Let’s be honest: if you’re lacking inspiration, cooking dinner each day can become a tedious, repetitive bore — but that doesn’t have to be the case! From slow-simmered braises to vegan twists on classics, there’s bound to be something out there that sparks your interest and activates your tastebuds.
Here, we’ve gathered 65 of our most varied dinner recipes. Not only do these dishes take inspiration from cuisines around the world, but they also work for a wide range of diets and lifestyles. While this roundup includes plenty of options for meat-eaters, there are also recipes that work for vegetarian, vegan, keto, and gluten-free diets. Many of these dishes come together in under an hour, making them perfect for weeknights and last-minute occasions, and the handful of longer recipes are great for a weekend cooking project or special meal. Regardless of your level of experience in the kitchen, you’ll be hard-pressed not to find inspiration in at least one of these dishes.
For a nourishing and potentially vegetarian main (depending on how you feel about Parmasean cheese), look no further than a bowl of this classic Italian soup. Containing protein-rich beans, hearty vegetables, and carbohydrates in the form of small pasta, minestrone is a perfect all-in-one dinner.
Streamlining the process even further is this recipe’s use of a slow cooker: by using the appliance, you can cut down your active cooking time. Simply set a timer for a few hours and let the soup come together while you’re busy doing other things.
Recipe: Slow Cooker Minestrone Soup
Recipe developer Ting Dalton’s highly-flexible recipe for Thai chicken curry calls for packaged Thai green curry paste, chicken thighs, eggplant, and snow peas, along with fish sauce, coconut milk, and other aromatics. However, the dish can be adapted to whatever you have in your kitchen, making it the perfect meal to help clean out your fridge. Feel free to swap the green curry paste for red, or make your own if you prefer. You can also use chicken breast instead of thighs and change up the vegetables to match your mood.
Recipe: Thai Chicken Curry
Traditionally, Irish stew is made from mutton, lamb, or even goat meat — but for an American-style adaptation of the dish, use beef as the stew’s protein source. Perfect for a rainy-day project, this recipe does require just over two hours to complete. However, despite taking a while to come together, both the ingredient list and process are fairly straightforward. The end result will be a deeply satisfying, savory dish that pairs perfectly with colcannon or Irish soda bread.
Recipe: Beef Irish Stew
For a super-quick way to spotlight seafood, turn to a pescatarian version of an American favorite: salmon burgers. Requiring just 20 minutes of your time (half for prep, half for cooking), this dish is ideal for busy weeknights and last-minute get-togethers.
With the help of a food processor, briefly blitz your raw salmon with breadcrumbs, egg white, herbs, and lemon juice. After forming the mixture into patties, simply fry ’em up and assemble your burgers.
Recipe: Salmon Burgers
Moong dal, or mung beans, make for an ultra-flavorful, nutritious meal that’s ready within an hour. On the stove, onion is cooked down with garlic, ginger, and a teaspoon of cumin seeds. Add tomato paste, more spices, moong dal, and broth, and leave the mixture is left to simmer until soft, about 30 to 40 minutes.
You can serve the final dish on its own or on top of rice, along with thinly sliced red onion and a handful of fresh, chopped cilantro. Leftovers will keep for up to five days in the fridge if stored correctly, making this dish a no-brainer for busy weeks.
Recipe: Healthy Moong Dal
For the ultimate comfort-food dinner, look no further than this rich, cheesy, and deceptively simple dish. This recipe utilizes packaged, pre-made gnocchi as well as cooked, shredded chicken — effectively eliminating the most time-consuming parts of the cooking process. All that’s left to do is make your cream sauce, simmer with your gnocchi, and stir in some baby kale to wilt. This luxurious, deeply-satisfying meal comes together in under 40 minutes, making it perfect for a weeknight treat.
Recipe: Creamy Chicken Gnocchi
Despite their name, air fryers are good for more than just replicating the taste of your favorite fried foods. In this recipe, the increasingly popular home appliance is used to perfectly cook a large cut of beef without any stress. The best part? This roast beef requires a mere 30 minutes in the air fryer, meaning you can replicate the taste of a Sunday roast no matter what day of the week it is.
Serve with gravy, potatoes, and any vegetables you like — roasted carrots and broccoli pair particularly well.
Recipe: Air Fryer Roast Beef
Not only is this soup deeply nourishing, but it’s also completely meat-free. By combining three types of beans (black, kidney, and pinto), brown rice, and hominy in this thick, stew-like dish, you get a meal packed with protein and carbohydrates.
This dish not only comes together quickly, but it’s a great recipe for fans of meal-prepping. Simply whip up a batch at the beginning of the week and reheat the leftovers for a filling, satisfying lunch or dinner option.
Recipe: Mexican Rice Soup
For a vegan-friendly twist on an Italian classic, try out this plant-based eggplant parmesan. Simply substitute your cheese for dairy-free versions, and use a vegan batter instead of egg during the breading process. Unlike more traditional eggplant parmesan recipes, which require you to fry the vegetable in oil, this recipe has you bake them — making the cooking process simpler and a little less messy. In under an hour, you’ll have a perfect eggplant parm without any of the dairy.
Recipe: Vegan Eggplant Parmesan
If you happen to have a smoker laying around, these pork tacos make for a great project — plus, they feed a crowd. To balance out the savory, smoky flavor of the pork, these tacos are topped with creamy avocado, sweet pineapple, red onion, sliced radish, and cilantro.
This recipe calls for a three-pound pork loin, which yields a whopping 20 tacos. To feed a smaller group, you can easily choose a smaller cut of meat and scale down the recipe. Alternatively, cook the larger pork loin and use your leftover meat in other recipes throughout the week. (We feel it would be a particularly tasty chicken substitute in our fried rice.)
Recipe: Smoked Pork Tacos
Masala dosa, a South Indian crepe usually stuffed with savory fillings, is a dish you can make in the comfort of your own kitchen. The process does require some advance planning: the batter, which is made from uncooked rice and dal, requires several hours of resting. However, each step is relatively simple and the results are well worth the wait. Once the dish is completed, you’ll end up with dosas stuffed with a fragrant, spiced potato mixture — a perfect vegetarian main.
Recipe: Classic Masala Dosa
An air fryer can help you make the idea of succulent, juicy pork chops on a weeknight a reality. First doused in a sweet, tangy marinade containing balsamic vinegar, maple syrup, olive oil, and aromatics, these pork chops need only about 10 brief minutes in the air fryer (depending on their thickness, of course).
Recipe developer Kit Hondrum recommends serving the pork chops with brown rice and asparagus, but this versatile dish pairs well with whatever you have in your kitchen.
Recipe: Air Fryer Pork Chops
Briam, also called briami, is a vegetable-forward dish hailing from the Mediterranean. Known as the “Greek ratatouille,” this vegan bake includes a whole lot of veggies: sliced eggplant, red onion, zucchini, and russet potatoes, to be precise. After combining the prepped vegetables with a can of crushed tomatoes, garlic, parsley, and olive oil, simply pop the mixture in the oven. About 40 minutes later, the vegetables will be tender and ready to be topped with kalamata olives.
Recipe: Oven-Roasted Greek Briam Bake
Making perfect risotto can be a lengthy and technical process, requiring you to stand at the stove and stir until the rice’s consistency is just right. However, it need not be that difficult. With the help of an Instant Pot, this mushroom risotto comes together in under 30 minutes from start to finish.
The inclusion of mushrooms gives the dish an earthy, umami flavor profile — but if you’re not a fan, you can easily swap the fungi out for peas, leeks, or another vegetable of your choosing. This dish can also be made vegetarian, or even vegan, with a few simple swaps.
Recipe: Instant Pot Mushroom Risotto
It may be a take-out favorite, but it’s totally possible to make orange chicken in the comfort of your home kitchen. Instead of deep-frying the chicken, as is typical in restaurant versions of the dish, this recipe calls for baking the bite-size pieces of chicken breast. This makes the process not only a little easier but also less messy.
This dish is best served atop a fluffy pile of rice, showered with a sprinkling of sesame seeds and chopped green onions.
Recipe: Baked Orange Chicken
For another vegan twist on a classic, swap meat for mushrooms in this stroganoff recipe. Every bit as comforting as the meat version, our vegan mushroom stroganoff uses coconut milk and nutritional yeast to evoke the creamy texture and tangy taste of sour cream, a traditional ingredient in beef stroganoff. To finish the dish, mix the stroganoff with cooked pasta and top with chopped parsley for a dash of color and freshness.
Recipe: Vegan Mushroom Stroganoff
Chana masala is a fragrant, warming dish that’s perfect for a chilly evening — and it just so happens to be vegan.
Using an Instant Pot expedites the cooking process for this Indian chickpea curry, and the inclusion of several aromatics and spices (cumin seeds, mustard seeds, ginger, coriander, and garam masala, just to name a few) helps to build huge amounts of flavor in a short period of time. Serve over rice or with naan, if you like, and top with fresh cilantro.
Recipe: Instant Pot Chana Masala
If you’ve ever been craving sushi but not had the tools to make it yourself, this may be the recipe for you. This California roll bowl is sort of like a deconstructed sushi roll, inspired in part by the widely-beloved poke bowls. Use sushi rice as your base, then top with spicy mayo, surimi (imitation crab), cucumber, avocado, nori, pickled ginger, and furikake.
While our recipe features ingredients based on the California roll (hence the name) feel free to swap whatever you like to style it after your go-to sushi order.
Recipe: California Roll Bowl
This vegetable-centric dish evokes all the iconic flavors of lasagna but uses spaghetti squash as a base instead of noodles. The recipe is perfect for anyone following a low-carb diet, and can easily be made keto if you use a sugar-free tomato sauce or vegetarian if you omit the meat.
In addition to spaghetti squash and marinara sauce, this recipe calls for a mouth-watering mix of sweet Italian sausage, baby spinach, and three different types of cheese.
Recipe: Spaghetti Squash Lasagna Boats
Shepherd’s pie is always a crowd-pleaser — and it’s surprisingly easy to make! A savory mixture of ground beef, carrots, corn, peas, broth, herbs, and aromatics is topped with a “crust” of buttery, creamy homemade mashed potatoes. The pie is then baked until the potatoes start to turn golden-brown and crispy along the edges. Easy as (shepherd’s) pie.
Even if you’re not cooking for a crowd, shepherd’s pie makes for yummy leftovers, perfect for reheating throughout the week.
Recipe: Simple Shepherd’s Pie
Access the flavors of the Mediterranean coast from your own kitchen with this tasty, nutrient-packed dinner. Simply bake cod fillets (fresh or thawed-from-frozen will both work) with lemon juice, olive oil, olives, red onion, and cherry tomatoes. A selection of dried herbs also enhances the Mediterranean vibe.
Recipe developer Christina Musgrave recommends serving this dish over a bed of orzo, along with extra lemon wedges on the side. Just be aware, this dish doesn’t keep well so be sure to scale down if you’re feeding less than four.
Recipe: Mediterranean Baked Cod
We all know and love a classic bowl of tomato-based chili, laced with beans and ground beef … but why not switch things up and try a different version for a change? This white chicken chili gets its luxurious texture from the inclusion of cream cheese, and the use of an Instant Pot means you can develop the complex flavors of a long-simmered stew in under an hour.
Recipe: Instant Pot White Chicken Chili
For a lighter take on an American classic, try a shrimp burger. These patties — made from a mix of ground and coarsely chopped shrimp for a varied texture — are especially good served on a buttered and toasted bun with spicy, sriracha-laced mayo, and soft butter lettuce. To take things to the next level, feel free to top your burgers with thin slices of avocado, tomato, and/or jalapeño.
A side of french fries and onion rings is never a bad move, but these burgers also pair well with a salad or vegetable of your choice.
Recipe: Shrimp Burger
Tofu is beloved by vegetarians and meat-eaters alike for its neutral taste and ability to absorb flavors like a sponge. This simple tofu recipe gets its flavor from something you probably already have in your fridge: barbecue sauce.
To first get the tofu crispy, cube and press the protein to release any excess water. Then, dust with cornstarch and lightly fry to develop a golden-brown crust. To complete the flavor-packed main, just mix the tofu with the barbecue sauce and serve. This vegan dish is great on its own, but can also be served over rice or alongside your favorite potato preparation.
Recipe: BBQ Tofu
Pan-fried chicken thighs are one of those restaurant-quality dishes that are surprisingly easy to make at home — and it comes together in only 35 minutes.
To turn the chicken thighs into a complete meal, recipe developer Susan Olayinka recommends pairing the protein with a grain (quinoa or rice, for example) or a starchy vegetable like potatoes. The recipe developer also suggests adding something green, like broccoli, to balance out the meal. A side of crusty bread — which we suggest you use to mop up the buttery, savory pan sauce — would also do the trick.
Recipe: Pan-Fried Chicken Thighs
This salmon recipe is filled with explosive flavor thanks to a marinade made with lime juice, honey, garlic, and soy sauce. Requiring just 10 minutes of prep and 15 minutes of baking, this dish comes together in an instant, making it ideal for last-minute dinners.
The final result is highly-adaptable: recipe developer Christina Musgrave suggests pairing the fish with cilantro rice or adding it to a taco salad. Other options include serving it with pasta or in a sandwich. Of course, if all else fails, this salmon is delicious on its own.
Recipe: Honey Lime Salmon
Mushrooms make the perfect filling for these meatless fajitas, and portobello mushrooms (which are known for having a substantial, meaty taste and texture) make for a particularly effective meal.
These ‘shrooms are cooked with bell peppers, onion, and spices, and then paired with creamy avocado before getting wrapped in a warm tortilla. Feel free to add a squeeze of lime juice, cilantro, jalapeños, chopped tomatoes, or any other Tex-Mex toppings you’d like.
Recipe: Portobello Fajitas
Requiring just 10 ingredients including the garnish, this recipe for teriyaki chicken — full of acidic pineapple and sweet bell peppers — packs a punch.
Seasoned with soy sauce, brown sugar, ginger, honey, garlic, and shallots, this chicken dish pairs beautifully with fluffy, steamed rice or a bowl of noodles. And the best part? This quick and easy recipe lets you have dinner on the table in under 40 minutes.
Recipe: Pineapple Teriyaki Chicken
There’s nothing better than elevated comfort food, and this green chile mac and cheese is exactly that. Inspired by recipe developer Kristen Carli’s hometown of Phoenix, Arizona, this mac and cheese uses canned green chiles and pepper jack cheese to give the creamy dish some much-needed heat.
Outside of the time it takes to boil water, this recipe comes together in just a few minutes — meaning it’s nearly as quick to make as your favorite boxed version.
Recipe: Green Chile Mac & Cheese
Who doesn’t love a California roll? As it turns out, the popular sushi doesn’t have to be a restaurant-only affair. As long as you have a bamboo sushi mat and plastic wrap, it’s fully possible to make California rolls — or really, any sushi — at home.
Make sure you use sushi rice for this recipe: it’s stickier than other varieties of white rice and is essential for holding everything together. (If you need help on how to cook it, we got you.) For a classic California roll, fill with imitation crab (also called surimi), cucumber, and avocado.
Recipe: California Roll
The idea of making BBQ ribs at home can sound daunting … and besides, is it even possible to replicate the taste of your favorite barbecue joint in your own kitchen? Turns out that with an air fryer, it is.
The popular kitchen appliance not only shortens the cooking time of the ribs, but it yields a crispier result than what you can typically achieve in an oven. Make your own BBQ sauce or simply use your favorite bottled one, the choice is yours. Serve with coleslaw, potato salad, or any other classic BBQ side.
Recipe: Air Fryer BBQ Ribs
Pork chops can easily become dried-out and chewy, and as a result, many people avoid making them at home. But by using a temperature-controlled sous vide machine, you can completely eliminate the risk of overcooked pork. After the chops are finished cooking in their sous vide bath, toss them in a hot skillet with some butter and thyme for a quick sear. This technique will develop a golden-brown exterior that beautifully compliments the tender meat.
Recipe: Sous Vide Pork Chops
Inspired by the flavors of Morocco, these beef meatballs are packed with cilantro, garlic, cumin, and paprika — a refreshing alternative to the Italian-style meatballs we all know and love.
These meatballs, which are simmered in a spiced tomato sauce, can be paired with spaghetti or another pasta if you choose; however, they also work well with any number of sides, including quinoa, rice, or even a simple salad. What’s more, you can prep the meatballs ahead of time, freezing them until you’re ready. Just remember to move them from the freezer to the fridge the night before you plan to eat them to defrost.
Recipe: Moroccan Meatballs
This red beans and rice recipe uses an Instant Pot to make the New Orleans staple easier than ever — and vegan! Recipe developer Miriam Hahn recommends using Beyond Sausage for this dish, but you can use any vegan sausage substitute you have access to. The recipe also calls for dried beans, something rarely seen in weeknight recipes. However, because of the Instant Pot’s pressure cooking abilities, these beans need just a quick soak and a fraction of the standard cooking time.
The idea of vegan red beans and rice break your bayou heart? We also have a recipe for a more traditional version of the Instant Pot dish featuring pork sausage.
Recipe: Instant Pot Vegan Red Beans And Rice
For the ultimate all-in-one meal, look no further than this barley soup. Packed with beef and vegetables, this recipe transforms several pantry staples — carrot, celery, onion, barley, beef chuck, some herbs, and broth — into a hearty, satisfying soup that’s more than the sum of its parts. While this nourishing, savory dish can certainly stand alone, a roll or some bread on the side is never a bad idea.
Recipe: Vegetable Beef Barley Soup
Lasagna is one of those dishes that never fails to delight. To bulk up this meatless version, recipe developer Miriam Hahn added a load of veggies: specifically, six cups each of kale and sliced mushrooms. Layered with pasta sheets, ricotta cheese, mozzarella, and marinara sauce, the final dish combines that classic lasagna taste with a hefty dose of nutrients. This recipe comes together in just over an hour, making it perfect for weeknights and special occasions alike.
Leftovers will last about four days in the fridge, so this recipe is the perfect way to get a few meals out of one dish.
Recipe: Kale Lasagna
For an ultra-quick weeknight dinner, try this garlic butter shrimp. This dish can be made using either fresh or frozen shrimp — meaning it’s the perfect opportunity to use that bag of shrimp you’ve had taking up precious space in your freezer. The buttery sauce, fortified with white wine, lemon, and garlic, is so good on its own you’ll definitely want to have some crusty bread nearby to mop it all up.
Recipe: Garlic Butter Shrimp
These hearty sandwiches make for a satisfying meal that just so happens to be vegan. The tofu, which is marinated in soy sauce, lime, garlic, and ginger, brings substance to this Vietnamese-style sandwich, while the quick-pickled veggies pack an acidic punch. Just make sure to use egg-free mayonnaise to ensure the dish remains totally plant-based if you’re serving to someone who follows a vegan diet.
Eat these sandwiches alone or pair with soup for a more filling meal.
Recipe: Tofu Banh Mi
One of Cuba‘s most famous dishes, ropa vieja takes flank steak and braises it until it’s fall-apart tender. To streamline the process, Kristen Carli developed this recipe to be made in a slow cooker, where it simmers away for about six hours. When it’s finished, you’ll have a tomato-filled braise dotted with olives and capers. Carli recommends serving your ropa vieja with rice and/or tortillas.
Recipe: Slow Cooker Ropa Vieja
With the help of an Instant Pot, this soup comes together in under 20 minutes — but you’ll have a dish that tastes like it’s been simmering on the stove for much longer. Salsa, beans, spices, tomatoes, and chicken help build layers of flavor, while a topping of sour cream and tortilla strips adds richness and crunch.
Best of all, this soup makes for great leftovers to eat for lunch the next day! Just make sure you wait to add your toppings, lest you end up with soggy chips and an unpleasant texture.
Recipe: Instant Pot Chicken Tortilla Soup
Sous vide is a method that allows you to cook things at a precise temperature, using a vacuum-sealed bag and a gentle water bath. When cooked sous vide, salmon takes on a flaky, melt-in-your-mouth texture that can be hard to achieve by other means. Once the salmon is done in the sous vide, it’s briefly seared in butter to crip up the skin and add flavor and color to the dish.
Serve alone, with a side of asparagus or another veggie, or atop rice.
Recipe: Sous Vide Salmon
You’ll need a smoker and a couple of hours to make this recipe a reality, but the prep couldn’t be simpler. While the ribs are on the grill, make a quick glaze with barbecue sauce (we like Sweet Baby Ray’s), brown sugar, apple cider vinegar, and Worcestershire sauce. During the last 30 minutes of cooking, simply brush the meat with your ultra-flavorful sauce — but don’t forget to set some aside for dipping later on.
Recipe: Smoked Country-Style Ribs
This is a hearty salad with a ton of mix-ins to keep you full and satisfied for hours. Using vegan “taco meat” (made from lentils and walnuts) as a stand-in for the real thing, you’re able to emulate the key flavors of the Mexican-inspired dish. Also included in the mix are black beans, corn, tomato, black olives, avocado, dairy-free cheese, fresh tomatoes, and more — all served on a bed of chopped romaine. We used vegan sour cream and salsa for the zippy, creamy dressing, but a little oil and lime juice would also work.
Recipe: Vegan Taco Salad
For a truly luxurious meal, look no further than these homemade crab ravioli made with fresh pasta dough. While making pasta from scratch may seem daunting, this recipe doesn’t require any fancy equipment — just a rolling pin. Meanwhile, the filling, laced with crabmeat and ricotta, comes together in mere seconds. All these ravioli need is some melted butter and maybe a little chopped parsley, if you have some on hand.
Recipe: Crab Ravioli
Chicken Normandy (or poulet à la Normande, as it’s known in France) highlights a key ingredient from its home region: apples. While the combo of chicken and apples may sound like a strange pair, the two ingredients create a dish that perfectly balances savory with sweet, yielding a surprising depth of flavor. In addition to sautéed sliced apples, this recipe also makes use of apple brandy to deglaze the pan and apple cider as a braising liquid.
Recipe: Chicken Normandy
This salmon only needs 30 minutes to marinate, thanks to the use of umami-rich miso paste. Along with the flavorful ingredient, the marinade calls for white rice vinegar, soy sauce, brown sugar, and red pepper flakes — making a final product that’s simultaneously salty, sweet, savory, and spicy.
Serve alongside your favorite green vegetable (broccoli, green beans, and peas would all work nicely) and rice, quinoa, or noodles for a filling meal. This salmon also makes great leftovers and can be served hot or cold the next day.
Recipe: Miso Salmon
This luxurious pasta dish is a great way to sneak some extra veggies into your meal. In fact, the spinach included in this recipe provides a much-needed counterpoint to all the creamy, cheesy elements.
Along with the spinach, these jumbo shells are stuffed with a combination of crumbled Italian sausage, shredded mozzarella, and parmesan — and then topped with a garlic-parmesan cream sauce. The dish is rich, comforting, and perfect for a winter night.
Recipe: Sausage And Spinach Stuffed Shells
Mapo tofu is a classic Sichuan dish, with origins as far back as the late 19th century, according to The Guardian. Taking inspiration from the original, this meat-free version uses black bean sauce, sesame oil, garlic, and dried shiitake mushrooms to coat the tofu.
Recipe developer Kristen Carli chose to substitute the dish’s signature Sichuan peppercorns for red chili flakes, but feel free to swap back (or use both) if you’re looking for that classic tongue-tingling flavor.
Recipe: Vegetarian Mapo Tofu
Literally translating to “little sleeves” in Italian, manicotti is a dish made using tube-shaped pasta that’s been stuffed with a cheesy filling and baked in a tomato sauce. This weeknight version of the Italian-American favorite uses a simple ricotta-parmesan filling and calls for jarred marinara sauce to streamline the process (our favorite is Rao’s). Thanks to the reduced prep time, you can have these mozzarella-topped manicotti on the dinner table in under an hour — seriously.
Recipe: Classic Manicotti
For an impressive dish that’s also deceptively easy to make, you need to know about our Champagne chicken recipe. The protein is served with a creamy, champagne-based sauce — made with shallots, butter, and stock — plus mushrooms. Always a delicious combination of ingredients.
It’s also totally fine if you don’t want to splurge on a fancy bottle of champagne to make this dish: it works just as well with sparkling white wine.
Recipe: Champagne Chicken
This hearty, Southern gumbo gets its flavor from the “holy trinity” of vegetables (bell pepper, onion, celery) and a dark roux. In addition to adding a ton of nuttiness and depth, the roux plays an essential role in the gumbo’s texture, thickening the dish to its desired consistency. Serve with a pile of steaming rice for a classic Louisiana-style dinner, or switch it up and pair with a leafy green salad for a lighter meal.
Recipe: Shrimp And Okra Gumbo
This stuffed pepper skillet takes all of the flavors of the beloved dish and deconstructs it into a delightfully simple one-pot meal.
Instead of having to actually stuff your peppers, our recipe calls for a mix of diced orange, yellow, and red bell peppers. These are added to a pot with cooked ground beef, onion, diced tomatoes, canned beans, chicken stock, and uncooked white rice. As the mixture simmers away for about 20 minutes, the rice cooks and absorbs the excess liquid, leaving you with a perfectly creamy, comforting meal. Top with cheese to finish the whole thing off.
Recipe: Stuffed Pepper Skillet
In this recipe, tilapia is elevated with a coating of lemony breadcrumbs (or panko) and parmesan cheese. Unlike some recipes, which use breading techniques that can be messy and complicated, recipe developer Susan Olayinka uses an unexpected ingredient — mayonnaise — to help the coating stick to the fish. After just 20 minutes in the oven, you’ll have a main that goes with anything from a side salad to creamed corn.
Recipe: Parmesan Crusted Tilapia
Beef burgers are a staple in many households, but you probably less often find them made from lamb.
Our twist on the classic not only uses ground lamb in place of beef, but adds a ton of herbs and aromatics into the mix for a burst of flavor. Lamb pairs beautifully with mint and coriander, and the inclusion of red onion, garlic, and dijon mustard only elevates things further. To complete the dish, top these burgers with a garlicky, herby mayo and served on a toasted bun.
Recipe: Best Lamb Burger
This Cuban picadillo combines ground beef, canned tomato sauce, and diced yellow potatoes with spices like ground cumin, paprika, and dried oregano to yield a flavorful final dish. As it simmers, the excess liquid evaporates, the flavors concentrate, and the potatoes become creamy and tender. But this 35-minute meal wouldn’t be complete without the garnish: a topping of diced green olives adds an unexpected brininess to the dish, while chopped cilantro adds freshness and bite.
Recipe: Easy Cuban Picadillo Recipe
A classic Hungarian goulash usually contains meat, but this version is perfect for all the vegetarians in your life. Due to its distinctly meaty texture, tempeh (which is made from soybeans) makes the ideal vegan substitute for ground meat. Because of its fairly neutral flavor, tempeh also allows the flavors of the dish’s vegetables, aromatics, and spices to really shine through.
This dish is particularly great for weeknights, as it calls for dried elbow macaroni to be cooked directly in the goulash — meaning there’s no need for an extra pot.
Recipe: Vegetarian Goulash
For a light, veggie-forward (though not vegetarian) dinner, try these pork lettuce wraps. Filled with ground pork and fresh carrots and peppers, this recipe makes for a fresh, light dinner. Added to the pork are soy sauce, hoisin sauce, honey, and chili flakes, all of which contribute a ton of flavor and depth to the overall dish. Toasted cashews, meanwhile, add a satisfying, nutty crunch, providing a welcome contrast to the meaty filling and fresh vegetables.
To make the meal more substantial, pair it with a starchy side like rice.
Recipe: Ground Pork Lettuce Wraps
“The preparation of a fish meunière style means rolled in flour and sautéed in butter, then finished with a lemon butter sauce,” explained recipe developer Kate Shungu, discussing this 15-minute recipe. The dish only calls for seven ingredients in total — trout fillets, flour, salt, pepper, butter, lemon juice, and parsley — but it yields a rich and balanced final product.
Pair the fish with bread or another starch to soak up all of the buttery sauce.
Recipe: Trout Meunière
For a twist on a Philly classic, try using thinly-sliced chicken breast in your next cheesesteak. These hefty sandwiches are topped with a creamy homemade cheese sauce made with sharp provolone, as well as sautéed green bell peppers, white onion, and mushrooms. After toasting each hoagie roll under the broiler, generously fill with your meat, veggies, and cheese sauce. These cheesesteaks come together in 35 minutes and are best served immediately.
Recipe: Chicken Cheesesteak
After braising for three hours, these lamb shanks emerge tender and falling off the bone. The best part? All of that magic happens in the oven — meaning this is a surprisingly easy dish to nail, regardless of one’s experience level in the kitchen.
While our slow-braised lamb shanks do definitely require a substantial time commitment, most of that time is hands-off, making this the perfect recipe for a weekend you plan to spend on the couch. Serve with mashed potatoes and peas or green beans for a classic pairing.
Recipe: Slow-Braised Lamb Shanks
Our recipe for sesame chicken results in a highly-flexible main that can be used in countless ways. Whether it’s served on a bed of rice, alongside a stir-fry, or as the protein source in a salad, this shredded chicken breast can fit any and every mood. Because the recipe uses a crockpot, cooking for several hours at a low temperature, it’s a great dish to prepare in advance.
Recipe: Easy Crockpot Sesame Chicken
A remarkably easy dinner, these trout fillets are first dredged in flour, then dipped in egg and coated in a mixture of breadcrumbs and ground pecans. While it’s somewhat unexpected to use pecans in a breadcrumb coating, the nuts add a buttery, sweet flavor and crunch to the delicate fish. These fillets bake for just 10 to 12 minutes in the oven and have a flaky texture when finished.
Recipe developer Jennine Rye recommends serving the trout on its own or with a lemon cream sauce, or going all out and placing the crispy fish on top of a plate of fried bacon and sauteed peas.
Recipe: Pecan-Crusted Trout
Soups can take a long time to make, but this recipe expedites the process using chicken stock from your grocery store and pre-cooked turkey. (As you can imagine, this soup is the perfect way to use leftovers from a turkey dinner.) Orzo, or another small pasta of your choice, adds bulk to the dish, making it satisfying enough to eat alone. This soup is also chock-full of veggies like spinach, peas, carrots, celery, and bell peppers — the perfect way to add some nutrients to a winter diet.
Recipe: Turkey Vegetable Soup
Pork loin is undeniably delicious, but it can easily turn out disappointing and dry when overcooked. To avoid that outcome entirely, use a slow cooker instead of your oven next time you’re craving the dish.
Along with the perfectly-cooked meat, our recipe delivers a tangy, sweet sauce flavored with apple cider vinegar and dark brown sugar. Just make sure to start cooking in advance: this dish requires a minimum of five hours in the slow cooker.
Recipe: Slow Cooker Pork Loin Roast
Khichdi is a deeply-comforting South Asian dish made from lentils and rice. It also happened to be meat-free and filled with plant-based protein, making it perfect for anyone following a vegetarian or vegan diet (though we promise it won’t disappoint the meat-eaters sitting at your table).
Spiced with turmeric, cumin, bay leaf, fresh ginger, and chilis, this khichdi has you simmer jasmine rice and lentils with diced tomatoes and chopped onions. The dish is ready when everything is soft and tender and the excess liquid is absorbed — about half an hour.
Recipe: Easy Khichdi