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60 Simple Meal Ideas with 5-Ingredients (or Less!)

Dinner doesn't have to be a hassle. With just 5 ingredients you can put these simple meal ideas together and get a delicious dish on the table.

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Buffalo Chicken SlidersTaste of Home

Buffalo Chicken Sliders

I got the idea for these Buffalo chicken sliders from my mom and dad, who'd made a similar version for a family get-together. It's a versatile recipe, and I sometimes use several different styles of Buffalo sauce and let guests mix and match their favorites. —Christina Addison, Blanchester, Ohio

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One-Pot Mac and CheeseTaste of Home

One-Pot Mac and Cheese

Who likes cleaning up after making mac and cheese? Not this girl. This one-pot mac and cheese is a family favorite, and my 3-year-old is thrilled to see it coming to the dinner table. We love to add sliced smoked sausage to this creamy mac recipe! —Ashley Lecker, Green Bay, Wisconsin

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Shrimp Pasta AlfredoTaste of Home

Shrimp Pasta Alfredo

My son loves any recipe with Alfredo sauce. When he cooked as a bachelor, shrimp pasta was one of his first recipes. Now his children ask for it. Gail Lucas, Olive Branch, Mississippi

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Easy Marinated Grilled Flank SteakTaste of Home

Easy Marinated Grilled Flank Steak

Friends shared this three-ingredient marinade years ago, and it’s been a favorite since. Serve this steak with salad and grilled potatoes for a quick meal.

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Chicken with Rosemary Butter SauceTaste of Home

Chicken with Rosemary Butter Sauce

This elegant rosemary chicken requires minimal effort but will win you major compliments. You'll love the mellow sauce! —Connie McDowell, Greenwood, Delaware

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Breaded Pork ChopsTaste of Home

Breaded Pork Chops

These traditional pork chops have a wonderful home-cooked flavor like the ones Mom used to make. The breading makes them crispy outside and tender and juicy inside. Why not treat your family to some breaded pork chops tonight? —Deborah Amrine, Grand Haven, Michigan

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Tasty Onion ChickenTaste of Home

Tasty Onion Chicken

The secret to this French onion chicken is the yummy, crunchy coating that keeps the meat juicy and tender. Round out your meal with green beans and buttermilk biscuits. —Jennifer Hoeft, Thorndale, Texas

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Fast Baked FishTaste of Home

Fast Baked Fish

We always have a good supply of fresh fish, so I make fish recipes often. This recipe is my favorite because it is moist, tender and flavorful. —Judie Anglen, Riverton, Wyoming

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Taco Pizza SquaresTaste of Home

Taco Pizza Squares

Everyone will come running the minute you take this fun twist on pizza out of the oven. I top convenient refrigerated pizza dough with leftover taco meat, tomatoes and cheese, bringing a full-flavored fiesta to the table in under half an hour. —Sarah Vovos, Middleton, Wisconsin.

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Fruited Pot RoastTaste of Home

Fruited Pot Roast

This is a wonderful variation of classic pot roast. My family really enjoys it. The fruit is a nice change from the usual vegetables that normally accompany this dish.—Linda South, Pineville, North Carolina

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Crispy Dill TilapiaTaste of Home

Crispy Dill Tilapia

Every week I try to serve a new healthy fish. With its fresh dill and delicious panko bread crumb herb crust, this dish with mild tilapia is a winner. —Tamara Huron, New Market, Alabama

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Nutty Cheese TortelliniTaste of Home

Nutty Cheese Tortellini

I like to plant Italian flat-leaf parsley in a long terra-cotta planter so I always have some on hand. It adds bright, fresh flavor to this pasta dish. —Barbara Penatzer, Vestal, New York

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Orange Pomegranate SalmonTaste of Home

Orange Pomegranate Salmon

A colorful, festive salmon dish makes an impressive addition to your holiday table—and it is as delicious as it is beautiful. What no one will guess? How easy it is to cook. I serve this with roasted baby potatoes and asparagus for a show-stopping holiday meal. —Thomas Faglon, Somerset, New Jersey

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Artichoke Chicken Pesto PizzaTaste of Home

Artichoke Chicken Pesto Pizza

Make pizza night an upscale affair with this fun twist on the traditional pie. A prebaked crust and prepared pesto keep things quick and easy. —Trisha Kruse, Eagle, Idaho

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Peppered Pork with Mushroom SauceTaste of Home

Peppered Pork with Mushroom Sauce

Using preseasoned pork tenderloin gives us flavorful, quick and satisfying meals without a big mess or leftovers. I have used all flavors of pork tenderloin for this recipe. Making the sauce doesn't take much extra time and results are well worth it. —Jolene Roszel, Helena, Montana

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Sausage and SauerkrautTaste of Home

Sausage and Sauerkraut

I created this tasty quick-and-easy sauerkraut and sausage dish so I can throw it together in no time on those extra-busy nights. — Mary Lyon, Spotsylvania, Virginia

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Sausage HashTaste of Home

Sausage Hash

We always have plenty of pork sausage around, so when I need a quick supper, I use this handy recipe. The colorful vegetables give the hash a bold look to match its flavor. —Virginia Krites, Cridersville, Ohio

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Black Bean and Beef TostadasTaste of Home

Black Bean and Beef Tostadas

Just a handful of ingredients add up to one of our family’s favorites. Also easy to double for company! —Susan Brown, Kansas City, Kansas

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Herbed Pork ChopsTaste of Home

Herbed Pork Chops

Herbs are a fast and flavorful way to dress up pork. Plus, they make the chops look so pretty on a platter. I prepare these year-round as a way to capture the taste of summer. —Dianne Esposite, New Middletown, Ohio

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Ravioli LasagnaTaste of Home

Ravioli Lasagna

When you taste this casserole, you'll think it came from a complicated, from-scratch recipe. Really, though, it starts with frozen ravioli and has only three other ingredients. —Patricia Smith, Asheboro, North Carolina

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Grilled Maple Pork ChopsTaste of Home

Grilled Maple Pork Chops

Pork chops on the grill are hard to beat. The marinade is simple, and so good. —Nicholas King, Duluth, Minnesota

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Tangy Beef TurnoversTaste of Home

Tangy Beef Turnovers

My mom's recipe for these flavorful pockets called for dough made from scratch, but I streamlined it by using crescent rolls. My children love them plain or dipped in ketchup. —Claudia Bodeker, Ash Flat, Arkansas

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Chicken Cordon Bleu in PastryTaste of Home

Chicken Cordon Bleu in Pastry

Baking chicken breasts in a flaky dough makes them turn out moist and delicious every time. This fancy dish is nice to serve family as well as guests.

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Cranberry Maple ChickenTaste of Home

Cranberry Maple Chicken

Cranberries and a hint of maple syrup make a sweet sauce for these easy chicken breast halves. They’re a quick but lovely main course for weeknights and other occasions. –Kim Pettipas of Oromocto, New Brunswick

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Buttery Parmesan ChickenTaste of Home

Buttery Parmesan Chicken

A rich, cheesy breading locks in this chicken's natural juices, making it moist and tempting every time. Because it can be made in advance, I rely on it often during the week and when entertaining. —Kathie Landmann, Lexington Park, Maryland

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Garlic Herbed Grilled Tuna SteaksTaste of Home

Garlic Herbed Grilled Tuna Steaks

Grilled tuna steak recipes aren't limited to restaurants. After enjoying yellowfin tuna in southwest Florida, I came up with this recipe so I could enjoy the flavor of my favorite fish at home. —Jan Huntington, Painesville, Ohio

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Apricot-Orange Salsa ChickenTaste of Home

Apricot-Orange Salsa Chicken

Sweet oranges and apricots blend perfectly with zippy salsa in this five-ingredient entree. Keep the heat to your liking with mild, medium or hot salsa. Served over rice, it's a dinner we've enjoyed time and again. —LaDonna Reed, Ponca City, Oklahoma

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Cheeseburger and Fries CasseroleTaste of Home

Cheeseburger and Fries Casserole

Kids love this casserole because it combines two of their favorite fast foods. And I like the fact that I can whip it up with just four ingredients. —Karen Owen, Rising Sun, Indiana

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Beef in Mushroom GravyTaste of Home

Beef in Mushroom Gravy

Reports Margery Bryan of Royal City, Washington, "This is one of the best and easiest meals I've ever made. It has only four ingredients, and they all go into the pot at once. The meat is nicely seasoned and makes its own gravy-it tastes wonderful when you serve it over mashed potatoes."

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Skillet Mac & CheeseTaste of Home

Skillet Mac & Cheese

This super creamy mac 'n' cheese is so simple it seems almost too easy! Kids really go for the rich cheese flavor, but I've never met an adult who didn't love it too. —Ann Bowers, Rockport, Texas

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Fiesta RavioliTaste of Home

Fiesta Ravioli

I adapted this recipe to suit our taste for spicy food. The ravioli taste like mini enchiladas. I serve them with a Mexican-inspired salad and pineapple sherbet for dessert. —Debbie Purdue, Freeland, Michigan

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BBQ Meat Loaf MinisTaste of Home

BBQ Meat Loaf Minis

Kids can have fun helping to prepare these mini meat loaves in muffin cups. For extra spice, we sometimes add 2 teaspoons chili powder and 1 cup of salsa. —Linda Call, Falun, Kansas

 

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Saucy Grilled Pork ChopsTaste of Home

Saucy Grilled Pork Chops

My mamaw in Kentucky used this "dip," as she called it, on many grilled meats including chicken and steak. —Misty Schneider, Bayport, Minnesota

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Pressure-Cooked Mesquite RibsTaste of Home

Pressure-Cooked Mesquite Ribs

When we're missing the grill during winter, these tangy ribs give us that same smoky barbecue taste we love. They're so simple, and fall-off-the-bone delicious, too! —Sue Evans, Marquette, Michigan

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Bacon Cheeseburger PastaTaste of Home

Bacon Cheeseburger Pasta

I try to make foods that are not only kid friendly, but are also easy to reheat since my husband works long hours and often eats later than our children. If you like, use reduced-fat cheese and ground turkey for a lighter version. —Melissa Stevens, Elk River, Minnesota

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Pork Chops with Dijon SauceTaste of Home

Pork Chops with Dijon Sauce

Here's a main course that tastes rich but isn't high in saturated fat. It's easy for weeknights, but the creamy sauce makes it special enough for weekends. —Bonnie Brown-Watson, Houston, Texas

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Quick Tater Tots BakeTaste of Home

Quick Tater Tots Bake

I like to make this dish when time before supper is short. If we have unexpected company, I just double the ingredients and use a 13x9-in. pan. I call it my Please Stay Casserole! —Jean Ferguson, Elverta, California

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Easy Slow-Cooked Swiss SteakTaste of Home

Easy Slow-Cooked Swiss Steak

I let my slow cooker simmer up this fuss-free and flavorful Swiss steak. Perfect for busy spring days…the longer it cooks, the better it tastes! —Sarah Burks, Wathena, Kansas

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Sunday's Best ChickenTaste of Home

Sunday's Best Chicken

I am the busy mom of four and a nursing student, so weeknight dinners are often rushed. Sunday dinners are very important to our family and everyone loves when I make this old-fashioned chicken recipe. It's the best chicken recipe there is!—Amy Jenkins, Mesa, Arizona

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Maple Pork RibsTaste of Home

Maple Pork Ribs

A luscious maple-mustard sauce will take your next plate of ribs to a new level. —Phyllis Schmalz, Kansas City, Kansas

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Grilled Peppered SteaksTaste of Home

Grilled Peppered Steaks

I once wanted a peppered steak for supper, so I tossed some spices together and came up with this recipe. My family thoroughly enjoyed it.—Stephanie Moon, Boise, Idaho.

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Salmon with Honey Pecan SauceTaste of Home

Salmon with Honey Pecan Sauce

I love the explosion of sweet and buttery flavors in every bit of this salmon dinner. —Alice Stanko, Warren, Michigan

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Basil-Butter Steaks with Roasted PotatoesTaste of Home

Basil-Butter Steaks with Roasted Potatoes

A few ingredients and 30 minutes are all you’ll need for this incredibly satisfying meal. A simple basil butter gives these steaks a very special taste. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen

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Aloha PizzaTaste of Home

Aloha Pizza

This Aloha pizza came together on accident. I had to take something to a gathering, but had no time to shop. I raided the fridge for inspiration and discovered this happy combo. —Wendy Huffman, Bloomington, Illinois

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Green Chile PosoleTaste of Home

Green Chile Posole

This recipe combines parts of my nanny's and my mother's recipes that were taught to me when I was young. An optional sprinkling of queso fresco on top is delightful. —Jaime Love, Las Vegas, Nevada

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Maple Mustard ChickenTaste of Home

Maple Mustard Chicken

My husband loves this chicken dish. It calls for only five ingredients, and we try to have them all on hand for a delicious and cozy dinner anytime. —Jennifer Seidel, Midland, Michigan

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Curry Shrimp LinguineTaste of Home

Curry Shrimp Linguine

Curry, cilantro and coconut milk make this dish an exciting change of pace. It's also good with Thai rice noodles or spaghetti. —Jana Rippee, Casa Grande, Arizona

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Mediterranean TilapiaTaste of Home

Mediterranean Tilapia

I recently became a fan of tilapia. The mild taste makes it easy to top with our favorite ingredients. And it’s low in calories and fat. What’s not to love? —Robin Brenneman, Hilliard, Ohio

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Chicken & Vegetable Curry CouscousTaste of Home

Chicken & Vegetable Curry Couscous

For my busy family, a partly homemade one-pot meal is the best way to get dinner done in a hurry. Use your favorite blend of frozen veggies and serve with toasted pita bread for smiles all around. —Elizabeth Hokanson, Arborg, Manitoba

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Heart's Desire PizzaTaste of Home

Heart's Desire Pizza

Sweethearts of all ages will have a delightful time sprinkling these fun personal heart pizzas with whatever tasty toppings they love most. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen

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Ham & Spinach CasseroleTaste of Home

Ham & Spinach Casserole

This is down-home cooking at its best! Ham and veggies join forces with a creamy sauce and pretty topping to create a hearty meal-in-one. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen, Milwaukee, Wisconsin

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Sausage Florentine Shepherd’s PieTaste of Home

Sausage Florentine Shepherd’s Pie

In this Italian take on traditional shepherd’s pie, sausage takes the place of ground beef (or lamb), and spinach replaces the green veggies. Zesty tomatoes, Italian cheese blend and garlicky mashed potatoes make this dish incredibly long on flavor, even though the ingredient list is short. —Leah Lyon, Ada, Oklahoma

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Saucy Raspberry ChickenTaste of Home

Saucy Raspberry Chicken

I first had this as a teenage babysitter, when the children’s mom prepared it for us to eat while she was out. The kids loved it, and so did I! Now I make it for my own kids.

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Pressure-Cooker Carolina-Style Vinegar BBQ ChickenTaste of Home

Pressure-Cooker Carolina-Style Vinegar BBQ Chicken

I live in Georgia but I appreciate the tangy, sweet and slightly spicy taste of Carolina vinegar chicken. —Ramona Parris, Acworth, Georgia

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Sweet and Spicy Chipotle ChickenTaste of Home

Sweet and Spicy Chipotle Chicken

My husband and I have created many wonderful memories by sharing this meal with our friends. In the winter, we bake it indoors; in the summer, it works well on the grill, too! Either way the chicken pretty much cooks itself, leaving you plenty of time to visit with friends and family. —Ashlie Delshad, West Lafayett, Indiana

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Asian Salmon TacosTaste of Home

Asian Salmon Tacos

This Asian/Mexican fusion dish is ready in minutes—perfect for an on-the-run-meal! If the salmon begins to stick, add 2-3 tablespoons of water and continue cooking through. —Marisa Raponi, Vaughan, Ontario

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Hawaiian Pulled Pork Lettuce WrapsTaste of Home

Hawaiian Pulled Pork Lettuce Wraps

We love this easy slow-cooker recipe on Sunday afternoons. It's equally comforting and light for lunch or dinner. We serve ours with sweet potato oven fries and roasted green beans. —Arlene Rakoczy, Gilbert, Arizona

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Slammin' LambTaste of Home

Slammin' Lamb

This meat is easy, flavorful and best when marinated overnight. You can even mix it up and freeze it until you want to throw it in the crock! Make sure you have lots of pita bread on hand to soak up the juices. —Ruth Hartunian-Alumbaugh, Willimantic, Connecticut

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Salsa Steak Garlic ToastsTaste of Home

Salsa Steak Garlic Toasts

These open-faced steak sandwiches play up the popular combo of steak and garlic bread. The salsa, sour cream and garnish elevate it into quick, satisfying meal. Substitute chopped green onions or chives for the cilantro if desired. —Arlene Erlbach, Morton Grove, Illinois

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Tuscan Grapes and SausagesTaste of Home

Tuscan Grapes and Sausages

This recipe is one of my go-tos when entertaining. It's simple, elegant and you can entertain your guests instead of spending the entire time in the kitchen. It is always a crowd pleaser and everyone always asks for the recipe. The whole pieces of garlic in this dish become so sweet, a lovely complement to the sweet grapes and spicy sausage. I serve this over rustic hand-mashed red potatoes. —Melissa Zienter, Las Vegas, Nevada

Carolyn Lewis
Carolyn Lewis is a young writer & digital media professional who grew up in Milwaukee. She loves to read graphic novels, write poetry about nature and cook Thai food while listening to podcasts. She has always been a storyteller and animal lover, thus, she has a hamster named Hamlet.

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