255: How to Get Family Dinner on the Table (+ Why It Matters!) // Kelsey Nixon


I will be teaching a class at Pinner’s Conference in Utah which is happening on Friday, November 4th and Saturday, November 5th, and I would love for you to come! Pinners is a conference featuring over 100 classes on a huge variety of topics, and it’s also a market with over 200 small businesses featuring their creative, unique products.



For me, there is almost nothing in this world quite as painful as the “dinnertime dread.” You know that feeling right? It’s 4:00 pm, and you realize that the minions are going to be clamoring for food shortly, and you have literally no idea what to feed them.  I hope that all of you listening have perfected systems for feeding your families so you do not have to deal with this awful feeling every night of your life. BUT if there are in fact some human mothers out there listening who relate to dinnertime dread, this episode is for you.

My guest today is Kelsey Nixon, an Emmy-nominated TV personality, author, wife, mom, and cooking show host. She is the host of the hit family food game show Dinner Takes All and she has previously hosted Kelsey’s Essentials and Kelsey’s Homemade on Cooking Channel/Food Network, as well as being a finalist on season 4 of Food Network Star. Beyond that impressive professional bio, Kelsey is a mom–a busy working mom–so she really builds her brand around realistic, practical kitchen essentials – essential tips, techniques, and tools to help home cooks develop confidence in the kitchen and get dinner on the table.





  1. Embrace meal planning, but remember that it can be simple! The secret is to start that process in your very own kitchen by “shopping your kitchen” before you begin your meal plan. Use what you ALREADY have on hand to guide the decisions you’ll make for meals that week. Assign your partner/spouse/older kid a weeknight to be in charge of dinner.
  2. Have 3 simple recipe ideas for when you don’t feel like cooking. (and ALWAYS have the ingredients on hand). These are the things I turn to often when there’s a gap in my meal plan and I feel that feeling of dinner dread at 5pm. Breakfast for dinner, Spaghetti and Meatballs, Grilled Cheese with Apples + Bacon. These are all meals that my kids are guaranteed to eat so I know that I won’t have any battles at the table and I could basically make these with my eyes closed.
  3. Create a recipe binder. It may sound old school, but most people prefer cooking from a hard copy vs. a screen. Include your family’s “greatest hits” recipes in your binder and make this binder your first stop when you sit down to do your grocery order for the week to help with decision fatigue. Consider putting the printed recipes in page protectors or laminate them to keep them in tip top shape for a long time.


>>>Are these tips from Kelsey Nixon on family dinner helpful? What would you add to the takeaways? Tell us in the comments below.




Recipe Club: Kelsey has offered our listeners $10 off her monthly Recipie Club with code 3in30.  Recipe club has 5 NEW recipes each month  from Kelsey, that are voted on by club members.  They are quick, easy, and loved by everyone at the table!


  • Lusbrands.com:  Use code 3in30 to get 15% off your first order over $50.
  • BetterHelp: Use the code 3in30 to get 10% off your first month of online therapy!
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3 thoughts on “255: How to Get Family Dinner on the Table (+ Why It Matters!) // Kelsey Nixon”

  1. Rachel, So I did gasp when I heard your go-to meal was mine too—the one I thought “yep, I’ve got one of those.”
    I make OBB Guiltless Alfredo all the time—it gets on the meal planner (and is a requested birthday meal) for sure but it’s also always the last-minute meal when we get home from a trip and everyone is ravenous for real food or when the planned meal doesn’t sound good anymore or just because it’s everyone’s favorite and a real comfort food. We call it veggie Alfredo because we always throw in a few handfuls of veggies in the pasta water the last 5 minutes of cooking the pasta. Love that we share our love for guiltless alfredo!
    Thanks for this great episode with Kelsey!

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