Easy dinner recipes are a must-have if you're a kitchen newbie, a busy working parent, or even a seasoned chef. At Yummly, we have hundreds of dinner ideas made for taking the stress out of weeknight dinners and giving you back your precious time. We all need those nights where we take a break from difficult meal prep — combining dozens of ingredients, recruiting family members for slicing and dicing, and then rounds of basting, braising and turning. The following recipes will have you in and out of the kitchen in no time…
Easy Dinner Sheet Pan Meals
Nothing says easy dinner recipe like one that comes together in a single pan. That's why the sheet-pan dinner is an excellent choice for easy weeknight meal seekers, amateurs, and pros alike. All you have to do is decide what protein you're in the mood for. About ½ pound per serving works well with chicken breast, red meat, or a fish fillet. Then select a vegetable side, add some fat, flavorings, and roast on high heat until everything is golden and delicious.
Timing varies by protein but, in general, easy chicken sheet pan meals take 20 to 40 minutes to complete, depending on whether you’re using skin-on or skinless, bone-in or boneless. Vegetables cook down quite a bit under high heat so err on the side of more instead of fewer vegetables in the pan. Dense veggies take about the same amount of time to cook as chicken or steak, whereas leafy greens cook in 3 to 10 minutes, so keep an eye on them. Are you craving some bold flavors? Consider using Chinese five-spice to warm things up on a cold night, or use the juice from a lemon, lime, or orange for a zesty, citrusy kick. Whatever you choose, a sheet pan meal will be a satisfying and well-rounded addition to your evening.
Easy Dinner Slow Cooker Meals
The best kind of slow cooker meals for busy weeknights are the ones that require zero prep. Set it and forget it. That’s right — no browning, no cooking ahead. Just toss your ingredients into the Crock Pot before leaving for work and come home to a delicious meal that tastes as if you labored over it all day.
The slow cooker is a kitchen workhorse. It can handle chicken, pork, steak, seafood, and vegetarian dishes. Because of its slow and low style, it provides depth to soups, stews, and even cuts of meat that are generally too tough to cook in the oven without first tenderizing or on the stovetop without having to marinate for hours. The slow cooker does the hard work for you — tenderizing tough cuts and infusing your meat with the rich flavors of your marinade. In some cases, it's a good idea to cook a side to pair with your main meal. Think easy, like pasta with your soup, rice for your tacos, or warm up some crusty rolls to sop up your stew. Now you’re cooking!
Easy Dinner Skillet Meals
One skillet and a few ingredients are all you need to put together impressive main courses in 30 minutes or less. A skillet meal is a great option if you’re cooking for one, or if you want to have leftovers for lunch the next day. We love a good seared pork chop tossed with some root vegetables, like sliced fennel, and some sweet surprises thrown in, like cherry tomatoes cooked down until the juices run. Pork is done cooking when the meat thermometer reads 145 degrees and veggies are browned and tender yet firm.
Chicken is easily prepared and tastes fantastic after cooking in a skillet. Smother the chicken with some store-bought pesto sauce and serve alongside healthy vegetables, like asparagus and tomatoes.
Chicken thighs also come out perfectly golden-crisp when cooked in a skillet. Toss with vegetables, like and peas and corn, and add in small potatoes, like baby reds, or diced Yukon golds, and you have an entire meal in under an hour. The perfect busy weeknight meal!
You can even take your chicken to the Mediterranean by pairing it with broccoli florets or artichokes and serve over a bed of warm couscous.
Wherever your dinner takes you, we hope these meals will get you there with ease!