Do you struggle with coming up with family friendly meals that everyone will eat? Are you looking for some healthy kid friendly recipes for your family? I have rounded up our 7 Favorite Family Cookbooks that all offer tons of healthy and easy recipes that your family will love!

The Best Cookbooks for Kids and Families #mealideas #healthy #easy #kidfriendly

Family Meal Ideas

If you have been following me for awhile, you know how much I love Weekly Dinner Themes. We use themes to plan out our dinner menu for the week. Having a plan saves a TON of time when it comes to thinking up with meal ideas. Once you have a plan, all you have to do is plug in a recipe to fit the day’s theme. For instance, if you know that every Tuesday your family has tacos, all you have to do each week is decide what kind of taco dish you would like! Maybe you mix up the type of meat you use or you alternate between taco shells and taco salads. It really just make things so much easier to use themes.

How to Plan Family Meals

So how do I come up with what recipes we will make? I ask my family, I brainstorm family favorites and I look through cookbooks. Even in the days of Pinterest, I still LOVE a good “old fashioned” cookbook to get inspired.

I’ve rounded up our favorite cookbooks that we use all the time. These are the books that have dog ears and post it note bookmarks, so I know they are our favorites! Some of these family friendly cookbooks are great for dinner ideas and some of them are our favorites for snacks and other meals!

Best Cookbooks for Kid Friendly Meal Ideas

Kid Chef Junior

We received this cookbook last fall (I reviewed it here) and it has become one of our favorites. The recipes are healthy and very kid friendly.

Best Cookbooks for Kids #easy #kidfriendlyrecipes #healthy

Some of the ideas are playful including a recipe to make Magic Unicorn Toast! We love the Alphabet Pretzels as an after school treat!

Our favorites from Kid Chef Junior cookbook include:

Goblin Green Pasta (Pesto)

Apple Cinnamon French Toast Bake

Alphabet Pretzels


The Cookbook for Kids

This kid friendly cookbook by William Sonoma is GREAT for kids who like to help with cooking. The instructions are easy to follow and the recipes are not overly complicated. While the book does not have a specific chapter for dinner recipes, most of the lunch ideas can be made for dinners as well!

7 Awesome Kids Cookbooks #kidfriendly #easy #healthy #recipeideas

There are tons of  healthy snack ideas–perfect for after school snacking!

Our favorite recipes from The Cookbook for Kids includes:

Sloppy Joes

The Best Banana Bread

Tortellini Alfredo

Crusty Mac & Cheese

100 Days of Real Food

If you are not familiar with Lisa Leake and her 100 Days of Real Food revolution, you will want to check out her blog and cookbooks! I have been following her since her very early blogging days and many of our family favorite recipes are from her collection. Lisa takes kid favorites like chicken nuggets, pizza and pasta and uses wholesome, non processed ingredients to make them healthier options. She shares easy school lunch ideas on her Instagram account and I am always inspired.

Best cookbooks for healthy family dinners #easyrecipes #organic #kidfriendly

We have so many favorites from the 100 Days of Real FoodA few family friendly dinner recipes include:

Homemade Chicken Nuggets

Whole Wheat Pizza Crust

Chicken Noodle Soup

The Best Whole Chicken

No Excuses Detox

While this cookbook might not make you think “family friendly” with a title that includes detox, it is jam packed with recipes for your family.  There are over 100 healthy recipes including salads, soups, snacks, dinners and desserts.

Cookbooks for healthy family dinners #kidfriendly #organic #easy

My kids love the cinnamon oat cracker recipe–better than store bought crackers! The recipes get you to think outside of the “kid’ food box” and expose your kids to more “grown up” meals. If you are looking to really amp up your family’s healthy eating, this is a great cookbook to get you on the right path!

Some of our favorite kid friendly recipes from this cookbook include:

Speedy Black Bean Burgers

Deep Dish Chocolate Chip Cookie

Nut Free Chewy Granola Bars

Cinnamon Oat Crackers (kids’ favorite!)

Cashew Queso (so yummy!)

Kitchen Playdates

We have had this cookbook for years! Besides some easy recipes for kid favorites like pizza and waffles, there are great recipes for side dishes and salads. We have made the Greek Roasted Potatoes recipes so many times! The recipes are centered around some fun play date ideas including a breakfast bar and tea party.

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This book is not quite as flashy and colorful as some of the other kids’ cookbooks I’ve mentioned. But the recipes are reliable and tasty!

Favorite recipes from Kitchen Playdates includes:

Greek Roasted Potatoes

1-2-3 Cheese Tart

Sesame Orzo with Dried Apricots, Currants & Slivered Almonds (Summer time favorite pasta salad!)

Rachel Ray 30 Minute Meals for Kids

Rachel Ray has been serving up her 30 minute meal ideas for years. I used to love her 30 Minute Meal show!! Ray’s cookbook for kids is super easy to follow. Similar to her other 30 minute meal books,  this kid version offers up tasty comfort food recipes that are quick and easy!

Seven of the best cookbooks for kids who like to cook #easyrecipes #kidfriendly #healthy

She is the queen of big burgers and hearty foods. This cookbook is very fun and conversational. She offers helpful tips for little chefs. Some of the recipes are a little more involved, so you might consider working together as a family on the recipes.

Some of our favorite’s from Rachel Ray’s 30 Minute Meals for Kids includes:

Meatloaf Muffins with BBQ Sauce

Mini Shrimp Scampi and Angel Hair Pasta

201 Healthy Smoothies & Juices for Kids

This smoothie cookbook is another one that we have had for years! It is a perfect, pocket size book to reach for when you are looking to mix up your usual smoothie or juice recipe. The author, Amy Roskelley, is the founder of Super Healthy Kids. Over the years, I have tried so many Super Healthy Kids recipes!

Kids Cookbooks for healthy recipes #easy #smoothies #kidfriendly

All of her ideas are very kid friendly and great for picky eaters. Amy sends out a weekly meal plan to her subscribers that I often look to for meal inspiration. So, it is no wonder that I love this Smoothie Cookbook–so many easy and fun recipes!

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Cookbooks are a great way to get the meal planning juices flowing. Involve the kids by letting them regularly look through cookbooks and let me pick some of your meals! What are your favorite cookbooks for easy and healthy family meals?


Easy and Healthy Family Dinner Ideas from the best cookbooks #kidfriendly #dinnerideas #meals #easy


  1. Yolanda on February 18, 2019 at 8:38 am

    I love these! I have a cookbook for my youngest but I’m not really a fan of the recipes so thank you for recommending all of these. I know my son will love the smoothie book plus a few others. I think it’s so important to get kids cooking and these books will definitely help!

  2. Lily on February 18, 2019 at 9:26 am

    Great resources! We just got Kid Chef, Every Day Recipes and have loved it!

  3. candy on February 18, 2019 at 10:25 am

    Let the kids plan and help cook and prepare the meals helps them want to eat. Sounds like good cookbooks to get ideas.

  4. Courtney Kramer on February 18, 2019 at 10:37 am

    I love getting new cookbooks and with an especially picky toddler, I’ll have to check out a few of these recommendations!
    I also love 100 days of real food!

  5. Jill on February 18, 2019 at 10:45 am

    My son is starting to really enjoy getting in the kitchen and cooking and experimenting with new recipes. These all look like great resources for me to find some good kind friendly meals and get him more involved in cooking! I’m going to have to check out the Kid Chef Junior and those Alphabet Pretzels.

  6. Holly Breton @ Pink Lady on February 18, 2019 at 11:05 am

    Thanks for all of these awesome ideas Jaclyn- I think when we get back from vaca, I am going to make a conscious effort of letting my girls help me in the kitchen and will try to incorporate these awesome recipes!

  7. Alexandra on February 18, 2019 at 7:35 pm

    I absolutely love my cook books, but I don’t have any of these. Looks like I have some book shopping to do 😉

  8. Julie Plagens on February 18, 2019 at 8:49 pm

    I just pinned this. What a wonderful resource to have when cooking with your kids. I wish I had a kid at home so I could use one of these books!

  9. Jasmine Hewitt on February 18, 2019 at 10:39 pm

    this looks like an awesome collection of cookbooks! I need to get a few

  10. Nicole Kauffman on February 19, 2019 at 9:50 am

    Love these ideas! Cookbooks are great, especially with kids!

  11. Amanda on February 20, 2019 at 8:24 am

    Totally going to check out those kid cook books. Thanks for sharing ?

    • Jaclyn on February 20, 2019 at 8:33 am

      Thanks Amanda!!

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