Quick and Easy Dinners for a Family

Everyone knows in my house we have pizza on Friday, quick and easy dinners are all we have time the bandwidth for at the end of the week. But not everyone is a pizza lover and someone asked during Poll the People for easy Friday dinners the aren’t pizza. I’m offended, but of course the community showed up and has THE BEST answers.

If you are new here on Sunday’s in my stories we play a game called Poll the People. This is where you put any question you want in the question box and then I ask the community. In the end we have a community of women helping each other and sharing all of our best tips.

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Charcuterie Board/ Snack Boards

All the snacky foods your kids love, no fussing about not liking something because there is plenty to choose from, and nothing needs to be cooked, just cut and place on tray

Sheet Pan Nachos

Absolutely YES! Cover the pan in chips and load those suckers in leftover meat, beans, and shredded cheese (if you use queso we can’t eat together but I will still be your friend). Bake for 10 minutes at 350 until the cheese melts. Sprinkle with guac, salsa, and sour cream! Delicious.


Boil noodles and dump a jar of sauce. I know good quality Italian is WAY more complex than that, but quick & dirty also has its place

Carne Asada Quesadillas

Honestly any type of quesadilla is perfect. A friend taught me to make them in the oven and that was a GAME CHANGER. They come out perfect (no burnt side), I can make 6 at a time, and I don’t have to babysit it.

Breakfast for Dinner

Pancakes, waffles, bacon, eggs, biscuits, and cereal all taste better after 5pm, it is science

Big Mac Crunch Wrap

This one is not one I’m familiar with, but it sounds fantastic. I am linking a recipe that looks worth a try. I’d make it easier and skip the homemade sauce and use Trader Joe’s Burger Sauce instead.


We do leftovers every Wednesday night and it started because I needed a break. BUT it also allows for less food waste and better for our budgets because we have one less meal to buy and aren’t throwing expensive groceries away. I put it on a tray to look like a charcuterie board and so that it feels less leftover-y.

Rice Bowls

Rice, roasted veggies, and meat. You can switch out seasoning and sauces to change the flavor profile from Mexican, to Chinese, or Greek.

Chinese Bowls

Trader Joe’s Orange Chicken, Mandrin BBQ Chicken and their frozen rice (fried or white) is a budget Panda Bowl

Egg Roll in a Bowl

One of my favorite easy dinners. It is in my Dinner & Treats Playbook. Ground sausage with coleslaw mix. Cook with soy sauce, ginger, and garlic. And just let it cook till it is all wilted. Top it with yum yum sauce. SO GOOD!


Tacos are always a win at our house. You can change the meat and toppings. Every builds their own so no fights over ingredients. You can even make walking tacos which is like tacos and nachos had a baby, all the taco fillings inside a bag of chips.

Chicken Wraps

Chicken in the air fryer + tortilla + lettuce + sauce. You can make this honey mustard, Caesar, buffalo, bbq. The flavors are endless, but this will be AMAZING!

Alfredo with Chicken and Broccoli:

TRUST ME! Trader Joes Frozen Fettuccine Alfredo + Just Barre Chicken Nuggets + steamed broccoli

Burgers & Hot Dogs

Best part about this for me is I will be handing it all off to Eric. I will simply toast some bun and grab the condiments from the fridge. Serve with chips and the fruit you already cut and prepped this week.


I’m typing this in May so it feels wrong, but chili in October ABSOLUTELY. Another dump in the crock pot and go situation. My crock pot chili recipe is in my Dinner & Treat Night Playbook and I dump the chicken in frozen, add all the canned goods, and set it for the day. By dinner time it is perfection.

DIY KFC Popcorn Chicken Bowls

I don’t eat KFC unless we are on the boat, but I think these are basically mashed potatoes (buy Bob Evans or something), popcorn chicken (Just Barre in the air fryer), with gravy and canned corn. So easy.

Appetizer Dinner

Let each person in the family pick an appetizer from the freezer section. Bake them according to the package and serve family style.

Fish Sticks and French Fries

My favorite appliance is my air fryer. I use it more than anything else and this dinner is an air fryer dinner. You dump the food, set, and forget. Easy dinner at it’s finest.

Sam’s Club or Costco Meals

A rotisserie chicken, the taco tray, and the chow mein. 100% yes.

Sub Sandwiches

My family is not a sandwich family, but Eric’s mom used to this all the time. She would even buy the huge premade ones from the deli section.

Crock Pot Pulled Pork Sandwiches

Pork + BBQ Sauce + Seasoning in the crock pot all day. Pull it out, place on a bun & top it with coleslaw and more BBQ sauce. YUM

Grocery Store Sushi

Kroger & Publix sell some good sushi. Eric wanted to stick his nose up at it, but then I brought home a $21 tray with 3 rolls and he was impressed.

I am so grateful for this community and your recommendations. I learn so much from you and I have found some of the best products because of you. I truly love you.

Join the fun on Sundays on my Instagram stories to play Poll the People.

Let me know what you make for a quick and easy dinner on Friday’s when you are just done for the week.

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by emily lawson