5 Simple Dinners to Ease into the New Year

Let's start the new year with nice, easy, and quick recipes. We have a sheet pan dinner, baked fish, a stir fry, and more!

Meal Plan Week 1

Welcome to 2022! A whole new year is in front of us. That means a whole new batch of yummy weeknight dinners and fun weekend baking projects! I am excited, but also a little tired after last month’s series of elaborate meals.

I want to help my family ease back into a routine of school, work, and easy family-friendly dinners. By easy I mean 10 ingredients or less and ready in under an hour. 

In addition to being easy, I want this week’s meals to bring balance back into our diet while leaving us full and satisfied. Our holiday was full of sweet treats and cheesy casseroles.

I've gathered light, easy, and quick dinner ideas for this week. I hope they help you ease into the new year! If you're going meatless in January, here is a great place to start.

  • Sheet Pan Sausage, Peppers, and Onions

    Overhead view of a sheet pan sausage dinner.

    Here is a quick and easy sheet pan dinner! Cut Italian sausages into bite-sized chunks and roast them with bell peppers and onions. A simple seasoning of olive oil, salt, and black pepper means it can be served in many ways: on its own, with pasta or rice, or tucked into a hoagie.

  • Easy Pasta with Winter Greens

    Swiss chard, lemon, and parmesan pasta heaped in a low bowl.
    Alison Bickel

    Pasta is a safe offering in my house. This dish saves me the trouble of having to make a side salad—the sauce has two bunches of chard! The greens are cooked in the pasta water, then they are blended into a creamy, vibrant sauce.

  • Baked Tilapia in Lemon Butter Sauce

    Lemon Butter Oven Baked Tilapia on a plate with a fork and green beans.
    Lori Rice

    Fish is an easy weeknight option because it cooks quickly—this one bakes for about ten minutes. Tilapia is a mild fish and this recipe enhances it with a simple lemony butter sauce. 

  • Easy Cashew Chicken

    Cashew chicken
    Elise Bauer

    Easy Cashew Chicken is a quick stir fry that requires little prep. The chicken marinade doubles as a sauce—be sure to cook the marinade since it held raw chicken. Serve this dish with rice.

    Continue to 5 of 6 below.
  • Stovetop Double-Stack Cheeseburgers

    Stovetop Burgers with Cheese
    Nick Evans

    By the end of the week, it’s tempting for me to head for a drive thru. These homemade stovetop burgers curb the craving. Plus, it's simple! No need to fire up the grill or shape the patties into rounds. Use lean 90/10 ground beef and top it with fresh lettuce, tomatoes, pickles, and whatever else you like with your patty. 

  • Weekend Baking: Easy Mango Lime Sorbet

    How to Make Sorbet with Mango
    Alison Conklin

    After filling up on buttery holiday cookies and candies, this sorbet is exactly what I want to eat. Buy frozen mango chunks and process them in a food processor with fresh lime juice and sugar. It's so easy and refreshing!