Does this happen to anyone else? You make a meal plan, you shop for groceries, plan the week out as best as you can. You do everything right, but there are still evenings when you just don’t feel like cooking.
I totally get it.
I mean, I am a food blogger – I LOVE food. Food is my job, literally. And I still have evenings where I don’t want to cook a dang thing.
Instead of throwing in the towel and ordering take-out or swinging through the closest drive-thru, give these 5 super easy meals a try.
These aren’t Pinterest-worthy gorgeous meals. They are real life, real mom, get the job done easy meals that you don’t have to feel totally ashamed about feeding your family. All you need to do is rifle through your pantry and fridge to help with these no-recipe needed dinners you can easily serve your family.
1. Anything Goes Tacos
Whether or not it’s a Tuesday, you can’t go wrong with tacos as an easy dinner. The basics (tortillas, beans, sour cream, and cheese) are easy staples you probably already have. Throw in whatever protein you have in the fridge (chicken, ground beef, eggs, whatever is leftover from last night) along with any veggies you can scrounge up and you have the makings for a super easy, super quick meal that you can make without too much brain power.
2. Breakfast for Dinner
I could seriously eat pancakes all day long. They are one of my favorite meals, no matter the time of day, and they are so easy to make. Whether you choose to make them totally from scratch or use a boxed mix, it’s a solid choice for dinner when you need something easy. I always add a bunch of extra ingredients to make sure they have as much nutritional value as I can get, since basically dinner is bread with syrup. The Kodiak Cakes brand is my fav – it’s not cheap, but it’s pretty rocking in the nutritional information AND they taste healthy, so it’s totally worth it in my book.
If you are looking to boost the nutritional quality of your pancake mix, try some of the following:
• If your mix says “just add water”, you can instead swap it out with milk, plain greek yogurt, or apple cider!
• Add a scoop of vanilla protein powder for a great vanilla taste and even more protein!
• Add an extra egg (or two!) to really pump your pancakes up with more protein.
• Throw in some ground flax seed for a great Omega-3 boost!
• Play with toppings! Add bowls of fresh fruit, peanut butter, and toasted nuts to the table so your family can add even more great flavor (and nutrition!) to their dinner!
3. Mini Smorgasbord
This is one of my favorite things to do when I need an easy meal. My kids love it because they feel really fancy, and I love it because it’s not at all hard. Use a big plate or a muffin tin and fill it with ALL THE THINGS. Cubes of cheese, pretzels or crackers, fresh veggies, nuts, bits of leftover meat (salami or sausages are my kids favorites!), dried fruit, pickles, you name it. It is kind of like a mini meat and cheese snack tray, but you can seriously pack in the nutrition with hardly any work. Extra points if you get your kids to help.
4. Stir Fry!
This is a great meal for cleaning out the fridge of all the random veggies you have stored in the crisper or freezer. Add in whatever leftover meat you have. You can also use whatever grains you have in the pantry – rice, rice noodles, barley. Top it with some fresh cashews or peanuts for added crunch. You can use a combination of rice vinegar and soy sauce, or a terikayi sauce.
5. Rainbow Veggie Pizza
This quick and easy meal is perfect to make when you don’t feel like doing anything. It is a favorite because not only does your family do all the work for you, but they all end up eating tons of veggies for dinner. Whether you purchase your ingredients that day or scrounge up what you have on hand at home, your family will love this meal! Get more information on how to make this easy meal work for you here.