Kid-friendly New Year's Eve Dinner

I am looking for ideas for a fun, informal and kid/friendly menu for New Year's Eve dinner. By kid-friendly I (sadly) am alluding to my own children's limited palates of Mac n cheese, pizza and chicken nuggets. (Oh how it pains me to write that!)

Would love something a bit special but still designed to please all. I do NOT want to prep and serve two different meals. Would need to do most prep the day before (as in tomorrow).

Anyone else feeding picky mouths on New Year's Eve? What are you serving?

  • Posted by: TobiT
  • December 29, 2014


ChefJune December 30, 2014
What about pizzas? I love to serve a pizza supper. I used to teach a pizza class, with several different styles of pizza, and that's partly what I draw from -- a classic Margherita, a pissaladiere, a stuffed spinach pizza (has the sauce on top. If you'd like recipes, feel free to message me. I also have an excellent copycat recipe for the REAL Uno's/Due's deep dish pizza.
Stephanie G. December 30, 2014
We're having a from scratch spaghetti and meatballs with freshly made French toast and salad. The grownups will be enjoying mussels as a first course to dress the meal up a little, with some good cheeses and fruit set out for all.
luvcookbooks December 30, 2014
What about chili? W optional additions, different kinds of rice to put underneath, or cornbread to crumble in? Guacamole and chips, homemade agua fresca?
ktr December 30, 2014
Don't feel bad about your kids limited palates, my son has been exposed to all kinds of foods and he refuses to eat even the most basic foods (anything but quick oats, oatmeal, yogurt, applesauce, pizza or anything fried). My husband and I figure we know very few teenage boys who don't eat pretty much anything put in front of them so he'll eat eventually.
As for dinner, pizza is always popular. And if you want something else for the adults, why not just throw some frozen chicken nuggets in the oven for the kids. Yes, that means you are making 2 meals, but chicken nuggets require very little thought and time to make. And if your kids are anything like mine, they will be so distracted by other people being there that they won't eat anyway - so I never put much thought into what my son will eat when we have company.
TobiT December 29, 2014
All great suggestions! I think I will enlist the help of the older picky eater - he can select among one of those great choices and then assist with prep. (This past weekend he and I made Smitten Kitchen's chocolate hazelnut crepe cake for his bday - a great success -so he can now officially be my sous chef - even if he IS picky!)
Pegeen December 29, 2014
In case there are younger kinds who will have trouble managing soup, if you provide some rice or noodles, they can put that first on their plate, then spoon some of the soup and various toppings over and eat with a spoon.
Pegeen December 29, 2014
"kids" - not "kinds" !
Pegeen December 29, 2014
How about a basic chicken & pasta twist soup (no long noodles to stymie kids) with good bread and basic salad. And provide a buffet of add-ins for the adults: small sliced sausage pieces, very small meatballs, spicier chicken pieces, roasted vegetables such as sweet potato, onion, broccoli or cauliflower (very easy to roast in the oven with some olive oil, salt and pepper). A couple types of cheeses you can sprinkle on top.
Pegeen December 29, 2014
p.s. You do need to provide large-ish size individual serving bowls so that the adults can add ingredients. In case you don't have something like that already, fortunately everything is on sale right now.
jlhogan December 29, 2014
I went to a friend's house with picky children (including my own) on Christmas Eve and they served cheese fondue and it was a great hit with everyone. It's a really fun, sophisticated meal for the adults and the kids can pick what they want to eat but still have fun using the long forks.
kimhw December 29, 2014
I've used some if these suggestions before. But when I have a variety of ages and pallets I tend toward make your own stations.
Pizza, traditional toppings for kids, more adventurous for adults; figs, bleu and prosciutto. Shredded duck confit, caramelized onions and balsamic.
Taco bar; chicken and or beef for kids, fish and pulled pork for adults.
Panini station... Really fun and easy, a couple types of breads, few different meats, fruits and veggies. You can even type out some suggested sandwiches.
Salad station. Enough said.
Baked potato bar.
Ice cream sundae or mousse cup station.
ktr December 30, 2014
A panini station sounds like a fun idea. And you could put out peanut butter and jelly for the really picky kids (i.e mine).
Recommended by Food52