Written and provided by mom blogger Rebecca Nichols

As much as I try not to cater to my children’s occasional picky eating habits, I recognize that each of us has legitimate likes and dislikes. But I’m not about to become a short order cook, spending the whole evening in the kitchen making individual dinners for each of my kids. That’s why I work customizable meals into our family’s regular weeknight dinner rotation. A customizable meal is one that allows each person to build their own plate from ingredients on the table.  These are some of our favorite meals because they taste good and my kids love having control over what goes on their plate.  Here are five customizable meals to try this week!

  1. Tacos are a standby in our household.  Load the table with bowls of beans, seasoned taco meat, cheese, salsa, onions, sour cream, lettuce, or whatever else you like. Let each person fill his or her own shell (or opt for no shell) and enjoy!
  2. Loaded Baked Potatoes are another of our favorites. Bake a potato for each family member and then offer butter, cheese, broccoli, crumbled bacon, sour cream, and any other veggies you have on hand. Everyone can load a potato to his or her liking!
  3. Individual Pizzas are fun, easy and delicious! Give each kid a small portion of store bought or homemade pizza dough.  Demonstrate how to stretch out a pizza crust on a parchment lined pan and then let the topping begin! The sky’s the limit with pizza toppings, but some of our favorites are tomato sauce, olive oil (for the non tomato sauce eaters in our family), pepperoni, bell peppers, onions, sliced garlic, bbq chicken or various seasonal veggies.  We’ve even put Brussels sprouts and butternut squash on pizza!
  4. Try making your own Burrito Bowls at home! Start with a base of rice and beans. Offer some kind of meat, like leftover shredded chicken or beef. Then load up with veggies like peppers and onions, salsa, guacamole, and sour cream.  The kids won’t let you forget the cheese, too! Let each person fill their own bowl and belly!
  5. Who doesn’t occasionally like breakfast for dinner? Let each family member create their own Omelet or Egg Scramble. Think fancy hotel breakfast bar here. Have each person fill their plate with their choice of ingredients like leftover chicken, sliced ham, crumbled bacon, cheese, peppers, mushrooms, tomatoes, onions, herbs, or pretty much anything you have in the fridge. Throw their selected ingredients in the pan with some scrambled up eggs and cook it up.  Voila! Dinner! You can serve it with some bacon, toast and fresh fruit.


Now enjoy a peaceful family dinner without any of those pesky picky eater battles!