The Table Is Set, Here Are Some Great Meal Train Ideas For Families

Cooking for an entire family? Unsure of what to make? We’ve got just the list of ideas for you!

a family seated at a dining table having a meal

When someone is going through a life changing experience–whether it be an unexpected fall, the birth of a child, a health problem arises, or something else significant, they might be in need of a helping hand.


That’s where a meal train can really change the game!


A meal train is where family members, friends, and neighbors come together for a period of time making meals for someone (or someone(s)) who especially needs it right now.


Today we are talking specifically about meal train ideas for families, meaning recipes you can make that will be enough for everyone in the house and covers every meal of the day–plus some snacks and treats to add a little something fun to the meal train package!

bowl of "O" shaped oat cereal and milk. cereal is one of the great meal train ideas for families

Sometimes something simple like a bowl of cereal can be a great breakfast choice when things are busy.

Wake Up, It’s Time For Breakfast!

Breakfast is known as the most important meal of the day and it’s for good reason, it’s the first thing you eat when you wake up and a good meal can definitely improve your mood for the rest of the day. These recipes are a great combo of tasty, sweet, and savory–as a really good breakfast plate entails.

Egg and Tater Bake

Looking for a hearty breakfast that’s full of flavor and can be enjoyed at any time of the day? (Because let’s be real, breakfast food is delicious all day long.) This Egg and Tater Bake recipe courtesy of the official woman’s day website will take your regular frozen then oven baked tater tots to a whole new level. In just four relatively easy steps and just under an hour you’ll have a delicious Egg and Tater Bake that will change your breakfast game.


Healthy Chocolate Chip Muffins

If you’re looking to treat your loved ones with something sweet but healthy this is the recipe for you. Courtesy of the official favfamilyrecipies website, these Healthy Chocolate Chip Muffins are here to be a new favorite treat. In only 7 easy steps you’ll end up with warm and delicious chocolate chip muffins that will make for a nice breakfast or snack!


Let’s Get Simple Here With Cereal & Other Goodies

Sometimes the easiest option is the best option and that’s why we’re suggesting you go with a few quick “breakfast pick-ups" which are cereal, preferred milk, bread for toast, and jam or butter to top it off. And if their family enjoys avocado’s then grabbing eggs and avocados for a delicious Avocado Toast breakfast might just be their new favorite quick bite to eat in the morning. At the end of the day a pre-made dish is great but if the family could use something that’ll last a little longer than a week, then picking up their favorite go-to’s at the grocery store is a great option.

lunch meat sandwich on a croissant

Lunch doesn’t have to be complicated, it can be as simple as a well prepared sandwich to enjoy!

Lunch Options For The Whole Family

Lunch can sometimes be a forgotten meal, it can get lost in the chaos of the day or you’re just too busy to sit down for a half an hour to actually eat. Well, your loved ones won’t be forgetting to grab lunch when you’re providing it through their meal train because these recipes are so good, it’ll make lunch time something to look forward to!

The Best Ever Grilled Cheese Sandwich

We all know how good grilled cheese is, it’s been a lunch staple for a long time and it’s good at any age. Plus the more you make them the more you can start to change up the “one type of cheese" and white bread routine to something that’ll change the way you eat grilled cheese from now on. Courtesy of the official tasteofhome website, “The Best Ever Grilled Cheese Sandwich" recipe calls for softened butter, sourdough bread, mayonnaise, finely shredded Manchego and/or Parmesan cheese, onion powder, shredded sharp white cheddar cheese, shredded Monterey Jack cheese, shredded Gruyere cheese, and Brie cheese. In just two steps you will have made “The Best Ever Grilled Cheese Sandwich" in under a half an hour with enough for four servings!


Tri-Color Pasta Salad With Italian Dressing

With the weather getting warmer and the sun staying out longer a tasty summer pasta salad is exactly what the new change in season calls for, especially this dish. Courtesy of the foodfolksandfun website, this Tri-Color Pasta Salad With Italian Dressing recipe is super easy to make, can serve up to 12 people, and looks quite fun as a meal for the younger kids.


Quick Pita Pizzas

Pizza is well loved amongst a lot of people, it’s delicious and you can do so many different styles of pizza with a bunch of combinations of fun toppings and cheeses to make it your own. This recipe takes a little spin on the classic pizza dish by using Pita Bread. Courtesy of the official bbcgoodfood website, this Quick pita pizzas recipe is are small “personal" pizzas.

rolled, pastry pizza wheels. great meal train ideas for families

Little snacks throughout the day are definitely needed, especially if they are as good as this!

After Lunch And Before Dinner, Don’t Worry, It’s Snack Time!

Sometimes when someone is going through a life-changing experience they need a pick-me-up and what better than a snack in the middle of all that chaos? These recipes and suggestions can make for a great addition to your meal train delivery.

Easy Broccoli Cheese Cups

Perfect if you’re in need of an “on the go" snack this recipe will make eating veggies- (for those who aren’t a fan, especially the little ones) a real treat and they are super simple to make. Courtesy of thelazydish website, these Easy Broccoli Cheese Cups aren’t just great for kids but also make for a great bite for the adults too! This recipe makes 16 cups so they can last you a few days, there’s some notes on what to look out for when you’re making it on the website so all you have to do is follow the instructions and you’ll be ready to deliver these guys to the family who needs them.


Copy Cat Auntie Anne’s Cinnamon Sugar Pretzel Bites

If you’re looking to get your baking gloves on and want to be ahead of the pack, well these sweet treats are definitely going to be a hit. Courtesy of the official scrambledchefs website, this Copy Cat Auntie Anne’s Cinnamon Sugar Pretzel Bites recipe requires a prep time of 30 minutes, a cook time of 10, and about an hour to let the dough rise.

Sometimes A Simple Grocery Store Run Is Just What They Need

When you create a meal train, communication is key to making it all work smoothly and if you want to do something that will really show a nice personal touch for the family, try asking them what snacks each member of the family likes. You can get a snack for everyone in the house and it’ll be a nice surprise when you drop off the meal you’re also cooking for them on the side.

green beans and grilled chicken on a plate

Dinner time is a way to enjoy finally being home and coming together to spend time over good food, that’s what makes a meal train especially great when a family needs it.

What To Do When It’s Time For Dinner

With dinner there are so many different dishes that can be made and all so very delicious, especially when shared with the family after a long day. These recipes might just become new favorites in the families house…

Black Bean Chicken with Rice

If the family you’re cooking for is in the mood for a little heat, then this might just be the recipe to try out. Courtesy of the official tasteofhome website, this Black Bean Chicken with Rice is done in just two steps. This recipe makes four servings and only takes 25 minutes to prep/cook!


Easy Stuffed Pasta Shells

This recipe is a real crowd favorite and is full of flavors that will have you reaching over the plate to grab seconds. Courtesy of themodernproper website, these Easy Stuffed Pasta Shells are cheesy and really easy to make. Cook time takes 30 minutes and it is baked in a 9×13 baking dish, plenty for a family dinner.


Ginger Meatballs With Sesame Broccoli

Perfect as a side or a main dish, this recipe is absolutely delicious and is perfect to eat with additional add-ins if you’d like to spice it up. Courtesy of thepioneerwoman website, these Ginger Meatballs With Sesame Broccoli are a little more complicated to make then the other recipes on the dinner list but if you follow the steps and tricks on the website, you’re sure to come out with something amazing.


If you’re looking for a way to get your meal ideas and meal train itself to other family members, friends, and neighbors you’ll want to look into the Give InKind website which is a platform all about organizing support from anywhere in the world for anyone. You can create an “InKind Page" in just five minutes that can help schedule and nail down all the little details of the meal train so everything runs smoothly. It’s the perfect place to help others.

Give InKind does not provide medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. We have an affiliate relationship with many of the advertisers on our site, and may receive a commission from any products purchased from links in this article. See Terms & Conditions.

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