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Don’t want to spend a ton of time getting dinner on the table? These easy dinner ideas will help you get dinner done quick, please your pickiest eaters, and feel good about what you’re feeding your family!
When I make dinner, I want to make it fast, with little mess, and easy. But I also want to feed my family something healthy and not just junk food. Can you relate? There are so many easy dinner ideas that are healthy too, like these. Try these air-fried chicken breasts without breading! So good!
In times like these, we don’t always have a bunch of choices of ingredients, so knowing how to make something with pantry staples is a real plus. How about some of these quick easy pantry meals for dinner tonight?
Or do you have a bunch of eggs to use up? Check out these delicious egg recipes. (And eggs are economical too!)
And meatloaf freezes great too! This bbq meatloaf is a crowd pleaser at our house.
Loaded with cheese and pepperoni, this pizza pasta bake will be a crowd-pleaser.
I know pasta is one of my daycare kid’s favorite meals, but my husband and daughter LOVE pasta too. I make my own hamburger helper with pasta here at home and it’s always a big hit. I love how quickly pasta cooks, it makes the whole meal seem like it comes together faster. Try these quick easy dinner ideas with pasta with your family tonight. You can even sneak in a ton of veggies with no one realizing with this butternut squash mac and cheese. My kids love it!
You can make cheesy tuna mac or creamy spicy tuna mac with just a can of tuna or chicken you already have in your pantry. You can also make tuna salad with eggs to stretch your tuna further or make this kid-pleasing tuna bake for kids. And don’t forget Creamy tuna pasta salad.
Using up leftovers for dinner
I love being able to take something I have already made and recreate it for my kids or my family. Easy dinner ideas with leftovers is one of my favorite cooking techniques. See what you can make with what’s already handing out in the fridge waiting for a new taste. Another great leftover idea is pork chop tacos with your leftover pork chops. And nachos are another great way to use leftover meat. And check out these super easy BBQ pulled pork sandwiches.
Soup is one of my favorite meals and some of my very favorite soups are in this quick easy dinners (soup) post, check it out for some inspiration for tonight. There are plenty of soups in there that my daycare kids love as well. The other night we used our first yellow squash from our garden to make this WONDERFUL hearty summer squash soup. It was amazing.
Leftover chicken is very versatile too. And buying a whole chicken to cook and make several meals saves you tons over buying specific parts. You can even use a rotisserie chicken that’s cooked in the store. This leftover chicken fried rice is our favorite way to use it. And we love anything Mexican flavored, so these creamy chicken enchiladas with leftover chicken are another winner at our house. We also love these leftover chicken mini pot pies!
One of the best things I’ve ever done with leftovers is this Mexican leftover smoked brisket soup. It only took about 10 minutes to make, I used up my leftover brisket, and it was so good, I couldn’t believe it. You can make this ahead and freeze it too.
For even more make-ahead freezer meals that you can prepare ahead, check out this post.
Easy dinner ideas with one pot wonders
I love cutting down on clean up and that’s why one pot wonders are some of my favorites. You can make everything in one vessel and not have a sink full of dishes just for the cooking part of the meal. Check out these quick and easy one pot wonders.
I don’t know about you, but pork is my favorite meat. I mean, bacon…right? I love pork roast, pork chops, pork ribs, all of it. These easy dinner ideas made with pork are sure to give you some serious inspiration and make your mouth water. Especially this pork Verde idea that can make your family a ton of meals!
Or what about turkey? This instant pot turkey breast makes a wonderful tender juicy flavorful meal in no time.
Being prepared ahead of time with freezer meals really helps on those nights when the kids have worn you out (or another job) and you don’t feel inspired to make anything at all. Freezer meals have saved my bacon more times than I can count.
I love to have something in there I can pull out and be all magical with. Check out these quick and easy freezer meals and spend some time this weekend making some stuff to get ahead. It just takes a little work ahead to save you tons of time all week.
One of my favorite freezer meal stand bys is this easy freezer stir fry with all my favorite veggies.
And don’t forget the one pot wonder of the crock pot. Check out this crock pot (or any pot) bbq pork roast recipe that will please your family for several meals! Or even this pork tenderloin teriyaki recipe in the crock pot. (Although you do have to cook down the sauce in a little separate pan, it’s worth it!). Don’t forget to check out slow cooker pork chops with apples here. Or how about this 4 ingredient Rotel chili? Yum! It’s a great Rotel recipe you’re going to want to keep!
I also LOVE these comfort food sausage cabbage rolls that are super easy with only one pot. You can get them ready and then they cook while you’re doing homework, getting baths, or whatever else you need to do.
Do you ever try to do meatless Monday? Or are you giving up meat for lent? There is tons of great inspiration in these quick and easy dinner ideas full of meatless meals. This vegetable lasagna using zucchini noodles is a winner here too! It’s even nightshade free!
Sometimes I don’t want to do any kind of cooking at all. You might think you have to cook, but when it’s hot, who even wants to heat up the kitchen? I love no cook meals when I’m extra tired, or way too hot. Check out these really easy dinners that don’t require any cooking at all. I think you’re going to find something your family or daycare kids will love!
In the fall, I love a stick to your ribs comfort food meal like these ideas.
My air fryer oven is a lifesaver for easy dinner ideas. These air fryer pork recipes have saved me tons of time already. I’m working on air fryer beef recipes, air fryer chicken recipes, and air fryer fish recipes too.
We all gotta stick together and after a full day of working with other people’s kids, I never feel like making dinner. But if we eat out all the time it wastes money and it’s not good for our health, so I try to cook most days. I hope some of these easy dinner ideas will change your overwhelm into a feeling of accomplishment when you are inspired to knock dinner out of the park (without knocking yourself out in the process)
What are your favorite easy dinner ideas? I’d love for you to share recipes with me as well.
Enjoy dinner with your family tonight!