The Importance of the Family Dinner + Homestyle Chicken and Noodles

As a mom, I don’t really have a whole lot of rules.  I let my son figure things out on his own.  Yeah, I try to say no to too much sugar and I try to get the kiddo in bed by a certain time, but when it comes down to it, I’m not that strict.  But I do have one rule that I have stood by for at least the last two years, and I think it has stuck.  Family Dinner.

I don’t care if you’re not hungry.  I don’t care if you don’t like what I made (but really, do you think that ever happens… as if!).  I don’t care if we’re fighting and you don’t want to look at my face.  Unless you’re sick, you will sit at the dinner table. There have been a couple times when workout schedules cut dinner short or we end up eating late, but regardless, we always eat together as a family.  This is something I wanted to instill in my son’s core while he’s young, in hopes that he will want to come home for dinner as a teenager and possibly even continue when we grows up and has a family of his own.

I have read studies on family dinner and they show that the more often families eat together, the less likely kids are to smoke, drink, do drugs, get depressed, develop eating disorders, and consider suicide.  It is more likely they will do well in school, eat their vegetables, learn big words, and know their table manners.

As you all know, I thoroughly enjoy cooking meals for my family.  I put all my love into it, hoping to give them a meal that will warm their souls and fill their bellies.  I don’t do this so each person can take their plate to a separate room where they’re watching whatever movie or mindless show is on tv. I create these meals so we can all come together as a family to eat, talk, and just spend time together.  Sometimes we don’t necessarily have anything to say, but almost every night after we have finished eating and our food is digesting, my wife and I are left at the table just chatting about our day or something we are thinking about.

In our busy lives where we are always telling our kids and spouses, “just one minute!” or ” I don’t have time right now,” I think it is extremely important to take that half hour or so each day to sit down with your loved ones.  Don’t you think your family deserves that time?  Your dinner doesn’t have to be fancy.  Even if you’re just popping a frozen pizza out of the oven or serving sloppy joes and fries.  It doesn’t matter.  Make is as healthy as you can.  Make it as fun as you can.  But whatever you do, just do it together, as a family!

When I think of my favorite kind of family dinners, I think of comfort foods.  Mashed potatoes and gravy.  Noodles.  Cooked Veggies.  Biscuits.  Oh yeah!  That is exactly the meal we had last night, and as I was eating it, I couldn’t help thinking how much I love that we sit down together as a family almost every night to eat such delicious food.  I’m so lucky to be the mom and wife who gets to prepare such great comfort food!


Homestyle Chicken and Noodles


1/2 onion, chopped
1 lb chicken, cubed (I used Quorn chick’n cutlets)
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 cup carrots, finely chopped
1 cup celery, cinely chopped
2 14-oz cans vegetable broth
1 10-oz can cream of onion soup
1 cup water
6 oz whole wheat noodles
1 Tablespoon fresh sage, chopped
1 Tablespoon fresh rosemary

Coat the bottom of a large stock pot with olive or coconut oil.

Saute onion, chicken, and garlic on medium heat for about 10 minutes (or until chicken is no longer pink, if you are using real chicken).

Add mushrooms, carrots, and celery.  Saute for another 5 minutes.  Make sure ingredients are mixed thoroughly.  While stirring, add cream of onion soup and water.

Raise temperature to medium high and let soup simmer until it reaches a roaring boil.  Add noodles, sage, and rosemary.

Cook until noodles reach al dente.

Serve on top of mashed potatoes with a freshly baked biscuit or roll.


  1. says

    We made this on Friday and it was fantastic. We’re still enjoying the leftovers. I adapted it for the crockpot. We threw in the whole chicken breasts and everything else except the noodles, and cooked on low for about 5 hours. Then I shredded the chicken, added noodles and cooked for another hour. It smelled amazing!
    I love recipes like this. Simple, doesn’t require a ton of ingredients, and delicious.

    • Holly says

      I am so happy to hear that you tried it and liked it. It’s really kind of nerve-wracking to post a recipe for the world to see, in hopes that if someone does actually try it, they’ll actually enjoy it. It’s just a risk we take I guess. Regardless, thanks for the crockpot tip! I’m always looking for ways I can utilize that thing a little more.

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