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Need dinner ideas!

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I am so tired of the same old stuff. It seems like we cycle through the basics over and over again:





Sausage and Potatoes


Macaroni and Cheese



None of it particularly healthy and all of it really, really boring.


Dh does not eat casseroles or meatloaf. He doesn't like rice or eggs. Everything must have meat in it or he doesn't think he is done. He won't eat frozen meals.


I really want healthy and not so...processed. Totally different! Any ideas?

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Let's see, here are some things from my menus that are stacking up on the side of my fridge:


cobb salad with chicken-I marinate the chicken in some lemon juice, olive oil and garlic, then I have hubby grill it when we're grilling something else. In the salad goes: romaine, sliced boiled eggs, bacon, avocado and blue cheese.


meatballs with pasta-I make simple meatballs with seasoned breadcrumbs, an egg, a little milk and some finely chopped onion and bake them in the oven at 400 degrees for about 20 minutes. In a pan on the stove (in the meantime) I cook celery, carrots and onion, adding diced tomatoes and lemon juice near the end. I put the meatballs in with the veggies so that the flavors all meld. I serve it with tricolor rotini.


enchiladas-I make two different kinds. Sometimes, I make chicken enchiladas. I have adapted this Martha Stewart recipe. Other times, I just cook hamburger meat with onions and roll that in enchiladas with beans and cheese, topping them with red sauce. I usually make a salad with avocado on the side.


The rest of these, I'm just going to link to a similar recipe if I can find one:

glazed salmon with broccoli salad and rice (my dh actually loves rice, but you could use pasta or some other starch)


Baked Potato Soup (there isn't a lot of meat in this, but I guess you could serve it as a side?).


Stuffed Shells (I make my own sauce, another adapted MS recipe), asparagus and PW's olive bread.


Chicken Satay with rice and a selection of fruit.


BBQ chicken sandwiches (I just put chicken and a bottle of BBQ sauce in the crockpot, that's right, I said it, crockpot) with cole slaw.


Steak Fajitas


Chicken Stir Fry-I cook the chicken, then the veggies. I use a mix of frozen and fresh. I start with frozen stir fry veggies (usually broccoli, peppers, water chestnuts, nothing with seasoning or sauce), add frozen edamame and throw in some extra carrots, celery, etc. I add soy sauce, honey and lemon juice near the end, then combine everything. I serve it over rice, but you could do lettuce wraps.


Chicken noodle soup-I make stock with chicken, I make the noodles (your basic egg noodles).


Pork chops, mashed potatoes and green beans.


Homemade strombolis-I use pre-made pizza dough, that makes this pretty fast.


Pot roast with carrots and potatoes, served with bread and salad.

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Hambugers with fries or potato salad

Does hubby eat fish, maybe a stuffed fish or just fried fish with potato pancakes.

Soup and BLT's

BBQ Pork sannys with salad or slaw

Pot roast with roast veggies or shredded and put on buns for french dips

Stuffed porkchops with baked spuds

Turkey dinner with fixins--if there is enough left over turkey and gravy over toast tomorrow night lol

Grilled chicken with alfredo and salad


That is all i can think of right now I hope you get some great ideas I know I love reading what everyone else is eatting.:001_smile::lurk5:

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Roast (I usually use an extra large roast so I have enough for two meals)


Roast - 1st Night


1 package Au Jus Mix

1 package Good Seasons Italian Dressing

1 Cup Beef Broth

1 Cup Water

Potatoes - Quartered


(Double Au Jus, Italian Dressing, Broth, and Water if using a large roast)


Mix together the Au Jus, Italian dressing, broth, and water in a crock pot. Then add the roast, potatoes, and carrots. Cook on low until meat is falling apart.



Roast - 2nd Night


Add bbq sauce to leftover roast and heat on stove. Serve on hamburger buns for bbq beef sandwhiches. I usually serve this with homemade fries and some type of fruit.

Edited by AllSmiles
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I have two chicken dishes I do with good success from the meat & potatoes crowd in my house.


Fajita Chicken:


Bake boneless chicken breasts

Cut up and simmer with fajita mix (in the bagged spices section)

Serve on flour tortillas with regular taco sides

Serve with black beans and rice


BBQ Chicken: (these go over quite well)

Bake boneless chicken breasts

Cut up and simmer in BBQ sauce

Serve on flour tortillas


Easy potatoes:

Cut up white potatoes and sweet potatoes into bite sized cubes

Boil for 5-10 minutes

Drain and spread into baking pan

Drizzle with olive oil and spices (we use Lawry's)

Bake at 350 for 30-40 minutes

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Will they eat soup if it has meat in it? I make a chunky chicken soup made with chopped onions (saute in butter) add garlic; stir in 1/3C flour. dd chicken broth(6C) bring to boil, then lower heat and simmer 5 min. Add lemon juice (about 1/4C), tarragon (1T dried), a couple dashes of Tabasco, and a 1/2C cream. Serve with bread and a salad.


Shepherd's pie is another favorite - is it too much like a casserole?


BBQ sandwiches - cook a boston shoulder roast in a crockpot all day. Shredd and add your favorite BBQ sauce (store-bought or home made)


All of these freeze well, so make 2 or 3 batches and have easy dinners to pull out - oh, never mind - just saw the part about frozen meals.

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This salmon recipe is wonderful


Easy fried rice... I add sesame oil and cut the butter just a bit


And one of my really fast go-to recipes that the pickiest of my crew likes


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Today we had shrimp (sauteed in some healthy oil with some seasonings) over pasta (I use Smart Taste pasta), with broccoli and "sauteed" (again, healthy style) mushrooms. I am on a diet so I just used I Can't Believe It's Not Butter spray and some garlic and a little salt on the pasta, mixed it all together, and it was quick, easy, tasty and healthy :D

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Stir fry: Use chicken or beef cut into thin strips, and you can buy a bag of frozen stir fry veggies if you need to save time not cutting them yourself. Serve with rice.


Chicken or beef teriyaki - buy sauce (Yoshida's Gourmet Sauce is good, but you may already have a favorite). Cut the beef into strips, or leave chicken as whole pieces and marinate in the sauce for several hours, then either grill or bake or stir fry. Add a bit more sauce on top and serve with rice. This is also good if you skewer it and grill them.


Pulled Beef Sandwiches: Get a beef brisket, put it into a crock pot and cover with water, and whatever else you like (Worchester sauce, onions, or even a can of beer) and cook for 6-8 hours. Remove from the liquid and shred with two forks. Cover with BBQ sauce and serve on hoagie rolls or even hamburger buns. Serve with baked beans and salad.


Chili and cornbread: Quick way is to use some cans of chili and place into a baking dish. Top with cornbread batter and bake until the cornbread is cooked. I make my own cornbread from scratch, but you can also use a mix if you prefer, and you can make your own chili, too.


Taco Salad: Cook up some hamburger and add taco seasoning, or use a couple cans of chili (with beef, to please your dh!). On plates, layer tortilla chips, shredded lettuce, warmed taco meat or chili, and top with shredded cheese, sour cream, guacamole, olives, tomatoes, or whatever combo you prefer.


Take BLSL chicken breasts and flatten them just a bit by pounding. Add a slice of swiss cheese and piece of ham (deli ham is just fine) and roll up. You may need a toothpick to hold each piece closed. Dip in egg and roll in bread crumbs and place in a greased casserole dish. Bake at 350 for 45 min. or so until cooked. Very easy to make, and yummy. Serve with favorite veggie and rolls or potatoes.


Baked potatoes: Bake large potatoes and have toppings. Would your dh be satisfied with bacon as his dinner meat? Top with bacon, shredded cheese, chives, sour cream, butter, or chili (that would give your dh some meat).


Hawaiian Chicken sandwiches: Grill BLSL chicken breasts or thighs (cheaper). I prefer chicken breasts. Brush with teriyaki sauce while grilling. You could bake these if weather doesn't permit grilling. Then either grill pineapple slices or lightly brown them in a pan. Put the chicken on a hamburger bun, top with a grilled pineapple slice and some warmed teriyaki sauce. Great with rice or salad. You can do the same thing with hamburger meat.


Pita Chicken Salad Sandwiches: use cooked chicken. Either bake chicken or buy a roasted chicken. Cube the chicken. Add mayonnaise and some curry to taste. Mix in some diced apple (use apple with good flavor, like Pink Lady or even a tart Granny Smith) and roasted cashew pieces. Open pita bread and add some lettuce, then stuff with the chicken salad mixture. Great on a hot day with fruit salad, and it is more filling than it may sound.


Pork Roast: Put the pork shoulder or roast into a crock pot. Cover with some orange juice concentrate straight from the frozen can, (don't mix it into juice) and a can of cranberry sauce. Add just a bit of water to the bottom and cook on low for 6-8 hours or on high for 4-5, or until cooked. You can also cook it in the oven if you prefer.

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I see you don't have some of the traditional "meat" meals:


A chicken cooked in a crockpot (or oven) with oven roasted potatoes and carrots.


Pork loin baked in the oven (just open the package and pop it in the oven.)


Do you guys like ham? I hate it, but other people like it. I think you just pop it in the oven. Sounds easy (if you like it.)


Chili? (or is that too much like a stew.)


For our spaghetti, we put Hormel Chili (w/o the beans) on it instead of sauce. (that's processed, but at least it's different from regular spaghetti.) Maybe homemade chili on the spaghetti, instead of the canned stuff.


Bean enchilladas?

1 can refried beans

2 cans enchillada sauce

1 chopped onion

10 tortilla shells



Mix beans, onion, and ONE can enchillada sauce. Put some of the mix into a shell. Roll up the shell. Pour some of the other can of sauce onto the rolled up shell. Microwave 2-3 minutes.


Top with chopped tomatoes if you like.


I'll cook 2-3 enchilladas on a plate in the microwave at a time. This is a FAST dinner. If you have leftover chicken, you can stick that in, too.

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