MSN TFP Images 39

35 Dinner Ideas That Are Quick to Make So You Can Spend More Time Relaxing

As a busy professional, it can be difficult to maintain a healthy lifestyle and eat well. What I’ve learned over the years is that you need to get the hang of a few basic skills and a few essential recipes. Once you do, you’ll automatically keep key ingredients in your home. When that happens, it becomes much easier to whip up something to eat, and trying new recipes also is less daunting.

1. Vegan Pasta Al Limone

MSN TFP Images 3 2
Image credit: romandebree via

A classic Italian pasta dish with the creamiest lemon sauce! This Vegan Pasta al Limone recipe is gluten-, dairy-free, allergy-free, and still simple and easy to make! This authentic Southern Italian pasta sauce is cheesy, buttery, tangy, super creamy, and comes together in one pan for a quick and delicious meal ready in 10 minutes! Vegan Pasta al Limone Italian Lemon Pasta

2. Chicken Thyme Pasta

MSN TFP Images 4 2
Image credit: Timolina via

This chicken thyme pasta cooks in just 20 minutes! If you’re looking for an easy meal everyone will love, then this pasta dish is for you! This chicken thyme pasta is super comforting and rich. The dish is cooked with fusilli pasta, cream, thyme, and juicy chunks of chicken. The ultimate date night meal! Chicken Thyme Pasta – Cooked by Julie

3. One-Pot Pasta with Pumpkin Sauce

MSN TFP Images 5
Image credit: homydesign via

This pasta with Pumpkin Sauce is quick and easy to make, easy to clean up, and will feed the whole family! It’s hearty, flavorful, and cozy. With only one pot required, and less than ten ingredients, this pasta is easy to cook and easy to clean, which (hi, busy mom, here!), we can all appreciate! One-Pot Pasta with Pumpkin Sauce | Marley’s Menu

4. 25 Minute Lemon Broccoli Pasta

MSN TFP Images 6
Image credit: sofyabolotinaphotos via

25 Minute Lemon Broccoli Pasta is an easy weeknight meal and a great entertaining option all wrapped into one! It is surprisingly fast and easy, yet full of bright, fresh flavors that everyone will enjoy. 25 Minute Lemon Broccoli Pasta | Borrowed Bites

5. Creamy Garlic Mushroom Pasta

MSN TFP Images 7
Image credit: Yuliya Furman via

Make a restaurant-worthy creamy mushroom pasta dish with ease at home! You roast the mushrooms with garlic and butter, and the pasta is tossed with a velvety garlic sauce, served with creamy, luxurious burrata cheese that makes the perfect creamy garlic mushroom sauce. Creamy Garlic Mushroom Pasta | Sweet Tea + Thyme

6. Southern Baked Macaroni and Cheese

MSN TFP Images 8
Image credit: George Dolgikh via

Southern baked macaroni and cheese, also called soul food mac and cheese, is the ultimate comfort food. Creamy, rich, ooey-gooey, super cheesy, with those crispy browned cheese edges…no one can resist perfectly baked mac and cheese. (Soul Food) Southern Baked Macaroni and Cheese | Sweet Tea + Thyme

7. Sun-Dried Tomato Pasta

MSN TFP Images 9
Image credit: foodphotographer.puglia via

Sweet sun-dried tomatoes and vegan cream sauce come together to make a dish that gives you the best of both worlds. It’s creamy, cheesy, 100 percent vegan, and is easy to make. Sun-Dried Tomato Pasta – Daring Kitchen (

8. 20-Minute Sweet and Spicy Noodles

MSN TFP Images 10
Image credit: Joshua Resnick via

These Sweet and Spicy Noodles are a Thai-inspired fast, easy weeknight dinner that can be ready and on the table in just 20 minutes! These 20 Minute Sweet and Spicy Peanut Noodles are so easy and so spicy with a lovely hint of sweetness. 20 Minute Sweet and Spicy Noodles – Served From Scratch

9. 5 Ingredient Spinach and Ricotta Stuffed Shells

MSN TFP Images 11
Image credit: Oleksandr Prokopenko via

These 5-ingredient spinach and ricotta stuffed shells are a quick and simple vegetarian pasta dinner that is perfect for a busy weeknight or a special occasion. These easy stuffed shells provide a comforting, wholesome, flavorful treat and make the perfect 30-minute meal the whole family will enjoy. 5 Ingredient Spinach and Ricotta Stuffed Shells • Happy Kitchen

10. One-Pot 20-Minute Greek Pasta

MSN TFP Images 12
Image credit: Luis Pena Photography via

It’s a one-pot wonder ready in just 20 minutes! This Mediterranean-inspired One Pot 20 Minute Greek Pasta is a dump and makes a vegetarian dinner that’s bound to be a family favorite like it’s become in our house! One-Pot 20 Minute Greek Pasta – Served From Scratch

11. Pizza Rice Casserole

MSN TFP Images 14
Image credit: rimmabondarenko via

This Pizza Rice Casserole is a favorite weeknight dish with all the pizza components without the crust. You don’t need to wait for a pizza crust to rise or a pizza stone to heat up for this cozy dinner. Pizza Rice Casserole – Nina Kneads to Bake Savoury

12. Harissa Falafel

MSN TFP Images 13
Image credit: jcvelis from pixabay via

Flavourful, soft, perfectly-textured falafel with a crisp outer, you’re going to love this vegetarian harissa falafel recipe! The whole wrap is super easy to make and tastes like you are walking in the market in the Middle East. Harissa falafel – A Mummy Too

13. Spanish Rice and Beans

MSN TFP Images 15
Image credit: Juan Moyano via

Spanish Rice and Beans from Platter Talk is a fast, easy, and healthy meal to feed your family! Who said living on a diet of rice and beans needs to be boring? Trust me, with this dish you won’t feel poor! Spanish Rice and Beans

14. Sweet Potato and Black Bean Tacos

MSN TFP Images 16
Image credit: George Dolgikh via

Taco Tuesday just got a healthy makeover with these sweet potato and black bean tacos. Ready in just 25 minutes, sweet potato tacos are perfect for when you want a fantastic dinner but are short on time. Sweet Potato and Black Bean Tacos

15. Amazing Vegetarian Quesadilla Recipe

MSN TFP Images 17
Image credit: Oleksandr Prokopenko via

These quesadillas are quick, delicious, and packed full of vegetables. The crisp tortillas, melted cheese, and big flavor make them a favorite for the whole family. This recipe is so simple that kids can get involved in making vegetarian quesadillas too. Amazing Vegetarian Quesadilla Recipe: Quick and Delicious

16. Vegetarian Quinoa Enchilada Bake

MSN TFP Images 18
Image credit: olenayeromenkophotos via

This vegetarian quinoa enchilada bake is perfect for busy weeknights. It also freezes well and is a great dish to use to stock up your freezer. I love this recipe because it can be tailored to fit a lot of different dietary needs. Vegetarian Quinoa Enchilada Bake

17. Lentil Dal

MSN TFP Images 19
Image credit: CS Stock Images via

This simple and delicious lentil dhal is made with just a few pantry ingredients. Red lentils are cooked with fragrant spices and creamy coconut milk until a creamy and thick texture is reached. Easy Lentil Dahl Recipe – Nourish Plate

18. Easy Mediterranean Buddha Bowl

MSN TFP Images 27
Image credit: Timolina via

Love Buddha bowls? Love bright, bold Mediterranean flavor? Then, you’ll love these easy-to-meal prep bowls filled with flavorful quinoa, arugula, bell pepper, tomato, cucumber, chickpeas, olives, feta cheese, and hummus. Easy Mediterranean Buddha Bowl | Monica Nedeff

19. Chipotle Chicken Tacos

MSN TFP Images 20
Image credit: Oleksandr Prokopenko via

Chipotle Chicken Tacos are an easy weeknight chicken dinner ready in about 30 minutes! These tacos are spicy and a bit sweet, with a sauce made with chipotle peppers, onion, and lime. Perfect if you are looking for summer dinner ideas. Chipotle Chicken Tacos | Nibble and Dine

20. Gluten-Free Chicken Fried Rice

MSN TFP Images 21
Image credit: ildipapp via

This chicken-fried rice recipe is ready in just 10 minutes! Using leftover chicken is even quicker (and more nutritious) than getting take-out! This recipe is such an easy recipe to throw together after a busy workday! It’s such a quick, easy dinner. 10 Minute Gluten-Free Chicken Fried Rice – The Helpful GF

21. Spanish Chicken Stew

MSN TFP Images 22
Image credit: idlipapp via

This Spanish Chicken Stew comes together in less than half an hour but tastes like it’s cooked for hours, a hearty chicken stew full of warming rosemary, lemon, and garlic flavors. It one of my favorite weeknight dinners for years – and great to keep in the freezer for cold days when you need to warm up. Easy Spanish Chicken Stew with Lemon, Rosemary & Olives

22. Pineapple Chicken

MSN TFP Images 23
Image credit: YamisHandmade via

This healthy one-skillet pineapple chicken includes chicken breasts stir-fried with fresh ginger, garlic, and vegetables, all in a sweet pineapple sauce. I love meals like this, where the grocery list can be short. Healthier Pineapple Chicken Stir Fry | Worn Slap Out

23. Apricot Chicken

MSN TFP Images 24
Image credit: Radu Bercan via

This Skillet Apricot Chicken is pan-seared until golden and juicy, then covered in a sweet and sticky apricot jam glaze! It’s an easy weeknight dinner made in one pan (or electric skillet) in just 25 minutes. Skillet Apricot Chicken | Borrowed Bites 

24. Chunky Chicken Tortilla Soup

MSN TFP Images 25
Image credit: Linda Hughes Photography via

This Chunky Chicken Tortilla Soup Recipe comes together in 30 minutes and packs a ton of flavor and veggies! Make this soup for dinner any night of the week, or freeze some for later. Chunky Chicken Tortilla Soup | Fast | Easy | EmilyFabulous

25. Orange Chicken

MSN TFP Images 26
Image credit: Joshua Resnick via

Less than 30 minutes from start to finish, this Orange Chicken is bound to become your new favorite! It’s way better than takeout. It’s fresh, light, and filled with those signature flavors you crave and love. Serve with broccoli or cauliflower rice for a healthy Whole30 approved meal that the whole family will love! WHOLE30 ORANGE CHICKEN – Organically Addison

26. Herb-Roasted Sheet, Pan Chicken

MSN TFP Images 28
Image credit: nadianb via

This Herb-Roasted Sheet, Pan Chicken recipe, made with chicken thighs, gold potatoes, and fresh green beans, makes a delicious and easy weeknight meal. This is a nutritious dinner that the whole family will devour! Herb-Roasted Sheet Pan Chicken with Potatoes and Green Beans

27. Honey and Lemon Chicken and Rice

MSN TFP Images 29
Image credit: pixelshot via

Tender, juicy chicken breast cooked with rice and seasoned with honey and lemon is a delicious twist on chicken and rice. Cooked in one pot, this recipe has dinner on the table in a snap! Honey Lemon Chicken and Rice

28. Easy Ramen Noodles

MSN TFP Images 30
Image credit: Studio Japan via

You can make this Easy Ramen Noodle Recipe in less than 30 minutes. Throw that salty preservative package away and make a delicious and homemade meal that everyone will love. Easy Ramen Noodle Recipe

29. Homemade Sloppy Joes

MSN TFP Images 31
Image credit: Oleksandr Prokopenko via

Needing an inexpensive and easy idea for dinner? Homemade Sloppy Joes! Yes, these are easy and fast, and I am not talking about pouring it from a can. Homemade is the way to go, and I bet you already have these ingredients in your refrigerator and pantry. Homemade Sloppy Joes – Home at Cedar Springs Farm

30. The Best Easy Taco Salad

MSN TFP Images 32
Image credit: juliedeshaiesphotos via

This easy taco salad comes together in a flash, especially if the ground beef is cooked ahead of time – which it could be if you follow my quick dinner cooking tips above! The Best Easy Taco Salad Recipe – Fluxing Well

31. Easy Mahi Mahi Recipe with Lemon Garlic Sauce

MSN TFP Images 33
Image credit: svetlanafoote via

This is a simple and wildly delicious way to prepare and serve this tender, flakey, and popular white fish. If you can’t find mahi-mahi, replace it with another type of flakey white fish. Easy Mahi Mahi Recipe with Lemon Garlic Sauce – The Forked Spoon

32. Creamy Salmon Pasta

MSN TFP Images 34
Image credit: katrinshine via

Super quick make in ten minutes creamy salmon pasta that the whole family loves! This pasta is so quick to get ready. It only takes the pasta cooking time plus 5 minutes to stir through! Creamy Salmon Pasta

33. Tuna and Sweet Corn Pasta

MSN TFP Images 35
Image credit: Timolina via

Whip up this super simple tuna and sweet corn gluten-free pasta dish using a handful of store cupboard ingredients. It’s so delicious, packed with bold flavors, you can even serve it hot or cold – the choice is yours! Tuna and Sweet Corn Pasta – That Girl Cooks Healthy

34. 10-Minute Blackened Tilapia

MSN TFP Images 36
Image credit: Joshua Resnick via

Tilapia fillets are coated with an amazingly flavorful blackened spice rub and pan-fried to perfection. It is super quick! Less than 10 minutes to make this blackened tilapia, and that includes the prep time as well. 10-Minute Blackened Tilapia – Framed Recipes

35. Pan-Seared Salmon

MSN TFP Images 37
Image credit: piyato via

This pan-seared salmon is a quick, delicious take on seafood flavors. It’s a lemon-garlic seasoned filet with baked broccoli to complete a multi-textured and filling dinner! Pan-Seared Salmon Recipe – A Simple and Elegant Dinner Idea

Final Thoughts

MSN TFP Images 38
Image credit: anyka via

Cooking at home is one of the best frugal living tips you can use! A home-cooked meal is a satisfying and warming end to a long day. When you don’t have time to sit and cook for a long time or don’t have the luxury of a croc-pot or instant pot to throw up supper, these quick dinner ideas are the perfect recipes to eat after a long day. These easy dinner ideas will make meal prep a breeze, and with this list, you won’t have to spend too much time deciding what to make for any weeknight dinner.

Pictures featured are to illustrate examples of the main dish and do not represent the actual finished product in the recipes.

This article originally appeared on Your Money Geek and has been republished with permission.


Similar Posts