7 Rice Bakes That Will Make You Love Casseroles (Recipes)

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By Cooking Panda

Do you have any idea how underrated casseroles are?

If the very idea of a casserole makes you envision something full of soggy, sauceless noodles, canned tuna and all your least favorite canned vegetables (with no seasoning to be found), it’s time you give the easy, comforting dish another chance to change your mind and your dinner routine.

Picture it this way: moist or creamy, perfectly seasoned protein, some tender veggies (optional!) and easy, flavor-packed rice that cooked in the juices of your protein. Doesn’t sound too bad, right? It’s so easy, too! All you need to do is toss everything in a dish and pop it in the oven, like so:

1. Cajun Rice Bake

So. Much. Flavor! Cajun seasoning and tomato sauce make for a perfect combo. Want to mix it up? Swap out the chicken for shrimp. Tasty either way.

2. Easy Chicken Fajita Rice Bake

If you love fajitas but don’t have the energy to grill them, go ahead and toss together some seasoned veggies and chicken (or your meat of choice), broth and rice, put it in the oven and BAM! you’re done.

3. Baked Sushi Casserole

This recipe calls for imitation crab, real crab and cooked shrimp, which is super delicious, but you’re more than welcome to mix it up — for example, a bit of salmon or tuna would be tasty too. Chopped cucumbers or fried onions would both make delightful toppings, once you pull it out of the oven.

4. Paprika Chicken And Rice Bake​

Look how crispy that spiced chicken looks! This one is less of a creamy casserole and more of an easy way to make yourself a one-pan dinner, especially if you throw in some veggies with your rice. Nice!

5. Cheesy Broccoli-Rice Bake​

If you love cream of broccoli soup, you have to try this casserole version — throw in some chicken or tofu if you want even more protein. Velveeta cheese brings a surprisingly perfect creaminess, although if you aren’t a fan you can just stick with regular cheddar or Jack cheese.

6. Cashew Chicken Casserole

This one is easy and just a little creamy, thanks to some cream of chicken soup that makes for a delicious gravy shortcut. Top with crushed cashews, crunchy fried noodles or your favorite veggies like cabbage or broccoli to make this healthier spin on a takeout favorite even tastier.

7. It’s Too Easy Cheeseburger Casserole

If you’re craving burgers but not in a bun mood, consider switching up the format and turning it into an easy, cheesy, comforting and slightly tangy rice bake that comes together in less than half an hour.

Featured Photo Credit: Steven Depolo/Flickr

Tags: casseroles, easy recipes, one dish dinner, one pot meal, rice bakes
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Whip Up These 7 Impossibly Easy, 1-Pan, Healthy Dinners

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By Cooking Panda

Oct. 24 is perhaps the most important food holiday of the year! It’s National Food Day, and we are super excited to celebrate.

Food Day is all about eating real, healthy, sustainable food. But eating healthy doesn’t have to be tough! There’s no need to spend hours of prep and mess up your whole kitchen just to eat a few whole foods. We know how busy you are on weeknights. That’s why we’ve come up with some easy,real food recipes that you can cook up using only one pan. Seriously! Check these out:

1. Soy Sauce Longevity Noodles

Just an easy dinner using your favorite kind of egg noodles. If you want to be even healthier, you can use whole wheat or soba noodles.

2. Apple Butter Pork Chop Skillet

Sweet fruit and pork are so good together, and this dish really could not be any easier. We recommend eating this with some healthy carbs like #3:

3. Warm Balsamic Kale Salad

Warming up the kale just a bit makes it so much easier to eat and enjoy. Toss it with balsamic vinegar, butter, and your favorite veggies — plus anything else you have on hand, like fresh basil, grilled salmon, brown rice, dried fruit…

4. Spaghetti and Meatballs

We won’t tell if you want to make life easier on yourself and use store-bought meatballs, although they aren’t too tough to make from scratch. If you are making them by hand, try mixing in a boatload of finely chopped mushrooms in addition to your breadcrumbs. Not only will this give you an extra savory flavor and a nice, tender texture, it will also pack in some vitamins and help you stretch out that ground meat.

5. Chili Lime Chicken and Sweet Potato Skillet

Sautee some chicken, sweet potatoes, beans and your favorite vegetables for a super easy weeknight treat that you can serve with rice, tortillas or any which way.

6. Curried Lentil and Spinach Soup

As the weather cools off, soup becomes more and more appealing. It’s also healthy, hearty and a great way to fill up on veggies, particularly with this super flavorful, filling rendition.

7. Lemon-Rosemary-Garlic Chicken and Potatoes

Because who doesn’t love a classic chicken and potato roast? Bonus: throw some asparagus or green beans onto your sheet pan for an extra delicious, fully balanced meal.

Featured Photo Credit: The Cookie Rookie

Tags: clean eating, easy weeknight dinner, healthy dinner, one pot meal, one-pan meal
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Speed Up Your Evenings With These 6 Craveworthy One-Pot Meals

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By Cooking Panda

As much as we love a good, elaborate, home-cooked meal, spending ages cleaning it up on a weeknight is just not the business.

why does cooking take like six hours and eating like three seconds and washing dishes like seven days and seven nights

— no (@tbhjuststop) August 23, 2015

Fortunately for you, that doesn’t have to be your fate.

We’re huge fans of one-dish meals, where cleaning up takes almost as little time as actually eating. It really doesn’t get any easier. Or more delicious. You’re welcome.

1. One-Pot Pasta with Spinach and Tomatoes

Yep, that’s right — one pan pasta. It’s a real thing. We love this recipe because it uses whole grain noodles, which don’t get too starchy or gummy, and everything else is stuff you might already have on hand.

2. Salmon with Pepita-Lime Butter

Salmon is super healthy and delicious, but it’s easy to fall into a butter/lemon rut. Try something new with this lime juice/chili powder/pepitas rub for an extra kick.

3. Slow Cooker Ribs

Ribs always seem like an extravagant affair, but did you know that enjoying delicious, tender, melt-in-your-mouth ribs on a weeknight is as easy as doctoring up some barbecue sauce and throwing it into the slow cooker with baby back ribs? Bonus: For an extra caramelized touch, broil the finished product for a few minutes with a little bit of the reserved sauce.

4. Savory Pudding with Sausage and Tomatoes

This is technically a two-dish meal, since you need to use a mixing bowl to make your batter. Please forgive us.

5. One-Pan Lasagna

Save yourself half the work by using oven-ready, instant lasagna noodles.

6. Pork and Plums

Take full advantage of plum season with this sweet-savory breeze of a dish.

Featured Photo Credit: Jonathan Lovekin/MarthaStewart.com

Tags: easy weeknight recipe, one pot meal, one-dish meall, one-pan meal, weeknight recipes
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8 Quick But Fancy Meals You Should Make This Week

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By Cooking Panda

We hope you’re feeling hungry this week. While these recipes all require a little more work than, say, making a sandwich, all of these are pretty easy and very realistic for your busy weeknights – bonus, they are all super tasty. Knock yourself out:

1. One Pot Cajun Chicken and Sausage Alfredo Pasta

One Pot Cajun Chicken Pasta Alfredo with Sausage

A one-pot wonder. If you don’t feel like buying Cajun seasoning, go ahead and mix equal parts cayenne pepper, onion powder, paprika, garlic powder, salt, and pepper.

2. Slow Cooker Mongolian Beef

Let it cook all day when you’re at work. Then just serve it with some rice and maybe veggies if you’re feeling healthy.

3. Pretzel Crusted Cordon Bleu

You can totally use this formula and up your ingredients if you want – for example, you could totally fill the inside with spinach and ricotta and/or wrap the outside in bacon. Follow your heart.

4. Easy Chicken Piccata

Creamy, crunchy, salty, tangy, moist – this chicken recipe has it all. We recommend serving it with this easy rice cooker rice pilaf.

5. Pork Cutlet Sliders

No, you don’t understand – the pork cutlets are the buns!

6. Rigatoni Pasta Pie

It looks awesome and tastes even better. Make sure your sauce isn’t too chunky so that it will slide down into the noodles and keep them nice and moist.

7. Spicy Sesame Cauliflower Wings

These Sticky Spicy Sesame Cauliflower Wings are the best veggie wings I've ever had! Loaded with a maple sesame flavor and spice, they are the perfect game day snack for vegans!

Be sure to make extra, because you are going to devour these faster than humanly possible.

8. One-Pot Poached Shrimp And Orzo

One-Pot Poached Shrimp And Orzo

If you have a rice cooker with a steamer attachment, use it to make this one of the easiest recipes you will ever cook.

Featured Photo Credit: Tablespoon

Tags: easy weeknight meal, one pot meal, quick dinner, recipe list, weeknight dinner
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Ridiculously Easy, Affordable Dinners To Make This Week

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By Cooking Panda

Looking for some quick dinners to make this week? We got you covered. We know you’re busy, so this week we have super simple recipes that don’t take a lot of time or cost much but taste like a million bucks. Most of these will only make you wash one or two dishes and a few can be prepped in advance in your slow cooker.

Slow Cooker Chicken Enchilada Soup

It doesn’t get any easier than this. Dump a bunch of ingredients in your slow cooker in the morning, and you’ll come home to a delicious, flavorful and filling soup.

Lemon Butter Cod

It tastes like you put a lot more work into this white fish dish than throwing some stuff in a pan and roasting it, but this primal recipe is so easy a caveman could make it. If you don’t want or have cod, use any fish you want.

Crock Pot Stuffed Bell Peppers

All you have to do is mix a bunch of stuff together in a bowl, stuff it into your bell peppers, and toss them into the slow cooker. Does it get easier?

Crispy Cheddar Chicken

If you want cheesy fried chicken without the hassle, try this impossibly easy baked version that uses only a few ingredients and is super inexpensive to make. Pro tip: prep the chicken in advance and freeze it beforehand. That way, all you have to do is defrost and bake.

One Pot Wonder Southwest Pasta

Fool your dinner guests into thinking you spent more than eight minutes getting this outstanding, simple dish ready. It is packed with both flavor and veggies, so it’s a win-win for everyone.

Shakshuka

Whether you’ve had shakshuka a ton of times and love it, or you’ve never even heard of it, you need to make this recipe. This hearty, healthy veggie and egg dish will leave you totally satisfied, and you’ll be pleased by the minimal cleanup involved with this one pan meal.

Photo Credit: Life In The Lofthouse

Tags: affordable dinner, dinner recipe, easy recipes, one pot meal, recipes
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