Quick & Easy Go-To Dinners (+Ramen Challenge)

So as much as I (and Alec!) love to cook, some nights the full blown dinner just isn’t going to happen. I honestly feel like we really have not repeated many recipes (except these) since we have been married because we love to cook THAT much. I am a mini-version of my mother and have started a little cookbook collection (she literally has hundreds) and I really do like to cook new things out of them. Every time I make a new recipe, once it’s done, I write something on that page in the cookbook and date it. It’s so fun to look back and see “Our first full week as a married couple. We love this dish but next time add less salt”. Maybe I’m just nostalgic like that…

I wanted to share a handful of my favorite “oh no we have nothing planned for dinner” recipes! But first, here is today’s Newlywed Wednesday video where we try to eat one of the hottest ramen ever! Let me tell ya, IT WAS VERY SPICY….

  1. Stir Fry
    We usually make chicken stir fry but lately we’ve been mixing it up if we feel fancy and do steak stir fry instead. Also, do not get the frozen veggies (unless you seriously are not feeling it that night). Cutting up fresh veggies hardly takes any time and tastes 100x better (I used to use the frozen bag of stir fry veggies but Alec broke me of my habit). Stir fry is great because you can seriously throw in whatever sounds good to you and it makes great leftovers! Here is what we usually put in ours:

    Cubed chicken or sliced beef
    Green Onion
    Stir Fry Sauce / Soy Sauce
    A pepper or red chili flakes (I let Alec put his own on because his spice tolerance is much higher than mine)

    Cook the chicken first (make sure it’s a big pan/ pot/ or wok), add some sauce, add the hard veggies like carrot, broccoli, and celery. Add ginger, garlic, onion, and a little more sauce if you need. Let it cook slowly but don’t let your veggies get soggy! Serve with rice!

  2. Spaghetti Meat Sauce
    If I have the time, I will make a nice homemade sauce with fresh tomatoes from scratch and it freezes like a dream for leftovers. But if I am in a pinch, I will get:

    Package of ground turkey (you can get Italian seasoned or just add your own in)
    Can of spaghetti sauce (make sure it doesn’t have too much sugar in it)
    Clove of Garlic
    A 1/4 to 1/2 onion
    Italian Seasoning
    Red Chili Flakes

    Brown the meat in a deep pot. If there are a lot of juices, you can get rid of those so your sauce isn’t too oily. Add in the spaghetti sauce, garlic, onion, seasoning, and pepper flakes according to your taste! Literally just let it simmer low for 45 minutes to an hour. Stir it occasionally to make sure it isn’t sticking to the bottom. So easy and also great for leftovers!

  3.  Make Your Own Pizza/ Burger Night
    This is so fun to do together and really easy too! You just have to stop by your grocery store on the way home for:

    Package of raw pizza dough
    Shredded cheese (or be fancy and get a ball of mozzarella) (I get shredded lol)
    Pizza sauce / marinara
    Toppings (I keep it simple with pepp) (or sometimes we will put chicken breast, pesto, and artichoke hearts on top!)
    Italian Seasoning

    Preheat oven to about 425. We just cook our pizza on a baking sheet! Use flour to help the dough not stick to everything as you channel your inner Italian and stretch that pie out. Cover it with desired toppings and don’t forget to put a little olive oil, salt, and seasoning on the crust to make it carb-worthy! Bake for about 12-15 minutes or until your desired *crisp-ness*.

    Burger meat
    Burger seasoning of choice
    Burger bun of choice
    Burger accessories of choice (My go-to is sharp cheddar, lettuce, aioli (see below), and if I’m feeling wild, a fried egg)

    Alec and I like to have a little aioli sauce for our burgs and I make it by combining mayo, lemon juice, salt, pepper, garlic powder. You can also add some hot sauce or paprika to mix things up. Just add a little at a time until you get a combo of all the ingredients that tickles your fancy!

  4.   Shredded Salsa Chicken
    Seriously, this is SO easy. Just don’t forget about it before work! In a crock pot, put in:
    Chicken Breasts (We do 2-4)
    Jar of salsa
    Taco seasoning packet

    Told ya this was easy. Put down a layer of salsa in the crock pot, lay down your chicken breasts, sprinkle on some seasoning, and put more salsa on top. Give it all a little mix and turn your crock pot on low for 6 hours. Once it’s done, take two forks and shred the chicken up then mix it all together again with the sauce. Add this to your favorite *spicy* dish for a fiesta night!

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