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60 Dinner Recipes That’ll Make You Feel Like a Kid Again

Kids of all ages will love these feel-good dinners, including muffin tin pizzas, sloppy joes, cheesy noodles and more.

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Cheddar Spirals

Our kids always loved this cheesy pasta and would sample a spoonful right from the slow cooker when they walked by. Adding cocktail sausages, sliced Polish sausage or cubed ham makes it a hearty dinner. —Heidi Ferkovich, Park Falls, Wisconsin
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Mama Mia Meatball Taquitos

We love lasagna, but it takes too long on weeknights. My solution: meatball taquitos. My kids get the flavors they want, and I get a meal on the table in a hurry. —Lauren Wyler, Dripping Springs, Texas
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Parmesan Chicken Nuggets

My 3-year-old went through a chicken-nuggets-and-french-fries-only stage, so I made these golden nuggets for him. Even the grown-ups like them! —Amanda Livesay, Mobile, Alabama
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Zucchini Pizza Casserole

My husband has a hearty appetite, our two kids never tire of pizza and I grow lots of zucchini, so this tasty tomato casserole is absolutely tops with us throughout the entire year. Once you've tried the recipe, you may even decide to grow more zucchini in your own garden next summer! —Lynn Bernstetter, White Bear Lake, Minnesota
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Crispy Fried Chicken

If you've wanted to learn how to make crispy fried chicken, this is the recipe for you. Always a picnic favorite, this deep fried chicken recipe is delicious either hot or cold. Kids call it my Kentucky Fried Chicken! —Jeanne Schnitzler, Lima, Montana
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Skillet Mac & Cheese

This creamy mac and cheese is so simple it’s almost too easy! Kids always go for the rich cheese flavor, but I’ve never met an adult who didn’t love it just as much. —Ann Bowers, Rockport, Texas
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Bacon Cheeseburger Pasta

I try to make foods that are not only kid friendly, but are also easy to reheat since my husband works long hours and often eats later than our children. If you like, use reduced-fat cheese and ground turkey for a lighter version. —Melissa Stevens, Elk River, Minnesota
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Pizza Pasta Casserole

Kids will line up for this zippy pizza-flavored dish. The recipe makes two casseroles, so you can serve one to your family right away and keep the other in the freezer for another night. —Nancy Scarlett, Graham, North Carolina
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Cheeseburger Cups

A terrific recipe for moms with young kids and busy lives, this simple, inexpensive dish is made with handy ingredients and takes just a short time. Best of all, kids will go absolutely crazy for these darling dinner bites! —Jeri Millhouse, Ashland, Ohio
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Savory Spaghetti Sauce

This fresh-tasting spaghetti sauce is a real crowd-pleaser. I rely on this flavorful recipe often. It tastes especially good in the summer made with fresh garden herbs. —Anne Heinonen, Howell, Michigan
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One-Skillet Lasagna

This is hands-down one of the best skillet lasagna recipes our testing panel has ever tasted. And with classic flavors and cheesy layers, it’s definitely kid-friendly. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen
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Corn Dog Casserole

Reminiscent of traditional corn dogs, this fun main dish really hits the spot on fall days. It's perfect for the football parties my husband and I often host. It tastes especially good right from the oven. -Marcy Suzanne Olipane, Belleville, Illinois
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Taco Stuffed Pasta Shells

Here's a kid-friendly dish so flavorful and fun, nobody is likely to guess that it's also lower in fat. It's a great family supper for busy weeknights! —Anne Thomsen, Westchester, Ohio
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Sausage Wonton Stars

These fancy-looking appetizers are ideal when entertaining large groups. The cute crunchy cups are stuffed with a cheesy pork sausage filling that kids of all ages enjoy. We keep a few in the freezer so we can easily reheat them for late-night snacking. —Mary Thomas North Lewisburg, Ohio
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Chili Coney Dogs

From the youngest kids to the oldest adults, everyone in our family loves these hot dogs. Inspired by the classic Coney dog, they’re so easy to throw together in the morning or even the night before. —Michele Harris, Vicksburg, Michigan
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Cheeseburger and Fries Casserole

Kids love this casserole because it combines two of their favorite fast foods. And I like the fact that I can whip it up with just four ingredients. —Karen Owen, Rising Sun, Indiana
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Colorful Spiral Pasta Salad

Tackle gatherings with a bright pasta salad. This tricolor toss-up with broccoli, tomatoes, olives and a hardworking dressing is one of the easiest cold pasta salad recipes you could take. —Amanda Cable, Boxford, Massachusetts
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Farmhouse Barbecue Muffins

Cheddar cheese, fluffy biscuits and BBQ sauce combine to make these hearty muffins. Try them with ground turkey or other shredded cheeses to vary the flavor. —Karen Kenney, Harvard, Illinois
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Caprese Salad Kabobs

Trade in the usual veggie platter for these fun kabobs. In addition to preparing these for get-togethers, I often make these as snacks for my family. And because assembly is so easy, the kids often ask to help. —Christine Mitchell, Glendora, California
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Pizza Chicken Roll-Ups

I love the chicken roll-ups my mom made for special occasions, filled with spinach and cream cheese. My own kids wouldn't eat those, so I came up with a pizza-flavored variety the whole family enjoys. —Tanja Penquite, Oregon, Ohio
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Spanish Noodles & Ground Beef

Bacon adds crunch to this comforting stovetop supper my mom used to make when I was a kid. Now I prepare it for my own family. —Kelli Jones, Perris, California
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Seasoned Chicken Strips

These strips are designed for kids, but tasty enough for company. The tender strips are moist and juicy and would also be great on a salad. —Becky Oliver, Fairplay, Colorado
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Chili Mac Casserole

This cheesy casserole uses several of my family's favorite ingredients, including macaroni, kidney beans, tomatoes and cheese. Just add a leafy salad for a complete meal. —Marlene Wilson, Rolla, North Dakota
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Pizza Sloppy Joes

If you’re tired of same old sloppy joes, here’s a tasty twist! These messy, kid-friendly sandwiches have a definite pizza flavor that families will love, but be sure to serve them with a fork! Connie Pettit - Logan, OH
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BBQ Hot Dog & Potato Packs

For these nifty foil packs, small hands make quick work of topping potato wedges with a hot dog, onions and cheese. — Kelly Westphal, Wind Lake, Wisconsin
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Broccoli-Pasta Side Dish

I love to fix new recipes for my husband, Robert, and our children. With garlic and cheese, this broccoli pasta is a tasty way to get kids to eat their veggies. —Judi Lacourse, Mesa, Arizona
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Mozzarella Beef Roll-Ups

The kids will love these pepperoni and beef wraps. They're easy to assemble because each tortilla is simply wrapped around a portion of hearty meat filling with a piece of string cheese. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen
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Baked Parmesan Broccoli

I began making this creamy side dish years ago as a way to get my kids to eat broccoli. They've since grown up, but still request this satisfying dish. It's truly a family favorite. —Barbara Uhl, Wesley Chapel, Florida
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Creamy Cavatappi & Cheese

Dive fork-first into oodles of noodles baked to bubbly perfection and coated with a to-die-for sharp cheddar cheese sauce in this cavatappi, a grown-up version of mac and cheese. Hot sauce lends mild heat that’s delectable with the smoky topping. —Barbara Colucci, Rockledge, Florida
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Mini Pizza Cups

Served hot or cold, these little pizzas are wonderful. Their small size makes them ideal for an after-school snack or a kid-friendly party. Plus, they’re so easy to make that little ones can help you in the kitchen! —Jane Jones, Cedar, Minnesota
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Slow-Cooked Smokies

I like to include these little smokies smothered in barbecue sauce on all my appetizer buffets since they're popular with both children and adults. —Sundra Hauck, Bogalusa, Louisiana
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Bandito Chili Dogs

These deluxe chili dogs are a surefire hit at family functions and tailgates. Adults and children alike love the cheesy chili sauce, and the toppings are fun! —Marion Lowery, Medford, Oregon
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Cheese Chicken Soup

Kids won’t think twice about eating their vegetables after tasting this cheesy soup. —LaVonne Lundgren, Sioux City, Iowa
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Bacon Cheeseburger Tater Tot Bake

This bacon cheeseburger tater tot casserole is the perfect dish to bribe your kids; homework, chores, piano practice—consider them done! —Deanna Zewen, Union Grove, Wisconsin
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Mini Mac & Cheese Bites

Young relatives were coming for a Christmas party, so I wanted something fun for them to eat. Instead, the adults devoured my mini mac and cheese. —Kate Mainiero, Elizaville, New York
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Pizza Macaroni & Cheese

My grandma made this for us once when she came to visit and I never forgot just how good it was. Since my kids love anything with pepperoni and cheese, I thought they'd enjoy it just as much as I did. —Juli Meyers, Hinesville, Georgia
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Beefy Swiss Bundles

Kids and adults alike are sure to devour these comforting meaty pockets. Boasting creamy mashed potatoes, gooey cheese and flavorful seasonings, they offer a lot to love. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen
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Easy Meatball Stroganoff

This recipe has fed not only my own family, but many neighborhood kids! They come running when I make this supper. It's one of those things you throw together after work on a busy day because you know it works. —Julie May, Hattiesburg, Mississippi
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Sloppy Joe Pizza

If your kids like sloppy joes, they'll love this pizza. I came up with the six-ingredient recipe that's easy to assemble. —Brenda Rohlman, Kingman, Kansas
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Lunch Box Pizzas

When you have these fun-to-make mini pizzas, it's no challenge finding lunch fare that the kids enjoy. Plus they pack nicely in sandwich bags and travel well, so there's no mess. —Rhonda Cliett, Belton, Texas
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Three-Cheese Meatball Mostaccioli

When my husband travels for work, I make a special dinner for my kids to keep their minds off missing Daddy. This tasty mostaccioli is meatball magic. —Jennifer Gilbert, Brighton, Michigan
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Cheddar Creamed Corn

I took this super easy recipe to a school potluck once and it was gone in no time. I’ve been asked to bring it to every function since. —Jessica Maxwell, Englewood, New Jersey
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Easy Cheddar Chicken Potpie

My kids love chicken potpie, and I really like that this is so quick and easy to put together with frozen veggies and store-bought gravy. To make it even simpler, my friend and I decided to top it with a biscuit crust instead of homemade pastry. It’s delicious! —Linda Drees, Palestine, Texas
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Makeover Traditional Lasagna

I’ve never been quick to pass along my special recipes, but this one is so good that it’s become our family’s Christmas Eve tradition! —Michelle Behan, Littleton, Colorado
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Grandmother's Toad in a Hole

I have fond memories of my grandmother’s Yorkshire pudding wrapped around sausages, a puffy dish my kids called “the boat.” Slather it with butter and maple syrup. —Susan Kieboam, Streetsboro, Ohio
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Dogs in a Sweater

For a new twist on an old favorite, try these skewered hot dogs wrapped with breadstick dough and baked. They're fun to dip in ketchup, mustard or ranch dressing. The dressed-up dog recipe comes kid-tested from the National Hot Dog and Sausage Council. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen
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Party Time Mini Cheeseburgers

Kids and adults alike will love the taste of these moist and mouthwatering mini burgers. Juiced up with pickle relish and topped with cheese slices, these "sliders" will disappear in no time flat! Be sure to make plenty. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen
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Meatball Flatbread

As amazing as this flatbread is, you would never guess how unbelievably easy it is to make. And hiding veggies in the sauce is a clever trick, especially if you have kids. For a crunchy crust, bake the naan in the oven until slightly crispy on top before adding the tomato sauce. —Kimberly Berg, North Street, Michigan
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Easy Taco Cups

These zesty little cups rank high on my list of favorites because they combine three things I look for in a recipe: fast, easy and delicious! They make a simply fantastic finger food for parties, and my guests have fun selecting their desired toppings. —Ashley Jarvies, Manassa, CO
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Honey Buffalo Meatball Sliders

Honey Buffalo Meatball Sliders

These little sliders deliver big Buffalo chicken flavor without the messiness of wings. The spicy-sweet meatballs are a hit on game day with kids and adults alike. —Julie Peterson, Crofton, Maryland
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Super Supper Hero

Here's a hearty handheld meal you can eat on the go or pack for a picnic. Serve this versatile sandwich the way the recipe's written or stuff it with the works. —Maribeth Edwards, Follansbee, West Virginia
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Zucchini-Crusted Pizza

Flavorful, nutritious and versatile, this pizza is easy to prep ahead and freeze—and fun to make with kids. It also quadruples nicely. What's not to like? —Ruth Hartunian-Alumbaugh, Willimantic, Connecticut
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Lentil Taco Cups

My trusty muffin tin never fails to help me put fun and easy hand-held mains on the table for my family on busy weeknights. These festive vegetarian cups are always a hit with my kids; they're so flavorful, nobody misses the meat. —Shauna Havey, Roy, Utah
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Spinach and Turkey Pinwheels

Need an awesome snack for game day? My kids love these easy four-ingredient turkey pinwheels. Go ahead and make them the day before—they won’t get soggy! —Amy Van Hemert, Ottumwa, Iowa
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Chicken Fries

Kid-friendly and quick, these crunchy oven-baked chicken fries are coated with a mixture of crushed potato chips, panko bread crumbs and Parmesan cheese. Dip them in ranch dressing, barbecue sauce or honey-mustard sauce.—Nick Iverson, Denver, Colorado
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Whole Wheat Waffles with Chicken & Spinach Sauce

On a business trip years ago, I got the idea for waffles with chicken and spinach. When I serve it, people go back for seconds, even thirds. —Vicki Melies, Elkhorn, Nebraska
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My Best Spaghetti & Meatballs

One of my favorite childhood memories is going to the Old Spaghetti Factory with my family and ordering a big plate of cheesy spaghetti, meatballs and garlic bread. My homemade recipe reminds me of those fun times and satisfies everyone's craving for good Italian food. —Erika Monroe-Williams, Scottsdale, Arizona
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Bacon and Spinach Pizza

Our go-to pizza is a snap to make using packaged pizza crust and ready-to-serve bacon. The kids don't even mind the spinach on top! —Annette Riva, Naperville, Illinois

Nicole Doster
Nicole is the Content Director of TMB's Strategy and Performance team. She oversees the brand's shopping and trend editorial teams and assists with content planning across Taste of Home, Family Handyman, Reader's Digest, The Healthy and Birds & Blooms. With over seven years of experience writing and editing in the food and home space, she enjoys sharing cooking tips, recipe picks and product recommendations that make life a little easier. When she's not hunched over her laptop, she's either practicing latte art or fixating on her latest DIY home renovation.