Mums best 20-minute dinner recipes and ideas

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quick dinner recipes

There are always days when we just do not stop and dinner time suddenly lands out of the blue giving us a big old smack in the chops.  Argh!  What to do for dinner?

Here are some favourite super quick dinner recipes and ideas from our awesome community of MamaBakers who have been there done that.  Or rather are there doing that!

These mamas know what they’re talking about.

Quick Family Dinner Recipes

Kirsten’s Chicken Risotto
Cooked chook, basil, parmesan cheese, tomatoes, red onion, garlic, butter, chicken stock and arborio rice in the rice cooker…  Melt butter garlic then add red onion then rice then stock. Cook till rice cooker turns off. Then shred chicken and add all other ingredients and sit for 5 minutes – always a favourite.
Sherry’s  “Mark chicken” (as my kids call it!)
Chicken legs rubbed with mild curry powder, sealed in pan then into the oven for 20 mins.
Cut potatoes, and microwave for 15 mins then fry in pan on stove to get “crippy taytos”!
Mmmmm actually, that’s what we’re having tonight! Hubby out to dinner for work so it’s a dinner I know I won’t have to fight with them to eat!
Vicki’s Spanish Fried Rice
Cook 1.5 cups Jasmati rice with 3 cups water & 1 heaped tspn chicken stock powder in large microwave-safe bowl, no lid, on high in microwave 20mins.
While rice is cooking, finely chop 1 brown onion, 1 celery stick, 250g bacon & 2 spring onions.
Gently whisk 2 eggs in cup.
Heat wok over med-high, add 1/2tsp oil & add 1/2 egg while swirling wok.
Remove flat, round egg & cool slightly.
Repeat with another 1/2tsp oil & rest of egg.
Roll both flat eggs into “cigars” & chop.
Heat wok over high heat, add 1tsp oil & sauté the onion, celery & bacon.
Add 1/2cup each of frozen peas & corn & add chopped spring onion & sliced egg. Stir in 1 tin chopped tomatoes.
Add cooked rice & mix to combine.

Voilà! Dinner is served! Note: could also be used as a side dish with grilled chicken breasts, steak, lamb, fish etc…

Karen’s Carbonara
Onion, garlic, bacon browned then add cream, broccoli and peas and crack an egg in before stirring through pasta or we use zucchini spirals instead too.
Leila’s Quick Yummy Pasta
Boiled pasta (I use 3 minute pasta regularly), whatever meat we have in the fridge diced or shredded or chopped etc (leftover or sandwich meat at times diced or sliced meat that was prepped for a meal I don’t want to cook) thrown in a pan and heated through or cooked with some minced garlic and a little minced chilli, add a tin of diced tomatoes, a sprinkle of mixed herbs (or fresh if we have them), depending on which children are home, a tin of beans (red kidney, cannelloni etc) drained and mixed in. Heat the sauce through add drained cooked pasta and you have mummas throw together quickie.

Although unusually have several frozen meals in single portions ready to go in the freezer just incase the kids don’t like a new recipe I’m trying or I can’t be bothered cooking.

Olivia’s Zucchini Carbonara
Grate a zucchini and gently fry with a little bacon or ham, add some cream and Parmesan and add to 3 minute pasta adding half a tonne of baby spinach of making it for adults too.

OR Haystacks:
Corn chips, baked beans, cheese and as much salad as I can chop/grate.
On the table in 15 minutes and both Miss 6 and Mr 2 will eat them.
Mary’s Circle Pizzas
English muffins with garlic butter, ham and cheese. Sliced carrots and cucumber on the side

In true Mamabake fashion I make the whole pack and separate with baking paper and freeze in the original pack.
Justine’s Yummy vege pancakes. 10 minutes total. 
Grating blade in the food processer
Grate up vegetables equal to 2 cups (some ideas are carrot, zuccihni, red capsicum and you can add a small tin of corn)
1 cup of SR flour
1 egg
Mix together and add a a little milk if it a little more ‘wetness’
Spoon about 1 tablespoon into a medium heat frypanYou can serve some bacon, haloumi or smoked salmon on the side. But if my kids are truely “hangry” I just get them to stand next to the me with their plates and pop them straight on as they are done.

Bec’s Creamy Garlic Chicken 
Diced chicken and bacon pan fried with garlic, add cream at the end. Pour over cooked pasta – 15 minutes start to finish and is always a hit with the kids (2, 4, 6 & 8) and hubby.
Rebecca’s Pho (Vietnamese chicken noodle soup).
Put water in a big pot and add star anise, cinnamon stick, fish sauce and stock concentrate. While that’s heating chop the chicken. Add the chicken and a bit later add bok choy and noodles. If the 20 minutes is not up yet chop some herbs to add. We’ve got Vietnamese mint in the garden and usually coriander in the fridge.
Jenny’s Quick Tuna Pasta
Can of tuna drained, can of tomato puree and tub of cream heat it and add cooked pasta. Voila, Tuna Pasta!

More dinner recipes here.

Quick Dinner Ideas

Kathy:  Fried rice but on cauliflower rice so no waiting for rice to cook

Amethyst:  Egg & cheese quesadillas, with tomato & avocado salsa.  My daughter’s favourite quick fix!

LaurenThe ‘Mummy Special’ pasta/rice/cauli rice with chopped tomato, cucumber, capsicum and feta. Some lemon on top and voila! Empty bowls and full tummies!
MaryWe have recently tried Tina and cream cheese as well as tuna and mozzarella; my boys liked both.

Anna MareePasta, cous cous, & leftovers or eggs!

SusannaMassive bowl of nachos

Nina:  Breakfast for dinner  poached eggs or omelettes, a bit of bacon, some buttered toast, baked beans and I always throw on some cherry tomatoes, cucumber sticks, avocado and cucumbers.. Whatever I have. Then I make up a plate of fruit if they’re still hungry. They think it’s better than take-away!
ValerieBacon and grated carrot sandwich, or plain pasta.
LizFrench toast, veggie soup and fruit salad for dessert then extra times to spend with my darling daughter

MayanPancakes with melted cheese cooked onto them, bowl of cucumber and carrot and some fried bacon

SunnyBurritos! Olé!
RebeccaPasta tossed with bacon and broccoli
Anne-MarieGrated zucchini, mushroom & carrot in a tin of diced tomato with half a cup of stock, simmer & serve with pasta OR serve with meatballs and mash
LaurenMy go-to for my 4 and 2 year old is “smashed omelettes” basically a omelette with any veggie in the fridge or freezer (peas, mushrooms, spinach, grated anything, ham etc ) smashed up and mixed in with 2min noodles (minus the flavour satchels) they love it!
CynthiaOur tribe will happily demolish a big bowl full of salad with boiled eggs or cold meat. 20 minutes is loads of time for a simple salad.
AngePressure cooker risotto with whatever ingredients are available in the cupboard and fridge – 7 minute cook time, cant beat that!
Karen: Tonight its going to be eggs 2 ways. One son likes scrambled egg on toast the other likes omelette so I cook an omelette but make sure part of it can pass as mushed scrambled egg to go on toast.
Julie: Pasta w/grated cheese!
Larelle: One of my bulk cooked meals that are stashed in the freezer and if I get really lucky, miss 13 will even cook it for me!
AlysonBacon, egg and spinach wraps – dinner is on the table in less than 10 minutes!
RebeccaBacon and eggs, or toasties. Or tell them it’s GYO night (Get Your Own)
HaileySnags & mash
once-a-week cooking

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