Whats for Dinner? - Belleville,NJ

Updated on September 07, 2011
M.H. asks from Belleville, NJ
17 answers

Now we are starting a new school year and I am already stressing that question. Whats for dinner? Everyday! I really hate to cook now. I have no idea what to make anymore. I make almost the same things over and over. I am sick of them myself. Is there anything out there that will not take much time to make and feed my family 4 yr old and 9 yr old and us?

Here is my dinners:
spicy shrimp and rice
steak and white rice/beans
pork chops and spanish rice
grill chicken and salad/brocolli
salmon and white rice/salad brocolli
stew chicken and rice
grill chicken and mash potatoes
beef stew and rice
steak and yams
meatloaf and mash

I do not know what to make anymore! Help!

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So What Happened?

THANK YOU SO MUCH!!!! I am so excited to try all these dishes. I am signing up today for the allrecipes.com. Also, I do not give my kids spicy food. Oops thats for me and my husband. I have to print these comments, so when I make my list for the week I know what I will need. Can't wait! :) :) :)

Featured Answers



answers from Savannah on

Any type of casserole is simple to make and if it takes a while to prepare the one you want, make it for a different night and freeze it for later. This is a meal where you get starch, protein and veggies all in one. Also, Chili is extremely quick and easy, especially if you use a packet of seasonings, canned tomatoes etc. Look online for quick to prepare crock pot recipes. That way, you can prepare it in the morning and dinner will be ready when you get home!

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Richmond on

Tonight we're having long grain wild rice and beef sausage with green peppers... takes literally 10 minutes and cost about $5 :)

1 mom found this helpful

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answers from Seattle on

I use a lot of the same ingredients over and over (like you) but I mix up how I use them a LOT.

I cook very "Italian"... meaning I often roll one meal into the next (regardless of what the ethnicity is). When I smoke or slow cooker a pork shoulder one night it could be smothered in bbq sauce for pulled pork sammies, the next it might have lime & garlic drizzled over it for tacos... the remainder goes in the freezer, and the next week it gets brought out for vietnamese sammies, and the day after more goes in a pot of chili.

Meatloaf gets served at meatloaf one night, but gets stuffed into peppers on another, and rolled into meatballs and frozen for pasta one day next week.

Soup is soup one night, then cooked down for pot pies (or shepards pies) for the next night, and the remainder of the pies is frozen for days or weeks from now. Leftover potatoes get reinvented as those shepards pies, or might get kicked up with some garlic and ginger, or stuffed into samosas with some peas and spices.

Here're a few more have one thing a bunch of different ways

Shrimp (realizing this is almost a bubba gump list, bear with me)
- Spicy
- Coconut
- Italian Herbs, garlic, olive oil
- Garlic, ginger, soy
- Shrimp Cakes (like crab cakes, but with chopped shrimp instead of crab)
- Shrimp Po Boys
- Shrimp Vietnamese Sammies
- Shrimp Tacos with creamy avacado sauce OR thai sweet chili sauce
- Shrimp etouffee
- Gumbo-laya (I blend gumbo and jambalaya)
- Shrimp Caesar
- etc

- Religious Experience Steak (all red-meat eaters know this experience!)
- Carne Asada (best with skirt steak, flank will work if skirt isn't available)
- Philly Chese steak sammies
- Argentine (aka with chimichurri sauce)
- Kebabs
- Black'n'bleu salad
- etc

- Seared/Broiled/or Grilled with just a little salt/pepper&olive oil
- Ginger Garlic Cream Sauce (the calories are worth it)
- Poached in sake and miso wrapped around a seared bay scalop
- Salmon cakes (use the crab cake mix though, salmon cake mix is icky)
- Teriyaki
- Hot smoked
- Cold Smoked (aka lox)
- Lox w/ creme fraiche on quiche
- Onigiri
- Tempura / fish'n'chips
- Ceviche
- Tacos (although I prefer white fish on tacos, salmon works)
- Coconut
- "puffs" (aka whirl it in a food processor with "schtuff" to make a mouse or paste, wrap in wonton wrappers with cheese, and bake or fry

- Cuban/Caribbean sammies (I make tons of the marinated pork or pork chops at once and freeze later for easy meals)
- Cuban Cordon Bleu (butterfly chops, pound, mojo marinate, then stuff with ham and swiss)
- Pulled pork sammies
- Rolled and stuffed with fennel, onion, ground pork, and breadcrumbs
- Rolled and stuffed with apples
- Tacos
- vietnamese sammies
- chili

3 moms found this helpful


answers from Pittsburgh on

Homemade chicken pastina soup
Chili (That's what we're having tonight)
Stuffed peppers
Jambalaya (Zatterains brand--add sausage)
Beef/tater tot casserole
Chicken bundles
Oven stew
Chicken & stuffing casserole
Steak on the grill
hamburgers & hot dogs on the grill
Homemade pizza
Breaded baked pork chops
Pork & sauerkraut
Shredded BBQ Beef or pork sandwiches
Sloppy Joes
Mushrooms stuffed with stuffing & sausage

3 moms found this helpful


answers from St. Louis on

You have quite a list, so the key will be to make those things, just in a different way.

For example, one week do steaks with blue cheese on top and serve with mashed potatoes. Next time, do sauteed onions and mushrooms and serve with steamed veggies. Same meat, just a whole new look.

Pasta is awfully broad. What kind are you making? One recipe I love and it is fast and yummy:

Fettuccini whole wheat pasta
Diced tomatoes
Block Mozzarella - diced
Fresh Basil- diced
Olive oil (I add about 1/4 cup)
Mix the above, add the cold mixture to warm pasta - serve with garlic bread

Other ideas:
- crock pot meals such as beef stew, taco soup, swedish meatballs and egg noodles
- Wild caught salmon (easy, wrap piece in foil, cook at 425 for 15 minutes or until done, season to taste - you can add some fresh rosemary spriggs and garlic prior to baking)
- tacos
- turkey burgers (I add a packet of onion soup mix, a couple dashes of worstchsire and a dash of water, mix it with the ground turkey, fry in pan, serve on onion rolls and with sliced tomato and pickle, and with some sweet potato fries)
- pizza
- baked ziti
- breakfast for dinner
- tortellini soup (super easy, just make your own broth - you can use beef or chicken broth or boullion cubes - add some diced onion to boiling broth, boil for about 6 minutes, add tortellinis, simmer for 4 minutes - serve!)

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Los Angeles on

Most families cook 6 different meals/recipes. So if you do all of that you describe above, you are ahead of the game.

If you want lots of suggestions, go to allrecipes.com. They usually give you 5 suggestions each day and its FREE. There is no need to sign up for their paid service.

One that I don't see above is shrimp alfedo. I buy the alfredo sauce when it goes on sale ($.99) and so don't mind using it then. Chicken alfredo works well too. I cook the noodles, drain, add the cooked shrimp or chicken and alfredo sauce. Then I have added a tablespoon or two of shredded cheddar cheese after serving it in a bowl. It makes it richly creamy. The last time I sliced some carrots and diced an onion and put it in with the noodles at the last stage of cooking. The onions were done and the carrots had a little crisp left. The chicken was done when I added it just before adding the alfredo sauce.

Good luck to you and yours.

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Chicago on

I think your menu looks pretty good! During the school year we tend to have a weekly "Pasta Night", "Mexican Night", "Salad Night", "Crock Pot Night" etc. Tonight I'm making Taco Pie (recipe on allrecipes.com). We also just made Chilli in the crock pot this weekend and eat leftovers during the week.

Our favorite salad is Buffalo Chicken salad. Grill chicken and marinate with Franks buffalo sauce (or BBQ sauce if you don't like buffalo). Then cut it up and put it over lettuce with black beans, corn, croutons, ranch dressing, and any other toppings you like.

2 moms found this helpful


answers from St. Louis on

Here are some of our favs:

Salisbury steak, mashed potatoes and broccoli
Spaghetti/Lasagna or Tortellini with sauce (can change from white to red sauce) with garlic bread
Taco (for us) and quesadillas for the kids with rice
Grilled chicken (or steak or pork chops) with mac and cheese and a veggie
Meatballs with sauce (change this up) and potatoes or noodles with a veggie

How about trying a variation of what you already make?

Like not so spicy shrimp and noodles (in a butter sauce)
Steak (marinate it with something new) with cole slaw and beans
Pork chops, uncooked rice, milk and cream of whatever soup - throw it together and in the oven for an hour. Delish
Grilled chicken sandwiches
Sheppard's Pie

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Boston on

Here's my rotation this week:

Spaghetti and meatballs with steamed broccoli
Tacos & carrots (kids) and fish with seafood stuffing (us) with salad
Pork tenderloin with roasted carrots and baked waffle-cut fries
Slow-cooker chicken with green beans and biscuits
Homemade pizza & salad
Ziti, chicken and broccoli with creamy pesto (chicken from slow-cooker dinner)
Crock pot spare ribs with steamed veggies, beans and cornbread

And next:
Spaghetti and meatballs with steamed veggies
Tacos & snap peas (kids) and fish with rice (us) with salad
Chipotle steak salad with fresh flat bread
Slow-cooker chicken recipe TBD
Homemade pizza & salad
Chicken quesadillas or salad using leftover chicken
Crock roast beef all-in-one dinner

Hope that helps! I use Cozi for my electronic calendar and they have a neat feature where you can add a button to your internet toolbar that adds links to your calendar. That way if I find a recipe somewhere on-line, I can use that link to add it to my calendar and the link to the recipe is then right there. Sometimes I add meals directly to my calendar (I set up a "person" called "Dinner" so my dinners have their own color code) but I also use a "to-do" list. I have a Dinner to-do list and track all regular meals and new things I want to try there. If I want to put something in the rotation, I just add a date next to the "to-do" and it shows up in my calendar for that day. I "check off" dinners as I use them so I can see what I've recently used and what I haven't tried or done in a while.

I noticed that a lot of your sides are rice (which I used to do almost every day LOL), which can get a little boring. To break up the rice monotony, I added things like flat bread, corn bread, biscuits and egg noodles to my rotation. I bake the breads and biscuits a few batches at a time and freeze the leftovers. Then if I have one of these as a side on a weeknight, I just take a batch out of the freezer in the morning before work and they're thawed by dinner time, then I pop into the oven to warm and you'd think I had just baked them.

Hope this helps!

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Atlanta on

Pillsbury has been advertising some easy meals on T.V. here lately. One is to make mini pizza's with the bread the other is pigs in a blanket. The other thing I like to make that is simple is on the back of a cambells soup can. Get you a golden mushroom soup and there is a recipe for polyneisian pork chops. If you can't find it there go to their website. Then for the sides I will usually do like a mushroom rice or some type of rice and maybe chop up some squash zucchini and onions and saute them in a pan with a little garlic powder and italian dressing. Another easy one and getting into that time of year is chili in the crock pot ;()) Hope these help!

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Kalamazoo on

grilled cheese tomato soup
Beef stroganoff -I make the meat in the crock pot all day then just throw in some sour cream etc and top on noodles.
Beef stew - make dumplings instead of rice.....they cook right in the pot.
Chicken pot pie.
nachos - best in the oven
minestrone soup with bread and butter

1 mom found this helpful


answers from St. Louis on

I am at a loss most nights for dinner so I have started asking my kids what they want. If I like their ideas then that's what it is if not their ideas usually help me come up with something else.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Dallas on

You have a good menu!
We also do
taco salad
Salmon Patties
Crab Cakes
Salsbury steak
Chicken Alfredo
Italian Sausage Sandwhiches
Meatball Sandwhiches
Chicken with any seasoning we are feeling like that day.....BBQ, jerk, grilled, cajun, lemon pepper, garlic, italian, etc
Tilapia, pan fried or baked in the oven with any of the same seasonings as the chicken.
Shrimp sauteed with garlic, ginger, and sri racha over lo-mein.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Chicago on

2 Quick and super delicious recipes!
Sausage & Veggie Bake (actually got it from another post on here)
Italian sausage, potatoes cubed, red & green peppers chopped with olive oil, garlic, salt, pepper and any other herbs you like. Bake covered for 45 minutes at 400 degrees.
Zesty Pepper Penne
Hot Italian sausage (or mild if you wish), red peppers and pasta sauce. Crumble & cook sausage in frying pan, add red pepper (sliced) and pasta sauce. Cook penne. Mix togeher when all cooked!



answers from Topeka on

I'm making home made chicken noodle soup,this weekend opps there is a party so Pizza on Sunday but Saturday Chili.
Tacos,spaghetti w/garlic bread,side salad or other veggie,grilled cheese on a rare occasion,pork steaks w/ mashed potatoes & corn,BLTs,pork chops,pork roast w/whie rice & beans,marinated chicken then baked or use stove top,there is more but gotta go



answers from Cincinnati on

here is what we are having this next week or so
Tofu stir fry
turkey, potatoes, and green beans
cheesey fall stew (I made this recipe up and ended up loving it)
vegatarian shepards pie
lenitl stew and corn bread
beans and rice
cream of brocolli soup

I saw someone else said beef strogonoff, and I though I would share this really easy recipe from my dad. cut up 1 small round steak and brown with half a diced onion. Then toss in 1 container sour cream and 2 cans cream of celerey soup (my mom hates mushrooms but you could use cream of mushroom.) a little salt and pepper. simmer for 20 min, and serve over white rice or egg noodles (i like rice better.)

and here is a simple recipe (but great) from my mom. boil I box linguni and toss with 1 whole head sauted brocoli, sauted diced red pepper, toasted almonds, cubed cooked chicken breast, 1 bottle hidden valley ranch, and 2 tsp seasoning salt.


answers from Phoenix on

I have a Word document that I have cut and pasted in a lot of "easy" dinner ideas and recipes. If you or anyone else wants it, message me your email and I'll be happy to email it to you. Good luck!

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