Weeknight CookingWhat to CookDinner, Faster

Got 30 Minutes? Make These Dinners

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Sundays are the days I spend hours roasting sheet pans of sweet potatoes or cauliflower or carrots. I take my time simmering wheat berries and vigilantly stirring a batch of steel cut oatmeal. In these lazy afternoons, I abandon half-baked plans to bake perfect spice bread. Mondays through Fridays? Not so much.

While this Sunday prep takes me to the middle of the week, by Wednesday, I start fretting about what to throw together. All too often, minimally dressed eggs and pasta save the day. But recently I realized I could make a lot more exciting meals in 30 minutes. Salads or tacos or stir-frys that come together in the time it takes for me to watch an episode of The Office. (Yes, some include eggs and pasta, but more as supporting cast members.) Here are 20 Sunday-worthy meals I can throw together any other day of the week.

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For the carnivores

Nigel Slater's Miso Soup with Beef and Kale
Nigel Slater's Miso Soup with Beef and Kale
Jerk-Spiced Chicken Hakka Noodles

Jerk-Spiced Chicken Hakka Noodles by Shalini Singh @ Shalini's K...

Oyako Don

Oyako Don by Francesca

Shaking Beef (or Other) Salad
Shaking Beef (or Other) Salad
Apple and Sage Brown Butter Pork Chops
Apple and Sage Brown Butter Pork Chops
Spaghetti Carbonara
Spaghetti Carbonara
Pasta with Nduja & Bitter Greens

Pasta with Nduja & Bitter Greens by Sara Jenkins

Roasted Sweet Potatoes with Merguez, Persimmon, and Za'atar Yogurt

Roasted Sweet Potatoes with Merguez, Persimmon, and Za'at... by Josh Cohen

Grace Young's Stir-Fried Garlic Eggplant with Pork
Grace Young's Stir-Fried Garlic Eggplant with Pork

Fast Fish Dishes

Low-Maintenance Fish Tacos
Low-Maintenance Fish Tacos
Lebanese Fish with Herby Tahini Sauce Over Rice

Lebanese Fish with Herby Tahini Sauce Over Rice by Sara Jenkins

Smoked Trout and Avocado Salad Toasts

Smoked Trout and Avocado Salad Toasts by Alexandra Stafford

Broiled Lemon-Honey Arctic Char with Citrus Sauce
Broiled Lemon-Honey Arctic Char with Citrus Sauce

Meatless Mains

Spinach, Chile, & Egg Noodle Pizza
Spinach, Chile, & Egg Noodle Pizza
Sweet Potato, Goat Cheese and Sage Pasta Pile-up

Sweet Potato, Goat Cheese and Sage Pasta Pile-up by amreen

Beans and Greens Soup

Beans and Greens Soup by Sara Jenkins

Curried Lentils with Coconut Milk

Curried Lentils with Coconut Milk by Alexandra Stafford

Marcella Hazan's White Bean Soup with Garlic and Parsley

Marcella Hazan's White Bean Soup with Garlic and Parsley by Genius Recipes

Smoky, Spicy Vegetarian Pasta with Eggs and Mushrooms
Smoky, Spicy Vegetarian Pasta with Eggs and Mushrooms
Entomatadas (Cheese-Filled, Tomato Sauce-Smothered Tortillas)
Entomatadas (Cheese-Filled, Tomato Sauce-Smothered Tortillas)

What are are your weeknight warriors? Anything you can prep in less than 30 minutes? Let us know!


Tags: quick dinners, 30-minute dinners, speedy suppers