There was a time when I used to spend hours making dinner for my family. But now, as all of our responsibilities have doubled and tripled over the years, dinner recipes have become quicker, simpler and less time-consuming for the whole family.
While we still do cook something elaborate on the weekends sometimes, dinners in our home are usually quick meals that take less than an hour to prepare. Sometimes, I prepare the ingredients way ahead so that it takes even less time in the evening to set up.
Here are 55 of the simplest but wholesome meals you can make for your family, found on different blogs by parents who don’t want to spend more than 30 minutes in the kitchen every day. I’ve found most of them to be extremely delicious and not at all bothersome to cook.
RELATED: Hot And Spicy Meatballs Recipe
55 Quick Family Dinners To Make In 30 minutes (or less)
1. 5-ingredient Pepper Chicken Recipe
This incredible chicken recipe needs just 5 ingredients, everything you probably already have in your kitchen if you like Indian food. Green chili, onions, yogurt, a paste of ginger and garlic, and black pepper is all you need, with a few pieces of boneless chicken.
Check out this recipe by Saima Zaidi at Indian Ambrosia.
2. Baked Boneless Pork Chops in Tomato Sauce
This is a high-protein meat recipe prepared from boneless pork chops that you can serve with rice. It is simple enough to cook in about 30 minutes but gorgeous enough to serve to sudden company.
Tobius Oerum from Diabetes Strong (Healthy Life with Diabetes) has the full recipe.
3. Sweet and Sour Cabbage Stir Fry with Pork/Chicken
If you prefer mixing your meat recipes with vegetables, this is a great recipe from Kate Vaynshteyn where you can add stripped cabbage to thinly sliced pork or chicken bits.
You can get the full recipe at Babaganosh.
4. Maple Glazed Pork Chops
You can try this pork recipe from Babaganosh in less than 30 minutes. This is boneless or bone-in pork glazed with real maple syrup and garnished with thyme, cooked in a skillet until the sauce thickens. I served it with brown rice, but you can also try roasted young potatoes or a salad.
5. Mexican Veggie Rice
This veggie rice recipe has a lot of proteins and a great chance to be innovative. I followed the recipe and put it kidney beans, red and yellow pepper, sweet corn and onions. This is such a wholesome recipe that you can serve it as a standalone dinner, even without any sides.
The whole recipe is available at Crunch and Cream.
6. Easy Bhindi Sabzi
I came across this recipe on a fluke but loved it after trying, This is a simple stir fry that is completely vegan, gluten-free, keto-friendly and easy to cook. You might need a few minutes to cut the okra into cubes, but cooking takes around 15 minutes or so.
The recipe is extremely easy and can be found in Indian Ambrosia.
7. Easy and Healthy Stuffed Peppers Recipe
I try this recipe on the nights that I neither have the time nor the energy to prepare a side or a salad. This wholesome stuffed pepper recipe has ground beef, hot sauce, and tangy spices, perfect to serve with bread or toast.
Get the full recipe here in Coupons for your Family.
8. 15-minute Chicken and Broccoli Stir Fry
This simple stir fry recipe is easy and quick. It takes a total of 25-30 minutes of time, with preparation and serving. You can find the recipe in Curry Trail if you want to try this chicken and broccoli recipe.
9. One Pot Spring Pasta
This pasta recipe takes less than 30 minutes to cook, and you can use both spring veggies and chicken sausage in it. I used peas, asparagus and just a few pieces of chicken salami, and the taste was truly delicious.
This recipe is by Samantha Dawn from My Kitchen Love.
10. Vegan Buddha Bowl Recipe
I tried this vegan recipe with steamed brown rice and some of my favorite veggies: carrots, brussels sprouts, a few almonds and beet pieces. Preparing five separate bowls for my family was easy and took less than 30 minutes.
Check out Valerie Mitchell’s recipe from Mama Likes to Cook.
11. 20-minute Red Sauce Spaghetti
This recipe from Fun, Food and Frolic was a hit on our Spaghetti nights. The sauce takes only 20 minutes to cook, with the spaghetti boiling alongside. We usually add a lot of cheese to our spaghetti and that makes it taste better.
12. Pierogies and Kielbasa Skillet Recipe
This gorgeous Polish recipe only takes 30 minutes to prepare! Yes, I was surprised, too. Kielbasa is cooked Polish sausage and Pierogies is made from potatoes, sauerkraut and cheese and available frozen. You add bell pepper, potatoes, and cheese to the combination and come out with something awesome.
The whole recipe is here at Mom Foodie.
13. Baked Cod Recipe with Cracker Topping
Usually, seafood isn’t a part of our dinner recipes as fish takes a long time to cook, but this recipe by Robin Gagnon from Mom Foodie takes less than 20 minutes to prepare. It is healthy and filling and only takes a few ingredients.
14. Vegan Mac and Cheese
My kids love this vegan Mac and Cheese recipe. It’s easy enough for them to make it for the whole family and requires minimum supervision and effort. Check out The Banana Diaries for this recipe from Brittany Isabella.
15. Easy Vegan Dirty Rice
This recipe is a mixture of such exotic flavors! I see canned jackfruit, celery, onion and bell pepper with rice here, as well as a few spices. The whole thing takes less than 20 minutes to cook and serve.
You can find the full recipe here at Strength and Sunshine.
16. Special East Indian Chicken Tope
This is not just an Indian recipe, but Indian combined with exotic Portuguese cuisine. You can use the same recipe to make Mutton tope, but with chicken, the recipe will take less than 30 minutes.
This easy recipe from The Winged Fork is perfect to serve with some white or brown rice.
17. Best Szechuan Chicken Recipe
As a family, we love the taste of Szechuan cuisine. We’ve tried this Szechuan chicken from Sweet and Savory Meals and absolutely loved it. Since we cook a lot of Asian meals, most of the ingredients needed are always ready at hand.
18. Best Hunan Beef Recipe
Another favorite Chinese recipe of ours happens to be this Hunan Beef Recipe by Sweet and Savory Meals. It takes us only half an hour to make this meal, but it has a lot of vegetables stir-fried into it. We love this with a side of white rice or a simple green salad.
19. Easy Vegan Tomato Pesto Pasta
Brittany Isabella from The Banana Diaries has another scrumptious pasta recipe but in this one, she uses sun-dried tomato pesto. The tomato paste makes the pasta look spicier than it actually is, but in truth, this recipe is more about tomatoes than about any other kind of spice.
20. 30-minute baked Ravioli
You can both cook and bake this Ravioli dish within 30 minutes! There’s no need to boil the Ravioli beforehand; you can just cook them in the sauce together, and even add garnish and spice of your choice.
Kylie Lato from Midwest Foodie Blog has the full recipe, and other Italian recipes you’ll love.
21. Roasted Red Pepper Oven Grilled Cheese
Now, this is a dish I plan whenever we feel like having a cheat day at home! Whole red peppers, spinach and melted cheese makes this recipe absolutely awesome. In fact, we don’t need any dessert the day I make this oven-grilled Red Pepper recipe for my family.
The full recipe is here at Dizzy, Busy and Hungry.
22. Korean Cauliflower Lettuce Wrap
For a healthy eating habit, this is a quite popular Korean recipe that takes less than 30 minutes to prepare. You need to roast the cauliflower for 10 minutes, mix it with cooked onion, jalapeno, soy sauce, rice vinegar, and garlic, and then wrap them together in butter lettuce for some crunch.
You can find the full recipe here at Midwest Foodie Blog.
23. Chicken Fajita Pasta
This recipe from When is Dinner? combines a chicken fajita with pasta! It takes just about 30 minutes to finish this awesome, filling recipe if you have all the ingredients ready at hand. I’ve tried this once and let me tell you, my family was quite surprised.
24. Egg Roll in a Bowl
As a family, we are quite crazy about recipes with eggs, and it keeps me from worrying about our protein requirements. This recipe by Adrienne Urban from Whole New Mom has a number of vegetables besides eggs and takes only a few minutes to prepare.
25. Easy Indian Lentils (Dal)
Although this is actually a side dish that you can best try with bread or Naan, there’s no denying the rich protein value of lentil. We tried this recipe once or twice when we felt like a light dinner dish, and the surprisingly rich taste was quite good.
This recipe too is by Adrienne Urban from Whole New Mom.
26. Red Thai Curry with Vegetables
My whole family is quite comfortable with Thai dishes, and this is one of the Thai curries that we’ve tried a lot of times. It is vegan and gluten-free, and perfect with a side of rice. Since I add quite a few different types of vegetables in this recipe, it’s quite healthy as well.
The full recipe is available at The Hidden Vegetables.
27. 15-minute American Goulash
This is one of the fastest dishes that you can make for your family that will also be healthy and filling. Goulash is quite popular here in the United States, a simple dish cooked with pasta, canned tomato soup or tomato paste, onions and ground beef.
You can find the recipe here in My World Simplified.
28. Kielbasa and Rice Casserole
Another great recipe by Amy Barrett from My World Simplified is this casserole made from rice and Kielbasa, which is a kind of Polish cooked sausage. Amy has also added a few herbs and spices, ketchup, black beans, and diced tomatoes.
29. Vegetarian Fajita Pasta
If you’ve tried the chicken fajita pasta and liked it, this one is a 100% vegetarian dish for your next experiment. I cooked it on a stovetop instead of an instant pot and the result was the same.
The recipe is by Meeta Arora from Piping Pot Curry.
30. Easy Chicken and Dumplings from Scratch
This recipe from Bowl of Delicious can be made from scratch within 30 minutes if you follow the recipe. It is quite an elaborate recipe if you want to make the dumplings by yourself, but you can make them once and then freeze them for later.
31. Spicy Chicken Skewer and Turmeric Rice
You can make both these chicken-and-rice combo in under 30 minutes if you don’t have a lot of time on your hands. These simple dishes are quite popular in India and very easy to make, especially if you marinade and freeze your chicken beforehand. That’s what I do at home – I marinade more pieces than we need for dinner for use on a different day.
The full recipe is here at Crunch and Cream.
32. Beef and Broccoli Bake
Broccoli and beef may seem like a weird combination in a single dish, but in reality, they taste great together. This dish takes around 25 minutes to cook and bake, and you can even put some cheese on top.
Alli Doubek has the full recipe at Dancing Through the Rain.
33. Chicken Pesto Pasta
This pasta recipe by Shannon Cairns of The Freckled Foot Doc is budget-friendly, healthy and easy to make. Her 3-year old loves it and because it is neither spicy nor hot, this dish is completely kid-friendly, too.
34. Easy One-pot Gluten-free, Allergy-free Louisiana Red Beans and Rice
No meat in this recipe, but it doesn’t lack in protein, thanks to the Red Beans that Rebecca from Strength and Sunshine puts in abundance. You can serve it with a stir-fried chicken or veggie dish, or by itself. This dish has enough spices to make you not miss chicken or pork at all.
35. Easiest Vegetarian Enchiladas
Mexican food is love! This vegetable enchiladas recipe is a must try if you love meat but are trying to cut back. Packed with rich vegetable, this is a great dinner dish that has red onion, poblano pepper, black beans, chilis, spices, and cream cheese. The whole thing takes 30 minutes if you are a fast worker.
The full recipe is here at Midwest Foodie Blog.
36. Baked Spinach Mushroom Quesadillas
Another awesome Mexican recipe, but with spinach and mushroom. Kristin King from Dizzy, Busy and Hungry makes quesadillas with both mushroom and chicken, but always with plenty of spinach and cheese inside.
37. Lemon Garlic Pasta
Not ingredients I’d generally put in my pasta dish, but they make sense. Kylie Kato from Midwest Foodie Blog used Rigatoni pasta for the dish, along with vegetable stock, cheese, and lemon zest, asparagus, and garlic garnished with parsley. The whole thing cooks in a single pot, which makes zero mess.
38. Easy Chicken Green Chili Casserole
This easy-to-make casserole is the perfect comfort food when you need it. Full with chicken goodness, this casserole is also low-carb and keto-friendly. Joe Koellmann from Whole Lotta Yum puts in three kinds of cheese in it, just for adding taste!
39. Green Shakshuka
If you’ve ever tried and liked the classic Shakshuka, you are definitely going to like this greener version of it. Instead of poached eggs in tomato sauce, this recipe calls for a lot of collard greens and kale leaves, making it more filling and healthier.
Kate Vaynshteyn from Babaganosh serves it for both dinner and breakfast.
40. Garlic Chili Chicken and Peppers Skillet
This is another recipe from Babaganosh that I’ve tried before. This chicken and pepper stir-fry is perfect for a main with a side of rice or pasta, a wholesome dinner. It can be made in a single pan, with no mess in the kitchen, as quickly as under 30 minutes.
41. Thai Panang Curry Recipe with Chicken
You can serve this Thai curry recipe with a side of white rice, as is quite popular in Thai cuisine. Jyothi Rajesh from Curry Trail puts in a large amount of crushed peanuts in it, which adds to the unique taste, or a chunk of peanut butter. The peanut is what makes Thai Panang Curry a little different from Thai Red Curry.
42. One-Pot Tex-Mex Rice
From top to finish, this one-pot recipe takes a total of 15 minutes to cook. This is something you can whip up in a matter of minutes for your family with only 6 basic ingredients. Not just rice, it has a healthy dose of ground beef, black beans, raw tomatoes, taco seasoning and corn.
Get the full recipe here at My Kitchen Love.
43. Spicy Frisch’s Big Boy Pizza
I found this homemade pizza recipe on the Internet and tried it because it was easy. Apparently, Big Boy restaurants are quite popular in Cincinnati and this is one of their most loved items. Heather Johnson from The Food Hussy has recreated the recipe with tartar sauce, cooked ground beef, lettuce, cheese and pickles on bread.
44. Deep Dish Pizza Casserole
Another recipe for your weekly pizza night could be this pizza casserole with pasta, pepperoni, cheese and sauce. Preparing and baking them all together takes less than 30 minutes, and you get a healthy option instead of ordering pizza.
Get the full recipe from My World Simplified.
45. New England Baked Haddock
This is one of the easiest and the quickest recipes I have come across on the Internet. This seafood recipe only requires three ingredients: butter, bread crumbs and of course, the fish, and a bit of salt & pepper. You can get the full recipe here on Bowl of Delicious.
46. Easy 30-minute Potat0-Bacon Chowder
Looking for something hearty and filling for the days you are feeling a little under the weather? This chowder recipe with bacon and potato can be a comfort food if you have a cold or feeling drowsy. The whole dish takes less than half an hour to cook if you follow the recipe by Jade Jones in Jonesin’ for Taste.
47. Cheesy Vegetable Chowder
This is another vegetable chowder recipe that you can make under 30 minutes, with plenty of cheese and your favorite vegetables. This recipe from Inspiring Savings has used broccoli, carrots, celery and baking potatoes, as well as chicken stock and cheddar cheese.
48. Hawaiian Pork and Pineapple Shish Kabab Recipe
One of my favorite ways to incorporate meat and fruit (!) in a single recipe! A Hawaiian recipe that you can whip up at home in under half an hour, to be served with salad or bread. All you need to do is to cut the pork and the pineapples into size, coat them with a mixture of soy sauce, sugar and ginger, and grill until done.
The full recipe is here in Play Party Plan.
49. Easy Stove Top Macaroni and Cheese
I’ve given a lot of recipes on Mac and Cheese in one of my previous post, but this one from Journey to Sahm is one of the easiest. It takes only 30 minutes to make this where Samantha Erb uses Cheddar cheese, milk, butter, and flour.
50. Gluten-free 30-minute Chicken Tortilla Soup
If you love chicken tortilla, why not try to turn it into a hearty soup? Michelle Palin from My Gluten-Free Kitchen used gluten-free store-bought large plain tortillas, with chicken broth and tomatoes for soup. This recipe also calls for garnish with shredded cheese, sour cream, avocado slices, and lime.
51. Quick Vegetarian Chili
Chili is our all-time favorite! This recipe uses a number of canned beans and tomatoes with sweet potatoes, carrots, celery, green lentils, and mushrooms. Shadi HasanzadeNemati has used both black beans and navy beans in her recipe, but you can use other types, too.
Unicorns in the Kitchen has the full recipe.
52. Chicken Marsala Meatballs
You can cook a large dinner of chicken meatballs with this recipe from Mighty Mrs. It also has a little bit of mushroom and Marsala wine (which is optional), and also some unseasoned bread crumbs, oregano, onion, and an egg.
53. Creamy Tuscan Chicken with Spinach and Sun-dried Tomatoes
This is an awesome Italian pasta recipe that takes less than half an hour to cook. Pasta, chicken breasts, heavy cream, Parmesan cheese, spinach, sun-dried tomatoes and Italian seasoning – what’s not to love!
Get the full recipe here in Nourish and Fete.
54. Hearty Tortellini Chicken Noodle Soup
Monica Lensink from Nourish and Fete made a filling soup with chicken breasts, tortellini cheese, chicken broth, and vegetables (carrots, onions, celery, and spinach).
55. Quick Tomato Basil Pasta
Kate Minor did this Quick Tomato Basil Pasta on the blog for me a few months ago. It’s monthly regular on our menu because it’s so easy, quick and delish.
These days, there is never much time to toil over dinner recipes, is there? Personally, I prefer recipes that are filling and hearty but doesn’t take much time to prepare. These 55 recipes are definitely ones you should try at least once because your family is going to love them. I can say so because we’ve tried most of them and they were exactly what was promised.