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As busy moms, there’s one thing you can always bank on: the need to find something for dinner!
Finding the best dinner ideas is complicated enough, but for working moms, there’s the whole extra level of balancing your job and mom duties. To help out, here are some easy meals and tasty dinner ideas to help slot into those meal-planning slots.
Instant Pot Recipes
The Instant Pot is a working mom’s friend because it does so many dishes in one pot, which also saves on washing up! From casseroles and stews to pasta dishes, there’s no end to the types of recipes you can create with them. It makes for the best easy dinner recipe, so if you have one, it will feature a lot on your weekly meal plan.
Instant Pot Fried Rice
Fried rice is always a winner, but you can get it on the table quickly with this Instant Pot version. Add your favorite vegetables, proteins, and uncooked rice to the pot and let it work magic. You can add something like chicken or turkey or any other leftover meat you have in the refrigerator to use up.
Instant Pot Chili Mac
This delicious Instant Pot chili mac is a tasty twist on the classic. It’s easy to make, nutritious, and full of flavor – perfect for those busy weeknights when you need something quick and filling. Add ground beef or turkey, canned beans, tomato sauce, spices, and uncooked macaroni, and let it cook.
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Instant Pot Pulled Chicken
Another popular dish to make with the Instant Pot is pulled chicken. Simply add the ingredients to your pot, let it cook, shred the chicken and then serve with your favorite sides. This meal is a great way to use any leftover cooked chicken and create a tasty dinner in minutes.
Instant Pot Pasta with Sausage
This Instant Pot pasta dish is a great way to get dinner on the table fast. Simply add chopped sausage, onion, garlic, tomatoes, chicken broth, spices, and uncooked penne to your Instant Pot and let it do its thing! In just 25 minutes, you can create this tasty meal packed with flavor and nutrients.
Instant Pot Meatloaf
This Instant Pot meatloaf is a great way to get an old favorite on the table quickly. All you have to do is mix together your ingredients, like ground beef, eggs, and breadcrumbs, in your Instant Pot and let it cook away. You can top it with ketchup or BBQ sauce for extra flavor.
Instant Pot Lemon Garlic Salmon
This delicious recipe is the perfect option for an easy and tasty dinner. All you need to do is place fresh salmon in your Instant Pot along with some butter, lemon juice, and garlic cloves. Let it cook, and then serve it with a side of rice or potatoes for a complete meal.
Pasta Dinner Recipes
Pasta is always an excellent option for dinner recipes as it is quick to cook, and there are plenty of ways to serve it. You can add a simple sauce from a jar or create something more complicated if you have the time. There are also healthy options, such as switching to wholemeal pasta.
One Pot Turkey Pasta
This one-pot turkey pasta is a hearty, filling meal requiring minimal effort and just one pot. Plus, it’s loaded with protein to keep you going! All you need is ground turkey (or chicken), spaghetti noodles, diced tomatoes, cream of mushroom soup, garlic powder, and onion powder to season. Some grated Parmesan really finishes it off.
Chicken and Parmesan Bow Tie Pasta
A classic Italian pasta dish, this chicken and Parmesan bow tie pasta recipe is simple to make yet full of flavor. It’s great for busy weeknights when you need something easy, but it tastes delicious enough for your whole family to ask for seconds! For this one, you’ll need cooked chicken breast, bow tie pasta, Alfredo sauce, Parmesan cheese, and garlic powder.
Gnocchi Chicken Skillet
Gnocchi is a quick-cooking favorite that can help you get dinner on the table in no time. Plus, it’s always so much fun to eat! In this recipe, you’ll need cooked chicken, gnocchi, broccoli, diced tomatoes, and some Parmesan cheese for extra flavor. You can also add different herbs and spices to make the dish just as your family likes it or change the chicken for any other cooked meat.
Mediterranean Pork and Orzo Pasta
This Mediterranean pork and orzo pasta dish is a great way to enjoy all the flavors of the Mediterranean in one meal. It’s packed with hearty ingredients like lean pork, tomatoes, oregano, feta cheese, and olives. Plus, it only takes around 30 minutes to make! Just sauté the pork in a pan with some garlic and spices, then add in the tomatoes, oregano, and orzo. Then top with feta cheese and olives before serving.
Chicken Pesto with Pasta
This creamy and delicious chicken pesto with pasta is sure to become a family favorite. It’s packed with flavor from the garlic, Parmesan, pine nuts, and of course, the pesto! All you have to do is cook some diced chicken in a pan with olive oil, then add cooked pasta, pesto, and Parmesan cheese.
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Spinach Ravioli Bake
This spinach ravioli bake is an easy and tasty way to get dinner on the table quickly. It’s great for meatless Mondays or when you’re in need of something quick! All you need are some frozen cheese ravioli, a jar of your favorite pasta sauce, some frozen spinach, and shredded mozzarella cheese.
Taco Tuesday Ideas
Taco Tuesday is a fun idea and doesn’t have to be limited to a Tuesday. The key is finding simple recipes you can make after work that don’t require too much preparation. So Mexican-inspired recipes are an ideal weeknight dinner solution.
Cheesy Chicken Tacos with Salsa
Rotisserie chicken is a big help for this kind of recipe because there’s no cooking involved. You can shred it up, mix with some salsa and sour cream, and add it to flour tortillas. Add some shredded cheese, then cook until everything is warm and melted.
Slice up some chicken breasts, peppers, and onions. Heat a frying pan with oil, then add all of the ingredients together, season with a teaspoon of chili powder, and cook until everything is golden brown. Serve with warm tortillas and your favorite toppings.
Pepperoni Pizza Quesadillas
Take some pepperoni, mozzarella cheese, and pizza sauce with a bit of Italian seasoning and add them to a flour tortilla. Add another tortilla on top and cook with a bit of butter until everything is melted. Cut into triangles and serve with pizza sauce to dip them in.
Honey and Lemon Chicken Enchiladas
This dish may sound complicated, but it’s easy to pull off! Just mix together cooked chicken, honey, lemon juice, and some cream cheese. Spread the mixture on top of a tortilla and roll it up into an enchilada. Top with some shredded cheese and bake until everything is hot and bubbly.
Simple 15-Minute Meals
Simple 15-minute meals are ideal if you don’t have time to prepare anything for dinner but don’t want to keep the kids waiting too long. They are quick meals that are easy dinners to make and use lots of everyday store cupboard staples.
Cheesy Meatball Sub Sandwiches
Pre-cook the frozen meatballs as the packet instructs, then add them to a warm sub roll with some grated cheese. Pop in the oven until everything is melted, and serve with your favorite side dish. A good saving tip is to cook the meatballs in the morning, cool them and pop them in the fridge. Then you can reheat them with the sandwich and save the extra time needed to cook them before serving.
Ham and Zucchini Frittata
Whisk some eggs in a bowl and add cooked diced ham, grated zucchini, and shredded cheese if desired. Heat a skillet with oil, pour the mixture in, and cook on low heat until everything is done. Serve with your favorite sides.
Quick Taco Stuffed Peppers
Slice up some bell peppers and stuff them with cooked ground beef and taco seasoning. Top with some shredded cheese, bake until everything is hot and bubbly, then serve with sour cream and guacamole.
Ham and Cheese Sliders
Use Hawaiian rolls to make sliders, filling them with deli meat such as ham and cheddar cheese. Put some butter and seasoning on top, then pop them in the oven for 15 minutes. You can also add things like garlic salt, poppy seeds, Italian seasoning, or other favorite herbs to add extra flavor. Serve with crispy fries or a salad.
Cheeseburger Skillet Dinner
Brown some ground beef in a skillet, then add a can of diced tomatoes. Stir everything together and season with garlic powder, onion powder, and paprika. Finally, add some grated cheese on top, cover the pan with a lid, and cook until everything is melted. Serve with your favorite sides, such as mashed potatoes or fries, to keep the entire family fed.
Loaded Chicken Baked Potatoes
This is another recipe where rotisserie chicken is a big help. Grab a favorite potato for baking, such as Russet potatoes, then cook them until soft. Mix some grated cheese, bacon bits, and sour cream with the chicken and add to the top. Pop back in the oven for a few minutes until melted.
Garlic Toast Pizzas
For a fun twist on pizza, get some garlic toast and spread it with tomato sauce. Add your favorite toppings, then place in the oven until the cheese is melted and bubbly. You can also use English muffins instead of garlic toast for an even quicker meal.
Chicken Dinner Recipes
Chicken is a go-to menu item because it is easy to cook, and you can make so many chicken recipes! You can also buy pre-made chicken products such as crispy chicken strips or chicken nuggets, making the recipes even more effortless.
Crispy Chicken Strips Ranch Wraps
Cook your favorite chicken strips, then add to flour tortillas with shredded cheese, some ranch dressing, and lettuce. You can also add things like tomatoes or jalapenos if everyone likes their meals spicier.
Thai Peanut Chicken with Noodles
This is a great meal that comes together quickly. Cook the noodles according to package instructions, then mix with cooked chicken strips and a peanut sauce of your liking. You can even make something with peanut butter if you have some in the house. Serve with some broccoli or other veggie on the side for added nutrition.
Barbecue Chicken Pizza
A fun twist on classic pizza. Start by spreading store-bought pizza dough with barbecue sauce. Top with cooked chicken strips and shredded cheese, then bake for 10-15 minutes until cheese is melted and bubbly. Serve with a side salad for a complete meal.
Crispy Chicken Sandwiches
Use some breaded chicken fillets for this recipe and add to a bun with lettuce, tomato, and pickles as one of your healthy meals. You can even top it with some ranch dressing or flavored mayo. Serve with chips on the side for an easy meal everyone will love!
Cashew Chicken with Ginger Rice
This is a flavorful Asian-inspired dish that’s great for dinner. Start by cooking white or brown rice, then stir in chicken and cashew nuts—top with a sauce of your choosing, such as teriyaki or sweet & sour sauce. You can also add some shredded carrots and green onions if desired. Serve with additional vegetables on the side for a complete meal.
Asian Chicken Rice Bowl
Marinate chicken breasts with a mixture of garlic, honey, soy sauce, and seasoning. Cook the chicken in a skillet until golden brown, then add to warm cooked rice. Top with some diced green onions and serve with your favorite Asian-style sauces such as teriyaki or sweet chili.
Healthy Chicken Salad Wraps
Mix together pre-cooked diced chicken, some chopped celery, and onion with a bit of mayonnaise. Spread the mixture on top of the flour tortillas, then roll them up. Serve with chips or a side salad for an easy lunch idea.
Chicken Pizza Pockets
Mix cooked chicken, pizza sauce, and shredded cheese together, then spoon into biscuit dough rounds. Bake in the oven until golden and serve with some ranch dressing for dipping.
Easy Dinner Meals for Working Moms
These are just a few easy recipes you can whip up when you need a quick dinner that everyone will love! With such a simple list of ingredients, you can create delicious meals in no time. You’ll be able to get dinner on the table quickly while still providing your family with a delicious meal. Enjoy!
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