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Meals Make It Home

The Importance of Dinner at the Table

Article by DeLaine Broderick

Photography by Kate VanMersberger

Originally published in Allen City Lifestyle

How important is family time to you? When I think about my early childhood, I remember wholesome TV shows like "Leave It to Beaver" and "The Brady Bunch." Something that still stands out in my memory are scenes of the families gathered around their dinner tables. Growing up, our family meals didn't look like an episode of "Leave It to Beaver." However, I knew that every Sunday we would have a roast dinner. My father would prepare the roast and potatoes, and my mother and sisters would do the rest. 20 years later, I still appreciate those Sunday dinners spent together.

My love for cooking came from these dinners. I would help my dad or mom prep. Eventually, I began to experiment on my own with new recipes. Now that I am a mother, time in the kitchen with my children has become something I treasure. To me, food is love. It brings families, friends, and even colleagues together. It shows you want to take care of another individual and share your time and energy with them. Food brings people together. It unites us.

Research shows that eating dinner as a family has many benefits. Among others, eating dinner together:

  • Builds a child's self-esteem and shows you value time with them

  • Enables family members to handle daily stress better

  • Promotes sensible eating habits and portion control

  • Improves communication with one another, along with learning to listen to one another 

  • Reduces unhealthy eating behaviors, substance abuse, and depression

If you could have one hour a day where your entire family could sit down without distractions, talking face-to-face and eating a meal together, what would that be worth? You don't have to spend hours in the kitchen or shopping for groceries to make that vision a reality. You can have a fully-prepared meal made from scratch delivered right to your door. It arrives ready to go in the oven and takes away the guilt and stress of providing your family with a wholesome dinner. I know that life with multiple children and work schedules makes it difficult most days to find an hour to carve out time for a sit-down meal. In addition, having teenagers in sports and church groups along with a younger sibling makes it almost impossible to coordinate schedules. Yet, dinner time can be the best hour of our day when we prioritize it.  

Providing a way for families to connect while eating a homemade meal is at the core of my business. I started Dinners by DeLaine to share my passion with others and to give families back the time they have missed at the dinner table. You may not have two hours to prep and cook a meal, but chances are you have 30 minutes to an hour to sit and eat one together a few times a week. Eating together is what matters — more than the preparation. I still believe in families cooking together regularly, but even as a chef I'll admit it's not always possible to make that happen multiple times a week.

In starting my business, Dinners by DeLaine, I had a vision to bring families and friends together. I genuinely love feeding people. I love seeing them enjoy something they have never eaten before. Providing meals for others is about making time for families. Food isn't just what I do — it's a part of who I am. It is my passion, and sharing it with others brings me pure joy.  

Favorites from Dinners by DeLaine:

Pancake Dippers

Light, fluffy, and the perfect size for dipping and snacking. Available in Classic or Cinnamon. 

Cheese Enchiladas (GF)

Sharp Cheddar wrapped in corn tortillas topped with cheese and a delicious chili tomato sauce.

Mozzarella Chicken Pasta

Creamy pasta dish with grilled chicken, sundried tomatoes, fresh mozzarella, parmesan cheese.

Pumpkin Spice Cake with Brown Butter Frosting

A pumpkin spiced cake with rich browned butter frosting.

DeLaine Broderick is a chef, wife, and mother. She opened Dinners by DeLaine with the vision of bringing families and friends together to enjoy a meal without the hassle of cooking. From breakfast to lunch and from dinner to dessert, DeLaine delights in delivering delicious meals across Collin County. Visit, call (469) 803-6871, or drop by 1228 E Exchange Pkwy #108, Allen, TX 75002.