This is your new list of go-to's for those weeks when you're out of time, energy, and ideas.
It turns out that every day, three times a day, is a lot of cooking.
The novelty of being tasked with cooking every meal and finally having the time to prepare our own homemade pasta has worn off. There’s an extremely thin line between the Gordan Ramsay version of myself that aspires to cook everything from scratch on a daily basis, and the me that eats ready meals and toast for dinner. Because why should I work when the microwave can do it?
The reality is that sometimes, cooking is just hard. You’ve had a busy day, you're tired and you're just plain out of ideas. We've reached a point in the year where deciding what to make for dinner is as painful as going for a bikini wax.
But rather than ordering in every night or resorting to consecutive days of microwave meals, exciting and easy recipes do exist. What you want are dishes that only require a few ingredients (cost-effective and you won't waste hours looking around the shops for specific spices), recipes that feed more (so you don't have to cook tomorrow) and recipes that can be easily reinvented and incorporated into a range of other dishes.
So, to get you out of the food rut you've found yourself in, we've taken the liberty of digging through the extensive FOOD&WINE archives to find midweek friendly recipes that you'll genuinely be excited to cook and eat.
Here are seven tasty dinner recipes to try tonight, from a hearty spinach and feta cheese filo pie to the perfect excuse to fire up the barbecue in the form of mango chutney spare ribs.
Chilli pork noodles
Ditch the takeaway and try to make your favourite dish at home with this gorgeous chilli pork noodle recipe. It's really light and jam-packed with flavour, so you'll definitely want to make it again and again, plus it tastes just as good cold, so make extra to have for your lunch too. Get the recipe, here.
Broccoli and chicken pasta bake
Pasta bakes offer an unlimited number of possibilities and are also a fantastic way to use up leftover ingredients you might have knocking around the kitchen. They can be prepped in advance and frozen too, making them both economical and delicious! Get the recipe, here.
Chilli con carne
When you fancy a chilli con carne but don’t have the time for slow cooking – this is the quick chilli recipe for you. Lots of other recipes call for simmering for at least an hour, sometimes even more! The reality of that is tough, so we've found a chilli recipe that you can make on a weeknight in under an hour. If you prefer a thicker chilli, however, simply follow this recipe but simmer it at a lower heat for longer. Get the recipe, here.
Pepper, feta and spinach filo pie
This tart is perfect for meal prep as you can make it on a Sunday, then enjoy it for lunch or dinner for the rest of the week. It's so delicious that we can guarantee you won't get sick of this dish. Serve with a selection of salads and flatbreads, or simply by itself with a dollop of thick, seasoned yoghurt. Get the recipe, here.
One-pan Italian chicken
This tasty one-pan Italian chicken dish features classic Italian ingredients like tomatoes, garlic, spicy sausage and a drop of vino. It's a quick chicken dinner you can pull together any night of the week. Get the recipe, here.
Spare Ribs with Mango Chutney
This summery recipe is perfect now that the weather is starting to get a little warmer. These meaty, moreish ribs are ideal for al fresco dining and the mango chutney is absolutely delicious. We recommend making a double batch as you're going to want to eat it with everything. Try the recipe, here.
Ginger beer-soaked chicken
Cooking chicken over a can of ginger beer may be an unconventional method but once you taste it, you'll wonder why you didn't try it sooner. The ginger beer gives the sauce a delicious flavour and ensures the chicken stays moist. It’s best served with simple boiled rice and steamed green vegetables. Get the recipe, here.