Lunch

Recipe: Fast and Fancy Pork and Beans — Quick and Easy Weeknight Dinners

(Image credit: Maria Siriano)

Pork and beans, the popular companion to barbecued meat at summer cookouts, doesn't have to come straight out of a can — nor does it mean soaking dried beans and hours of slow cooking time. With your favorite cut of cured pork, smoky molasses, canned beans, and a secret ingredient, you can be eating creamy beans suspended in a smoky, velvety, sweet, and savory sauce with just 30 minutes of stovetop time. This recipe is fast but just a touch fancy — just the way we like it.

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My Secret to Packing Lunch in Under 6 Minutes — 6-Minute Lunch

Here at Kitchn, we've been talking a lot about the idea of the six-minute lunch. The logic is simple, of course: No one has time to spare in the mornings (because mornings are hard!), and lunch is sometimes the last thing we're thinking about as we're wasting precious seconds (okay, minutes) hunting down our keys. But we all deserve more than a handful of pretzels between afternoon meetings. To help, we've been giving you all sorts of ideas to help you pack a legit lunch in six minutes.

And here's one more idea. Hint: It requires getting one other coworker involved.

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Recipe: The Easiest Cheese and Vegetable Frittata — Quick and Easy Weeknight Dinners

(Image credit: Joe Lingeman)

If I had a summer cooking motto it might be "frittatas forever" because frittatas are the real sweethearts of the kitchen. You always have the main ingredient — eggs — on hand, you can throw any vegetables and cheese you want into frittatas, and they cook up in a flash to be served hot and bubbly from the oven or at room temp with good bread and a salad.

This one is particularly great at using up all those farmers market vegetables that you bought with the best of intentions. Frittatas forgive you for forgetting about basil and onions in the fridge and welcome your half a bell pepper and zucchini (that's going soft) with enthusiasm, all while helping you make a summer supper that can do double duty as breakfast or lunch too. Here's the magic formula to this fridge-clearing wunderkind.

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Recipe: No-Chop Cold Veggie Noodle Bowls with Soy Lime Vinaigrette — Quick and Easy Vegetarian Dinners

(Image credit: Joe Lingeman)

There are two summer supper situations where you'll want to know this summer-sauté-meets-noodle-bowl method by heart. The first are those muggy evenings where after a long day outside you're ravenous, but the idea of chopping anything seems arduous. It's too hot to cook, you think, but you've also got a fridge full of vegetables and an empty belly. You could probably muster up cooking, as long as you didn't have to chop anything.

Likewise, you may find yourself in a friend's summer cabin or in a high-traffic vacation rental in which the knives have all but disappeared. There's a paring knife with a broken handle that you'd rather not use, but there is a decent peeler. That means you can pull off this hat-trick of a summer supper in that situation as well.

This summer sauté served over rice noodles is everything you'll crave in a cold noodle bowl: vegetables quickly cooked with plenty of bite left in them and one of the best soy vinaigrettes I know.

Here's the summer sauté that doesn't require a knife, only requires a teensy bit of cooking, and has enough variables that you can make it over and over again all summer long.

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Recipe: Grilled Shrimp and Vegetable Grain Bowls — Quick and Easy Weeknight Dinners

(Image credit: Joe Lingeman)

I am a big fan of cooking out when friends stop by for dinner, whether it's a weeknight or a Friday night. My favorite trick for making this possible is to have guests build their own dinners. Grilled grain bowls are an easy way to pull this off.

Think of grilled grain bowls as the grown-up version of the hobo packets you might have made at sleep-away camp. Essentially everyone builds their own packet of uncooked quinoa, chopped vegetables, and shrimp, and then the packets are wrapped up and cooked on the grill. It's pure summer comfort food by way of the grill. Drizzled with a creamy herb sauce and prepped in just a few minutes, you'll be making these regularly — guests or not.

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Recipe: Summer Breakfast Salad — Healthy Breakfast Recipes

(Image credit: Joe Lingeman)

If you're not one already, this salad is the one that will make you a breakfast salad believer. And it's easy to see why — it has a lot going for it. Fresh ingredients like spinach, plump blueberries, and creamy avocado make you feel like you're starting the day off on the right foot, while protein-rich eggs, bacon, and quinoa will keep you going until lunch. But what will make you fall hard is the warm bacon-apple cider vinaigrette. The temperature makes the whole salad comforting, and it works to mellow any bite in the greens and enhance the sweetness of the berries.

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