30 Minute Meals

Quick and Easy Recipes

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Baked Grilled Cheese Pesto Sandwich. Linda Larsen

Yes, you really can make 30 minute meals, from gathering the ingredients to eating the first bite. You do need to do a little bit of work in advance of the meal, like reading through the recipes, planning the steps of cooking, and making sure that all the ingredients are in your pantry, fridge, or freezer. But once you start cooking, these recipes ensure that there isn't a lot to do.

Always keep the ingredients for these recipes on hand, so you can cook a good dinner at a moment's notice.

 So do a little bit of planning, keep your eyes open at the grocery store for ingredients that cook quickly, and take your time and enjoy the process of cooking a meal.  Even if a meal can be made in 30 minutes, that doesn't mean you have a stopwatch clicking away!

30 Minute Meals

  • Soup and Sandwich Meal
    I love the combination of rich, slightly sweet soup and savory, crisp sandwiches with melted cheese and pesto. If you can't find Tomato Bisque Soup in your supermarket, just add 1/4 cup of heavy cream to an ordinary can of tomato soup.
  • Skillet Meal
    Frozen fully cooked meatballs are one of my greatest 'quick cook' secrets. You can make your own and freeze them on a leisurely weekend if you don't want to purchase a bag from your supermarket. This hearty 30 minute meal is perfect for a cold fall night. And almost any skillet meal will do for this menu.
  • Broiled or Grilled Meats
    This 30 minute meal is so easy; while the chicken cooks under the broiler or on your outdoor grill, you have time to finish the rest of the meal. Substitute grilled steaks, pork chops, or tuna steaks for the chicken for a nice change. Or even use salmon steaks or shrimp; those foods have even shorter cooking times.
  • 30 Minute Pasta Meal
    Pasta is the ingredient I turn to most often when making 30 minute meals. Once you get your own kitchen rhythm going, you'll find there are almost infinite choices for pasta toppings and you'll be able to assemble a meal in your sleep (but don't!).
  • Soup and Salad Meal
    This wonderful hearty soup is so filling that a crisp green salad and some inventive toppings are all you need. Soups and salads are a classic combination and very satisfying.