40 Dinner Ideas for Tonight (+ Easy Recipes) (2024)

Looking for some easy dinner ideas for tonight? From casseroles to stews, these easy dinner recipes will quickly become your new favorites.

And with 40 options to choose from, you won’t run out of ideas.

So stop wondering what’s for dinner tonight and try one of these tasty recipes!

40 Dinner Ideas for Tonight (+ Easy Recipes) (1)


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Easy Dinner Ideas For Tonight

Do you have plenty of time to prepare a culinary feast? Or only a few minutes for a one-pot recipe?

Either way, the list below has something for every time frame and budget.

And be sure to check out the Tuscan Chicken recipe at the bottom of the post. Trust me, you don’t want to miss this crowd-pleaser.

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1. Tater Tot Casserole

Whenever I ask the family what sounds good for dinner? They say, “tater tot casserole!”

The versatile potato is the perfect backbone for this delicious casserole.

In a pinch, frozen tater tots become a delicious meal that your whole family will love. Cheese, onion, and ham are the perfect toppings for crispy taters.

So serve up something scrumptious tonight with this one-dish wonder of a recipe.

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2. Cottage Pie

Comfort food is the quintessential dinner time favorite, and cottage pie is a perfect choice.

Mashed potatoes, green peas, and ground beef are smothered in a delicious gravy.

Slice up this savory pie and please everyone’s palates in one fell swoop. This recipe has a little bit of everything mixed into one delicious dish.

Save this for cold winter nights or spoil your family in the summer.

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3. French Bread Pizzas

Freshly made French bread is so easy to come by! Enjoy it plain, or dress it up with this recipe.


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Homemade pizzas are delicious but can be so messy. This recipe cuts out the messy dough preparation and leaves only yummy toppings and sauce.

Each dinner guest can customize their own pizza pie to enjoy!

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4. Meatloaf

Meatloaf has gotten a bad rep over the years, but not with this recipe! Serve up a flavorful, moist loaf and leave the dry cardboard-like texture in the past.

Chopped onions and crushed crackers make for a delicious meatloaf. This recipe is topped with a ketchup glaze that is just the icing on the cake.

Picky eaters will not have a problem gobbling this meatloaf up!

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5. Philly Cheesesteak Pasta

Philly cheesesteaks are popular sandwiches, but have you ever thought of pairing the ingredients with pasta?

With this recipe, all of your favorite Philly flavors top hearty noodles for a meal that rocks.

Steak pieces and cheese sauce complement sauteed onions and mushrooms in a pasta toss that pays true homage to the original sandwich.

If you love Philly cheesesteaks, you’ll have to try this Philly cheesesteak pasta recipe!

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6. Crescent Roll Chicken Casserole

Flaky and buttery crescent rolls join forces with juicy chicken pieces in this casserole. Nothing says home cooking like warm bread and poultry pieces.

This is a milder dish that screams childhood favorite in the making.

With only creamy crescents and chicken, even the pickiest eaters won’t find anything to complain about.

Join the clean plate club with this delectable casserole.

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7. Beef Stew

Beef stew is a dinner classic, and for good reason. With savory vegetables and delicious beef chunks, a good stew goes a long way.

Make this your go-to for snowy nights. Imagine how excited your family will be to curl up with a bowl of beef stew after a long day of sledding.

The instant pot version is great for busy weekdays when you need something quick!

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8. Taco Bell Quesadilla Recipe

Wondering what to eat tonight?

This Taco Bell quesadilla copycat is a cheesy, chicken-packed feast with a spicy kick.And it’s one of those easy dinner recipes you can whip up in a flash.

Crispy tortilla wraps around tender chicken and melted cheese. The tangy sauce adds the perfect finishing touch.

Quick and delicious, it’s one of the best dinner ideas for tonight.

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9. Lo Mein

No, this isn’t takeout! These delicious lo mein noodles are made fresh in your very own kitchen.

The sweet and tangy sauce covers the noodles and broccoli for a delicious bite every time.

Noodles are so filling and will stick with you for the rest of the day. Luckily, this dish is simple to make and will only dirty up one dish.

Travel the world tonight with homemade lo mein.

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10. No-Peek Chicken

Need an easy chicken recipe for dinner today?

How about a meal you pop in the oven and never think about it again? No-peek chicken is just the thing!

This recipe results in delicious flavorful chicken that compliments any side dish. Scrape up what’s left in your fridge and have a meal you can be proud of.

Once the aroma of this dish is wafting your halls, you will be glad you chose this dish for tonight’s dinner.

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11. Parmesan Crumbed Fish

Feeling fancy? How about making fish for dinner? This parmesan crumbed fish recipe is an elegant, restaurant-quality dish.

Fortunately, it’s super simple to make. I won’t tell if you don’t! Treat yourself tonight with this scrumptious dinner dish.

This is the kind of food you can light two candles and cut the house lights for.

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12. Applebee’s Three Cheese Chicken Penne

When it comes to easy weeknight dinners, you can’t go wrong with pasta.

So, spice up your life with this Applebee’s 3-cheese chicken penne copycat.

Experience the harmony of Alfredo sauce, grilled chicken, and triple cheese in this tasty dish.

Be careful not to get caught licking the bowl clean!

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13. Sloppy Joe Pizza

Sloppy Joes are a legendary weeknight meal. Now, imagine them on a pizza crust.

This Sloppy Joe pizza combines the saucy, meaty goodness of sloppy joes with a pizza crust.

Savory and a bit sweet, and totally satisfying, it’s perfect for when you want something a little different, yet delicious.

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14. Toad in the Hole

Did you think the toad in the hole was just for breakfast? Think again! This savory classic can be enjoyed any time of day.

This recipe offers great tips for getting that perfect “hole” effect. No more broken yolks here! Break into a loaf of bunny bread and get cooking.

Spend less time in the kitchen and more time with those you love with this dinner recipe.

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15. Chicken Curry

If you’re looking for flavor, look no further than this chicken curry recipe. Curry, cinnamon, and paprika all come together to spice up this creamy curry dish.

This recipe is so versatile; you can add any vegetable you happen to have on hand. All of the ingredients take on the flavor of the sauce.

Serve over Jasmine rice and enjoy!

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16. Honey Garlic Salmon

Sweet or savory? Have both with this honey garlic salmon recipe! Dinner tonight will be everyone’s favorite for the week.

Flaky, fatty salmon is a prime cut of fish. It can be intimidating to make! With this recipe, you are sure to do your filet justice.

Sweet honey and savory garlic elevate this filet to the next level.

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17. Baked Gnocchi

Doughy gnocchi balls are prime pasta for any night of the week. Their round shape lends a satisfying squish to each bite.

Dress up your gnocchi in this pasta bake. Baking your pasta gives the surrounding sauce a thicker texture. Making this one hearty dish.

Plate this pasta for a rich and satisfying meal.

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18. Fried Chicken

Does this dish need an introduction? Fried chicken is a family favorite that doesn’t just come from drive-thrus.

Make your own with this easy to follow recipe. You are guaranteed crispy, juicy chicken pieces that withstand the test of time.

Hot or cold, fried chicken always takes first place.

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19. Ham, Cheese, and Potato Casserole

This ham, cheese, and potato casserole is comfort food perfection.

It combines hearty ham, creamy cheese, and soft potatoes into a deliciously warm and comforting dish.

With its crispy top and savory flavors, it’s a hit for any meal. It’s one of those dinner recipes that satisfies every time!

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20. Coconut Lentil Curry

Sweeten up your curry experience by using coconut milk as a base. The creamy milk easily takes on traditional curry flavor once you add in the spices.

Lentils make the perfect protein addition in this coconut curry. Forego traditional chickpeas for a superfood that is right at home in your curry dish.

You’d better double this recipe because you will want leftovers!

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21. Chicken Pot Pie

Marie Callendar makes a good one, but with this recipe, yours will be better.

Chop up delicious chicken and mix in green peas and potatoes for a pot pie delight!

The best part of this recipe is the crust! Learn to make your own and never rely on frozen crusts again. Trust me, homemade is better.

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22. Marry Me Chicken

Marry Me Chicken is a decadent delight.

It’s brimming with juicy chicken, crispy bacon, and tangy sun-dried tomatoes, all swimming in a luscious sauce.

It’s rich and savory, with a hint of tanginess and sweetness. Yum!

Serve it over angel hair pasta for an unforgettable meal.

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23. Corn Dog Casserole

This corn dog casserole brings the fun of the fair to your dinner table.

It’s a delightful mix of savory hot dogs and sweet, fluffy cornbread, baked until golden brown.

Crispy outside, moist inside, it’s a comfort food winner.

Plus, it’s less greasy than deep-fried corn dogs. What a great bonus!

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24. Mushroom Pasta

If you like mushrooms, you’ll love this mushroom pasta. There is something so classy about satisfying mushrooms and pasta mixed together.

This ingredients list is full of favorites like butter and cream to make this dish absolutely delectable.

If you need something scrumptious in a pinch, mushroom pasta is the way to go.

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25. Chili

Chili is no longer just for tailgates! It’s a warm and hearty soup that makes a delicious dinner just as well as it is great game day food.

Spicy chili beans with simmered bell peppers and ground beef is the perfect blend of comforting foods.

Boil up a pot and answer the age old question of, “Do noodles belong in chili?”

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26. Baked Ravioli Lasagna

This easy ravioli lasagna brings a delightful twist to a classic dish.

It combines cheesy ravioli with rich tomato sauce and plenty of melted cheese!

It’s a comforting, hearty meal that’s incredibly easy to throw together, making it perfect for busy nights.

Expect layers of flavor and a satisfied smile with every bite.

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27. Kylie Jenner Ramen Recipe

The Kylie Jenner ramen recipe transforms ordinary instant noodles into something extraordinary.

Garlic powder adds a savory kick, butter brings a silky richness, and an egg ties it all together.

Quick, delicious, and far from average, it’s one of the best dinner ideas for tonight.

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28. Nachos

Have you ever met a bad plate of nachos? Me neither! Make a plate to share with the family tonight!

Set a strong base of cheese and beans, and then the possibilities are limitless. Top your nachos any way that pleases your palate.

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29. Stuffed Pork Chops

These stuffed pork chops are perfect for shaking up your dinner routine.

Juicy pork meets a savory stuffing, delivering a satisfying bite every time.

It’s comfort food made easy, ideal for busy nights. In under an hour, you’ve got a delicious meal sure to impress.

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30. Carne Asada

Carne asada is a classic dinner recipe around the world! Serve it up plain alongside some rice or use it as a filling for tacos or gorditas.

This recipe yields plenty of tender, flavorful cubes of meat. Invite over the neighbors because there will be enough to share!

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31. Burgers

Everyone loves a big, juicy cheeseburger and you can grill up your own with this recipe.

Take the party outside for an outdoor grill or use a skillet right on top of your stove.

Add a slice of cheese and make them into cheeseburgers, or serve up the patties as is.

Either way, you really can’t go wrong!

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32. Stuffed Peppers

These stuffed peppers combine rice, ground beef, and savory spices, all nestled in tender bell pepper shells.

They’re topped off with a rich tomato sauce, creating a perfect blend of tastes and textures.

It’s a gourmet dish without the fuss and always a hit at the dinner table. Classic comfort food at its best!

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33. Green Chile Chicken Enchiladas

These green chile chicken enchiladas bring the heat and the flavor to your dinner table!

Soft tortillas are stuffed with chicken, green chiles, and melty cheese, all smothered in spicy salsa verde.

A dollop of sour cream adds a creamy finish. It’s a spicy, cheesy, chicken-packed dish sure to make your taste buds dance.

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34. Shrimp Scampi

This shrimp scampi is a quick, easy dish that packs a punch of flavor.

Plump shrimp meet a garlicky lemon butter sauce, creating a delectable combination.

It seems fancy, but it’s actually easy to make. It’s perfect for impressing guests or satisfying your seafood cravings on a weeknight.

Don’t wait for a special occasion; make shrimp scampi tonight!

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35. Chicken Piccata

Experience Italy at home with this zesty lemon and caper chicken piccata.

The chicken is tender, bathed in a tangy buttery glaze, creating a harmonious dance of flavors.

This classic chicken recipe is impressively easy. It makes any weeknight feel like a special occasion.

Make chicken piccata tonight and watch it become a new family favorite.

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36. Olive Garden Chicken Alfredo

Whip up this copycat Olive Garden Chicken Alfredo for a taste of indulgence.

This cheesy, creamy delight combines pasta with tender chicken chunks, all swirled in a rich Alfredo sauce.

So, ditch the dinner reservations and enjoy this luscious dish at home.

It’s so easy, it’s impossible to mess up!

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37. Teriyaki Chicken

This teriyaki chicken dish boasts sweet, savory, and umami richness without the need for takeout.

Honey and brown sugar balance the flavors, creating a quick and mouthwatering teriyaki sauce.

Perfect for busy weeknights, it delivers restaurant-quality taste in your own kitchen.

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38. Chicken Fajitas

These chicken fajitas pack a punch with spicy, juicy chicken, sautéed bell peppers, and onions.

They’re a flavorful, vibrant feast that’s as wholesome as it is tasty.

They’re also a breeze to make. So whether you’re a kitchen newbie or a pro, these fajitas are sure to delight.

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39. Air Fryer Salmon

Whip up a meal that’s as tasty as it is healthy with this air fryer salmon recipe.

Rich in antioxidants and Omega-3 fatty acids, salmon is a delicious and nutritious protein option.

Forget boring salads; this recipe ensures you don’t sacrifice flavor for nutrition.

Perfect for anyone wanting a delicious yet healthy option.

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40. Bruschetta Chicken Pasta

This bruschetta chicken pasta is a stellar addition to your dinner recipes.

Juicy chicken, tangy tomatoes, fresh basil, and perfectly cooked pasta come together in a symphony of taste.

The zesty bruschetta enhances the chicken and pasta, creating a dish that’s impossible to resist.

Scrumptious, easy, and budget-friendly, this dish is a true delight on any dinner table.

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40 Easy Dinner Ideas for Tonight

Course: DinnerCuisine: Italian




Prep time



Cooking time






Looking for some quick dinner ideas for tonight? Try this creamy Tuscan chicken with spinach and sun-dried tomatoes!


  • 3 chicken breasts

  • Salt & pepper, to taste

  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder

  • Flour for dredging

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil (divided)

  • 1 tablespoon butter

  • 1/4 cup chicken broth or dry white wine

  • 1 heaping teaspoon Dijon mustard

  • 1 cup heavy whipping cream

  • 2 cups fresh baby spinach

  • 1/4 cup sun-dried tomatoes (if dry, hydrate in warm water for about 20 minutes; if oil-packed, drain and chop)

  • 1 tablespoon fresh basil, chopped


  • Season chicken breasts with salt, pepper, and garlic powder. Lightly dredge them in flour, shaking off any excess.
  • In a large skillet, heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil and butter over medium-high heat. Add the chicken breasts and cook until golden and cooked through (about 4-5 minutes per side, depending on thickness). Transfer chicken to a plate and tent with foil.
  • In the same skillet, add the remaining 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Sauté the sun-dried tomatoes for 1-2 minutes until they’re softened. Pour in the chicken broth or wine, scraping the bottom of the pan to release any browned bits. Stir in the Dijon mustard.
  • Reduce heat to medium and pour in the heavy cream. Allow the sauce to simmer for 2-3 minutes until it starts to thicken.
  • Stir in the baby spinach, letting it wilt in the creamy sauce.
  • Add the chicken breasts back to the skillet, spooning some sauce over the top. Simmer for another 2-3 minutes, or until the chicken is warmed through.
  • Garnish with fresh basil.
  • Serve and enjoy!


  • For an even cook, ensure the chicken breasts are of uniform thickness; you can gently pound them if needed.
  • If the sauce is too thick, adjust the consistency with a splash of chicken broth or milk to thin it out.


  • Calories: 377kcal
  • Carbohydrates: 8g
  • Protein: 30g
  • Fat: 25g
  • Saturated Fat: 10g
  • Cholesterol: 132mg
  • Sodium: 173mg
  • Potassium: 647mg
  • Fiber: 1g
  • Sugar: 1g
  • Calcium: 47mg
  • Iron: 1mg
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40 Dinner Ideas for Tonight (+ Easy Recipes) (2024)
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