100 Easy One Dish Meals for Busy Moms

Posted on by admin | in babysitting

For many moms, preparing dinner is the most stressful part of the day. From the meal prep to the clean-up, trying to get a home cooked meal on the table can be a real challenge. You can simplify your dinner routine by sticking with easy one dish recipes. Here are 100 one dish meal ideas to get you started.


The casserole is an old stand-by in the way of one-dish meals. Casseroles travel well, freeze well and tend to stay hot longer than other kinds of cooking. These dishes also often have fillers like rice or pasta built into the dish, so they’re easy to serve to a larger crowd. They tend to work well as leftovers, too, making them the perfect dinner. Take a look at these 10 casserole recipes and see if any of them appeal to you.

  • Spicy Coconut Chicken Casserole—Try this simple and spicy dish created by The Urban Mrs.
  • Polish Casserole Recipe—This recipe features polish sausages called Kielbasa and penne pasta from Taste of Home.
  • Chicken Alfredo Casserole {A Dreamy One-Dish Meal}—Enjoy the rich creaminess of this simple recipe by Mommy’s Kitchen.
  • Chili Relleno Casserole, Tangy One Pot Meal—This egg dish from Circle Me can be enjoyed for breakfast or dinner.
  • Meat and Potato Casserole—One Dish Dinner!—If your family likes meat and potatoes for supper, try this one dish meal by The Shady Porch.
  • World’s Greatest Chicken Pot Pie Recipe—For those people who say they don’t like casseroles this is the solution found on Oprah.
  • Meat Noodle Casserole—This casserole by Parent Society can be made with beef, chicken, or turkey depending upon what you have on hand.
  • Cracker Barrel Broccoli Cheddar Chicken—If you like the original dish at the restaurant you are going to love this copycat recipe by All Free Casserole Recipes.
  • Beefy Skillet Nacho Bake—Mix up this recipe by The Weekend Gourmet and serve with tortilla chips for a fun and simple dinner.
  • Sloppy Joe Tater Tot Casserole—Combine two childhood favorites into one casserole with this recipe from Buns in My Oven.

Slow Cooker

Mom’s everywhere know the best meal helper they have is the slow cooker. You can load up the cooker in the morning and come home to a finished dinner at night. In a hurry? Speed up the slow cooker process by prepping and freezing ingredients for meals so they’re ready to go whenever you need them. Cooking in a slow cooker is a smart way to save money too, because the low and slow cooking style allows you to use cheaper cuts of meat that will still result in a tender and delicious meal. Read through these slow cooker meals to get some new ideas for your family dinners.

  • Pot Roast Meal—A healthy and simple dinner option by Title Boxing Club will help you get your meat and veggies in for a complete meal.
  • Jambalaya {A One Pot Meal}—This Cajun specialty can be pretty spicy, so you might want to go slow on adding the spice part according to Country Girl in the Village.
  • Crock Pot Chicken, Rice, and Veggie DishSOA Event Concepts has combined basic ingredients to create this simple dish.
  • Crockpot Breakfast CasseroleEat. Drink. Love has put together this convenient breakfast dish that’s perfect for the mornings when you don’t want to get up early to fix breakfast for a crowd.
  • Crock Pot Chicken and Dumplings—Whip this recipe together in no time! You can even use frozen chicken to slow the cooking down according to Stuff Parents Need.
  • Crock Pot Chicken and Stuffing—Only four ingredients go into this super simple one pot meal that’s featured on Stockpiling Moms.
  • Wine-Infused Pork Roast Crock Pot Meal—There’s no muss or fuss when making this one pot dish by Surviving a Teacher’s Salary.
  • Thanksgiving: Turkey and Stuffing Crock Pot Casserole—You’ll have plenty for dinner with this seasonal dish by The Kitchen Witch.
  • Crock Pot Chicken and Sweet Potatoes: Healthy, Flavorful Meal for a Special Occasion—This dinner is special enough for company, but truly simple enough for any day of the week by New Orleans Mom.
  • Slow Cooker Quinoa and Black Bean Chili—Make this dinner when you have a busy night of running kids to practices suggests Healthnut Foodie.

Stir Fries

You don’t need a wok to make a stir-fry – any large non-stick skillet will work. And you don’t have to cook Asian-inspired meals either. These 10 blogs feature various types of stir-fries that will please any palate. Some, like the southwestern stir-fry and the onion, pepper and steak stir-fry, can be made without traditional Asian ingredients. The trick to creating a delicious stir-fry is being prepared, so cut up your ingredients over the weekend and put them all in a gallon-sized zipper topped bag marked with the day of the week you plan to fix it.

  • Southwestern Pork Stir Fry—For a true one pot dish serve this stir fry from MJ’s Kitchen with tortillas or whip up a batch of polenta to go alongside it.
  • Stir-Fried Beef with Tropical Fruit—You can serve this stir-fry in lettuce cups or with rice as a side according to Our Kitchen.
  • Beef and Veggie Stir-Fry—Serve this dish with some leftover rice from the fridge or noodles suggests MOPS.
  • Stir-Fry—This recipe from Table 365 is less of a recipe and more of a technique that lets you pick what protein, veggies and sauce you want to use in your stir-fry.
  • One Pot Pork and Chorizo—Follow the directions from Family Foodie to whip up this quick stir-fry that uses pre-cooked rice.
  • Authentic Asian Stir-Fry—You can make this stir-fry with pork or chicken and basic vegetables by following the recipe on Pint Sized Treasures.
  • Happy Family Stir-Fry—Made with seafood, chicken and beef this stir-fry will definitely make any meat eater happy. The recipe and directions can be found on Cooking Jar and Happy Accidents.
  • Beef, Broccoli and Kimchi—Cook time on this stir-fry is only 15 minutes, so it’s important to get everything prepped ahead of time according to Spicie Foodie.
  • Onion, Pepper and Steak Stir-FryFam Friends Food suggests you speed up the making of this dish by buying pre-cut stir-fry beef from the store.
  • Spicy Pork Teriyaki Stir-FryGrumpy Hungry suggests using day old rice in this dish and leftover veggies from the fridge to speed up this stir-fry even more.


Vegetarian dishes don’t have to be boring or difficult. Take a look at the recipes in these 10 blogs to see how varied vegetarian eating can be. It’s important to make sure that your one-dish meal contains some sort of protein, whether its tofu, beans, eggs or dairy. Getting enough iron is also important, so you should try to include dark leafy greens when you can to bump up your iron intake. Gather other healthful ideas by reading these blogs.

  • Mafalda and Vegetables with Asiago Fontina Cheese Sauce—This dish combines pasta with vegetables and cheese and is a hearty vegetarian option from The Iowa Housewife.
  • Sweet Chili, Hoisin, Tofu & Vegetable Noodles—While this dish from Fuss Free Cooking is an Asian-inspired stir fry, it best fits with the vegetarian meals.
  • Sweet and Sour Vegetarian Stir-Fry—This dish is made with tofu, noodles and tons of vegetables from Foxes Love Lemons.
  • One-Pot Beet, Rosemary & Kale Arborio Rice Pilaf Recipe—The vibrant color and flavor of the beets make this dish by Cookin’ Canuck a showstopper.
  • Tofu and Bok Choy Stir-Fry—This dish can be served alone or with rice and is a quick weeknight meal choice by Eating Bird Food.
  • Mushroom Fried RiceShweta in the Kitchen explains how to make this vegetarian stir-fry more filling by using meaty mushrooms.
  • Creamy Macaroni and Cheese with Crunchy Topping—Enjoy this comfort food any night of the week from Tablespoon.
  • Vegetable Rava Biryani/ Easy & Quick One-Pot MealSpicy Treats put together this recipe for vegetable rava biryani for a 30-minute meal challenge.
  • October Evening Lentil Soup with Spinach—Phoebe from Feed Me Phoebe came up with this recipe, and is now a cookbook author and on a cooking reality TV show.
  • Vegetarian Mushroom and Spinach LasagnaLisa’s Kitchen gives you the step-by-step instructions for making this rib-sticking dish – you won’t even miss the meat!

Make-Ahead Freezer Meals

What could be better than having dinner already made when you get home? How about having dinner already made and all you have to do is take it out of the freezer and toss it in the oven to bake while you take care of other matters? Having at least a few make-ahead freezer meals could help you save money by being able to avoid ordering in or running through the drive-thru on those busy nights when cooking is out of the question. You can make-ahead casseroles, soups and even slow cooker dinners. Keep in mind that certain ingredients freeze better than others, and sometimes you will need to freeze food before you bake it and other times you can bake it and then freeze the leftovers. These 10 recipes will help you get started putting some meals in the freezer for those nights when you are just too busy or too tired to think about making dinner.

  • Make-Ahead, Freezer-Friendly One Dish Meals: Steak Nacho Casserole—Try this perfect make-ahead dish by Temptations.
  • Mexican Lasagna—This meal freezes well and can be a life saver on those busy nights when you don’t have the energy to cook from Barefeet in the Kitchen.
  • Prepped Meals: Pre-Mixed and Frozen Slow Cooker Meals for an Easy Meal—Make these crock pot meals ahead of time and freeze them for a later date like The Krazy Coupon Lady does.
  • Crock Pot Beef and MushroomsFabulously Frugal makes this meal ahead and freezes it, then serves it alongside some mashed potatoes.
  • Healthy Chicken Vegetable Casserole—Leave the cheese for the day you reheat and freeze this casserole after you cover it well with foil according to Spark People.
  • Black Bean Chili—Put all of the ingredients in a freezer bag and lay flat to freeze. Then when you get ready to fix it just put all ingredients in the crock pot according to Baked in the South.
  • Country Casserole—This chicken and pasta dish has cheese and mixed veggies in it and can be frozen in a gallon zipper top bag until the night you need it according to Christy Jordan’s Southern Plate.
  • Quick and Easy Stuffed Shells—There’s something about cheese and pasta that make them simple to freeze ahead like in this recipe by Beyond Toast.
  • Baked ZitiAnnie’s Eats has come up with this freezer-friendly recipe that you can make up to the point of baking, then cover it in foil and freeze right in the dish or use a foil pan.
  • Chicken Pot Pies with Ham—You can mix this dish up, load it into ramekins and top it with the pastry dough before you let it cool and wrap it with plastic wrap and foil. Then freeze for up to three months according to Delish.


With the price of groceries steadily escalating, it’s hard to make ends meet these days. How do you feed your family a filling and nutritious meal without spending more money? These 10 blogs have put together budget-friendly meals that will satisfy your family and keep your costs down.  Having these dishes be one-dish meals is just icing on the cake. Look at the ideas below to see if you can save some money at the grocery store.

  • Quick One Pot Red Beans and Rice—Only 12 ounces of turkey Kielbasa in this whole pot make this a budget-friendly one pot meal by A Kitchen Hoor.
  • Oven Roasted Autumn Medley—According to Budget Bytes this recipe only costs $7.04 per recipe.
  • Quick Tomato-Zucchini-Bean Pasta—Use vegetables from your garden for this recipe and you can save even more. According to Whole Foods on a Budget this meal comes in at around $6!
  • Baked Shrimp with Tomatoes and Feta—With only a little over a pound of shrimp in this dish, it still remains a pretty inexpensive one-pot option to feed four people. Recipe from Foodnetwork.
  • One Pot Leftover Sausage & Prawn Jambalaya—This is a leftover recipe, so if you have leftover chicken or pork use them instead of the prawns in this recipe from Rachel Phipps.
  • Jill’s Coconut, Lemon & Ginger Chicken with Couscous Recipe—This recipe is simple, only costs $4.19 per person to make and you can choose to serve it with couscous if you like, according to The Frugal Model.
  • Crock Pot Beef StewAmazing One Pot Meals uses inexpensive cuts of meat to make this dish that’s cooked low and slow.
  • Tuna Macaroni SaladSimple Recipes shows this simple and inexpensive recipe that you can serve cold.
  • Chicken Cacciatore One Pot—This inexpensive dinner from Mr. Food is fancy enough for guests, but won’t break the bank.
  • Skillet Moussaka—This Greek dish can be made with beef instead of lamb to save even more money according to Eating Well.


There’s nothing like a hot bowl of soup on a cool day, and soup reheats well for leftovers and can be frozen for a future meal. It also packs well for lunches. These one-dish soup recipes vary from creamy to brothy and from spicy to mild. You may want to serve some rolls or crusty bread with these soups as a side. Take a look at these 10 blogs and see if any of these soups sound good to you.

  • Crock Pot Potato Soup—On a cool morning put the ingredients for this comforting soup by Live Mom into the crock pot to have soup ready and waiting for you when you get home.
  • Make: Creamy Carrot-Ginger Soup with ShrimpBe Well Philly has come up with a tasty one pot dinner with no cream added.
  • Butternut Squash SoupWoman’s Day features this simple recipe that would work well when the grocery store is plentiful with inexpensive butternut squash or you have them in your garden.
  • Chicken and Brown Rice Soup—Mix up this simple soup by Goop to enjoy any night of the week.
  • Easy, One-Pot Post Run MealsRunner’s World has put together this ideal one-pot meal for runners to enjoy after a cold run.
  • Tortilla Soup Recipe—This soup can be as spicy as you want it to be and can be topped with sour cream, green onions and crispy tortilla strips from Kitchen Ability.
  • Escarole Soup with Turkey Meatballs (Italian Wedding Soup)—This recipe makes 12 cups of soup, so you will have leftovers that you can eat or freeze according to Gina’s Skinny Recipes.
  • Mexican Chicken SoupReal Simple has put together this soup that will serve 6 to 8 people, so there may be leftovers that you can take to work the next day.
  • Chickpea Chicken Soup—To speed up this soup recipe from How Sweet Eats you can chop your veggies on the weekend or earlier in the day.
  • Black Bean Soup—Try this slimmed down version of black bean soup from Paula Deen.

Asian Inspired

Change up your normal weekly menus by throwing in some different recipes from time to time. These Asian inspired recipes can be made cheaper than take-out and you will have the leftovers. Not all Asian inspired recipes are stir-fries, so glance through these 10 blogs to see what you think about these one-dish meals. Use some leftover rice with or in these dishes and you won’t even have to spend the time making the rice.

  • Pineapple Teriyaki Crockpot Chicken—In the mood for something a little different? Try this tasty dish by One Good Thing.
  • Asian Chicken Rice Pot—Made with chicken thighs and Chinese sausage, this one pot dinner from A Distinguished Palate is simple to make and hearty to eat.
  • Chicken and Pineapple Fried Rice—If you like traditional fried rice, you might like this twist on it from Rasa Malaysia, who has changed it up by adding chicken and pineapple.
  • Chinese Chicken Salad Recipe—Check out the video tip that goes with this recipe from Viet World Kitchen.
  • Asian Slaw with Ginger-Peanut DressingOnce Upon a Chef explains that this dish can be made as a side dish or a light lunch.
  • One Pot Asian Chicken, Rice and Bok Choy— According to A Family that Eats Together this recipe is similar to clay pot chicken.
  • Chicken and Mushroom Rice—This recipe is another recipe that is similar to the kind of clay pot chicken that can be found in the market according to Hungry Go Where.
  • One-Dish MealDelicious Asian Food shares this tofu and edamame dish that she claims is a popular dish among busy moms.
  • Spicy Asian Chicken and Rice—Try this one-pot dinner that is made in a Dutch oven and can be whipped up in only 35 minutes, according to The Balanced Baker.
  • Asian Fried Rice—Put together this meal in about 15 minutes per Notecook, as everything is thrown into a wok and cooked on high heat.


Even if you aren’t vegan you may want to try a vegan recipe every now and then as a healthy alternative to heavier meals. Many people are trying a meatless Monday where they serve vegan or vegetarian dishes to save money and to be healthier. Some of these recipes are cooked in the slow cooker, whereas others are cooked over the stove, so no matter how you’d like to do your one-dish cooking there’s a vegan recipe for you. Try some of these recipes and see what you think.

  • Crock Pot Vegan Black Bean and Brown Rice Soup—This vegan recipe from Kitchen Treaty can be made in your slow cooker or in a stock pot on the stove.
  • Sesame, Shiitake and Greens Stir Fry—Beans and the peanut satay bring in some protein in this recipe from Made of Stars.
  • Pumpkin Coconut Red Curry Noodles from Hello Veggy—Enjoy this recipe created by a college student posting for Carrie on Vegan.
  • Vegan Szechuan String Beans with Chinese Black Bean Sauce and Cashews—This dish by The Blooming Platter of Vegan Recipes definitely has a kick to it with the addition Sriracha.
  • Garden Green EnchiladasGreen Gardening with Ann Lovejoy has put together this traditional enchilada recipe, but bumped up the veggies and cut out the meat.
  • Hearty One-Pot Miso Soup—Learn how to make this unique soup by getting the directions from Fat Free Vegan.
  • African Peanut and Sweet Potato Stew—This one-pot wonder is a unique combination of ingredients that you may already have around the house according to Vegangela.
  • Vegan Soy Veggie Ground Tacos with Mushrooms—Try this variation on a classic quick dinner selection that has now been made vegan by Low Fat Vegan Chef.
  • Vegetarian ChiliIn Good Taste put together this recipe that can easily be made vegan by leaving out the cheese on the top of the chili.
  • Speedy Sweet Potato Chili—Simple to make and you can make many additions to this vegan dish by Lunchbox Bunch.

Indian Food

Indian cooking requires a lot of spices, with curry being one of the most common. Take a look at the egg Bhruji, which is most often eaten at breakfast, and is a one-dish Indian meal that would certainly spice up your typical breakfast routine. These 10 blogs will give you a small sample of Indian recipes to try.

  • One Dish Meal: Fast Chicken Apple Curry—The spices are definitely the key to this tasty one pot meal from Miss Once Upon a Marathon.
  • Crock Pot Indian… Really!—This crock pot chicken curry recipe is something different to spice up a Tuesday night dinner says Cookie Doc.
  • Egg Bhruji (Beaten Egg Stir-Fry)—Commonly eaten at breakfast, this dish would also make a quick supper option as described by Just Indian Food.
  • Potato and Chickpea Curry with RiceVegetarian Times has put together this simple Indian recipe that is to be served with flat bread.
  • Curried Vegetable and Chickpea Stew—This Indian dish is budget-friendly and will also satisfy your craving for Indian food. Find the instructions for making this one pot wonder on The Kitchn.
  • Chicken-and-Okra CurryCountry Living has put together this one pot meal complete with coconut milk and garam masala for a mix of traditional Indian flavors.
  • Sweet and Sour Indian Vegetable Stew— Try this stew with butternut squash, cauliflower, eggplant and of course some Indian curry paste as described by Chatelaine.
  • Chicken CurryThe Family Dinner recommends this dinner as the perfect slow cooker meal.
  • Sweet Corn Rice-Sweet Corn PulaoPadhus Kitchen shares this unique vegetarian dish containing American sweet corn, and other more traditional Indian ingredients.
  • Masala Bhath (Maharashtrian Delight)The Indian Food Court shares this authentic recipe featuring chilies.
If you enjoyed this post, please consider leaving a comment or subscribing to the RSS feed to have future articles delivered to your feed reader.

Comments are closed.