Top 6 Easy Dinner Recipes to Cook at Home

The key to easy cooking, these days, is to take advantage of convenience items when you can and to have a few go-to recipes for which you always have ingredients on hand. Here are some favorite easy dinner recipes, gentle on the budget, quick to make, and delicious.

asparagus and salmon dish

The Best Easy Dinner Recipes to Consider

#1. Easy Pasta Recipe

spaghetti with meatballs

Ingredients

  • 1 lb. dry spaghetti or other pasta.
  • 1 or 2 cans or jars spaghetti or marinara sauce.
  • 1-2 pounds cooked frozen meatballs, cooked crumbled ground beef, or coarsely chopped cooked chicken, optional.

How to Prepare It

This is one of those easy dinner recipes that everyone loves. Boil a large pot of water. Add the pasta and cook for about eight minutes. While pasta is cooking, heat the sauce in a saucepan on the stove or large glass bowl in the microwave, stirring occasionally.

Stir in meat and heat through. Drain the pasta. Serve sauce over pasta or stir together before serving. These ingredients will be enough for 6 servings.

Variations

  • Add minced garlic, fresh herbs, salt and pepper to taste.
  • Sauté a chopped onion with the meat before combining with sauce.
  • Add a can of petite diced tomatoes.
  • Top with fresh grated Parmesan cheese.
  • Serve with buttery garlic toast and a tossed green salad.
  • Try alfredo sauce or pesto instead of marinara.
  • Use a pound of processed cheese instead of sauce, and thin with a little milk.

#2. Frittata & Scramble Recipe

egg frittata on a rectangular plate

Ingredients (for 3-4 Servings)

  • 6 eggs.
  • 1 10-ounce package frozen chopped spinach.
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil.
  • ½ chopped onion.

How to Prepare It

Crack the eggs into a bowl and scramble with a fork. Heat oil in a medium skillet over medium-high heat. Stir in the onion and sauté for 1-2 minutes. Add spinach, cover, and let cook for about 3 minutes. Stir and break up spinach, cooking until heated through. Stir in eggs.

Lift the edges and bottom gently to move the cooked egg and allow liquid to flow underneath. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and cook until the eggs are completely set (about 3 minutes).

Variations

  • Cook half a pound of ground beef with the onions.
  • Sauté 2 cups fresh sliced mushrooms first, then add the onions and continue as directed.
  • Cook a diced potato with the onions.
  • Instead of allowing to firm up in one piece, scrabble mixture as it cooks, and serve over buttered toast wedges.
  • Scramble the mixture. Just before serving, top with a diced tomato and a cup of grated mild cheese.

#3. Sandwich Recipe

turkey ham and cheese sandwich

Ingredients (for 4 Servings)

  • 8 slices firm bread.
  • Butter.
  • 1 pound sliced turkey or other deli meat.
  • 2 cups gravy, either homemade or from a jar.

How to Prepare It

Among the easy dinner recipes available out there, this is probably a great one for when you want to eat on the go. Toast the bread and keep warm in the oven. Place the meat and gravy in a large skillet over medium heat. Butter the toast, cut in half diagonally, and arrange 4 triangles on each plate, slightly overlapping. Spoon the meat and gravy over the toast.

Variations

  • Sauté mushrooms in the skillet first, then add the meat and the gravy.
  • Stir in a couple of ounces of wine.
  • Serve over mashed potatoes or cooked rice instead of toast.
  • Stir in a package of frozen mixed vegetables.
  • Try using shrimp or tuna and alfredo sauce instead of meat and gravy.

#4. Burrito Recipe

burrito wrap on a wooden surface

Ingredients (for 6 Servings)

  • 3 cups cooked ground beef, coarsely chopped chicken, or shredded roast beef.
  • 1 packet taco seasoning mix.
  • 6 large flour tortillas.
  • 3 cups grated mild cheese (Jack or cheddar).
  • 1 can refried beans if desired.
  • 1 ½ cups cooked rice if desired.

How to Prepare It

Preheat the oven to 350F. Place the meat in a large skillet and heat through. Add the taco seasoning and water as directed. Allow to simmer about 5 minutes. Place the tortillas on sheet pans, top with cheese, and place in the oven. As soon as the cheese is melted, remove it from the oven and spoon the meat on top. If desired, add warmed beans and/or rice. Fold the burritos.

Variations

  • Offer bowls of garnishes, like salsa, sour cream, guacamole, chopped green onions, and diced chilies.
  • Sauté multi-colored bell pepper and onion strips and add them with the meat.
  • Place the finished burritos in a casserole dish and drizzle a can of enchilada sauce over the top, then sprinkle some extra cheese on top and bake about 10 minutes or until the cheese is melted.

#5. Stir Fry Recipe

a stir fry Asian dish

Ingredients (for 4 Servings)

  • 1 large yellow onion.
  • 2 pounds boneless skinless chicken.
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil.
  • 1 bag Asian-style frozen vegetables.
  • 1 jar stir-fry sauce.

How to Prepare It

Heat a wok or large skillet over high heat. Slice the chicken into thin strips. Quarter and slice the onion, creating thin strips. Place the oil in a hot pan and allow it to heat for about a minute. Quickly stir in the chicken with the onion. Stir and cook very fast until chicken is opaque. Stir in the frozen vegetables and sauce, cover, and heat for about three minutes. Serve with steamed rice.

Variations

  • Use fresh bell peppers and a can of sliced water chestnuts instead of frozen veggies.
  • Use fresh broccoli and mushrooms instead of frozen veggies.
  • Use shrimp instead of chicken, and fresh snow peas instead of frozen veggies.
  • Try different Asian sauces, some hot chili oil, or some sesame oil.

#6. Stew & Dumpling Recipe

a stew dish with vegetables and meat

Ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil.
  • 1 cup each chopped onion and celery.
  • 2 cups cooked chicken, cut into large dice.
  • 2 cans cream of chicken soup.
  • 1 cup frozen green peas.
  • 1 package refrigerated biscuits.

How to Prepare It

Sauté the onions and celery in a large skillet until soft and translucent. Stir in the chicken and soup. Add a cup of water, chicken broth, or milk to adjust consistency, if desired. Stir in the frozen vegetables. Arrange the biscuits on top, pressing gently into the mixture but not covering. Cover the pan on the stovetop, reduce heat, and simmer until biscuits are steamed through about 10 minutes.

Variations

  • Season with herbs, garlic, and fresh ground pepper.
  • Instead of steaming the dumplings, place the (oven-proof) pot in preheated 350 oven and bake about 10 minutes or until biscuits are done.
  • Try using cooked cubed beef (canned or cooked at home) and brown gravy instead of chicken and soup.

Putting It All Together

All the above meals are easy dinner recipes that anyone can try and prepare. It will not take you long to cook them. Follow our steps and recommendations if you want to eat something different and tasty every night. Feel free to share with us your insights as well as your favorites recipes.

Image sources: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7

Curry Chick Peas lettuce wraps

lemon juice from half a lemon2 cans of chick peas drain wash and add to the panchop up 1/2 of an onion 1 cup chop up cherry tomatoes1/2 teaspoon curry1/2 teaspoon onion powder1/2 teaspoon of cooking oil sea salt and black pepper1 tablespoon pure tomato pasteAdd all ingredients to a pan greased with cooking oil

cook quinoaslice a half of iceberg lettuceplace iceberg lettuce shells on a plateadd cooked quinoa to lettuce shells put cooked curry chickpeas ingredients on quinoa and lettuce shellssqueeze fresh lemon juice lettuce wrap

Cauliflower tacos

Start by steaming 2 cups of cauliflower1 cup green chopped slaw 1 tablespoon honey 2 tablespoons of mayonnaise squeeze lime juice on the slaw and mix upIn a large non-stick skillet add 1 tablespoon of olive oil put on high heatadd in steamed cauliflower 1/4 cup of watersprinkle in chili powder, onion powder, garlic powder, ground cumin, paprika, black pepper, and sea saltmix until all the seasonings are well combined with the cauliflower.cover and let it steam and cookwarm-up soft tortillas in a hot frying pan with olive oilplace tortillas on a plate put slaw mix on tortillas add cauliflower ingredientsput some fresh cut avocado and squeeze lime on top

Roasted Shrimp Veggie Salad

1 cup each of fresh tomato, carrots, yellow pepper, onions, and asparagus place on a cooking tray add olive oilpinch of salt, pepper, chili powder, and oreganoBake in the oven at 400 degrees for 10 minutesseparate veggies in the middle of the cooking sheet add raw deveined no shell or tail shrimpseasonbake 400 degrees for 10 minuteslet chill and add to lettuce