Your go-to easy, FAST dinner ideas?

posted 3 years ago in Cooking
Post # 16
435 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: September 2016

Penne pasta with tomato and olive pesto, and bacon fried on top!

Post # 17
1054 posts
Bumble bee

Quick and easy is the only way I cook! Haha.

i like to do pizza on tortilla shells. Not healthy, but it’s not the worst thing ever?? Haha. Or pizza grilled cheese or pizza-dilla… You can basically turn anything into pizza. We also always have frozen pizza. It’s a staple for hubby.

I like to do easy club sandwiches. Turkey lunch meat, avocado, and turkey bacon between two pieces pf toast. You could add tomato but we never have any. 

I also like to do breakfast for dinner; so easy! We usually eat eggs, toast, and sausage links or turkey bacon depending which one we have. We usually have fruit on the side as well.

Baked potatoes are good if you don’t mind the carbs! I highly recommend the Potato Express Potato bag. I’ve had one for years and I LOVE it. Just pop in your potatoes, microwave for 4 minutes, and then I top with cheese, ham or bacon, and sour cream (well, usually plain Greek yogurt to be healthier). Bam, dinner. 

I like to eat quinoa with just pepper and Parmesan cheese. If I also have to feed my husband then I’ll add grilled chicken and green beans to the menu as well. 

I like to keep pre-portioned cooked shredded chicken in the freezer, then I can pull it out for an easy meal. We do quesadillas a lot. If we don’t want traditional Mexican, another favorite is chicken, bbq sauce, and cheese or chicken bacon ranch and cheese. You can get pretty creative with quesadillas!

Post # 18
204 posts
Helper bee

We do tuna melts often on nights we need something quick. Tuna mixed with some light mayo or avocado, salt & pepper and put that on top of a slice of bread and some cheese on top. Stick it in the oven for 10 mins and done! I usually do that with a side salad, or cucumber and tomato slices. 


I also love quinoa pancakes. I cook up a big batch of quinoa for on top of our lunch salads and use the leftover for pancakes. 2 cups cooked quinoa, 2 eggs, shredded cheese and/or Parmesan, salt and pepper. Mix it all together and pan fry like you do a pancake. I am obsessed with these! Usually do a side salad with those as well. 

Post # 19
1150 posts
Bumble bee

This requires a stop at the store but: rotisserie chicken + a bagged salad.

Roasted chicken thighs and vegetables. I often simmer some lentils to go with while chicken is cooking & dress them with some pan drippings.

Premade ravioli with a simple butter or oil sauce + vegtable side.  I keep Trader Joe’s ravioli in my freezer at all times.  Add a vegtable sauté or even just some frozen peas if that’s all I have.  (My favorite is thin, biased cut asparagus & peas finished with lemon, cream, basil and mint.)

Pork tenderloin (seared on stove, finished in oven) + broil some vegetables while meat is resting.  I might cook some egg noodles or lentils to go with as a bonus. 

Sloppy joes.

Those are all really easy, low effort and mess free dinners.  But the very best lazy dinner is freezer leftovers.  I keep a stock of about 12 or so quart size freezer bags of soups & stews.  Run hot water on bag until the contents release from plastic, out on pot on stove and heat through till hot.  Dinner is served. Also store leftover cooked meat, rice dishes, bread, pasta sauces, etc.  






Post # 20
619 posts
Busy bee

MrsFiveOh :  I think we live parallel lives… We always have pizza in the freezer, as that is DHs favorite meal! And we also always have quesadilla fixings in the house: tortillas, cheese, eggs, peppers, onions, zucchini, mushrooms, beans, and usually some leftover chicken or fish. Of the meals we don’t eat together, a burrito or quesadilla is the way to go!

I though of a few other favorites, since I love to cook but I’m always starving by the time I get home from work. Usually I’ll prep or marinade things in the morning so they are ready to go in the evening. When it cools off outside, I use the crock pot a few times per week. 

Salsa and chicken in the crock pot, or any variation of meat and liquid. The meat comes out shredded, fat rendered, and super flavorful! I make a bunch so it will last us a few days or I can freeze it for later. 

Tuna cakes over salad. 

Stir fry is another easy favorite. Sometimes I add a half of a can of coconut milk and curry powder and serve over quinoa or rice.

White fish, like haddock, topped with creamy soup (use what you want here) raw onion, and shredded cheese. Bake until fish is done- 350 for 30-40 minutes. I usually add some other veggies in with it while it cooks and serve with fresh bread or salad. 

Minestrone. I use an Olive Garden copy cat and use whatever veggies we have on hand. Mmmmmmmm! 

Post # 21
12 posts
  • Wedding: August 2016

Hummus Crusted chicken is my favorite easy meal. The hummus doesn’t really get crusty, but it makes a tasty sauce. I love using roasted red pepper or garlic hummus.


Hummus-Crusted Chicken

Post # 22
1180 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: March 2011

Blue apron

Post # 23
202 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: July 2017

I usually keep a jar of pasta sauce and some pasta in the cupboard. Sauté some ground beef, onions, and mushrooms, cook the pasta, heat the sauce (I like to also add 1/2 a cup of red wine for flavor), and combine. It’s done in like half an hour, and SO easy. Picking a good tomato sauce that you really like is important. 

Rotisserie chicken + onions + green chiles (canned) + pinto beans + taco seasoning = chicken tacos. Sauté together for a bit, stick in some taco shells, top with some cheese, and bake for around 10 min. 

Baked chicken breast with your favorite spice blend is great over lettuce as a dinner salad, or on buns as chicken sandwiches.

Frozen salmon fillets (I like the pre-marinated ones if I really don’t want to do any work) + baked sweet potatoes pair nicely. 

For ultimate easiness, I serve all of the above with side salads + another veggie that cooks quickly (steamed broccoli or green beans, for instance).

Post # 24
3114 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: March 2016 - Surfer\'s Beach, Grand Cayman

Pasta with some jarred sauce and sautéed veggies or a salad. 

The other night we had grilled cheese sandwiches. 

Post # 25
1941 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: May 2018 - City, State

Our fastest, easiest meals are always salads.

Since its summer we don’t want to cook so we will throw together different salads with whatever lettuce/vegetable/fruit/topping combo we have handy. 

Yesterday was watermelon salad: spinach, watermelon, red onion, black olives, feta, fresh basil. You don’t need a dressing since the watermelon is super juicy so it’s healthy too!

Today we are doing strawberries, spinach, pecans, and feta with a homemade balsamic vinaigrette. 

Tomorrow will be taco salad with spinach, taco-fied ground beef, spicy salsa, onions, crumbled taco shells, olives, chiles, peppers and whatever else I find 

Post # 26
1129 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: July 2013

We usually do things like beef tacos, chicken fajitas, fish with steamed veggies, things like that.  Sometimes scrambled eggs with cheddar cheese and toast.

Post # 28
1107 posts
Bumble bee

GreenGarnet :  as you can prob tell from my handle i looooove to cook from scratch. cooking is probably my favorite hobby, BUT i have quite a few of what i call “period meals” lol. i get horrible cramps during my period and feel super low energy so to avoid spending a ton of money eating out i use these super fast recipes for lunch and dinner (breakfast is still eggs, bacon, hoemfries, etc.): 

1. tortilla pizza, someone else mentioned this but i’d like to second it. dh LOVES them. tortilla + canned plain tomato sauce (add in a little garlic powder, basil, salt, and oregano) + shredded cheese. just toss in the oven for 15 minutes. i add other stuff to top them when i have it but this is the simplest version.

2. ramen. seriously. i know it’s awful for you but it’s wayyyyyyy cheaper than any other premade meal and it’s satisfying enough. i compensate by serving fruit for dessert on ramen nights.

3. black bean & corn salad. so good and so fast. canned black beans + canned corn + fresh cilantro + spices + apple cider vinegar. top with avocado, chicken, tomatoes, or just eat plain. 

4. loaded baked potatoes (regular or sweet potatoes). just bake them, individually wrapped in foil. while they’re baking make toppings. anything goes, bacon, cheese, sour cream, peppers, black bean and corn salad, salsa & chicken, etc. 

5. salads. any and all salads are pretty easy. 

Post # 30
3232 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: September 2016

We do stir fry and curry fairly often! They can both be super quick. For curry the quickest is Thai green curry: onion (cut in half, peel and then chop thin slices off so it’s half moon shapes – so much faster than dicing), garlic, fry it in a pan with a little oil. Add green curry paste. If you need to cook meat, add that and get it mostly cooked (chopped chicken or frozen prawns work well.) once everything is seared I usually add green peas, a can of bamboo shoots, a can of water chestnuts, whatever veggies I think go well that aree in the fridge (brococoli stems, peppers, etc), a tablespoon of fish sauce, a can of coconut cream, and wait for the rice to finish!

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