8 Tasty 10-Minute Dinners for When You'd Rather Play Than Cook

chicken taco

In the fall and winter, I love puttering around in my kitchen creating a cozy, home-cooked meal. But right now it's summer, and I cannot be bothered. Cannot! It's too beautiful outside, and when I'm not working, I'd rather be out playing. Who's with me? Oh, but we still have to eat.

Just because I don't want to spend a lot of time in the kitchen doesn't mean I want to feed my family junk, though. So here are a few of my favorite quick, no-work summer recipes.


1. Grilled cheese sandwiches. I made this for my son's dinner last night, and it was simply sliced cheddar cheese between two slices of bread. But if you want to get a little more fancy than that, here are 8 "irresistible" grilled cheese sandwich recipes.

2. Rotisserie chicken tacos. There's a lot you can do with rotisserie chicken. (Pick it up with your hands and gnaw away, for example.) But I like quickly shredding some of it and letting everyone build their own tacos. Just set out the shredded chicken, taco shells or tortillas, some lettuce, grated cheese, and salsa.

3. DIY heroes. Once again, you are making your family prepare their own meal. Winning! Split some hero buns and set out all the fixings: Condiments, cold cuts, cheese slices, lettuce, tomato, pickles, whatever people love.

4. Buttered pasta with peas. Boil a box of pasta (bowtie or other little round-shaped pasta works best). During the last 2 minutes, throw in half a frozen bag of peas. Drain both and toss with butter to taste and maybe a squeeze of lemon. Add some chopped ham, too, if you like.

5. Scrambled egg burritos. Earlier in the day, we would call these breakfast burritos. But they work at night, too! Just scramble some eggs and roll up in flour tortillas. Add cheese and salsa for the people who like it.

More from The Stir5 Super Easy Microwave Recipes to Get Your Family Fed Fast

6. Hummus platter. Open a big tub of hummus and put it in the center of the platter. Surround it with pita bread, cucumber slices, olives, chopped red peppers, and whatever other raw vegetables you can get your people to eat. Be sure to take the hummus out at least 30 minutes before you eat so it can reach room temperature -- that tastes better. And toasted pita bread is nice, but only if you're feeling super ambitious.

7. Bread salad. Also known as panzanella, this is chopped tomatoes tossed with stale bread, olive oil, and salt. Add thinly sliced red onions and red wine vinegar if you think your kids will eat it. But the key is you make it ahead and let the bread soak up the tomato juices.

8. Grain salad. These are a tasty twist on the more traditional pasta salads that are summer staples. You can use any grain you want, with a variety of tasty and healthy mix ins. Quinoa, bulgur, rice, and barley are just a few of the grains you can try. 

What's your favorite quick, almost-no-cook dinner?


Image © Lauri Patterson/iStock

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