Summer family meal ideas

Discover some of our favourite recipes to lighten up your weeknight meals – perfect for getting the whole family enjoying new flavours and ingredients.

It’s easy to feel stuck in a rut when it comes to feeding the family, so try our fresh summer ideas that will make you feel excited about mealtimes again. All of the recipes use similar herbs and extra ingredients but taste completely different, so you won’t be left with a surplus of leftover ingredients afterwards. 

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Runner bean & prawn paella

Tuck into this flavour-packed paella and making a standard weeknight feel special – it takes just 10 minutes to prepare, so it won’t keep you in the kitchen for long. It’s packed full of tender chicken thighs, green beans and peppers, and the king prawns are optional if you fancy an extra treat. You’ll just be left with 650ml of white wine, but it makes the perfect companion to your meal. 

Runner bean & prawn paella

Halloumi with lemony lentils, chickpeas & beets

This warm and satisfying salad is packed full of beautiful sweet and salty flavours and you’ll probably find most of the ingredients in your storecupboard. If you’re in a hurry, try swapping the uncooked lentils for a tin that’s ready to go.  

Halloumi with lemony lentils, chickpeas & beets
 

Tuna & caper orzo with parsley


This fresh and zesty recipe makes a great summery change to standard tuna pasta bakes and uses cherry tomatoes, lemon and parsley. It’s on the table in less than half an hour, and it’ll also use up your leftover parsley and capers if you had the halloumi salad the night before.

Tuna & caper orzo with parsley
 

The best salmon fish cakes

This is summer comfort food at its best, and it’s a great way of getting oily fish like salmon into your child’s diet. Fry until golden brown and serve with a small handful of oven chips for extra brownie points from the kids. If you’re left with a rogue half pack of parsley and some dill, you can use these up in the next recipe. 

The best salmon fish cakes
 

Warm pearl barley & roasted carrot salad with dill vinaigrette

Feel like trying something different for supper? The caramelised carrots give this warm salad a great flavour, which goes perfectly with the creamy cheese – serve with buttered bread for a deeply satisfying dinner. It will also use up your remaining dill and bread from last night’s dinner, so it cuts down on waste too.

Warm pearl barley & roasted carrot salad with dill vinaigrette
 

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Enjoyed this? Read other family guides… 

Top 5 family pasta recipes
Top 5 healthy family meals
Veggie suppers for the whole family
Our ultimate healthy family recipe collection