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12 Delicious And Nourishing Weeknight Recipes Food Bloggers Swear By

A light salad, a filling pasta, and a tasty baked chicken.

Cooking an actual meal during the week can feel like a pretty daunting task, especially after a particularly long day.

As tempting as it is to pop a frozen meal in the microwave or order takeout, it's just not always going to be as nutritious or satisfying as you'd like it to be. What you actually need is a recipe that's not only filling and tasty, but is also relatively simple. So, we asked food bloggers for their go-to weeknight recipes. Here's what they shared:

1. Grilled Caesar Salad with Garlic Tahini Dressing — Kristie Williams-Yowell from The Mostly Vegan

themostlyvegan.com

"As a new mom, my days of spending hours in the kitchen prepping complicated meals have become a distant memory. Now, dinners are always a simple affair, but I still love to eat, and eat well! My grilled caesar salad with garlic tahini dressing comes together super quick but feels kinda fancy.

I grill the bread and greens in a stovetop pan until they're charred and smokey. Then, I layer the lettuce over the bread and drizzle on a simple tahini and garlic dressing. A sprinkle of cashew parmesan (or real parmesan if you’re not vegan!) adds an extra hit of salty goodness. I’ll even throw some drained chickpeas or cannellini beans on there if I’m feeling extra hungry after running around after the babe all day. This is a hearty and healthy meal that makes me feel like my pre-baby, cooking-obsessed self, even when I’ve only got 30 minutes to spare."

Get the full recipe here.

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2. Vegan Mediterranean Un-Tuna Salad — Ashley Melillo from Blissful Basil

blissfulbasil.com

"This vegan Mediterranean un-tuna salad comes together with little more than a pulse in the food processor, a few chops, and a toss...and it's unbelievably reminiscent of the real thing. Plus, it's versatile. Sometimes I eat it tucked into warm pita bread for a nutritious, protein-packed, on-the-go meal, but it's so good sometimes I can eat it right out of the bowl!"

Get the recipe here.

3. Roasted Tomato and Basil Pasta — Ania Marcinowska from Lazy Cat Kitchen

lazycatkitchen.com

"We've been blessed with some truly summery weather this year in the UK so we are keen on spending most of our free time outside instead of slaving over the stove. This simple roasted tomato pasta is our go-to meal of late. It's super quick and easy to make, delicious, and filling without being heavy. I like to top it all off with toasted pine nuts for some added crunch and heaps of fresh basil leaves."

Get the recipe here.

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4. Deconstructed Sushi Temaki Cone — Lyndsay Sung from Coco Cake Land

cococakeland.com

"Lately, our go-to family recipe is a deconstructed sushi temaki cone — brown rice, sliced avocado, and sheets of nori (shredded or served whole to be used as mini wraps), and cubed medium-firm tofu. Sometimes we stir fry the tofu with some garlic and tamari or teriyaki but for a supremely lazy meal, I just eat it straight out of the fridge.

To prepare, I put brown sushi rice in the rice cooker, slice up ripe avocado and tofu, and arrange it on top of the rice! I drizzle soy sauce, teriyaki or ponzu sauce over the bowl and douse it in sriracha or gochujang. If I make enough for leftovers, I'll add a soft-boiled egg to the mix. My five-year-old loves avocado rolls and has been eating plain tofu since he was a baby so he happily chows down on this meal."

Get a similar recipe here.

5. Tomato Toast — Jesse Szewczyk from BuzzFeed

instagram.com

"I cook (or write about cooking) all day so the last thing I want to do when I get home is cook even more. On weeknights, I typically turn to pasta, salad, or a fancy toast.

I usually just toast some bread and spread on some cream cheese, goat cheese, hummus, or even labneh (basically whatever I have in the fridge at the time). Then, I top it with thick slices of tomato and season with a generous showering of flaky salt and pepper, a bunch of herbs, and olive oil. This one had some thin slices of shallot, but that's only because I had some that was about to go bad. Anything leftover makes for a great breakfast in the morning."

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6. 10-Minute Summer Meal: Greens + Tuna + Shallot Vinaigrette — Alexandra Stafford from Alexandra Cooks

alexandracooks.com

"When I can't find the energy to dedicate to making dinner, I reach for the shallot vinaigrette, a dressing I now make in large batches to ensure I have it on hand at all times. I used to reserve this shallot vinaigrette for dressing delicate greens, but now I use it for everything. Whether it's a simple kale and chard salad, or a large chopped salad made of all the vegetables in my weekly farm share (radishes, turnips, snap peas, cucumbers, bell peppers, summer squash, etc.), the dressing is perfect.

With the shallot vinaigrette on hand, the only thing I actually have to do is chop up the vegetables, which takes all of about 10 minutes. I like using tuna, but if you're not a fan, you can switch it out for a hard- or soft-boiled egg, chickpeas, cubes of cheese, or leftover chicken from last night's dinner. An avocado adds a nice creaminess and richness while still keeping this meal tasting fresh and light."

Get the recipe here.

7. Summer Salad with Corn and Shrimp — Vallery Lomas from Foodie in New York

foodieinnewyork.com

"I love making this healthy and delicious salad when I've got leftover corn from a barbecue. I toss cooked quinoa, baby spinach, tomato, and feta in a bowl with the corn. Then, I season shrimp with paprika and sauté it for a minute or two. The paprika pairs perfectly with the smokiness of the grilled corn. Lastly, I whisk up a homemade vinaigrette for a tasty, satisfying meal that I can quickly toss together."

Get the recipe here.

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8. Balsamic Tomato Baked Chicken — Marzia Aziz from Little Spice Jar

littlespicejar.com

"On days when I don't feel like cooking, I love making my tomato baked chicken. It's as simple as chopping up tomatoes and basil, tossing it into a dish with the other ingredients, and popping it into the oven. All you need to make this a full meal is a prepared salad kit and a loaf of crusty bread. Plus, one-dish dinners make cleanup a breeze!"


Get the recipe here.

9. Quick Turkey Ragu — Lisa Goldfinger from Panning the Globe

panningtheglobe.com

"This quick, healthy ground turkey pasta sauce tastes like a rich, meaty bolognese. It's my favorite recipe for those long, stressful days when cooking dinner is a challenge and when I want, more than ever, to sit down to a comforting evening meal.

I love this recipe so much because it only takes a handful of ingredients, and I can pull the whole thing off in a half hour. I'll eat this turkey ragu over pasta or a veggie substitute, and sprinkle extra parmesan on top. It's a staple recipe that I like to make again and again."


Get the recipe here.

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10. Easy Shrimp Scampi and Grits — Jocelyn Delk Adams from Grandbaby Cakes

grandbaby-cakes.com

"This recipe couldn't be easier or faster. I can prep and cook this meal in less than 30 minutes, and the flavors are simply sensational. Shrimp cooked with lemon, garlic, and a bit of spice served over a creamy bed of grits...what could be better?"

Get the recipe here.

11. Ramp, Mushroom, Asparagus, and Preserved Lemon Linguine — Erin Clarkson from Cloudy Kitchen

cloudykitchen.com

"After a long day of recipe testing or cooking, I often don't feel like putting a huge amount of effort into my own dinner. Having a quick, versatile, and easy pasta recipe up my sleeve has saved me more times than I can count. This one comes together in about 20 minutes, and it's totally customizable depending on what's in my fridge or what vegetables are in season.

The 'sauce' is one of my favorite things: mixing in parmesan cheese and reserved pasta water at the very end perfectly ties the dish together. I love to add broccoli or cauliflower, or stir through a big bag of baby spinach into the pot just before serving. This pasta hits the spot every time, and also scales easily if you need to serve a bunch of friends in a pinch. Sometimes, I add a little side salad if I have time, but it is just as amazing without."

Get the recipe here.

12. Spicy Oven Fried Catfish — Jocelyn Delk Adams from Grandbaby Cakes

grandbaby-cakes.com

"My southern roots dictate that fried catfish is a must. When I don't feel like dealing with heating oil and babysitting a skillet to ensure perfect frying, this is my go-to recipe. Not only is it a healthier, stress-free alternative, but it also tastes insanely delicious because of the cornmeal and a myriad of spices. Prep is only 15 minutes, and the fish goes right in the oven. It absolutely tastes fried!"

Get the recipe here.

Do you have a go-to recipe you make when you're having a rough day? Share it in the comments!

Spring is here!

This season, we have tons of easy and delicious favorites to share.

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This season, we have tons of easy and delicious favorites to share.

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