One of the things that keeps us eating home-cooked dinners more nights than not (yes, even on busy weeknights!) is my arsenal of dishes that are easy to throw together, with simple ingredients I usually have on hand. Some dinners come together in as little as 15 minutes!
Those that take a little longer to cook usually require less prep time, which means I’m able to throw something together, toss it in the oven to bake, and then spend time with the kids (or doing whatever else is on my to-do list).
Here are 6 easy weeknight dinner ideas on heavy rotation in our house:
Even thought they’re baked in the oven, the skin on these chicken thighs really does get “fried chicken” crispy! The best part is, prep takes all of 5 minutes (if that), so you can throw the chicken in the oven and forgettaboutit for 50 minutes.
These baked barbecue pork chops are super easy because I use a store-bought bottle of barbecue sauce. Although, I have to say, making your own barbecue sauce wouldn’t be that difficult either – so give it a whirl if you prefer. The whole family loves these chops!
I first tried making this recipe after reading Garlic & Sapphires by Ruth Reichl. The recipe is so simple you’ll go nuts. And bacon? Enough said.
Meatloaf gets a bad rap. I happen to love it, as do my kids and my husband. Like many dishes that have left a bad taste in mouths over the years, I find meatloaf is often poorly cooked and under-seasoned! Cooked properly, with enough salt and an inside filled with cheese (Mmmm….), it’s delicious! Using turkey is a twist on my traditional beef/pork/veal meatloaf.
This seared salt & pepper shrimp over thin spaghetti with a mushroom & garlic cream sauce is close to the recipe I made for my trip to NYC for the Food Network “Home Cooks” casting call. It’s also the longest recipe name EVER. Using frozen raw shrimp is one of my secrets to a quick weeknight meal – they take minutes to thaw, and less than 5 minutes to cook. TONS of uses.
These easy barbecue pork meatballs only take 30 minutes to bake (in a muffin tin!), and about 5 to prep. Another big hit in our house with the kids!