Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Quick & Easy Dinner Recipes!

What's for dinner? I'm cooking for a family of 5 almost every night. Now I remember the days when I'd cook crazy elaborate meals for my hubby (yeah, that was about 7 years ago when we were newlyweds). With a full-time job, three kids to shuffle around and a ton of daily commitments, dinner has come down to being a balancing act of quick and easy, but I hated forgoing DELICIOUSNESS for the sake of easy; so here are some quick tips to spend less time cooking and still enjoy a delicious meal:

1. Creamy Sun Dried Tomato Pesto Pasta (prep time: 25 mins or less): Who doesn't love pasta? It's so easy to boil and salt your favorite pasta type. After a quick 15 minutes you've got cooked pasta but you may want to try something better than a plain old can of spaghtetti sauce? Spruce up your pasta with the following pre-made trader joe's dip: 

Yes, this dip usually reserved for crackers can be melted into a deliciously flavorful and creamy sauce. Mix this torta over a fresh pot of streaming hot (drained) pasta. It is simply delicious and crazy easy. Top with basil and parmesean and YUM!

2. Enchilada Casserole (prep time: 28 mins or less): I love chicken enchiladas smothered in sauce, but boy can these little suckers take a while to prepare. Every single enchilada is rolled one tortilla at a time. That tortilla is first doused in hot oil, dipped in your enchilada sauce of choice (green or red) and after that you're finally ready begin rolling tortillas into individual enchiladas. Well strike that! Go the easier route without comprimising on flavor. Think "lasagna" creation, only instead of pasta use warm tortillas drizzled with oil to layer yummy ingredients normally used to make enchiladas... 

In a casserole: prepare a bottom layer of warm tortillas drizzled with oil, cover evenly with a thin later of enchilada sauce (canned, store bought), shredded cheese, bits of grilled chicken (can be store bought), and diced onions (optional)! Top the chicken with another layer of tortillas and sauce. Then repeat steps for as many layers as you'd like! Top off the dish with more yummy cheese and garnishes of your choosing (chives, olives, etc). Add more sauce over the entire dish and bake at high heat for 15 minutes or until cheese is fully melted!  Once cooked add sliced avocado or cool sour cream to your dish to really bring out the flavors!

3. Homemade Pizza (30 mins of less): fast and easy (but also messy)! I don't mind the mess as long as my kiddos have fun. This is such an easy dinner because of store bought dough! All you do is layout the dough and your ingredients and you're half way done. Think ready made ingredients (turkey pepperoni, pre-sliced mushroom and/or olives, canned pinneaple chucks). Fresh and Easy sells a great ready-made dough and pizza sauce. So rev up the stove, layout your ingredients, create your pizza and bake! This meal can be done in less than 30 mins. and it's chalked full of flavor! 

So there you have it! 
Three delicious and simple meals ready in 30 minutes or less!
Now, you share your favorite QUICK recipes with us by commenting below...

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