideas
Chicken for dinner is always a good idea! It’s versatile, loved by kids and adults, and can be prepared quickly.
Here are a few easy chicken dinner ideas to freshen up your menu. There are global flavors like Thai Chicken Panang Curry and Creamy Tuscan Chicken Orzo. Low carb ideas, such as Marry Me Chicken and Chicken Caprese Salad. And there are sure-fire family favorites like Orange Chicken and Chicken Enchilada Skillet.
Dive in and discover a few new chicken dinner ideas!
Above: Leftover Turkey Stroganoff
Easy Turkey Meals
Turkey dinner doesn’t have to be reserved for just Thanksgiving! From quesadillas, to pasta recipes, to tacos, these recipes will help you switch up your turkey routine.
Above: Low Carb Buffalo Chicken Meatballs from Food Faith Fitness
Buffalo Chicken Dinner Recipes
We all know Buffalo chicken goes well beyond just wings! If you like the classic flavor combo of hot sauce + butter, you are going to love these dinner ideas. The Buffalo Chicken Burgers in this list are so good, they’re part of our regular meal rotation at my house!
Above: Low Carb Egg Roll in a Bowl (aka Keto Crack Slaw)
Beef Dinner Recipes
Beef, it’s what’s for dinner! No matter what your budget is or how many mouths you have to feed, beef is a good choice for dinner.
Ground beef is affordable and very versatile. You can use it to make everything from Low Carb Egg Roll in a Bowl (aka Crack Slaw), to Ground Beef Stroganoff, to Ground Beef Bolognese.
And the beauty of something like a steak dinner is that you can easily adjust the recipe up or down based on how many people you’re serving. Also, steak is one of those meals that you can dress up for date night or dress down for a family cookout!
Above: Buffalo Beef on Weck
Beef Sandwich Recipes
Continuing on with a few more beef recipes, these sandwiches are quick and easy meal options that will have everyone asking you to make them again! Also, any of thee beef sandwich recipes can be made into appetizers by serving them on sliders instead of full-size buns.
Above: Pan Seared Cod with Tomato Garlic Sauce
Fish Dinner Ideas
Most of us are trying to eat more fish, especially salmon for its health benefits. If you want a few new fish dinner ideas, give any of these a try!
This Air Fryer Salmon is our favorite way to eat salmon at my house, and you can easily make it in the oven if you don’t have an air fryer. Serve it with broccoli and quinoa or rice for a restaurant-quality spa-like meal!
The Pan Seared Cod with Tomato Garlic Sauce on this list is another one I make regularly. Sometimes I’ll serve it with rice or crusty bread, and other times I’ll serve it as-is for a delicious low-carb meal.
There are plenty of delicious choices on this list if you want to add more fish to your diet!
Above: One Pan Italian Sausage Orzo from Run Lift & Eat
Sausage Dinner Recipes
One of the things I love about sausage is that it’s well-seasoned without having to add anything to it! It’s definitely a huge time-saver. Another great thing about sausage is that there are multiple types: pork sausage, turkey sausage, hot Italian sausage, sweet breakfast sausage, etc. There’s something for everyone!
Above: Creamy Mushroom Leek Pasta from NeighborFood
Vegetarian Dinner Recipes
You don’t have to be a vegetarian to appreciate a delicious vegetarian meal every so often! Whether you participate in Meatless Mondays, are sticking to a grocery budget, or just enjoy a meat-free dinner once in a while, this list will have something you love.
Above: Instant Pot Creamy Tortellini Soup with Sausage and Kale
Quick and Easy Soup Recipes
A lot of soups are super quick and easy to make. Here are just a few ideas to get you inspired. If you like, pair them with a grilled cheese for a classic cold-weather comfort food combination!
Easy Side Dish Ideas to Pair with These Family Dinner Recipes
A lot of these family dinner recipes are a full meal. But there are a few that you might want to whip up a side dish for, so here are a few side dish ideas to inspire you.
In keeping with our 30-minutes-or-less dinner theme, all these side dishes also whip up in the same amount of time!
- Cornbread Muffins – these are a great addition to just about any meal
- Paleo Flatbread – it’s gluten free, and like a thick, soft tortilla
- Grilled Peppers – if you’re firing up the grill anyway, these are great to throw on as a side dish
- Creamy Cauliflower Potato Salad – this is a low carb take on regular potato salad; same flavor profile, but much fewer carbs and pairs well with any number of things
- Apple Walnut Rainbow Swiss Chard Salad – full of crunch, this is the perfect healthy side salad
- Creamy Brussels Sprouts Salad – only 4 ingredients and absolutely delicious
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This post was first published on An Edible Mosaic on March 11, 2015. I updated it with more information on October 3, 2022.
Wow, this is amazing! I won’t need to buy another cookbook for a very long time!