We LOVE to indulge in simple delicious recipes, especially easy to make drink and dessert recipes. (And bacon. We LOVE bacon.)
Most of the recipes we post are old family recipes, sometimes even a healthier version of an old family recipe. If we have pulled a recipe from another source, we try to attribute the original source when we can, but sometimes this is very difficult.
If you would like to share a recipe you find here on your own website, please provide a working link back to the source recipe on CaliforniaUnpublished.com. Please only use one image when you source our recipes and do not republish the entire collection of recipe instructions and photographs.
We invite you to try our recipes, keeping in mind that what you see here is a work in progress and we often think of improvements and update the recipes. So pull up a chair, grab a refreshing drink, and indulge your taste buds in some tasty, delicious eats with us!
“Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food” -Hippocrates
Easy Recipes at Home: Quick and Delicious Meals for Busy Weeknights
Are you tired of eating the same meals every day? Do you want to try something new but don't know where to start? Look no further! We have compiled a list of easy recipes that you can make at home with simple ingredients. Whether you are a beginner or an experienced cook, these recipes are sure to impress.
Cooking at home can be a fun and rewarding experience, but it can also be overwhelming. With so many recipes and ingredients to choose from, it can be hard to know where to start. That's why we have selected recipes that are easy to follow and require only a few basic ingredients. From breakfast to dinner, we have got you covered. So put on your apron and let's get cooking!
Getting Started with Easy Recipes
If you're new to cooking, it can be overwhelming to know where to start. But don't worry, we've got you covered! With just a few essential kitchen tools and basic ingredients, you'll be on your way to making easy and delicious meals in no time.
Essential Kitchen Tools
Don't worry, you don't need to have a fully stocked kitchen to make easy recipes. Here are a few essential tools that will get you started:
- Chef's knife: A sharp chef's knife is essential for chopping vegetables, fruits, and meats. If you're new to using a chef's knife, consider taking a knife skills class to learn the proper technique.
- Cutting board: A cutting board is necessary to protect your countertops and keep your knife sharp. Consider having separate cutting boards for meat and vegetables to avoid cross-contamination.
- Measuring cups and spoons: Accurately measuring ingredients is important in cooking and baking. A set of measuring cups and spoons will ensure that you're using the right amount of each ingredient.
- Pots and pans: You'll need a few pots and pans to cook your meals. A medium-sized saucepan, a large skillet, and a baking sheet are good starting points.
- Instant Pot: An Instant Pot is a versatile kitchen tool that can be used as a pressure cooker, slow cooker, and more. It's perfect for making soups, stews, and one-pot meals.
- Grill: If you have access to a grill, it's a great way to cook meats and vegetables. Grilling adds a smoky flavor and can be a healthier cooking method than frying.
Basic Ingredients to Keep on Hand
Having a well-stocked pantry and fridge will make it easier to whip up easy recipes. Here are a few basic ingredients to keep on hand:
- Produce: Stock up on a variety of fresh fruits and vegetables. They can be used as snacks, sides, or main dishes. Some easy vegetables to start with include broccoli, carrots, and bell peppers.
- Protein: Meat, poultry, and fish are all great sources of protein. If you're on a budget, consider buying bone-in chicken thighs or ground beef. They're cheaper than other cuts of meat and can be used in a variety of recipes.
- Canned goods: Canned goods like beans, tomatoes, and corn are versatile ingredients that can be used in soups, stews, and salads. They're also shelf-stable, so you can stock up on them and use them when needed.
- Grains: Grains like rice, quinoa, and pasta are pantry staples that can be used as a base for many meals. They're also cheap and easy to cook.
- Spices and herbs: Spices and herbs can add flavor to any dish. Some basic spices to have on hand include salt, pepper, garlic powder, and cumin. Fresh herbs like basil and parsley can also add flavor to your meals.
With these essential kitchen tools and basic ingredients, you'll be able to make a variety of easy recipes. Don't be afraid to experiment and try new things!
Easy Breakfast Ideas
Starting the day with a healthy breakfast is important, but it can be challenging to find time to prepare a meal in the morning. That's why we've put together some easy breakfast ideas that use simple ingredients and can be made quickly.
Quick Egg Dishes
Eggs are a great source of protein and can be prepared in many ways. Here are some quick and easy egg dishes that you can make for breakfast:
- Scrambled Eggs: Simply whisk eggs with a splash of milk, salt, and pepper. Cook in a non-stick pan over medium heat until set. Serve with toast or fruit.
- Egg and Cheese Sandwich: Fry an egg in a pan and place it on a toasted English muffin with a slice of cheese. Add a slice of ham or bacon for extra flavor.
- Omelet: Whisk eggs with your favorite fillings, such as cheese, vegetables, or ham. Cook in a non-stick pan over medium heat until set. Fold in half and serve.
Healthy Smoothies and Bowls
Smoothies and bowls are a great way to pack in nutrients in the morning. Here are some easy ideas:
- Green Smoothie: Blend spinach, banana, almond milk, and honey until smooth. Add protein powder for an extra boost.
- Yogurt Bowl: Top a bowl of Greek yogurt with your favorite fruits, nuts, and seeds. Drizzle with honey for sweetness.
- Chia Pudding: Mix chia seeds with almond milk and vanilla extract. Let sit in the fridge overnight. Top with fresh fruit and granola in the morning.
Overall, these easy breakfast ideas are perfect for busy mornings. They use simple ingredients and can be prepared quickly, so you can start your day off right.
Lunch in a Snap
When it comes to lunch, we all want something quick and easy that we can whip up in no time. That's why we've put together some of our favorite lunch recipes that are perfect for those busy days when you don't have a lot of time to spare.
Sandwiches and Wraps
Sandwiches and wraps are a great option for a quick and easy lunch. One of our favorites is the classic chicken breast sandwich. To make it, simply grill or bake a chicken breast and place it on your favorite bread with some lettuce, tomato, and mayo. You can also add some avocado for a healthy twist.
If you're looking for something a little different, try a tuna wrap. Simply mix some canned tuna with mayo, mustard, and relish, and wrap it up in a tortilla with some lettuce and tomato. It's a light and refreshing lunch that's perfect for a hot summer day.
Salads with a Twist
If you're in the mood for something a little lighter, salads are a great option. But that doesn't mean they have to be boring! One of our favorite salads is a chicken Caesar salad with a twist. Instead of using traditional Caesar dressing, we like to use a homemade avocado dressing. Simply blend together some avocado, Greek yogurt, garlic, lemon juice, and salt, and drizzle it over your salad.
Another great salad option is a tuna salad with a twist. Instead of using traditional mayo, we like to use a homemade vinaigrette made with olive oil, balsamic vinegar, Dijon mustard, and honey. Simply mix together some canned tuna, chopped celery, and red onion, and toss it with the vinaigrette. It's a light and flavorful lunch that's perfect for a busy day.
So next time you're in a hurry and need a quick and easy lunch, try one of these delicious recipes. They're sure to satisfy your hunger and keep you going all day long.
Dinner Made Simple
At the end of a long day, the last thing we want to do is spend hours in the kitchen preparing dinner. Luckily, there are plenty of easy dinner ideas that are both delicious and quick to make. In this section, we'll share some of our favorite dinner recipes that can be made in no time.
One-pot meals are a lifesaver on busy weeknights. Not only do they save time on cleanup, but they're also a great way to pack a lot of flavor into one dish. Our go-to one-pot meal is a hearty chicken and vegetable stew. Simply brown some chicken thighs in a large pot, then add in your favorite veggies (we like carrots, potatoes, and onions) and some chicken broth. Let everything simmer together until the veggies are tender and the chicken is cooked through. Serve with some crusty bread for a comforting and satisfying meal.
When we're really short on time, we turn to our favorite 30-minute meals. One of our favorites is a quick and easy beef stir-fry. Simply cook some sliced beef in a hot wok or skillet, then add in your favorite veggies (we like bell peppers, broccoli, and snap peas) and a simple sauce made from soy sauce, honey, and ginger. Serve over rice for a filling and flavorful meal.
Sheet Pan Dinners
Sheet pan dinners are a great way to get a complete meal on the table with minimal effort. Our favorite sheet pan dinner is a vegetarian roasted vegetable and chickpea dish. Simply toss some chopped veggies (we like sweet potatoes, Brussels sprouts, and red onion) and drained chickpeas with olive oil, salt, and pepper, then roast on a sheet pan until everything is tender and golden. Serve with some crusty bread or a simple salad for a healthy and satisfying meal.
No matter what your taste preferences or dietary restrictions, there are plenty of easy dinner ideas that can be made in no time. Whether you're in the mood for chicken, beef, pork, or vegetarian meals, these recipes are sure to become staples in your weeknight dinner rotation.
Satisfying Soups and Stews
When we're looking for a comforting meal on a chilly day, nothing hits the spot quite like a warm bowl of soup or stew. Luckily, making a delicious soup or stew at home is easier than you might think. In this section, we'll share some of our favorite recipes for hearty meat soups and vegetable-forward options.
Hearty Meat Soups
For those who prefer a meatier option, there are plenty of soups and stews that fit the bill. One of our favorites is a classic beef stew. Made with tender chunks of beef, root vegetables, and a rich broth, it's a meal that's sure to satisfy. We also love chicken noodle soup, which is not only delicious but also a great way to use up leftover chicken.
If you're looking for something a little more adventurous, try making a spicy chili. Made with ground beef, kidney beans, and plenty of spices, it's a hearty and flavorful meal that's perfect for feeding a crowd. And for those who love seafood, a creamy seafood chowder is a delicious and indulgent option.
For those who prefer a vegetarian or vegan option, there are plenty of delicious soups and stews that don't rely on meat for flavor. One of our favorites is a hearty vegetable soup, which can be made with whatever vegetables you have on hand. We also love a classic minestrone soup, which is packed with beans, pasta, and plenty of veggies.
If you're looking for something a little more exotic, try making a spicy coconut curry soup. Made with coconut milk, curry paste, and plenty of veggies, it's a flavorful and satisfying meal that's perfect for a chilly evening. And for those who love mushrooms, a creamy mushroom soup is a delicious and comforting option.
No matter what your preference, there's a soup or stew out there that's perfect for you. With a few simple ingredients and some basic cooking skills, you can create a meal that's both delicious and satisfying.
Global Cuisine Made Accessible
We love trying out new recipes from around the world, but sometimes it can be intimidating to cook dishes that we are not familiar with. That's why we've put together a list of some of our favorite global recipes that are easy to make at home.
Who doesn't love a good plate of pasta? Italian cuisine is known for its comforting and hearty dishes, and luckily, many of them are simple to make. One of our go-to recipes is spaghetti aglio e olio, which is just spaghetti with garlic and olive oil. It's quick, easy, and delicious. Another Italian favorite that's easy to make is risotto. You can customize it with your favorite ingredients, like mushrooms or shrimp, and it always turns out creamy and delicious.
Mexican at Home
Mexican cuisine is another favorite of ours, but sometimes it can be hard to replicate the flavors at home. One of our favorite recipes is a salsa verde chicken casserole. It's a one-pan dish that's packed with flavor and perfect for a weeknight dinner. Another easy Mexican recipe is stuffed peppers. You can fill them with rice, beans, and cheese for a vegetarian option, or add ground beef for a heartier meal.
Asian cuisine is known for its bold flavors and unique ingredients, but it can be intimidating to cook at home. One of our favorite Asian-inspired dishes is a simple stir-fry. You can use any protein and vegetables you have on hand, and it's a great way to use up leftovers. Another easy Asian recipe is fried rice. It's a great way to use up leftover rice and you can customize it with your favorite ingredients, like shrimp or chicken.
Overall, cooking global cuisine at home doesn't have to be difficult. With a few simple ingredients and some easy recipes, you can enjoy delicious dishes from around the world in the comfort of your own kitchen.
As a family-friendly recipe blog, we know how important it is to have meals that everyone in the family will enjoy. That's why we've put together some of our favorite kid-friendly recipes that are sure to please even the pickiest eaters.
Fun Finger Foods
Kids love to eat with their hands, and these fun finger foods are perfect for little hands. One of our favorites is homemade chicken nuggets. They're easy to make and much healthier than the store-bought version. We like to use boneless, skinless chicken breasts and coat them in a mixture of flour, egg, and breadcrumbs. Then we bake them in the oven until they're crispy and golden brown. Serve them with a side of mac and cheese for a classic kid-friendly meal.
Another great finger food is mini corn dogs. We like to use cocktail sausages and wrap them in a cornmeal batter. Then we fry them until they're crispy and golden brown. Serve them with ketchup and mustard for dipping.
Casseroles are a great way to get kids to eat their veggies. One of our favorites is tater tot casserole. We start by browning ground beef in a skillet and then adding in a can of cream of mushroom soup and a bag of frozen mixed vegetables. Then we top it with a layer of tater tots and bake it in the oven until it's hot and bubbly.
Another great casserole is mac and cheese with broccoli. We start by cooking macaroni according to the package directions. Then we add in steamed broccoli florets and a homemade cheese sauce made with cheddar cheese and milk. We bake it in the oven until it's hot and bubbly.
With these fun finger foods and creative casseroles, your kids will be begging for seconds. And the best part is, they're easy to make and use ingredients you probably already have in your pantry.
When it comes to desserts, we all love something sweet and delicious, but sometimes we don't have the time or energy to create something extravagant. Fear not, we've got you covered with some easy and tasty dessert recipes that you can make at home with simple ingredients.
If you're looking for a quick and easy dessert that doesn't require any baking, then these no-bake treats are perfect for you. With just a few simple ingredients, you can whip up a delicious dessert in no time.
Chocolate Peanut Butter Bars
These chocolate peanut butter bars are a crowd-pleaser and are so easy to make. Mix together peanut butter, powdered sugar, and graham cracker crumbs, and then top it off with melted chocolate. Pop them in the fridge to set and you're done!
Oreo truffles are a classic no-bake dessert that everyone loves. Crush up some Oreo cookies, mix them with cream cheese, and then roll them into balls. Dip them in melted chocolate and let them set in the fridge. It's that simple!
Quick Baking Recipes
If you're in the mood for something baked, but don't want to spend hours in the kitchen, then these quick baking recipes are perfect for you.
Chocolate Chip Cookies
Who doesn't love a good chocolate chip cookie? With just a few simple ingredients, you can make delicious cookies in no time. Mix together butter, sugar, eggs, flour, and chocolate chips, and then bake them for 10-12 minutes.
This apple crisp recipe is so easy to make and is perfect for fall. Mix together sliced apples, sugar, flour, and cinnamon, and then top it off with a mixture of oats, flour, brown sugar, and butter. Bake it in the oven for 30-35 minutes and you've got a delicious dessert that everyone will love.
Whether you're in the mood for a no-bake treat or a quick baking recipe, these easy dessert recipes are perfect for any occasion. With simple ingredients and easy instructions, you can whip up a delicious dessert in no time.
Sides and Accompaniments
When it comes to easy recipes at home, sides and accompaniments are often overlooked. However, they can make a big difference in elevating a simple meal to something special. Here are some of our favorite vegetable and starchy sides that are quick and easy to make.
Vegetable Side Dishes
Vegetables are a great way to add color, flavor, and nutrition to any meal. Roasting, grilling, or sautéing vegetables can bring out their natural sweetness and make them more appealing to picky eaters.
One of our go-to vegetable side dishes is roasted broccoli. Simply toss broccoli florets with some olive oil, salt, and pepper, and roast in the oven until tender and crispy. You can also add some garlic or Parmesan cheese for extra flavor.
Another easy and healthy vegetable side dish is a simple salad. Mix together some greens, cherry tomatoes, cucumbers, and your favorite dressing for a refreshing and nutritious accompaniment to any meal.
Starchy sides like potatoes, rice, and pasta can be comforting and filling. However, they can also be high in calories and carbs. Here are some lighter options that are just as satisfying.
Cauliflower rice is a great substitute for traditional rice and can be made in just a few minutes. Simply pulse cauliflower florets in a food processor until they resemble rice grains, and sauté with some garlic and olive oil. You can also add some peas or carrots for extra color and flavor.
Sweet potato fries are another delicious and healthy side dish. Cut sweet potatoes into thin wedges, toss with some olive oil and spices, and bake in the oven until crispy and golden. They are a great alternative to regular fries and are packed with vitamins and fiber.
Overall, sides and accompaniments are a great way to add variety and flavor to any meal. With these easy and healthy options, you can make any dish feel like a special occasion.
Frequently Asked Questions
What are some quick and easy weeknight dinner ideas for families?
We understand that it can be challenging to come up with new and exciting meals for your family every night. Here are some quick and easy weeknight dinner ideas that your family is sure to love:
- One-pot pasta dishes like spaghetti and meatballs or chicken Alfredo
- Sheet pan dinners with roasted vegetables and chicken, fish, or beef
- Tacos or burrito bowls with all the fixings
- Stir-fry with your choice of protein and veggies
- Grilled cheese sandwiches with tomato soup
- Pizza night with homemade or store-bought crust and toppings
Can you suggest some simple and fun dinner options?
Of course! Dinner doesn't have to be boring. Here are some simple and fun dinner ideas:
- Breakfast for dinner with pancakes, eggs, and bacon
- DIY pizza night with a variety of toppings
- Build-your-own burger bar with different sauces and toppings
- Tacos with a variety of fillings and toppings
- Quesadillas with cheese, veggies, and protein
- Loaded baked potatoes with all your favorite toppings
What's the easiest pasta dish I can whip up at home?
Pasta is a staple in many households, and it's easy to see why. Here's the easiest pasta dish you can whip up at home:
- Spaghetti aglio e olio: Cook spaghetti in salted water until al dente. In a separate pan, heat olive oil, garlic, red pepper flakes, and salt. Toss the cooked spaghetti in the garlic oil and top with grated Parmesan cheese.
What are the best dinner recipes that have stood the test of time?
Some dinner recipes never go out of style. Here are some classic recipes that have stood the test of time:
- Meatloaf with mashed potatoes and green beans
- Chicken pot pie with a flaky crust and creamy filling
- Beef stroganoff with egg noodles
- Roasted chicken with vegetables
- Lasagna with layers of pasta, meat sauce, and cheese
- Shepherd's pie with ground beef or lamb, mashed potatoes, and veggies
Could you recommend some easy recipes that kids can help make?
Getting kids involved in the kitchen is a great way to teach them about food and cooking. Here are some easy recipes that kids can help make:
- Homemade pizza with their choice of toppings
- Mac and cheese with a breadcrumb topping
- Mini meatloaves with mashed potatoes and green beans
- Tacos with all the fixings
- Grilled cheese sandwiches with tomato soup
- Smoothie bowls with their favorite fruits and toppings
What are some classic casserole dishes that are simple to prepare?
Casseroles are a great way to feed a crowd, and they're easy to prepare ahead of time. Here are some classic casserole dishes that are simple to prepare:
- Tuna casserole with noodles, canned tuna, and cream of mushroom soup
- Chicken and rice casserole with veggies and cheese
- Shepherd's pie with ground beef or lamb, mashed potatoes, and veggies
- Green bean casserole with canned green beans, cream of mushroom soup, and fried onions
- Baked ziti with pasta, meat sauce, and cheese
- Broccoli and cheese casserole with fresh or frozen broccoli, cheese sauce, and breadcrumbs