Raise your hand if you tend to come home on a casual Tuesday feeling more exhausted than ever, hungry enough to eat a horse, and also too lazy to decide what you want to eat.
We’re here for you, friends. These super easy (and healthy!) dinner ideas can be thrown together with minimal ingredients and time, and customized to what’s in your fridge or your taste preferences. Never fear the lazy weeknight again.
Vegetarian Pasta Bowl
Ingredients: whole wheat pasta (shells, rigatoni, elbows, etc.), fresh or frozen spinach, canned tomato sauce, parmesan cheese
Directions: In a pot, bring salted water to a boil and cook pasta according to directions on the box until al dente. While pasta is boiling, add the tomato sauce into a saucepan over medium heat. Add in spinach (allow more time if it’s frozen, less if it’s fresh) and stir until heated through. Strain pasta when finished cooking, and pour it back into pot with tomato sauce. Grate fresh parmesan over the top, salt and pepper to taste, and dig in.
Ingredients: torn iceberg lettuce, black beans, rice (brown or white), diced chicken breast or ground turkey, diced tomato, sliced avocado, sliced onion, tortilla chips
Directions: If your rice isn’t pre-cooked, prepare it according to the package directions. During this time, sauté diced chicken or ground turkey in a large pan over medium heat with a touch of oil until completely cooked through and chop remaining ingredients. In a bowl, layer the greens, rice, protein, and veggies. Top with avocado and crushed tortilla chips, or leave the chips whole and use them to scoop up the salad!
Chicken Stir Fry
Ingredients: 1in cubed chicken breasts or thighs, green beans, mushrooms (oyster or crimini), soy sauce, white or brown rice
Directions: If the rice isn’t pre-cooked, cook it according to the package directions. In a large pan, sear chicken over high heat with a touch of oil for about a minute and a half per side. Remove chicken from pan and set aside. Add to pan the rinsed and cut green beans and mushrooms, and sauté for about 5 minutes, or until cooked through. Add in chicken and soy sauce (to taste) and cook for another 2-3 minutes. Pour stir-fry mix over rice and enjoy.
Mediterranean Quinoa Salad
Ingredients: quinoa, your favorite greens (like kale, spinach or romaine), feta cheese, chickpeas, olives, diced cucumber, diced tomato, thinly sliced red onion, balsamic vinaigrette
Directions: If your quinoa is uncooked, bring two cups of water for every 1 cup of quinoa to a boil in a saucepan. Reduce to a simmer, cover, and cook for about 10 minutes or until all water is absorbed. Prepare the other ingredients like chopping the veggies and draining the chickpeas if they are canned. Once quinoa is finished cooking, add it to a large bowl with all other ingredients and toss to combine. Dig in!
Ingredients: ground turkey, diced sweet potato, black beans, corn, sour cream, cheddar cheese
Directions: Preheat an oven to 350 degrees and place diced sweet potato in one layer on a baking sheet with olive or coconut oil and salt. Keep in mind, the smaller the pieces of sweet potato, the less time it’ll need to cook! Check them every 10 minutes, but after 20 minutes, the sweet potato should be cooked through (depending on the size). In the meantime, sauté turkey until completely browned and cooked through. Rinse and drain black beans and corn if canned, and shred the cheddar cheese. Once the sweet potato is done baking, add it to a bowl with the turkey, black beans, and corn. Top with sour cream and cheddar cheese. Eat immediately while hot.
Jordan Drakoski is the one woman star of the foodie blog Dancing for Donuts. She's a regular guest writer on ToBox serving up inspiration and recipes for the mind and soul. She loves spending time in the kitchen creating new recipes, hiking, trying new restaurants and visiting new places.