These tasty meals take less than 15 minutes to make

Speedy suppers



Even the most dedicated and enthusiastic home cooks have days when they don't feel like setting foot in the kitchen. While it's tempting to order a takeaway or pick up a ready meal, those aren't the only options. Here, we round up some 'throw it all together' recipes that prove you can eat delicious home-cooked food every night of the week, even if you're short on time or just feeling a little lazy. Our simple suggestions look and taste great, and – best of all – they'll be on the table in 15 minutes or less.

From curries to stir-fries, salads to soups, and plenty in between, read on to discover the meals you can throw together in next to no time – we guarantee you'll find plenty of recipes for your repertoire.

Black and kidney bean chilli

<p>Brent Hofacker/Shutterstock</p>

Brent Hofacker/Shutterstock

How does a filling dinner that's made almost entirely from store-cupboard ingredients sound? A vegetable and bean–packed chilli is just the thing for a busy weeknight; use canned beans for speed and serve with brown rice for added fibre (buy a pre-cooked pouch, which you can microwave in minutes). You can also always jazz the dish up with sour cream, chopped spring onions and grated cheese.

Ham and egg linguine

<p>Waitrose and Partners/loveFOOD</p>

Waitrose and Partners/loveFOOD

Combine strips of cooked ham with honey, mustard, spring onions and a little pasta cooking water to make a pasta sauce with a difference. Mix with linguine or spaghetti, then top with a poached egg. This super-simple meal will taste even better when generously dusted with freshly grated Parmesan.




Think of a quesadilla as a fancy fried cheese sandwich. You can fill your tortillas with all manner of different ingredients (though cheese, whether dairy or plant-based, is essential), and they're a great vehicle for using up leftover cooked meat, too. Vegetables, or even fruit, add a satisfying crunch – both sliced apples and red peppers work well.

Satay noodle stir-fry

<p>Issy Crocker/Hodder</p>

Issy Crocker/Hodder

Peanut butter is a store-cupboard staple, but have you thought about using it to form the base of an easy satay sauce? To do so, combine the nutty spread with soy sauce, rice vinegar and sesame oil, then fold through noodles (use the straight-to-wok variety to keep things really speedy). You could also add Tenderstem broccoli and sugar-snap peas, for extra crunch.

Steak with garlic butter

<p>Jane Hornby/Phaidon</p>

Jane Hornby/Phaidon

Cooking a great-tasting steak is surprisingly easy if you follow a few simple rules: choose high-quality meat, oil the steak (not the pan), and make sure your pan is really hot. Once your steak is cooked to your liking, leave it to rest for at least 5 minutes before topping with garlic butter. Complete the meal with a crisp green salad and some fries or chunky chips – from frozen, they'll take 12-15 minutes in an air fryer at around 200ºC (400ºF). Spray with a light coating of oil first, and shake vigorously once or twice while cooking.

Savoury pancakes

<p>Bonne Maman/loveFOOD</p>

Bonne Maman/loveFOOD

Wafer-thin savoury pancakes or crêpes can form the base of many a speedy supper. First cook your pancakes (make the batter with plain flour, rather than a mix of plain and buckwheat, so you don't need to rest it), or simply buy some ready-made crêpes. Then load them with your favourite fillings. We like ours stuffed with soft goats’ cheese, slices of ham, grated cheese and fig jam – a combination that, happily, needs no cooking.

Miso ramen bowls

<p>Patricia Niven/Bluebird</p>

Patricia Niven/Bluebird

It's not often you find comfort food that's both quick and healthy, but miso ramen bowls deliver on all counts. Simply simmer your noodles with a selection of veggies – broccoli, peas, asparagus, shredded carrots and peppers – and add miso paste to the cooking water. Leftover chicken, beef or pork can go in, too, and a jammy soft-boiled egg is the perfect finishing touch.

Huevos rancheros

<p>AS Food Studio/Shutterstock</p>

AS Food Studio/Shutterstock

This Mexican classic is traditionally a breakfast dish, but it works just as well (and is satisfying enough) for a quick evening meal. There are many variations, but all should include eggs and some kind of tomato. We like to add re-fried beans (you can buy them in a can) and serve our huevos rancheros on corn tortillas with avocado and fried eggs.

Cheat's chicken curry

<p>Bartosz Luczak/Shutterstock</p>

Bartosz Luczak/Shutterstock

There's no need to order a takeaway when you can rustle up a chicken curry in no time. Fry a finely chopped onion in oil until softened, then add diced chicken breast and continue to cook for 3-4 minutes, until sealed. Stir in enough good-quality curry paste to coat the meat generously – it's up to you whether you choose mild korma or fiery madras – then add coconut cream and chopped tomatoes. You want enough liquid so that the chicken simmers, but isn't drowning, in the sauce. Simmer for 10 minutes, or until the chicken is cooked through, then finish with a scattering of fresh coriander and serve with naan breads.

Puy lentil and tuna salad



This thrifty, filling salad might be simple to prepare, but it delivers big on flavour. To make enough to serve 2, first whisk together a dressing of 2 tbsp white wine vinegar, 1 tsp Dijon mustard, a squeeze of lemon juice, 1 tsp honey and 3 tbsp olive oil. In a large bowl, combine an 8.8oz (250g) pouch of pre-cooked Puy lentils with a 5.6oz (160g) can of drained tuna, 2 large handfuls of halved cherry tomatoes, 1/4 finely sliced red onion and a small bunch of chopped parsley. Pour over the mustard dressing, mix well and serve.

Gnocchi with a simple sauce



Having a pack of gnocchi in the fridge is a real bonus when you're pushed for time. Not only does it cook very quickly, it makes a nice change from pasta, too. You could stir pesto and cream cheese through blanched gnocchi, or coat with a tomato and basil sauce. Alternatively, fry your gnocchi until golden and crisp, then drizzle with melted butter infused with rosemary.

Fish finger tacos

<p>Nassima Rothacker/Kyle Books</p>

Nassima Rothacker/Kyle Books

Here’s a crowd-pleasing dinner idea if there ever was one. Fill tacos with a decadent cream of avocado whizzed up with sour cream, lime and garlic, add some oven-baked fish fingers, and top with a crunchy, piquant salsa. You could swap the fish fingers for juicy, cooked prawns or even chicken goujons – or use tacos as a vehicle for leftovers like roast chicken, cooked white fish or roast vegetables.

Seared soy and sesame tuna

<p>Brent Hofhacker/Shutterstock</p>

Brent Hofhacker/Shutterstock

Simplicity and speed are key when it comes to cooking tuna; leave the fish in the pan too long and it has a tendency to become dry and tasteless. Rub tuna fillets with a little olive oil, then coat with sesame seeds. Add to a very hot pan and sear for 2 minutes on each side. Remove from the pan, drizzle with soy sauce and serve with stir-fried greens and rice (or any other sides you'd prefer).

Speedy pea soup



We're always singing the praises of frozen peas, not least because they happen to make a mean soup. For 2 people, sweat a large onion in a little oil, add 7oz (200g) frozen peas and 10fl oz (300ml) vegetable stock and bring to the boil. Simmer for 5 minutes, then blend with a stick blender, season well and stir in 3 tbsp double cream. You could also finish the soup with fresh basil, extra blanched peas, crispy bacon or cooked ham.

Curried fish kebabs

<p>Rimma Bondarenko/Shutterstock</p>

Rimma Bondarenko/Shutterstock

Practically effortless to make and hugely tasty, these fish kebabs are perfect served with fluffy white rice and a crunchy cucumber salad. Cut 14oz (400g) white fish fillets into bite-size pieces and place in a bowl. Whisk together 3 tbsp Thai red curry paste, 6 tbsp coconut milk, and the juice and zest of 1/2 lemon. Pour over the fish, turning to coat. Preheat the grill to medium-high and thread the fish onto skewers, alternating the fish pieces with lemon slices. Grill for 6-8 minutes, turning halfway, until the fish is just cooked through.

Speedy poke bowl

<p>Anna Shepulova/Shutterstock</p>

Anna Shepulova/Shutterstock

Bringing an abundance of flavour and colour to the table, these 15-minute poke bowls couldn’t be easier to put together. Microwave white rice according to pack instructions, then fluff up, drizzle with a little rice vinegar and divide among bowls. Top with diced smoked salmon, avocado and cucumber slices, shredded cabbage and carrot. Drizzle with a dressing made from equal parts soy sauce, sesame oil, rice vinegar and lemon juice, and scatter with sesame seeds and coriander leaves before serving.

Pad Thai-inspired prawn noodles

<p>Chatchai Kritsetsakul/Shutterstock</p>

Chatchai Kritsetsakul/Shutterstock

Here's how to rustle up a noodle dish in no time. Cook 7oz (200g) rice noodles according to pack instructions. Stir-fry 7oz (200g) prawns, 3.5oz (100g) bean sprouts and 5 sliced spring onions. Then add 5oz (150g) frozen peas, 3 tbsp peanuts, and 2 tbsp each chilli sauce and soy sauce. Increase the heat, add the noodles and 2 beaten eggs and fry until the eggs are just cooked through. Scatter over 2 tbsp chopped coriander to serve.

Farfalle with pancetta and peas

<p>Liliya Kandrashevich/Shutterstock</p>

Liliya Kandrashevich/Shutterstock

It's always worth having a bag of peas in the freezer – they're just so incredibly versatile. For a super-quick pasta dish, fry pancetta and onions until the pancetta is crisp and the onions soft. Stir in frozen peas, add mint and Parmesan to taste, then cover with stock and simmer for 3-4 minutes, until the peas are tender and most of the liquid has been absorbed. Add cooked pasta to the sauce, stir well and serve. For a vegetarian dish, you could easily omit the pancetta, adding pesto at the end instead.

Teriyaki chicken

<p>AS Food studio/Shutterstock</p>

AS Food studio/Shutterstock

Teriyaki chicken is always a hit, and happily it's really straightforward to make. Fry cornflour-dusted chicken breast pieces in a pan until golden, then coat with ready-made teriyaki sauce. Sprinkle with sesame seeds, and serve with straight-to-wok noodles tossed with cooked greens such as spinach or Tenderstem broccoli.

Chilli spaghetti with garlic and parsley

<p>Luca Santilli/Shutterstock</p>

Luca Santilli/Shutterstock

For a simple yet seriously tasty meal, you can’t go wrong with chilli spaghetti with garlic and parsley. This dish really is as easy as it sounds. Fry sliced garlic and chilli (as much as you like!) in plenty of olive oil until softened, then fold in cooked spaghetti, along with plenty of chopped parsley. Serve the pasta drizzled with good-quality extra virgin olive oil and garnished with grated pecorino.

Fancy frittata


A frittata is really just a thick, chunky omelette with extra ingredients added to the egg mixture. Take the dish up a notch by adding smoked salmon trimmings or flaked smoked haddock, along with blanched asparagus spears. Pour into a frying pan and cook over a medium heat until nearly set, before finishing under the grill. Cut into wedges and serve warm with a green salad doused in a creamy, lemony dressing.

Glazed salmon



Looking for something new to do with salmon? Try this Asian-inspired glaze. To serve 4 people, mix together 4 tbsp mirin, 3 tbsp soft brown sugar and 4 tbsp soy sauce. Place 4 skinless salmon fillets in a shallow dish, add the sauce and leave for 3-4 minutes, turning the salmon halfway. Fry the fish in a hot non-stick pan for a couple of minutes on each side, then remove. Add the marinade to the pan with 2 tbsp rice vinegar, return to the heat and allow to bubble, then pour the glaze over the fish. Serve with rice.


<p>Martin Turzak/Shutterstock</p>

Martin Turzak/Shutterstock

Omelettes can be a lifesaver when you're short on time, and you can still take the dish in a decadent direction by choosing luxurious fillings. Try stuffing your cooked omelette with smoked salmon and herby cream cheese, or add chorizo, roasted red peppers (from a jar) and goats’ cheese. You could also fill it to bursting with creamy garlic mushrooms and wilted spinach.

Quick chicken soup



A soothing, hearty soup doesn’t have to take hours to prepare. To serve 2, fry 5 sliced spring onions and 5.2oz (150g) chopped mushrooms in a saucepan over a medium-high heat until the onions are starting to turn golden. Stir in 2 crushed garlic cloves and cook for 1 minute more, then pour over 24fl oz (700ml) good-quality chicken stock. Bring to a simmer, add 2 large handfuls of frozen peas and 10.6oz (300g) leftover shredded roast chicken. Warm through and scatter with chopped parsley to serve.

Pasta alla puttanesca



Punchy, flavour-packed puttanesca is a perfect simple meal on any night of the week. To serve 4, fry a finely chopped onion and 2 crushed garlic cloves in oil until softened, then stir in 1/2 tsp chilli flakes. Add a 14oz (400g) can chopped tomatoes, 5 finely chopped anchovy fillets, 4 tbsp pitted black olives and 2 tbsp drained capers. Simmer for 10 minutes while you cook 300g dried spaghetti according to pack instructions. Drain the pasta, toss with the sauce and serve.

Scallops with chorizo

<p>Bartosz Luczak/Shutterstock</p>

Bartosz Luczak/Shutterstock

Scallops and chorizo are a great combination, and are super quick to cook. Fry sliced cooking chorizo in a hot pan until crisp, then remove using a slotted spoon. Return the pan to the heat and cook the scallops in the oil from the chorizo for 1-2 minutes on each side – don't overcook them, or they'll turn rubbery. Return the chorizo to the pan, add chopped parsley, and serve with crusty bread and a green salad.

Honey and soy tofu stir-fry

<p>Elena Veselova/Shutterstock</p>

Elena Veselova/Shutterstock

For an easy, vegetarian stir-fry, first briefly marinate diced tofu in honey and soy sauce. In a wok, fry green vegetables of your choice until tender yet crunchy, then add the tofu (with the marinade) and fry until the tofu is crisp and light golden brown. Spoon the tofu and vegetables over cooked rice or quinoa, and finish with chopped coriander and a drizzle of sweet chilli sauce.

Moules marinière



Now that the majority of mussels are farmed on rope, they're very clean and don't require lots of scrubbing, saving you time in the kitchen. To make this classic dish for 2, sweat off a large onion in butter in a big pan, then stir in 2 cloves crushed garlic and around 5fl oz (150ml) white wine. Increase the heat and add 32oz (900g) mussels. Cover with a lid and cook, shaking the pan occasionally, for 3-4 minutes until most of the mussels have opened. Discard any broken mussels, then stir in chopped parsley and a little cream. Serve with crusty bread for dunking.

Spinach orecchiette

<p>Miguel Barcaly/Headline Home</p>

Miguel Barcaly/Headline Home

For a delicious dinner for 2, cook 2 large handfuls of orecchiette pasta until al dente. Set a frying pan with 1 tbsp olive oil over a medium heat, add 2 sliced garlic cloves and cook for 3-4 minutes. Stir in a generous drizzle of single cream and a handful of Parmesan. Season and simmer for 1 minute, then fold through around 4oz (120g) baby spinach. Drain the pasta, reserving a little cooking water. Add the orecchiette to the pan with the reserved pasta water. Stir to combine and serve with more grated Parmesan, if you like.

Now discover these super-fast meals to get you through the week