Oh, September. You are madness. You’re going back to school and back to work after lazing around in August and Labor Day. You are fresh new notebooks and backpacks. You are closed toe shoes. You’ve compared calendars, arranged carpools, put together nut-free lunches.
Figuring out dinner every day is already quite a task, but in hectic September it can be quite an ordeal.
I write a DailyExpertNews Cooking newsletter called Five Weeknight Dishes, with five recipes for busy people who still want something tasty to eat. (Sign up here.) And so in honor of September, I’ve picked 100 dinner recipes I think you need to try this year, ideas that make it easy to eat deliciously.
All 100 recipes are simple and most of them only take 30 minutes to make. None last more than an hour, and when they last that long, most of the time is hands-off. I had kids in mind when I chose these recipes, but the truth is, no matter where you are in life, September can wash over us all. I hope you find delicious dishes here, and that you put them on repeat all year round.
Miso honey chicken and asparagus. Roast these boneless chicken thighs instead of frying, which cuts the cooking time to about 10 minutes. That miso-honey marinade is tasty enough to drink from a spoon.
Sticky coconut chicken and rice. In this one-pot meal, chicken and rice cook together in a coconut milk bath.
Fried mustard-herb chicken legs. This is the chicken recipe you need to make everyone happy. Swap the mayonnaise for the mustard if necessary.
Tajín Grilled Chicken. Tajín’s chili-lime shake is sublime sprinkled with mango and watermelon; as an rim on a margarita it is unsurpassed. It is also an excellent seasoning mix for chicken (and seafood too).
Chicken Katsu. Schnitzel, Milanese, katsu – they are all breaded, fried schnitzels, and very sweet to boot. Katsu is a Japanese main dish, served with tonkatsu sauce.
Pasta, noodles, rice and other grains
Vegetable Pulao. Cardamom, cinnamon, cumin and turmeric add flavor to this cozy, easy-to-prepare dinner.
Kimchi fried rice. There is butter in this fried rice, which makes for particularly luscious results. I love this recipe.
Miso-glazed fish. This couldn’t be easier or more foolproof.
Shrimp with hot sauce. A stunningly simple move: toss shrimp in a bowl of hot sauce and butter. I keep shrimp in the freezer for making.
Salmon croquettes. These fish cakes use an underrated staple: canned salmon. But if you prefer, you can also use freshly cooked or leftover salmon. Serve with tartar sauce, hot sauce or both.
Coconut Curry Fish. This main course is based on Jamaican curry powder for its strong flavor and hue.
Sheet-Pan Fish Tikka with Spinach. The star of this clever recipe is the vibrant tikka marinade, which flavors both fish and vegetables.
Vegetable Pajeon (Korean Spring Onion Pancakes with Vegetables). Make these crispy pancakes with whatever vegetables you have on hand, even with leftovers.
Soy stewed tofu with pak choi. This recipe is a weeknight main dish in my house, a quick and hearty stew that can handle whatever vegetable you throw at it.
Sabich scales. The signature elements of Sabich, the Israeli sandwich made with eggplant, hummus, tahini sauce and boiled egg, are equally well poured into bowl form. Chickpeas replace traditional hummus.
Burritos with beans and cheese. For all the teens in your life who have recently become vegetarian, and for anyone in your house who loves the salty taste of baked beans.
Plantains with Jammy Tomatoes and Eggs. Tomatoes and eggs are a popular pair all over the world; this particular recipe is inspired by a version found in Lagos, Nigeria, using firm plantains.
Eggs Kejriwal. I’ve made this dish of spicy eggs on toast with many different types of bread (even bagels), and it always works. The combination of mustard, cheddar and chili pops.
Gyeran Bap (Egg Rice). Now part of my regular cooking routine.
Chilaquiles. For transcendent chilaquiles, fry or fry tortillas to make the chips yourself. For quick chilaquiles, buy the chips. It will still be good.
Çilbir (Turkish eggs with yogurt). The dinner eggs of my dreams.