5 Quick, Easy, INEXPENSIVE Dinner Ideas…My Favs!

If you’re anything like me.. always busy through the week trying to juggle life between work, running errands and attending extracurricular school activities for your children & you really don’t have a lot of time to come in and cook extravagant meals every night then I’ll be glad to share with you my top 5 FAVORITE dinner recipes!! Don’t get me wrong! I love cooking but here lately I just haven’t had the time or I’m too tired to do so! Therefore, these 5 Recipes come in handy!!

  1. Tatertot Casserole!

Ingredients:

  • 1lb Ground Beef
  • 1 Bag of tatertots
  • 1 can of Cream & Chicken
  • Salt & Pepper
  • 1 bag of Shredded Cheese (I normally get the shredded cheese that’s mixed with cheddar & mozzarella)

This recipe is very simple to make! The first thing I do is cook my ground beef. (I put a little dash of season salt in mine) After it’s finished cooking, I put the meat in a baking dish. The I add 1 can of the cream & chicken and mix it in really good with my meat. Next, I pour all of my shredded cheese on top of the mixed cream of chicken and ground beef. Don’t stir it. Just make sure all of the meat is covered with cheese. Lastly, I add my tatertots. You can either arrange them on top of the cheese “neatly” or you can just scatter them on there. It doesn’t matter. Be sure your tatertots cover all of the cheese. After you’ve done all that, you put the baking dish into the oven and let it cook until the cheese is melted! I normally set my oven on 375 and it takes roughly 20 minutes to cook! That’s about it! Of course you can add your own sides with it and I usually throw a little salt & pepper on mine just to give it a little bit more flavor. Perfect for a quick dinner and not a lot of work either!!

2. DORITOS CHICKEN CASSEROLE!!

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3. CHICKEN, BROCCOLI, SHELLS & CHEESE MEAL!!

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Y’all, I tried this for the very first time last week and it was soooo good !! It’s gets you pretty full too, no rolls or sides necessary/needed 🙂 Cooking this meal was also a great way to get my kids to eat veggies!! (Another win for mom lol) They absolutely LOVED this!!

Ingredients:

  • 2 Chicken Breasts (or as many as you’d like. I used like 4 or 5 since I was feeding 4 people)
  • 3 cups of Broccoli (I used two bags)
  • 1/4 tsp Garlic Powder
  • 1 cup Chicken Broth
  • 8oz Shell Pasta, Medium
  • 1/4 cup All-Purpose Flour
  • 1/4 tsp Pepper
  • 1/8 tsp Salt
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 2 cups Cheddar Cheese, sharp
  • Milk
  1. In a large pit of boiling salted water, cook pasta according to package directions. Add broccoli during the last 2-3 minutes of cook time. Drain & set aside.
  2. Melt butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add flour and cooking, stirring for 1 minute. Slowly whisk in milk and chicken broth and season with garlic powder, salt, and pepper. Cook, stirring constantly until mixture is bubbly and thickened. Remove from heat and add cheddar cheese. Stir until melted.
  3. Add the drained pasta, broccoli, and chicken and stir to combine. If sauce becomes too thick, add milk as needed to thin.

 

4.CHICKEN PARMESAN CASSEROLE.

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This is another good one!

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 lb Chicken, cooked
  • 1 1/2 Parsley
  • 1 Jar Marinara Sauce
  • 1 Italian Seasoned Salt
  • 1 1/2 Olive Oil
  • 1 Cup Panko Bread Crumbs
  • 1 3/4 cup Mozzarella Cheese
  • 1/2 cup Parmesan Cheese, grated
  1. Preheat oven to 350 F and grease 8 1/2 x 8 1/2 inch casserole with olive oil or spray with cooking spray.
  2. Place chopped cooked chicken in baking dish and pour marinara sauce over the chicken, stir to combine.
  3. Spread shredded mozzarella cheese on top to cover chicken. Sprinkle with grated parmesan.
  4. In a bowl stir together bread crumbs and italian seasoned salt. Add 1 tablespoon of olive oil and stir well. If it seems to dry and the crumbs are not evenly moistened add more olive oil and stir to combine. It depends on the texture of bread crumbs you use. Finer crumbs will seem to dry and need more oil, flacked crumbs like Panko need less oil.
  5. Sprinkle bread crumb mixture over the cheese and bake 20-25 minutes until bread crumbs get nice golden color.
  6. Sprinkle freshly chopped parsley before serving if desired. If you want to make this ahead and freeze for later DO NOT BAKE, just cover the casserole and place in freezer. Thaw completely before baking.

In case anyone is wondering, I got this recipe from Thriving Home!

 

5. LOADED BAKED POTATO SOUP!

One of my all time favs esp during the winter months!!!

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Ingredients:

  • 4 slices of bacon, diced (and if you don’t have bacon, bacon bits go well with it too)
  • 5 tablespoons of butter
  • 1/4 cup all purpose flour
  • 3 1/2 cups milk, or more, as needed
  • 3 potatoes, peeled and cubed (doesn’t matter which brand)
  • 2 green onions, thinly sliced
  • 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • salt & pepper
  1. Cook your bacon and then set it aside.
  2. Melt butter in a large pot over medium heat. Whisk in flour until lightly browned, about 1 minute. Gradually whisk in milk, and cook, whisking constantly, until slightly thickened, about 1-2 minutes. Stir in potatoes and green onions. (I usually chop my green onions)
  3. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer until potatoes are tender, about 15-20 minutes. Stir in cheese, sour cream, salt, pepper to taste. (I also throw in little dashes of onion powder and garlic powder to give it more flavor)  If the soup is too thick add more milk as needed.

Serve immediately, garnished with green onion, cheese, and bacon if desired.

 

I HOPE YOU ALL ENJOY & I HOPE THESE 5 IDEAS HELP LIGHTEN YOUR COOKING A LITTLE BIT LIKE IT DOES FOR ME! Feel free to hit the like button, follow my page if you haven’t already & comment!! 🙂

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