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30 Fast Thursday Meals to Get You Through to the Weekend

When it's nearing the end of a long week, the last thing you want to do is cook. Whip up one of these fast dinner recipes in a flash.

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Skillet Shepherd’s Pie

This is the best shepherd’s pie recipe I’ve ever tasted. It’s very quick to make, and I usually have most—if not all—of the ingredients already on hand. —Tirzah Sandt, San Diego, California

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Baked Chimichangas

My baked chimichanga recipe is healthier than a deep-fried version, but it's just as delicious. You can omit the chiles for less heat. —Angela Oelschlaeger, Tonganoxie, Kansas
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Salmon with Creamy Dill Sauce

There's nothing like fresh salmon, and my mom bakes it just right so it nearly melts in your mouth. The sour cream dill sauce is subtly seasoned with horseradish so that it doesn't overpower the delicate salmon flavor. —Susan Emery, Everett, Washington
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Hearty Penne Beef

This is comfort food at its finest! The best of everything is found here—it’s tasty, easy and a great way to sneak some spinach in for extra nutrition. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen, Milwaukee, Wisconsin
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Parmesan Chicken Nuggets

My 3-year-old is going through a stage where he'll eat only chicken nuggets and French fries. I like to make these golden nuggets for him so I know what he's eating. They're so good, we like them, too! —Amanda Livesay, Mobile, Alabama
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California Burger Wraps

I love the way these fresh flavors blend together. It's a snap to throw this together using leftover burgers for a quick, healthy lunch. The burgers can also be served on buns. —Rachelle McCalla, Batesville, Arkansas
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Mediterranean Pork and Orzo

On a really busy day, this meal in a bowl is one of my top picks. It's quick to put together, leaving a lot more time to relax at the table. —Mary Relyea, Canastota, New York
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Flavorful Chicken Fajitas

This flavorful recipe is definitely on my weeknight dinner rotation. The chicken fajita marinade in these popular wraps is mouthwatering. They go together in a snap and always get raves! —Julie Sterchi, Campbellsville, Kentucky
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Three-Cheese Pesto Pizza

We love the bold flavor of this pizza that's a bit different from the traditional. The pesto, cheese and olive topping makes a delicious statement. Serve it as a main dish, or as a fun appetizer cut in smaller pieces. —Pat Stevens, Granbury, Texas
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Buffalo Sloppy Joes

Lean ground turkey makes this a lighter sloppy joe than the standard ground beef version. A hefty splash of hot sauce and optional blue cheese provide an authentic Buffalo-style flavor. —Maria Regakis, Saugus, Massachusetts
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Fantastic Fish Tacos

Fantastic Fish Tacos

Searching for a lighter alternative to traditional fried fish tacos, I came up with this crispy, crunchy entree. It's a hit with friends and family. —Jennifer Palmer, Rancho Cucamonga, California
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Coconut-Ginger Chickpeas & Tomatoes

This is my go-to quick dish. When you add tomatoes, you can also toss in some chopped green peppers (jalapenos, if you like heat) to make it even more colorful. —Mala Udayamurthy, San Jose, California
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Grilled Tender Flank Steak

This marinated steak is so moist that it will become one of your favorite ways to serve beef. You can even prepare it on the grill. It can be easily cut into thin slices. —Heather Ahrens, Columbus, Ohio
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Feta Shrimp Skillet

On our honeymoon in Greece, my husband and I had a dish like this one. I tried to re-create the flavors in this recipe when we got home. When I make it now, it brings back such wonderful memories. —Sonali Ruder, New York, New York
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Egg Roll Noodle Bowl

We love Asian egg rolls, but they can be challenging to make. Simplify everything with this deconstructed egg roll made on the stovetop and served in a bowl. —Courtney Stultz, Weir, Kansas
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Creamy Curried Chicken

This is a big hit in our house. My young son and daughter gobble it up. With its irresistible blend of curry and sweet coconut milk, it’ll become a favorite with your family, too. —Tracy Simiele, Chardon, Ohio
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Crescent Turkey Casserole

How do you make a dinner of turkey and vegetables really appealing to kids? You turn it into a pie, of course! My version tastes classic, but won’t take much time at all. —Daniela Essman, Perham, Minnesota
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Curried Pork & Orange Kabobs

I love the sweet flavor of red, yellow and orange peppers. I always go for these in the summer when they are inexpensive and plentiful, plus I think they taste a whole lot better than green peppers. —Liv Vors, Peterborough, Ontario
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Favorite Skillet Lasagna

Whole wheat noodles and zucchini pump up nutrition in this delicious, family-friendly dinner. Topped with dollops of ricotta cheese, it has an extra touch of decadence. No one will believe this one’s lighter. —Lorie Miner, Kamas, Utah
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Lemon-Parsley Baked Cod

After trying a few baked cod recipes, this was the first fish recipe that got two thumbs up from my picky meat-only eaters. The tangy lemon gives the cod fish some oomph. —Trisha Kruse, Eagle, Idaho
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Black Bean & Corn Quinoa

Some vegan quinoa recipes are boring, but this one definitely isn't. My daughter’s college asked parents for the best quinoa recipes to use in the dining halls. This healthy quinoa recipe fits the bill. —Lindsay McSweeney, Winchester, Massachusetts
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Glazed Pork Chops

When I was a new mom, I needed tasty, healthy meals I could whip up fast. These juicy chops won me over. Since this is a one-pan dish, cleanup is a breeze, too. —Kristin Tanis, Hatfield, Pennsylvania
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Dinner in a Bag

I get a head start on this family-pleasing dinner by assembling ready-to-grab pantry kits. I measure dry macaroni and the spice mixture into separate containers, storing them in a paper bag with canned tomatoes. —Darlene Brenden, Salem, Oregon
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Vegetarian Linguine

Looking for a tasty alternative to the usual meat-and-potatoes meals? Try this colorful pasta dish. My oldest son came up with the scrumptious supper that takes advantage of fresh mushrooms, zucchini and other vegetables as well as basil and provolone. —Jane Bone, Cape Coral, Florida
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Tasty Burritos

My cousin is of Mexican heritage, and I’ve watched her make this crunchy beef burrito recipe for years. The very first time I made them for my own family, they instantly became a favorite meal. They’re even better warmed up the next day in the microwave. —Debi Lane, Chattanooga, Tennessee
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Chicken Thighs with Shallots & Spinach

This moist and tender chicken comes complete with its own creamy spinach side dish! It makes a pretty presentation and comes together in no time flat for a nutritious weeknight meal. —Genna Johannes, Wrightstown, Wisconsin
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Sausage & Vegetable Skillet Dinner

I threw this sausage recipe together one night to use up produce before going out of town. Who knew it was going to be such a hit! Now it’s a recipe I turn to whenever time is tight. —Elizabeth Kelley, Chicago, Illinois
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Stuffed Peppers for Four

Truly a meal in one, this quick supper has it all: Veggies, meat, pasta and sauce, packed into tender peppers. It’ll look so pretty on your table. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen, Milwaukee, Wisconsin
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Chicken and Dumplings

Perfect for chilly winter nights, this main course is speedy, low in fat and a delicious one-dish meal. —Nancy Tuck, Elk Falls, Kansas
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Potato Kielbasa Skillet

No need to hunt through kielbasa and potato recipes, this smoky take steals the show as a hearty home-style, all-in-one meal. It’s especially perfect on those cold late fall and early winter nights. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen, Milwaukee, Wisconsin

Christina Herbst
Christina is an Assistant Editor for Taste of Home, specializing in content creation and SEO optimization. She enjoys trying out local foodie restaurants and coffeehouses and adding copious amounts of garlic and cheese to any recipe she can get her hands on.
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