Dinner

Recipe: Polenta Florentine — Quick and Easy Weeknight Sides

(Image credit: Joe Lingeman/The Kitchn)

Ever eye those shrink-wrapped tubes of polenta in the grocery store and wonder what to do with them? Turns out they're the perfect base for casseroles — all you have to do is cut them into rounds first. The sauce, which I've been dreaming about for a while, is inspired by eggs Florentine. It's a basic Parmesan white sauce fragrant with garlic, onions, and, of course, a whole bag of sautéed baby spinach. Baked in a trusty casserole dish, this polenta Florentine is vegetarian comfort food at its finest.

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Recipe: Chicken Divan Casserole — Quick and Easy Weeknight Dinners

(Image credit: Joe Lingeman/The Kitchn)

Chicken divan is the ultimate old-school medley of chicken, broccoli, and cheese sauce. It originated in the early 20th century in a New York hotel restaurant, Divan Parisienne, and it hits all the right notes: hearty, creamy, and comforting. While the type of cheese used varies from recipe to recipe, what is not negotiable is the use of cream sherry, which adds a tiny bit of sweetness and richness to the cheese sauce.

There's no doubt that this dish is rich, but this lightened-up version skips sour cream and condensed cream soups in favor of some chicken broth and milk for the sauce. And if you start with leftover cooked chicken or a store-bought rotisserie chicken, this casserole can be yours even on a busy weeknight.

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How I Get Dinner on the Table When Culture Is Key — Dinner With Kids

I grew up with the ethos that rice is life. Rice holds such an exalted place in the Chinese culture as a staple food and life force that the word itself represents an entire meal and conveys hospitality; it's our custom to greet another person by asking whether he or she has eaten rice yet.

My husband, an all-American guy who grew up in a Seattle suburb on pot roast and boxed mac-and-cheese, did not.

Thankfully, our 10-year-old daughter and 8-year-old son have grown to like tofu and rice as much as they like pepperoni pizza and burgers, and they understand that mealtimes are important to me.

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Recipe: Slow Cooker Maple-Mustard Pulled Pork — Quick and Easy Weeknight Dinners

(Image credit: Joe Lingeman/The Kitchn)

Pulled pork is one of those magical meals that every self-respecting meat-eater should be able to prepare by heart. And when you say pulled pork to any Southerner, you'll hear descriptions of luscious pieces of tender meat rubbed with secret spice mixes and doused in sauces of spice and vinegar, tangy mustard, or sticky-sweet tomato and molasses.

Although those classic smoky flavors are satisfying, sometimes you need a new spin on an old classic. With a few shakes from your spice cabinet, some flavorful liquid, and a slow cooker, you can transform a huge hunk of meat into a satisfying meal for a crowd without spending hours over smoldering embers.

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25 Slow Cooker Meals You Can Eat When You Get Home from Work — Recipes from The Kitchn

You've been told time and time again that slow cookers help get weeknight dinner on the table without fuss. But you'll soon discover that many recipes take far less than the average eight-hour workday to cook. We know you're not running home on your lunch break to check on dinner, so we rounded up all our slow cooker recipes that do actually take eight or more hours to cook. From soup to pasta to pot roast, these 25 recipes are designed to fit your busy life.

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Recipe: The Best Chicken Zoodle Soup — Quick and Easy Weeknight Dinners

(Image credit: Joe Lingeman/The Kitchn)

Chicken soup is my not-so secret weapon to fighting the fatigue that comes with the change of seasons and the return to school. In this version, we're swapping pasta noodles for toothsome zucchini noodles (or zoodles), for a lighter, fresher take on the original. With a little help from the grocery store and a spin of the spiralizer, you'll have a bowl of chicken zoodle soup that's infinitely better than what you find in a can.

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