Easy Main Dish Recipes for Busy Weeknights
A while back I asked if any of you had some super easy main dish recipes to share for busy weeknights. Below are a couple healthy dinner recipes from Jeanne and one from Melissa (thank you both – hopefully I’ll also have a picture of Melissa up soon!), and I’m asking everyone to continue to email your recipes, too. Everyone has at least ONE easy recipe for busy nights, right? (Here’s my list: our version of fast food these days, and I always need new ideas!)
Jeanne also shows below how she adapted what she calls “junk recipes” into a more nutritious meal with better ingredients…
- Instead of 1 pound conventional ground beef, use 1 pound hormone free ground beef (grass-fed is even better – see sources for safe, healthy meat.)
- Instead of 1/2 cup ketchup, use 1/2 cup organic ketchup (to avoid HFCS)
- Omit 2 teaspoons brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon mustard can stay!
- Instead of 1 1/2 teaspoons worcestershire sauce, replace with 1 1/2 teaspoons minced garlic/onions
- Instead of 1 12-ounce tube of buttermilk biscuits, replace with your favorite homemade biscuit recipe mixed up (to avoid trans fats and vegetable oils!) Here’s my homemade biscuit recipe.
- Instead of 1/2 cup cubed Velveeta (ICK!), use 1/2 cup cubed cheddar
Mix up your favorite biscuit recipe (enough for 12 biscuits). Divide biscuit dough into 12 pieces. Press each biscuit onto the bottom and up the sides of a buttered muffin cup.
In a large skillet cook beef, garlic, onions until browned; drain. Stir in ketchup, mustard. Set aside.
Place 1 cheese cube in each biscuit cup. Spoon beef mixture into cups.
Bake at 400* for 14 – 16 minutes or until golden brown.
My kids love these as a quick between-event snack. The biscuit was sturdy enough so they could eat it in the car if necessary. I just made these again yesterday, but substituted sausage for the beef. I wrapped two cups in foil and placed in the freezer. I plan to reheat in the toaster oven for 15 minutes or so at 350* (this is approximate, since I haven't done it before) and serve as a breakfast.
(Original recipe from Taste of Home Simple & Delicious Sept./Oct. 2009.)
(Also from Jeanne – “Modified from my friend Debbie’s recipe.”)
- Instead of using 2 tubes of canned biscuits, replace with your favorite biscuit recipe, doubled
- Instead of 1 jar Ragu pizza sauce, use 1 jar organic pizza sauce or 1 jar organic tomato sauce with garlic, basil, oregano added
- 3-4 cups mozzarella cheese shredded
- Pizza toppings of your choice
Preheat oven to 350*. Butter a 9 x13 pan. Take a small ball of biscuit dough, about an inch in diameter, and place in the pan. Repeat until bottom is covered with biscuit balls. Bake 10 -15 minutes, until golden brown.
Take out of oven and layer toppings and cheese. *** Continue baking for approx. 20-25 minutes or until bubbly. Let stand for 5 minutes, cut into squares.
*** I usually double this recipe. With the second pan I freeze it at this point
to serve later. I take it out of the freezer about 30 minutes before I want to bake it, and then just continue on with baking instructions.
My kids also love this recipe!
Cook ahead tips:
Look for extra glass 9 x 13 baking pans at yard sales and good will/thrift stores so you have extra to freeze casseroles in. When you put a pre-made meal in freezer, write on a post-it note the instructions for baking and tape to outer wrappings. This way you don’t have to look up the recipe, etc.
- 1 pound no-nitrate, organic chicken sausage (I love Aidell's)
- I jar chunky organic salsa
- 1 can organic black beans
- 1 package frozen organic corn
- 2 Tablespoons flour
- grated cheddar
Slice the sausage and brown in in a large pan.
Drain the salsa, reserving the juice in a small bowl (you want about 1/3 of a cup, discard any more than that).
Add the beans and corn to the pan.
Whisk the flour into the reserved salsa juice.
Add salsa juice/flour to pan, and stir until thickened.
Serve with grated cheddar on top.
- Find more recipes! (In many different categories.)
- Have you ever fed 5 kids a healthy breakfast in 5 minutes?
- OVERWEIGHT KIDS – 16 Ways to Help
Meal Planning Help!
Sick of planning meals and answering the question, “What am I going to feed these people?” No matter what kind of eater you are (traditional, GF, paleo, vegetarian)… Check out these affordable interactive easy-to-use meal plans where the work is done for you. NOW recipes also available from Nom Nom Paleo, The Paleo Mom, and Wellness Mama all in one spot! You can read over my review here.