Simple, few-ingredient recipes to make for one's family while on vacation in FL?

  • Posted by: Mollyh
  • February 22, 2015


Healthline February 23, 2015
One meal idea is Salmon and Asparagus en Papillote ( with Almond Couscous ( It may sound fancy, but it's simple to prepare and is sure to impress your family. You can roast the salmon in the oven while the couscous is cooking.
cookinginvictoria February 23, 2015
We occasionally rent vacation houses with extended family. Our philosophy is to eat the way the locals eat, if at all possible. Since you will be in Florida, I would definitely seek out a good seafood market, so that you can do local fish one or more nights, assuming that everyone likes seafood. I would also try to stock up on any local fruit and vegetables that may be in season and let that dictate some menu choices.

We almost always do some sort of pasta, usually on the first night -- pesto or a simple marinara or Marcella's genius tomato sauce ( are easy, appeal to everyone and don't take long to prepare. I also like to make rivka's recipe contest-winning mujaddara to either accompany proteins or for a vegetarian entree: It makes great leftovers, can easily feed a crowd, and ingredients are easy to source. You can vary the herbs and spices in the yogurt sauce, depending on what is available.

And, yes, agree with other posters that simple desserts are a must. I usually make streamlined one-pan cakes or brownies. And we always indulge in lots of ice cream to eat with dessert or to make root beer floats. Have fun! :)
Windischgirl February 23, 2015
I'm currently in Florida with family. Our meals are guided by what looks good at the Farmers' Market (and they are everywhere right now) and fresh seafood. Shrimp scampi over pasta takes only a few minutes and can be modified to may just want pasta, leftovers can be topped with red sauce or turned into pasta salad, etc.
I'm also a big fan of grilling on vacation...easy and less mess than broiling.
Meaghan F. February 23, 2015
It's difficult to answer exactly without knowing the size of your group and the facilities you're working with, but think dishes that are both versatile and universally liked. A roast chicken (or chickens, depending on the size of the group) has the benefit of providing leftovers for the next day's meal, plus the carcass can be used to catch fish or crabs if you're into that. Rice Krispie treats are a simple three-ingredient dessert. A composed whole-grain salad can be a side dish one night, then stuffed into a bell pepper the next night for an entree.
Nancy February 23, 2015
Not exactly an answer, but both Melissa Clark and David lebowitz had features about simple vacation cooking (NYT JULY 2013 & his website, Aug 2013). To some extent they depend on car travel for bringing some ingredients. But even if you can't transport much, they both have hood basic ideas for making vacation cooking easier & tastier. See, go example, Clark's basic vacation panty.
Kristen W. February 22, 2015
Grill any kind of sausage you like, caramelize some onions and peppers, get some good buns, serve with big green salad, done!
drbabs February 22, 2015
My family rents a house on the panhandle every summer. There are 18 of us so we don't go out much. I make a big salad every night. We grill-- steak, hamburger, shrimp, fish, chicken. I also bake. We have muffins, strata, bread pudding. We buy cold cuts and fixings and make sandwiches for lunch. We cook together, take turns. Sometimes we argue. The last night is always the hardest-- you don't want to buy more food that you'll throw away. Really, a salad, protein, some bread-- it's all you need. And dessert. (We eat a lot of ice cream.) And wine if course.
kimhw February 22, 2015
Do a little online research and see if you can find a nice gourmet market. If they have prepared meals you are good to go! Grabs some salad veggies and breakfast foods and you are only going out to eat less than once a day!
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