All Food Bites & Articles | Janet's Notebook

Light and Easy Weeknight Meal Ideas

light and easy Grilled Florida Style Chicken

The weather is warmer which means lighter, easier meals make their way into my weeknight menu. You know I love to cook, but there are some nights I just don’t want to spend tons of time in the kitchen.

“My family first enjoyed this tasty dish when invited to a friend’s private island in the Bahamas,” reveals Roxane R. “The hot sun and beautiful scenery makes everything taste amazing, but I still thought I could re-create this recipe when I arrived home!”

Roxane’s experimenting created the most delicious Chunky Shrimp Gazpacho. Fresh and crisp, I could eat this gazpacho every day but especially on a hot summer day. Made with healthy ingredients, I won’t feel guilty after eating it.

Ina Cobh’s (Milwaukee, WI) Roasted Vegetables With Pasta is a fresh and simple dinner idea.

“This is my go-to picnic recipe,” shares Ina. “I love it!”

Orzo pasta is the base of this salad. It’s mixed with a lemony vinaigrette and tons of roasted veggies. Ina includes yellow squash, zucchini, eggplant, bell peppers, and onions. I’ve had success substituting other veggies I’ve had handy too.

At the last minute, Feta cheese and basil are mixed in for a final pop of flavor. It’s so good.

Sandwiches are a favorite in my house. Amy Croyle (Bellingham, WA) Turkey Veggie Wrap With Sun-Dried Tomato Pesto Mayo is a tasty one.

“This wrap came to be when I was shopping at Trader Joe’s and got a call asking me to bring lunch to a yard work party at my Grandma’s house in half an hour,” explains Amy. “I quickly grabbed some of my favorite sandwich things.”

The ingredients Amy grabbed made a great wrap. Smoky turkey and mild Havarti cheese are delicious together. The sun-dried tomato pesto, though, is the flavor star of this recipe. It adds a rich, smoky yet sweet flavor to the sandwich.

When the weather is warmer, my grilling heats up too.

Leah Stacey’s (Huntsville, AL) Cumin Grilled Pork Chops are tender with a capital T.

“These pork chops are so juicy and full of flavor that they taste like steak,” thinks Leah.

The delectable marinade offers up so much flavor. Cumin is the star ingredient and adds an earthy and peppery flavor to the pork. A touch of brown sugar adds sweetness and caramelizes once the pork chops are gilled. Yum!

If your family loves chicken breasts, try Elizabeth Mattice’s (Rockledge, FL) Grilled Florida Style Chicken.

“Love this grilling sauce as it is not a red or tomato-based sauce,” says Elizabeth. “It has been a family favorite for generations.”

The vinegar and seasonings combine to make one flavor-packed chicken marinade. It’s simple but so good. You probably have all the ingredients handy in your kitchen.

If you want a lazy day in the kitchen but still want to make a magnificent meal for your family, try one of these Blue Ribbon recipes. Not fussy to prepare, they’re big on flavor. Happy Pinching!