Why is it that summer always has the illusion of time – no school, no extracurricular activities, more daylight hours – but there’s still never enough time in the day?? Even in the summer a “quick meal” is the Chick-fil-A drive-thru, which everyone does, so it’s not even that fast! 

If you’re like me, the second I start to think, “I have time…” I start wasting time. And then before I know it, the kids are asking me what’s for dinner, and I’m left scrambling to make something other than cereal. Because, let’s be real: there’s only so much pizza delivery you can actually consume each week, or so I try to tell my husband. 

So our team here at Military Moms Blog have scoured the internet to bring you our favorite tested-and-approved “Quick Meals” that are easy, fast (preps and cooks in under 30 minutes!), mouthwatering, and sure to be crowd-pleasers. 

Spinach and Artichoke Dip

Spinach Artichoke Dip from Downshiftology

Paleo, dairy-free, and could easily be vegan, too, this is my all-time favorite recipe. It’s so savory and delicious and healthy. I always make a batch for potlucks or even just for myself. It pairs perfectly with pita chips and carrots, or even on a piece of toast. 
Recipe here  from downshiftology.com

Chicken Ramen Stir-Fry

Chicken Ramen Stirf-ry from Inquiring Chef

Ramen noodles aren’t just for college kids anymore! This 20-minute recipe is 400 calories and tastes fresh and filling. Plus, I’d bet you already have 90% of the ingredients in your house already! 
Recipe here from inquiringchef.com

Fried Avocado Tacos

Fried Avocado Tacos from Cake n’ Knife

Not only are these crunchy and flavorful, but the chili-lime dressing will have you licking the mixing bowl like it’s brownie batter! Did I mention it will only take you 15 minutes to prep and cook?  
Recipe here from cakenknife.com

Coconut Zoodle Soup

Coconut Zoodle Soup from Delish

This rich and creamy soup is so flavorful, that you don’t even notice how many vegetables you’re eating! The zucchini-noodles add such a delicious texture that you might just even prefer over traditional noodles! 
Recipe here from delish.com

Lemon Butter Scallops

Lemon Butter Scallops from Damn Delicious

There’s no need to spend an arm and a leg for a fancy plate of scallops on your next date night. All you need is 10 minutes and 5 ingredients and you can have these mouthwatering scallops at home! 
Recipe here from damndelicious.net

Low Carb Pork Egg Roll in a Bowl (Crack Slaw)

Pork Egg Roll in a Bowl from Peace, Love, and Low Carb

This recipe is oh so easy, and oh so satisfying! It will quickly become a household favorite! 
Recipe here from peaceloveandlowcarb.com

One Pot Cajun Chicken and Sausage Alfredo

Cajun Chicken and Sausage Alfredo from No. 2 Pencil

This quick meal serves a crowd and only takes 30 minutes to make … which you’d never guess based on the full, richness of the Cajun flavor. 
Recipe here from number-2-pencil.com

Beef Taco Boats

Beef Taco Boats from Delish

Tacos are a staple when you think quick meals. But add a boat, and dinner just got classy!
Recipe here from delish.com

Chicken Scampi Pasta

Chicken Scampi Pasta from Food Network

Move over Olive Garden! This popular dish that uses chicken instead of shrimp is sure to be a family favorite! 
Recipe here from foodnetwork.com

Parmesan Chicken Bites

Parmesan Chicken Bites from Damn Delicious

These elevated chicken nuggets are deliciously appetizing for the adult and child palate, and they are easier to make than you’d think! 
Recipe here from damndelicious.net

Coconut Lime Salmon

Coconut Lime Salmon from Delish

This creamy skillet meal is fresh and bright and decadent. The sauce is so flavorful that you’ll want to eat it like soup! 
Recipe here from delish.com

Bacon and Egg Cups

Bacon and Egg Cups from Seasonal Cravings

Have you ever cooked bacon in the oven?? Do it once, and you’ll never go back! Add an egg, and it’s a perfect breakfast (or lunch or dinner. We don’t judge). 
Recipe here from seasonalcravings.com

Spicy Sriracha Shrimp Tacos with Cilantro Lime Slaw

Spicy Siracha Shrimp Tacos with Cilantro Lime Slaw from Peas and Crayons

These tacos are legendary and easy to double or triple the recipe to feed a crowd. Try using broccoli slaw (instead of regular cabbage slaw) to add more veggies without losing any taste. 
Recipe here from peasandcrayons.com

Stovetop Mac and Cheese

Stovetop Mac N Cheese from Damn Delicious

Creamy comfort food has never tasted so delicious and been so easy! You’re just 30 minutes away from this indulgent, quick meal that will have your whole family begging for more! 
Recipe here from damndelicious.net

Asian Chicken Noodle Soup 

Asian Chicken Noodle Soup from Delish

The name doesn’t do it justice. It’s a Thai curry ramen soup that is easier to make than you’d ever imagine. The ramen noodles don’t save well, so invite a friend over and feast up!
Recipe here from delish.com

Easy Pork Chops with Sweet and Sour Glaze

Pork Chops with Sweet and Sour Glaze from Damn Delicious

Need a fast and easy dinner idea for you next date-night-in? You can’t go wrong with these pork chops, and you’ll be eating the glaze with a spoon! 
Recipe here from damndelicious.net

Buffalo Chicken Crunchwrap

Buffalo Chicken Crunchwrap from Delish

This dinner is everything you want, but never think you can actually make at home. Guess what? You can. And it’s easy. 
Recipe here from delish.com

Pepperoni-Sausage Skillet Pasta

Pepperoni Sausage Skillet Pasta from Noble Pig

Forget the frozen skillet meals, make this instead. It’s fast and easy comfort food that will have you fighting over leftovers, if you have the restraint to not eat the whole skillet for dinner (we don’t!). 
Recipe here from noblepig.com

15-Minute Lo Mein

15 Minute Lo Mein from Pinch of Yum

It doesn’t get much more “quick meal” than 15 minutes! Plus, you can use any veggie you have on hand! 
Recipe here from pinchofyum.com

Salmon Lemon Risotto and Asparagus

Salmon Lemon Risotto and Asparagus from Cake n’ Knife

Easy-peasy-lemon-squeezy, it’s sure to make your kids say, “More please-y!”  This recipe from Cake n’ Knife is fast, easy, and sure to be a crowd-pleaser! 
Recipe here from cakenknife.com

Veggie-Loaded Quesadillas and Easy Guacamole

Veggie-Loaded Quesadilla and Easy Guacamole from Vegan Runner Eats

Shhhh! Don’t tell my husband these are vegan! Despite being dairy-free, these quesadillas are so creamy and hold together very well. Plus, grilling them gives a unique flavor that will have your mouth watering! 
Recipe here from veganrunnereats.com

Gnocchi with Bacon and Escarole

Gnocchi with Bacon and Escarole from Food Network

Here’s another 15 minute recipe thanks to the fast-cooking star of this recipe: gnocchi. This easy dinner tastes as fancy as it sounds (Shhhh… we won’t tell if you don’t). 
Recipe here from foodnetwork.com

Giant Pizza Bagel

Giant Pizza Bagel from Delish

Because of the cook time, this recipe is technically an hour total. But it is so genius and ridiculously easy, I had to include it. This recipe brings “Quick Meals” to a new level! Do yourself a favor, and eat this for dinner. Tonight. 
Recipe here from delish.com

*Have a fancy Instapot that cooks everything quickly? Check out this list full of a week’s worth of kid-friendly and vegetarian Instapot recipes! 

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Originally from Denver, Amie enjoyed a break from cold winters while stationed in various southern locales with her husband, who is a pilot in the Navy. But they currently live outside Seattle, and she is now learning to love the rain. Amie and her husband have four small children who eat dinosaur chicken nuggets like they're going extinct and love all things aviation. After graduating with her B.A. in English, Amie worked in various fields with each military move, but never stopped writing. She has been a contributor for The Military Mom Collective since it was founded and finds joy in helping other moms connect in community. When she’s not writing or herding her adorable brood, you can find Amie working out at the local cross fit gym, binge-watching Hallmark movies, and actually enjoying chemistry while home-brewing with her husband. Amie is proud to be co-owner and Director of Partnerships for MilMC to help military families connect worldwide. You can contact Amie at info {at} militarymomcollective {dot} com and follow her journey on Instagram @mrs.amielou