30 Family-Friendly One-Pot Dinners for Weeknights
These dishes come together in just one pot, so you can cut down on cleanup and still enjoy a delicious, nutritious meal. From creamy pasta dishes to baked casseroles, these family-friendly feasts are sure to please everyone at the dinner table. Recipes like our One-Pan Chicken Parmesan Pasta and One-Pan Garlicky Shrimp & Rice are no-fuss and super-flavorful.
American goulash, also known as old-fashioned goulash, is the perfect economical family meal. The pasta cooks right in the sauce, so this satisfying dish can cook in just one pot.
One-Pot Tomato Basil Pasta
This one-pot pasta with tangy tomato-basil sauce is a simple, fast and easy weeknight dinner. All of your ingredients go into one pot, and with a bit of stirring and about 25 minutes of cook time, you'll have a healthy dinner the whole family will enjoy.
One-Pan Chicken Parmesan Pasta
This chicken Parmesan pasta uses the one-pot pasta method to cook your noodles, chicken and sauce all in one skillet for a fast and easy dinner with minimal cleanup. Finish the dish under the broiler to achieve a delicious melted cheese crust.
Ground Beef & Pasta Skillet
Sneak extra vegetables into your child's day (and yours too!) with this easy one-skillet pasta recipe. Finely chop mushrooms to resemble the texture of ground beef and stir them into a classic meat sauce for an extra-healthy twist on a dinnertime favorite.
One-Pot Lemon Asparagus Pasta with Shrimp
This quick one-pot shrimp and pasta dinner is cooked with asparagus in a lemony sauce. Feta cheese sprinkled over the top adds another savory layer, but feel free to skip it and add additional fresh herbs and a lemon slice instead.
One-Pan Garlicky Shrimp & Rice
This one-pan garlicky shrimp and rice dish makes a great easy dinner with easy cleanup. The garlic mellows as it cooks and infuses its flavor into the sweet shrimp and rice in the pan. A squeeze of lemon at the end brightens up the dish.
Chicken Enchilada Skillet Casserole
This simplified take on cheesy chicken enchiladas only requires one pan for cooking and eliminates the need to stuff and roll corn tortillas. Charring the veggies in a cast-iron skillet adds depth of flavor. Don't worry if you don't have one, because you can use any oven-safe skillet instead.
One-Pot Beans & Rice with Corn & Salsa
This one-pot dinner is like a deconstructed burrito bowl--especially when topped with salsa, sliced avocado or a dollop of Greek yogurt for a cool, creamy accent. You can also enjoy it as a meal on its own, or as a vegetarian taco or burrito filling or a side dish on taco night.
Quick King Ranch Chicken Casserole
Usually made by layering creamy chicken and tortillas (lasagna-style), this classic Tex-Mex chicken casserole gets speedier for an easy weeknight dinner when we mix everything together in a skillet, then pop the whole pan under the broiler to make the cheese topping gooey.
Loaded Black Bean Nacho Soup
Jazz up a can of black bean soup with your favorite nacho toppings, such as cheese, avocado and fresh tomatoes. A bit of smoked paprika adds a bold flavor kick, but you can swap in any warm spices you prefer, such as cumin or chili powder. Look for a soup that contains no more than 450 mg sodium per serving.
Easy Cauliflower Fried Rice
This vegetarian faux fried rice uses riced cauliflower in place of white or brown rice to pack in extra veggies and cut down on carbs. Chile-garlic sauce pumps up the heat, and fresh ginger adds a bright, warm bite. If you don't like the heat of the chile-garlic sauce, leave it out and add a bit more tamari or soy sauce for a rich, fermented tang.
Skillet Pork Chops with Peas, Carrots & Pearl Onions
This superfast one-dish dinner is full of classic flavor and is such a crowd pleaser that you'll want to work it into your regular weeknight dinner rotation. We call for bone-in pork chops to maximize flavor, but boneless pork chops are a fine substitution. To round out this meal a little more, serve with rice or mashed potatoes.
Chicken & Broccoli Casserole
This one-pan chicken-and-broccoli recipe comes out of the oven all browned, cheesy and bubbling like a casserole, but is really prepared more like a skillet meal on the stovetop. Serve with a crunchy green salad.
Beef & Bean Sloppy Joes
This healthy copycat recipe of the comfort food classic trades beans for some of the meat to bump up fiber by 7 grams. We also cut back on the sugar and ketchup in this Sloppy Joe recipe makeover to save you 12 grams of added sugar.
Tilapia & Poblano Tacos
Here's a quick take on fish tacos: just sauté fish, onions and peppers and serve with tortillas and some simple toppings. Poblano peppers vary immensely in heat level and tasting them is the only way to judge how hot they are. So before cooking, taste your poblanos and add a pinch of cayenne or a jalapeño if you want more heat. Use green bell peppers if you want a milder taco.
One-Pot Mac & Cheese with Cauliflower & Brussels Sprouts
Taking a minute to sizzle some garlic in olive oil is a simple way to pep up the cheese sauce for this easy homemade mac and cheese, and the flavor plays well with the cauliflower and Brussels sprouts in this family-friendly pasta dish. This recipe is designed for you to make a big batch of the cheese sauce to use in different dishes: Stir it into pasta and veggies to make this pasta a one-pot dinner then use it for Cheesy Beef Enchilada Casserole later in the week (see Associated Recipes). Or simply serve it over your favorite steamed vegetables for an easy side dish. If you'd rather make just enough sauce for this pasta, simply cut the sauce amounts in half.
One-Pot Chicken Alfredo
This better-for-you creamy, cheesy chicken fettuccine Alfredo isn't all that fancy, but it's incredibly comforting. You'll taste a nice pop of pepper and nutty notes from the whole-wheat pasta. Best part about this recipe? It's a one-pot meal, which means fewer dishes for you!
This famous soup from the state of Michoacán in Western Mexico is often made with a base of pureed beans along with tomatoes and dried chiles, which bring a lot of the character to the dish. Here we use ancho chiles, which are sweet, earthy and relatively mild. You could also use pasillas, which have a heat level similar to anchos--or, if you like it hot, gaujillos, which also bring some smoky notes to the pot.
Lemony Linguine with Spring Vegetables
Instead of cooking pasta in a huge pot of water, here we use just 3 1/2 cups for this one-pot pasta recipe. When the pasta is al dente, most of the water has evaporated and the bit that's left is thickened with the starch that cooks off the pasta. With just a few add-ins like lemon and Parmesan cheese you have a delicious silky sauce. Want to use up your veggie stash in the freezer? Swap in 8 ounces frozen spinach for fresh.
Rosemary Chicken with Sweet Potatoes
Chicken and sweet potatoes unite with the delicious taste of rosemary in this easy, one-skillet meal. Because we use parcooked and unseasoned sweet potatoes, the cooking time is much shorter--making this recipe perfect for weeknight cooking.
Pesto Chicken & Cannellini Bean Soup
This healthy, Italian-inspired chicken soup recipe is loaded with fiber-rich vegetables and beans and gets an extra boost of flavor from a swirl of pesto at the end. To get a homemade stock flavor using store-bought broth, we simmer bone-in chicken breasts in the broth before adding the rest of the soup ingredients.
Baked Tomato & Feta Pasta
Tomatoes and briny feta cheese form the base of the sauce that coats the pasta in this easy one-pan meal. Enjoy on its own as a vegetarian dinner or top with grilled chicken for some extra protein.
Skillet Chicken Parmesan
If you can't find cutlets for this easy chicken Parmesan recipe at your supermarket, place a boneless, skinless breast flat on a cutting board, hold it steady with your palm and, using a sharp knife, slice the breast horizontally into two thin pieces.
One-Pot Cheesy Tex-Mex Pasta
This comforting one-pot pasta dish has a Southwestern kick. Chili powder and pico de gallo flavor the dish, while melted Mexican cheese adds a creamy finish. Top it with your favorite fixings like scallions, cilantro and sour cream, and serve it alongside a crisp green salad for an easy weeknight meal the whole family will love.
Lemon-Thyme Roasted Chicken with Fingerlings
Fingerling potatoes are small, long, knobby spuds that are shaped like fingers. Look for them in the produce department or at farmers' markets.
We gave the plain old taco an easy, one-bowl makeover by turning it into soup! We garnish this zippy dish with pickled jalapeños, Cheddar cheese and tortilla chips, but feel free to mix it up with any of your favorite taco toppers.
Pastitsio is a classic Greek baked pasta dish made with ground beef and bechamel. Our version has all the flavors and the comforting feel of the classic, but is made in one skillet (less cleanup!) and is healthier for you, using whole-grain pasta, lean meat and low-fat dairy.
Beef & Bean Chile Verde
Chile Verde, usually a slow-cooked stew of pork, jalapeños and tomatillos, becomes an easy weeknight meal with quick-cooking ground beef and store-bought green salsa. Make it a Meal: Serve with fresh cilantro, red onion and Monterey Jack. Add cornbread on the side and your favorite hot sauce.
One-Pot Pasta with Tuna
Use the one-pot pasta cooking method to make this tuna pasta recipe that calls for just 5 ingredients and is ready in just over half an hour. For extra crunch and a tuna noodle casserole feel, sprinkle this speedy pasta dish with toasted whole-wheat panko breadcrumbs.
Very finely chopping onion, mushrooms and carrots in the food processor is not only fast--it makes the vegetables hard to detect for picky eaters. They also form the base for the sauce of this ground beef skillet supper. Make it a meal: Serve with a green salad.