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Favourite instant meals

(12 Posts)
TheRealAmandaClarke Mon 16-Jun-14 19:20:16

I'm struggling with evening meals/ dinner/ tea time.
Very short on time and feeding me, dh, 17 mo dd and 3 yo ds.
Please could you share your favourite super quick (definitely 30 mins or less) meals? I am craving inspiration. I'm about to scour Nigella's "express" again.

TalkinPeace Mon 16-Jun-14 21:05:39

Pasta with tuna and sweetcorn and veg on the side?
Jacket potatoes in the microwave with lots of toppings?
Stir fry?
Couscous with veg and salami?
Hot pasta salad with raisins and peppers and chicken?
Salade niceoise?

FinDeSemaine Mon 16-Jun-14 21:09:39

DD's absolute favourite meal is pasta with butter, cheese, chopped ham and peas. Grown ups can spice it up with tabasco or black pepper and stronger cheese. Good with tuna, too. The Chinese rice version of this is also good. Chopped spring onion/tomatoes/peppers in a bowl with any chopped cold meat, add soy sauce and sesame oil, maybe a little lemon juice. Cook rice, dump hot rice in bowl, mix and eat. Again, tabasco or something for grown ups if liked. Both of these take less than fifteen minutes start to finish and are genuinely nice but I would class them as emergency meals rather than proper cooking.

Chicken pieces like drumsticks only take about half an hour in the oven if you have something quick to serve them with? Boiled new potatoes and veg could be done in that time. Ready made sliced polenta, shallow fried in oil and with a tomato and veg pasta sauce is also good with chicken pieces or sausages.

Pasta and rice are definitely your friends, though. Could you make pasta sauce at the weekends and freeze in portions?

Risotto is fairly quick, esp if you do it with either cooked cold meat or prawns.

Toasted sandwiches actually don't make a terrible meal if you serve lots of veg sticks and something to dip them in alongside.

If you buy tinned pulses, you only need to fry an onion, add a few chopped tomatoes and some herbs and liquid (stock, wine, whatever) and simmer for a bit while you cook bacon/sausages/chicken/fish, though you could perfectly well just eat the pulses with bread or rice or something. If you or DH can buy crusty bread on the way home, that would go well.

Hope some of this is helpful.

CMOTDibbler Mon 16-Jun-14 21:23:55

salmon fillet (I buy the frozen ones in microwave bags so they nuke from frozen in 5 mins), prawns (frozen), creme fraiche or philly, peas and chives if I feel posh. Takes as long as to heat through.

Serve with pasta, rice or rice noodles (less than 5 mins to do).

Noodle soup - stock and a spoonfull of miso paste, broccolli, thin strips of carrot, chopped savoy cabbage or chinese cabbage, peas, some cooked meat shredded, or finely sliced chicken breast, and egg noodles. Chuck in together and boil for 5 mins. I usually put the carrot in first, then add the rest in cooking order but it doesn't matter hugely

Spurious Mon 16-Jun-14 22:04:39

Toasted sandwiches

TalkinPeace Mon 16-Jun-14 22:08:58

out of Delia's Frugal food : Spiced chicken pilau
out of Delia complete : eggs alpine
out of frugal food : pasta bacon and eggs
out of Floyd on fish : tuna flops (and a thousand variants)

TheRealAmandaClarke Tue 17-Jun-14 00:08:57

Wow. Thanks. These are all great. The kids will try most things. I'm inspired.
And hungry grin

madamecake Tue 17-Jun-14 07:24:15

Gnochhi with a pasta sauce, tend to make big batches of sauce and freeze.

Homemade pizza, the dough can be made in the morning or night before and kept in the fridge. I think some supermarkets might sell ready made dough you can roll out yourself.

Jamie Oliver's five spice chicken noodle stir fry is really quick and you could leave the chilli out for the dc.

We also really enjoy halloumi burgers, dry fry halloumi slices in a pan, serve piled up in buns with hummous, rocket, red peppers from a jar, sliced red onions and some sweet chilli sauce.

ThinkIveBeenHacked Tue 17-Jun-14 07:36:48

A mattessons sausage and two chopped peppers in a dish with cooked pasta. Passatta and cream cheese stirred in and grated cheese on the top. Bake til the cheese crispens. Nom.

deepbluetr Tue 17-Jun-14 07:37:24

I have no time either, I eat out of the freezer 4 times a week or quick stir fries. Fish is good too, cooks really quickly.
I batch cook but don't sacrifice a day doing so, I just bulk up and freeze on the days I am cooking anyway.

This week is
Monday: Chilli con carne with rice and salad ( both chilli and rice from freezer)
Tuesday: Tuna steaks with new potatoes and green beans ( everything cooked from fresh within 15 minutes)
Wednesday: Slow cooked beef stifado( from freezer) with butter beans and veg
Thursday: Chicken curry, rice, and chapatis ( all hm from freezer) and salad.
Friday: Sir fry chicken, veg and noodles.
Sat: lasagne ( hm from freezer)
Sun: lamb kleftiko ( will make quadruple portions to freeze) with hasselback potatoes stuffed courgettes.

JamNan Tue 17-Jun-14 12:00:26

Chakchouka is quick and easy

TheRealAmandaClarke Tue 17-Jun-14 19:03:34

Thanks so much.
Tonight we had Spanish chicken. All bunged in the slow cooker this morning, including potatoes and voila! Instant meal as we came in.
Tomorrow maybe risotto. But I'm fasting so my desire to cook for everyone dwindles grin
I need to do a week's plan and get shopping.

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