19 super easy meal ideas from readers' go-to recipe files #Recipes#cook#cooking#cooking for one#food#healthy food#salads#vegetarian April 9 | Catherine Clark bijouxandbits Tuscan white bean and quinoa salad from Kelley & Cricket Related Post 14 go-to easy breakfast ideas from our readers (for really easy mornings) Back in the summer, we featured a call-out to readers for their favorite easy breakfast ideas and you delivered. Y'all delivered so hard that I... Read more Back in the summer, we featured a call-out to readers for their favorite super-easy breakfasts and you delivered. We even featured a whole roundup of reader-submitted breakfast recipes here. You didn't just give us great brekky recipes, though. You also gave us a ton of awesome lunch and dinner ideas, too! Let's face it, we're also tired after work, amirite? I've divided them into categories: grains and stuff, easy pastas, salads and greens, and sandwiches and toasts. There are a lot of super easy meal ideas to be had here. More recipes can be found here if you want to expand your recipe haul. But if not, prepare to be inundated with delectable easy meal ideas from your fellow readers that will have you throwing noodles, greens, and bread into your gob in no time. Grains & stuff My favorite simple grain dish is quinoa with arugula and white beans, with a simple tahini lemon dressing that takes me 60 seconds to whip up. I feel like you're probably going to read that and say "oh too many weird ingredients and too much work", but if you just buy some cans of beans, a box of quinoa, a jar of tahini, and a bottle of lemon juice, then your pantry is stocked. The only thing you have to buy more often because it needs to be fresh is the arugula. – Alysssa Make polenta, stir in a shit ton of cheddar or goat cheese and (a) some frozen peas OR (b) just put an egg on it (fried capers are amazing with this one, if you've got the time). – JM My go to lazy dinner (with many leftovers for lunches): Couscous topped with salad greens and roasted sweet potatoes with a drizzle of Annie's Green Goddess Dressing. Sometimes when I am not wanting to turn on the oven, I do a microwave baked sweet potato instead of roasting them. – Keren Sweet potato & quinoa chili from The Simple Veganista Cook up some quinoa and sweet potato (bite-size pieces, also you can substitute other orange veg like carrot or butternut squash) in some veggie stock. When cooked, add a tin of chopped tomatoes, some tomato puree, a couple of tins of beans (black beans work really well, as do aduki, but any would be fine, and lentils could probably be used too) and all the flavouring — garlic and onion (dried if you can't be bothered to chop and fry!), whatever herbs you have, cumin, paprika, and salt, pepper, and chili powder to taste. The original recipe doesn't use it but a bit of creamed coconut would probably go well too. Once all that's heated through, it's ready. It's so simple and easy I've cooked it in one big pot over a campfire for 20 people. – Cat Easy pastas Cooked pasta (I like rotini for this recipe) topped with chopped tomato, lettuce, and sliced deli ham. Then tossed with (bottled) Italian dressing. I got this recipe from the Poor Girl Eats Well, except she used smoked salmon instead of ham (and maybe she used a fancier dressing?). You could also substitute cooked chicken breast, canned beans (like chick peas), hard-boiled egg, or sliced egg omelet. Or substitute cucumber for the lettuce, etc. No cooking needed other than for the pasta which only requires boiling water. Pretty easy and delish! – Gramercy Cooked pasta topped with olive oil, garlic powder (fry up some minced fresh garlic if you have it, though), and Parmesan cheese (yeah, the stuff from the shaker, or leftover packets from pizza deliveries). Then add sliced cherry/grape tomatoes and chopped green onion, if you have them. It's incredibly delicious, and very simple. You can also add red pepper flakes. – donteatmenooo Summer Squash Ribbons with Sage and Manchego from Heather Goesch My beloved flatmate and I used to have a joking name for our bowl recipes: Pasta With Things! Especially in high summer, one of my favorites is this: throw together minced garlic (a couple of cloves), fresh tomatoes, and if possible fresh herbs to taste. If you're feeling fancy, add chopped zucchini. Add liberal quantity of fresh ground black pepper, drizzle the whole thing with extra virgin olive oil, and let sit — either for a whole afternoon, or for as long as it takes pasta to boil, but the longer the better. Then boil your pasta water, cook and drain pasta, throw delicious tomato mixture on top, add optional cheese (because who doesn't like cheese?). I also recently found this recipe for summer squash ribbons, which I love. Bruschetta pasta salad Pasta salads are great "bowl food." My fave go to is 1 red onion chopped, 1 red pepper chopped, half a cucumber chopped, a handful of fresh basil (shredded), vinaigrette, chickpeas (1 can), and pasta of your choice. Mix and serve cold. Sometimes I add nuts depending on my mood. – Elisa Delish salads & greens Vegetarian Taco Salad from The Country Cook My favorite easy bowl is kind of like a deconstructed vegetarian taco salad. Black beans (from a can), rice, tomatoes, black olives, shredded cheddar, avocado and/or sour cream, salsa, and a few tortilla chips crumbled on top. – Clevelandkat My go-to easy lunch that I make about once a week is a collard greens and black-eyed peas concoction. The only fresh produce I need is collard greens. And to wash it, I use this AWESOME spin top-esque salad spinner. It actually makes washing greens fun! For the rest of the ingredients, I use frozen, pre-chopped onions, a can of black-eyed peas, and a jar of minced garlic. Here's the recipe I use. – Angelle Homemade maple curry vinaigrette dressing Greek salad. Chop up cucumbers so they fit on a fork, some tomatoes, either chopped or buy the little ones. Feta, a lot or a little to taste tossed on top (mozzarella is also good). Olives, (if you like olives, I love olives so it's about half olives, and I put like three kinds on it!) The dressing can be fancy or not. Vinegar (whatever kind you got) and a little oil drizzled on is where I start, with some black pepper, maybe basil one night, maybe oregano, lemon juice, any combination works. It's different every time I make it. – BBee Sandwiches & toasts Avocado toast with egg and paprika Avocado and fried egg on toast. Turn on stove burner and crack egg into a skillet. Put a slice of bread in toaster on 4-minute setting. While those cook, cut and mash up half an avocado. When the toast pops up, flip the egg over and take the pan off heat to finish cooking. Spread the avocado on the toast and dot with hot sauce. Move egg to top. – Alissa Ciabatta bread spread with goat cheese, drizzled with olive oil, sprinkled with dried basil, slices of tomato on top. Then put it under the broiler for a few minutes. – Alissa Avocado & tomato toast from Genius Kitchen Toasted cheese from Food52 More easy meal ideas: The secret of the casserole: Demolish leftovers with this easy casserole hack Every casserole follows the same basic schematic. And once you know that, you can use it to get rid of leftovers, get more greens into your diet, experiment with flavor… Read More Try this astoundingly-easy slow cooker curry recipe You know we love slow cookers and we love offbeat curries, so let's combine the two with this recipe! It's dairy, sugar, and gluten-free. It's vegan if you leave out… Read More Reporter Name * Reporter Email * Original text Enter the original text here. Edited text* Enter your suggested copyedit here. Notes You can add a note for the editor here. * Required information. Fix Typo Catherine Clark Catherine Clark is Offbeat Bride's Senior Editor. In her spare time she loiters at her local library, makes art, watches movies en masse, plays video and tabletop games, poorly cooks healthy things, cuddles with her feline fur baby, and blogs at BijouxandBits.com. @enidjcoleslaw @bijouxandbits @bijouxandbits PREVIOUS This historical Dutch spooky house for sale is straight out of our haunted dreams NEXT My mother abandoned me and my life was forever changed Show/Hide comments [ 4 ] Mac and Cheese is my easy meal. No roux necessary. Boil pasta, drain. Get some shredded cheese–I like a mix of 3/4 sharp cheddar and 1/4 Guyare (found some on sale at Aldi and stocked up….freezes ok). Layer pasta cheese and a few pats of butter and a couple dashes of salt if you want. I usually do about 4 layers, but you could do just two. Pour about 1 cup of milk in (if you're doing higher layers, maybe about 1/2 a cup if you're only doing 2). Bake at least at 350, but I've gone up to 425 if I am roasting veggies. bake for 25 or so minutes, you'll know when it's done. 2 agree Reply Get yourself some frozen rice from Trader Joe's. Get yourself a jar of kimchi. Thaw that rice and then throw it in a pan with some sesame oil. Let it get a little crispy. Toss on a little soy sauce. Mix it up. Take it off the heat and dump in as much of that tasty kimchi as you like. Chuck it in a bowl and throw a fried egg on top. Drizzle with a little bit more sesame oil. Boom, you've got my absolute favorite lunch. I really could eat it for breakfast, lunch, or dinner any and every day of the week. 4 agree Reply Mmmmmmm I'm so on that train – love me some kimchi fried rice with a fried egg! Breakfast of champions! 1 agrees Reply Start with kale. Bagged, ready-to-use kale is fine. Sautee with olive oil, salt, garlic, and a pinch of red pepper flakes. When thoroughly wilted, add a can of drained chickpeas and heat through. Serve over couscous. Top with Parmesan or similar, and a squeeze of lemon if you happen to have some. Reply Join the conversation Cancel Reply Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *Comment No-drama comment policy Part of what makes the Offbeat Empire different is our commitment to civil, constructive commenting. Make sure you're familiar with our no-drama comment policy.