Stuck in a recipe rut with no idea what to make? Here are my favorite, EASY go-to meals for simple dinners.
It’s been a hot minute since I’ve posted anything food related, but it’s probably one of my favorite things to post about.
When it comes to cooking, I rely heeeeeeeeeavily on Pinterest. There are so many amazing food bloggers out there, I’m usually always trying a new recipe. However, there are a few recipes that are 1.) family faves, 2.) dang deliciously, and 3.) sooooo easy and convenient.
These are the ones we keep in constant rotation and we always have the ingredients on hand.
My Favorite, EASY, Go-To Recipes for Busy Nights
Slow Cooker Chicken Parm
Key ingredients: chicken*, can of crushed tomatoes, penne pasta, mozzerella cheese, breadcrumbs
If you’ve been following Her Happy Home for any amount of time, you know I’m all about the Crock Pot. Like, it’s probably how I cook about 75% of our meals. The best part of this recipe: you don’t have to boil the pasta separately! Can I get a hallelujah?? Right before the end of the cooking time, throw the uncooked penne pasta in with the rest of the ingredients and you’ll have perfectly cooked pasta in about 20 minutes.
If you wanna master your Crock Pot game, I suggest getting one that’s Wi-Fi enabled so you can turn it on from anywhere, anytime. Total game changer. OR, even the Instant Pots now offer Wi-Fi capability (and you can use it as a slow cooker!)
*Keep a bag of frozen boneless, skinless chicken in the freezer for easy meals.
Slow Cooker Salsa Quinoa Chicken
Key ingredients: chicken*, quinoa, jar of salsa, canned black beans, canned corn, chicken broth, cheese
If I’ve ever cooked for you or you’ve ever asked for a recipe recommendation, then you’ve most likely had this.
It’s probably my favorite of all time. It is so. dang. good! Again, we always have these ingredients on hand, so it makes for a really simple Sunday meal….just throw it all in your slow cooker after church and take that Sunday nap.
You’ll find a few other random ingredients by clicking on the recipe (like queso fresco and diced green chiles), but I rarely have those items at home so I’ve never included those when I make it….and it still tastes awesome!
*Instead of rotisserie chicken, I use frozen boneless, skinless chicken thighs.
Spaghetti and Meatballs
Key ingredients: spaghetti, frozen meatballs, crushed tomatoes/spaghetti sauce
Such a classic, but so easy that we have it alottttt. One bag of frozen meatballs will usually last 2 or 3 meals, so it’s something that’s always in the freezer. You can make a super easy sauce with crushed tomatoes and spices, and since crushed tomatoes are super versatile….that’s usually what I always have in the pantry.
If you don’t have meatballs handy but have ground beef instead, you can skip the meatballs and make a really yummy meat sauce instead.
Slow Cooker Taco Soup
Key ingredients: ground beef, canned corn, canned black beans, canned kidney beans, beef broth, taco seasoning packet, ranch packet, Rotel tomatoes, diced tomatoes
Y’all, I told you…all about the Crock Pot. I don’t really know what more I can say about this recipe except this: it’s freaking easy, and everyone goes for seconds. You literally dump all the ingredients and walk away. The end.
*The recipe calls to brown the ground beef first. I don’t (just dump it on in there!) and it still turns out great.
Key ingredients: pizza dough*, and whatever the heck else you have on hand
Pizzas are an awesome way to clean out your pantry and fridge. As long as you keep some pizza dough on hand (frozen, pantry, or homemade), this is something you can make anytime. I always throw in some sort of cheese, meat, and/or veggies that we have around the house. Even if you don’t have a sauce, don’t worry. Olive oil and garlic (even the refrigerated kind) make a great base!
*This recipe makes 4 flatbread crusts, two medium crusts, or 1 thick crust. I almost always have these in the freezer for last minute pizzas.
Key ingredients: tortillas, rice, cheese, ANYTHING
Like pizzas, we make these frequently if I need to clean out the fridge, or if I’m just feeling lazy. Tortillas*, cheese, and veggies make a good ‘dilla IMO, but I’ll throw some meat in there too if it’s already cooked.
Same with burrito bowls: rice, beans, cheese, avocado….how can you go wrong?
*Tip: Freeze tortillas so you can have them annnnytime