Mom daughter mixing bowl with spoon

Making A Simple Dinner: Our Top Recipes

The results are in! Last month, we asked our Platein28 visitors:

“What is your biggest obstacle to getting dinner on the table?” 

The top three, most popular answers were….

  1. “I’m TIRED and don’t feel like cooking”

  2. “It’s so hard to satisfy my PICKY EATERS”


Grown-ups, we hear your struggle and are here to help! Check our our tips below for making a simple dinner and dealing with these oh-so-common mealtime struggles! 

“I’M TIRED AND DON’T FEEL LIKE COOKING” person too tired to cook

Whether you worked all day, shuttled kids non-stop, or were up all night with a baby, you are exhausted! How do we make dinner when we feel this tired?! 

We think the best recipes for us tired grown-ups are the ones that use only 1-2 pots/pans, have few steps, and have few things to chop/prep. Let’s keep it simple! Here are three recipes we recommend for the tired and weary 😴

Bonus: all of these recipes are great for leftovers. So, tomorrow you can just reheat!

1. Perfect Picnic Chicken Salad Sandwich

Perfect Picnic Chicken Salad Sandwich

Steps: TWO Items to Chop: THREE Pots/Pans: ZERO

2. One Pot Easy Pea-sy Cheese Tortellini

Steps: THREE Items to Chop: TWO Pots/Pans: ONE

3. Crescent Roll Hot Dogs with Homemade Ranch Dipping Sauce

Crescent hot dog with veggies on plate

Steps: THREE Items to Chop: THREE Pots/Pans: ONE


child sitting at table unhappy

Lots of kids have strong opinions when it comes to what they eat and how they eat it. While we can’t give in to all of our kids’ picky requests, we think it’s okay to be flexible and compromise once in a while. In fact, each recipe on Platein28‘s site has a dedicated “Kidify the Meal” section that lists strategies for satisfying your picky eaters.  

Below we’ve included our top three, most customizable meals that will help your kids feel more in control of they’re eating. 

1. Italian Wedding Soup

How to Kidify

  • Swap the veggies or pasta for your kids’ favorites
  • Serve some plain veggies on the side
  • Offer your kids’ carb of choice for dipping (i.e., crackers, toast).

2. One Pot Easy Pea-sy Cheese Tortellini

How to Kidify:

  • Swap the peas for your kids’ favorite veggie
  • Take out the sausage or swap it out for a different meat
  • Set aside some plain tortellini
  • Make faces with the food! Use the parmesan as hair. Lol

3. Tangy Turkey Taco Bowl

Tangy Chicken Rice Bowl

How to Kidify:

  • Instead of a fork, use Fritos Scoops
  • Tone down the spices
  • Swap the veggies for your kids’ faves, or increase the amount of the ones they like
  • Swap out the turkey for a different meat

“MOST RECIPES ARE TOO COMPLICATED”woman leaning over recipe book

Wouldn’t we all prefer recipes with just a few steps, little mess to clean, and not a million ingredients to buy?! Below we’ve listed our top three recipes with a max of 3 steps, using only 1-2 pots, calling for 10 or fewer ingredients.

1. Baked Cod with Peach & Tomato Salsa

baked cod and peach salsa on plate

Steps: TWO Pots/Pans: ONE Ingredients: TEN

2. Bow Tie Pasta Salad

Plated Bow Tie Pasta Salad

Steps: TWO Pots/Pans: ONE Ingredients: NINE

3. Perfect Picnic Chicken Salad Sandwich

Perfect Picnic Chicken Salad Sandwich

Steps: TWO Pots/Pans: ZERO Ingredients: NINE

We hope this helps!!! 

❤️❤️Julie & Marcie❤️❤️

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