“Mom, What’s for Dinner?”


“Mom, What’s for Dinner?”

I do not know about you, but “Mom, what’s for dinner?” has to be the most dreaded question I hear on a daily basis…Do they really expect dinner every night? Apparently so.

Let me just preface this by saying that I am not a cook, nor do I really enjoy cooking, so I tend to stick to the basics like spaghetti, tacos, soup and grilled cheese, chicken, mac and cheese, etc. But, when I don’t feel well or just don’t feel like cooking, it is extremely tempting for me to call my husband and ask him to bring take-out dinner on his way home from work.

I am trying to stop making that call often because I don’t want to teach my children bad habits like eating out all the time, therefore I try to keep some kid-friendly and easy recipes on hand that do not take a lot of time and energy to make.

Enter: Ground Turkey Sloppy Joes

As a kid, Sloppy Joes were one of my favorite meals, so I have always kept this recipe on the back-burner when I need to get something on the table but don’t have a lot of time. My children like turkey more than beef, so this is a recipe I found that they love from Country Living.


2 tbsp olive oil

1 medium yellow onion, chopped

1 red bell pepper, chopped

1 carrot, chopped

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

2 cloves garlic, pressed

1 lb. lean ground turkey or chicken

1 tbsp. chili powder

1/4 tsp. ground cinnamon

1 (8-ounce) can tomato sauce

1/4 c. sweet relish

2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce

2 tbsp. red wine vinegar, divided

3 Persian cucumbers, thinly sliced

1/2 c. thinly sliced red onion

6 thick slices toast or split burger buns

  1. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add yellow onion, bell pepper, and carrot. Season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until tender, 6 to 8 minutes. Add garlic and cook, stirring occasionally, until fragrant, 30 seconds. Add turkey and cook, breaking it up with a spoon, until no longer pink, 4 to 6 minutes. Add chili powder and cinnamon. Cook, stirring occasionally, 1 minute. Add tomato sauce and relish. Simmer until beginning to thicken, 2 to 4 minutes. Stir in Worcestershire and 1 tablespoon vinegar.
  2. Toss together cucumbers, red onion, and remaining tablespoon vinegar in a bowl. Season with salt. Let sit, tossing occasionally, 4 to 6 minutes. Spoon meat mixture on top of toast and top with pickles.

We all get by with a little help from our friends! Please share your go-to recipes that are easy and kid-friendly in the comments below.

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Elizabeth Deal
Hello, Beautiful's! My name is Elizabeth (Stinchfield) Deal, or as I like to call myself, “A Beautiful Disaster.” I am a daughter, sister, wife, mother of three amazing children (two beautiful daughters and a 5-year-old son), friend, writer, forgetter, cryer, go-getter, prayer warrior, Starbucks lover, LuLaRoe buyer, etc. After going through an extremely hard divorce (Aren’t they all?), I really thought it would be me and Gracie Lou (my 7-year-old Westie) forever. However, after being told by my bestie that I was no longer in charge of my love life, she was—I met my husband, fell in love, and my life has been a crazy, unbelievably beautiful ride ever since! And, I wouldn’t have it any other way!