Quick Dinner Ideas: 20 Easy Dump and Go Meals
Check out our favorite quick meals, easy dessert ideas, tips from experts, time-saving cooking ideas, and more!
By: Natalie Terchek, Editor, AllFreeCasseroleRecipes.com
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We live in a world where everybody is busy and always on-the-go. If you're having one of those hectic days when you're not sure if you'll have time to eat, these Quick Dinner Ideas: 20 Easy Dump and Go Meals should help you out.
All of these quick dinner ideas are incredibly easy to make. Once you complete a little bit of prep work, all you have to do is put the ingredients in the slow cooker or in the oven, and then you're done! This is a very effortless, stress-free process, and it gives you more time to accomplish everything on your to-do list.
Not only are these recipes simple, but they're also quite delicious and filling. A wide variety of delicious recipes are featured below, ranging from a zesty Mexican dish to easy chicken casserole recipes. No matter what you're in the mood for, these dishes should satisfy every kind of craving you could possibly have.
All of these dump and go meals make excellent weeknight dinner options that your whole family will enjoy. If you don't have a lot of time to cook, or if you really don't want to spend much time in the kitchen, these recipes are perfect for you.
Just don't forget to leave room for dessert – we've featured some delectable dump cake recipes in this collection of dump and go recipes, and they are to die for! There's no better way to relax after a long day than enjoying one of these sweet, fruity treats. They're the ultimate comfort food. Many different kinds of dump cakes are listed below, so you could probably make a different cake for each season!
BONUS! Check out the quick dinner idea and video for Dump and Done Chicken Casserole from our friends at RecipeLion! It's quick to put together and only needs to bake for 30 minutes.
Table of Contents
Quick Dinner Ideas
These savory ideas for dinner are sure to save you lots of time in the kitchen. And even though they don't take very long to make, they taste so good that it feels like it took hours of preparation.
Whether you're looking for a chicken casserole, a recipe with ham, or a pork chop casserole, you'll find something to love in our collection of quick dinner recipes.
"Delicious dinners definitely don't require hours of labor! The trick is to keep it simple: use just a handful of high quality ingredients, take advantage of fresh flavor from herbs and spices, and don't be afraid of shortcuts. I'm a big fan of frozen chopped onion, as well as minced fresh garlic and ginger in squeezable tubes from the produce section to cut down on prep time and minimize dirty dishes!"
- Blair Lonergan, The Seasoned Mom
Dump and Go Dinner Recipes
When life gets busy it's helpful to have some easy dinner ideas on hand. These recipes call for 15 minutes of prep time, at most, which means they are a breeze to make.
Once your casserole has been prepared, just bake it in the oven and go about your day. These quick meals will help you enjoy a homemade meal with very little active cooking time.
Save time in the kitchen with our new collection of delicious ground beef recipes. These hearty dinners are easy to make and are sure to please a whole crowd of hungry mouths! Download your own free copy of Ground Beef Recipes: 15 Easy Ground Beef Casserole Recipes
Easy Slow Cooker Dinner Ideas
The following recipes make excellent dump and go meals. All you have to do is dump the contents in your slow cooker, let it cook, and then you have a delicious, filling meal. It's just that easy.
These slow cooker casseroles are comforting, filling, and so easy to make. What more could you ask for?
"One trick for making quick dinners is simply by having the meat thawed or by having the meat cooked ahead of time. You save a lot of time when you can pull out cooked hamburger from the freezer or cooked and shredded chicken.
I also recently discovered sauteed onions in the freezer section of my grocery store. This saves the step of cutting the onion (wah!) and sauteing the onion."
- Karen Bellessa Peterson, 365 Days of Slow Cooking
Easy to Make Desserts: Dump Cake Recipes
Dessert sounds especially good when you've had a long, hectic day. These comforting dump cake recipes are perfect to make because they're super easy, quick and tasty.
Once you realize how easy it can be to make dinner, you'll definitely want to finish off the evening with a quick dessert.
Time-Saving Tips for Making Quick Dinners
1. Gather all of your ingredients before you start cooking anything. It is best to do tasks like opening cans, measuring out spices, rinsing beans, and chopping vegetables before you actually begin cooking. This will help keep you focused and will cut down on distractions. It can also keep your workspace cleaner! This culinary technique is known as mise en place, which translated from French means, “put in place.” It commonly seen on cooking shows and is used by professional chefs, but it is also great technique for any cook to use.
2. Cut or chop ingredients into smaller pieces. Ingredients like whole potatoes and carrots and meats such as whole chicken breasts and sausage can take a long time to cook. Cutting vegetables and meat into smaller, bite-sized pieces will help them cook faster and also make them easier to eat.
3. Line your casserole pans with foil. This step won’t make dinner cook any faster, but it will make clean-up a breeze! Lining your pans means you won’t have to wait for you casserole dishes to soak overnight. Once you’ve enjoyed your meal, just throw away the foil. And if the pan is lined well enough, you might only need to rinse out the pan rather than wash it.
4. Clean up the kitchen while your casserole is baking. Since all of the above recipes have quick prep times, you can utilize the baking time to wash dishes and put ingredients away. Then, after dinner, you don’t have to stress about cleaning up the kitchen.
5. Set aside time to prep ingredients. Although it takes a bit of time, prepping ingredients all at once will save you a ton of time during the week when you’re making a quick dinner. When it comes to prepping chicken, a great idea is to buy a large pack of chicken breasts (preferably when they are on sale) and cook them all at once. Then, you can freeze shredded or chopped cooked chicken in 1-cup amounts to use later. It can also save time to chop up vegetables all at once and right after you buy them. That way, you can easily use them in recipes throughout the week.
6. Plan your meals ahead of time. Taking the time to plan out the meals you want to make for the week will simplify your grocery shopping, cut down on food waste, and save you money. After deciding on the meals you’ll make for the week, head to your pantry to make sure you’re not buying something you already have and write down the ingredients you need to buy. For even more tips on meal planning, check out our guide, 8 Meal Planning Tips Everyone Should Know.
Looking for more shortcut recipes? For more inspiration, take a look at our collection of Recipes with Bisquick: 8 Casserole Recipes with Bisquick
What's your go-to recipe for a quick dinner?
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