Food bars are my favorite way to serve a family meal. With a vegetarian, vegan and 3 omnivores at my table every night, it’s an easy way to satisfy everyone. I introduced the DIY food bar concept to my meal plans shortly after I went vegan as a way to make sure there was something for everyone to eat on the table without having to make 2 or 3 meals. What started out as survival mode has now turned into our favorite way to eat!
So, what is a Food Bar?
Think of your classic salad bar or sundae bar where everything is set out “buffet style” for everyone to make themselves. I focus my food bars around a theme with some main dishes and include a few toppings that allow people to customize their meal (that’s where the fun happens!). I also include a couple of side dishes on the bar. I choose things that complement the main dish and make sure there is at least one thing everyone will eat.
There is no limit to food bars once you get going. Start with foods that your family loves. (In my house, that’s pizza, pasta, paninis and tacos!). Instead of just making one dish, it’s so much more fun to let everyone make their own!
Watch the video below and get inspired to serve this tasty and easy meal idea for dinner. You’ll learn everything you need to add this to your meal plan, including:
- The best ratio for mains and toppings in your bar
- The secret to a successful dinner bar
- My favorite side dishes for several DIY dinner bar ideas
- Why DIY bars aren’t just for dinner and how I use them to serve breakfast too!
I also share food bars that we love to make in my home, including my favorites:
Veggie Sushi Rolls
Pasta (Check out the DIY pasta bar my family loves that uses Trader Joe’s sauces.)
Watch the video and comment below with the food bar you’re most excited to try!
Want more meal planning help? Check out my weekly meal prep membership, Batch Cooking Club!