easy Big Family Recipes with budget in mind!

Welcome to my little corner of the internet, “Dinner in 5”, where I, a mom to a lively crew of five kiddos, share my meal-planning secrets and recipes for feeding a bustling family of seven without losing my mind (or breaking the bank!).

Here’s the deal: All my recipes are tailored to families of 6+ and have some sort of easy element to them – slow cooker, 30 minutes or less, simple ingredients, sheet pan, one pot – all the things we meal planners of the house are looking for when we are creating our menu for a hoard of kids.

My mission? To show you that cooking for a big family can be fun, not a huge time suck, budget-friendly, and (dare I say) easy! Plus, I got tired of trying to figure out how to double or even triple recipes catered to the “normal” family of 4. So if, you’re like me and embraced having a large family and now have to feed them all, I’ve got you!

I’m all about keeping it simple, scrumptious, and a smidge quirky in the kitchen. Why? Because who’s got time for hours in the kitchen when you’re doing the parenting hustle? Not me, and I’m guessing not you either! Whether you’re cooking for a crowd, wrestling with weeknight madness, or just need some easy-peasy recipes that don’t skimp on flavor, I’ve got you covered.

These recipes are my lifesavers on chaotic weeknights when my kids are running wild and I’m just trying to keep up. Just set it, forget it, and voilà —dinner is served! I am all about minimal prep work and letting whatever appliance I am using, be it an oven, instant pot, crock pot, or stove, do the majority of the work!

Portion sizes? Oh, they’re big! Because when you’ve got a family of seven, “just enough” is never enough. My recipes are perfect for large families of 5, 6, 7, or more, ensuring that everyone from the tiniest tot to the hungriest teen leaves the table happy and full, and you just might have leftovers, too!

And for my fellow planners and batch-cookers, you’re going to love the freezer meal section. Cook once, eat twice (or thrice!) – that’s my motto. Perfect for those days when you’d rather play superhero with the kids than play chef in the kitchen.

So, grab your apron (and maybe a cape because, let’s face it, you’re pretty heroic), and join me on this joyous culinary journey. Together, we’ll conquer the kitchen with minimal ingredients and maximum flavor. It’s time to make mealtime fun again with “Dinner in 5” – where less truly is more!

No time for fussy recipes means no time for fussy photo shoots. (sorry, not sorry!)

Hi! I’m Jackie.

Feeding a big family doesn’t have to be a pain in the ass or suck your bank account dry!

Around my house, we’re all about big laughs, big messes, and keeping things ridiculously simple. With a crew of five kids, ages 11 months to 12 years old, aka from diapers to diaries, I’ve learned to navigate the kitchen with a baby on one arm and a spatula in the other.

Let’s just say my life is a whirlwind of baby giggles, toddler antics, and pre-teen drama; all wrapped up in a big, loving family – who often want to throat-punch each other. But, nonetheless, as chaotic as life is, we are unapologetically us!

Cooking isn’t just a passion for me; it’s in my DNA. Both of my parents were in the restaurant industry, so I was a restaurant child through and through. Before I could even ride a bike, I was in the kitchen, learning the ropes and soaking up every culinary secret. By 12, I was a pro, working the line and even helping my dad with menu/recipe development.

Before becoming a mom, I could spend hours experimenting in the kitchen, tweaking recipes until they were just right. I can’t recall a time when I followed a recipe exactly – where’s the fun in that? But, oh, how times have changed! With a house full of kids, those leisurely kitchen hours are now precious moments I steal whenever I can.

These days, it’s all about simplicity and smart cooking. Yes, that might mean embracing a semi-homemade approach – think jar sauces or boxed cake mixes – but always with a twist of my own. While I might not win any ‘Mom of the Year’ awards, I’m fiercely committed to providing the best, healthiest food for my family.

So, that’s me – Jackie, just a mom trying to make mealtime a little easier, a bit healthier, and a whole lot of fun. Join me on this tasty adventure at “Dinner in 5,” where we celebrate the joy of family cooking, one simple recipe at a time!