Quick dinner recipes for busy families

Finding time to sit down and eat together as a family isn’t always easy, as there are so many other things than can get in the way. To make the process easier, here are some fail-safe family recipes that are not only delicious but very quick to put together.

The pork recipe below takes one hour from start to finish, and the other two are even quicker, so don’t think that cooking dinner for the family needs to take all evening! 

Pork tenderloin with roast potatoes and green beans

This is an ultra-quick version of a Sunday roast, but still very tasty! Pork tenderloin is lean and simple to cook, so if the thought of preparing a Sunday roast fills you with dread, give it a try! If you’re short on time, you can use roast potatoes from McCain – they only take 35 minutes in the oven, and they mean you don’t have to peel and parboil your spuds, which is a great time-saver.


  • 1 pork tenderloin, about 800g
  • thyme leaves, finely chopped
  • olive oil
  • large glass of white wine
  • 300g floury potatoes (such as King Edward or Maris Piper)
  • 150g green beans


  • Season the pork well with salt and pepper, then roll in the chopped thyme.
  • Heat a pan on the hob, add a little olive oil, then brown the pork on all sides.
  • Add the wine, then place the pan in an oven preheated to 190˚C for 50-60 minutes, until the pork is cooked through.
  • Meanwhile, peel the potatoes, chop into chunks, and parboil for 5-6 minutes until they start to soften.
  • Drizzle a little olive oil into an ovenproof dish then place in a hot oven.
  • Drain the potatoes well, then add to the dish, turning so that the potatoes are well coated.
  • Roast for 45 minutes, turning once.
  • Top and tail the green beans, then add to a pan of well-salted boiling water, and cook for 5 minutes until the beans soften, but still have some crunch.
  • When the pork is done, rest on a warm plate for 10 minutes to let the meat relax. Carve and serve!

Chicken wraps with spicy yoghurt sauce

Chicken breasts are a great standby for a quick family dinner, as they cook in next to no time. Here, they’re livened up with a tasty spicy yoghurt mix, and served in crisp pitta bread. Of course, you can tone down the spices depending on how hot your little ones like their dinner!

Chicken wraps


Spicy yoghurt sauce


  • 500g full-fat yoghurt
  • 2tsp ground cumin
  • 1tsp ground coriander
  • 1tsp zaatar
  • 2tsp fresh mint, finely chopped


  • Heat a large frying pan and add a light drizzle of olive oil.
  • Fry the chicken breasts until golden brown on both sides, then turn the heat down to medium and cook until the breasts are cooked through (which should take 15 minutes).
  • Once the chicken is cooked, leave to rest for a few minutes, which makes the chicken juicier, then cut into small strips.
  • Add the yoghurt, spices and herbs to a bowl, and mix well.
  • Grill or toast the pitta breads until crisp, then cut open, then into each one add a little pomegranate molasses, then some chicken strips, then the yoghurt sauce.
  • Top with some lettuce or rocket leaves, and serve.

Quick-and-easy Margherita pizzas

I don’t know anyone who turns their nose up at a pizza, and of course, kids love them! The beauty of making your own is that you can decide exactly what goes into them, so if you want to cut back a little on the cheese, or go to town on the toppings, you can!


  • four pre-made pizza bases
  • 200ml passata
  • 2 cloves of garlic, crushed
  • handful of basil leaves, plus extra to garnish
  • 2 x 125g balls of mozzarella
  • 50g Parmesan, grated
  • 12 cherry tomatoes, halved


  • Mix together the passata, crushed garlic and basil leaves in a bowl and stir well to combine.
  • Spread over each pizza base, but sparingly – you want a thin covering of sauce, not too heavy.
  • Break up the mozzarella with your hands into small strips and place on the pizza, followed by a handful of grated Parmesan.
  • Add a few halved tomatoes to the top, then bake in an oven heated to 200˚C for 8 minutes, or until the topping is crisp.
  • Add a few extra basil leaves, and a drizzle of extra-virgin olive oil, and serve.

These three family recipes are a great way to get dinner on the table in double-quick time. You can let your kids help you add the toppings to the pizzas for extra brownie points, and you’ll feel a great sense of accomplishment serving a Sunday roast in one hour start to finish. Try all three, and don’t be a slave to the kitchen for hours on end!

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