Post Last Updated: March 23, 2020. This post will be updated regularly with new ideas and contributions from our friends, family, and social media fans. Please bookmark it to your favorites and check back for updates. We want to keep each other inspired with No-Recipe Recipes and easy meal ideas while we are spending more time at home. If you have any to add, leave a comment at the bottom of this post!
Tasty Meal Ideas that Don’t Require a Recipe:
While many of us cook on a regular basis…many of us don’t. That’s ok. We get it. However, with everyone in the nation spending more time at home, I bet we all will be spending a little more time in the kitchen.
Product availabilty will definitely vary from state to state, even town to town, but this list of “No-Recipe Recipes” should help us all come up with ways to keep our family fed during quarantine and social distancing.
PLEASE – Feel free to contribute. Add your ideas at the bottom of this post. Share with friends and family. Let’s keep this going and help each other out.
- Italian Chicken – Any cut of skinless chicken, marinate overnight in bottled Italian salad dressing. Then you can grill it, bake it, even pan fry. – Me.
- Easy Chili Mac – Heat your favorite brand of chili in a skillet. Stir in cooked macaroni pasta and top with shredded cheese. – Me.
- Simmered Meatballs – Heat a bag of frozen meatballs to package directions (or make your own). Simmer in your favorite jarred pasta sauce and serve over pasta or on sandwiches. . – Me.
- Easy Pasta + Sauce – Meat spaghetti sauce. cooked noodles, mozzarella or parmesan cheese. Mix together and bake until heated through. – Debbie C., Facebook
- Tuna + Noodles – Thinned out cream soup mixed with cooked noodles, canned tuna and peas. Can be cooked on top of the stove or baked. – Debbie C., Facebook
- Easy Chicken Pasta – Cooked chicken, cooked noodles, mix with cream of chicken soup, serve warm. Delicious! – Juanita W., Facebook
- Sausage + Potatoes – Cut up smoked sausage, potatoes and onions, fry in a skillet. – Debbie C., Facebook
- Hamburger Stroganoff – Ground beef, cream cheese, mushroom soup, sour cream (optional). Brown + drain beef. Melt cream cheese in beef. Add 2 or 3 cans of soup and sour cream. Serve over egg noodles, pasta, or rice. – Sharon K., Facebook
- Kielbasa + Kraut – Kielbasa, drained and rinsed sauerkraut, and a bit of brown sugar. – Debbie C., Facebook
- Busy Day Casserole – 10 frozen burritos , 1 (12 ounce) jar salsa , 1 (10 ounce) can enchilada sauce, 1 pound grated cheddar cheese. Place 5 burritos in bottom of crock pot. Cover with half of salsa and enchilada sauce. Add remaining 5 burritos, repeat. Cover and cook on low for at least 4 hours. 30 minutes before serving, cover with shredded cheese. – Candi E., Facebook + The Devilish Dish
- Crockpot Roast + Veggies – Chuck roast, seasonings, carrots & potatoes in the crockpot. – Debbie C., Facebook
- Texas Tacos – Grilled chicken, beef and fish tacos and all that go with tacos – fresh tortillas and pico. – Johanna C., Facebook
- Rotel Chicken – Oven proof dish, melt butter, Brown chicken breasts, add two cans of Rotel and bake 45 minutes. Serve with Mexicorn and mashed potatoes! – Nancy M., Facebook
- Crockpot Chicken Tacos – Crockpot Chicken Tacos. 4-5 large chicken breast, 2 packets of taco seasoning (you can use 1 if you prefer), 1 jar of salsa. Set it on high for 2 hours or low for 4 hours. When done, you can stir it, and it falls to pieces; easy to shred. Add to taco shells or a taco salad. – Renee L, Facebook
- Easy Chicken Bake – Can of tomato soup and can of any cream soup. Mix and bake over chicken. Optionally add some sautéed veggies. – Sam S. – Facebook
- Egg Satarash – We also call it Balcan Stir-fry! 🙂 You fry some yellow bell peppers, chopped fresh tomato, add some eggs and Stir-fry it! Its super easy and light, perfect for hot summer days! – Kristina S., Facebook
- Chicken + Veggie Bake – Chicken thighs or breasts cut up, red potatoes, can or two of drained green beans. Italian seasoning or dry ranch packet tossed with everything. I’m the oven at 400 for an hour. – Meg A., Facebook
- Chicken + Rice – Chicken, Rice, Cream of Mushroom. Combine, bake until done. – Jennifer B., Facebook
- Open Faced Baked Bean Sandwiches – This is four ingredients, but cheap and tasty and filling lunch my mom used to make. You lightly toast bread, then divvy up baked beans on the bread, add shredded or sliced cheese, then top each with a slice of bacon cut in half crossed. Put under the broiler on low until the bacon is cooked. – Laura B., Facebook
- Smoked Sausage, Okra + Tomatoes – Smoked sausage cut into pieces, cook till done then add a can of Tomatoes-Okra-Corn. Cook an additional few minutes. Add some Tony’s and eat. – Sean G., Facebook
- Slowcooker Chicken + Gravy – Put chicken in slow cooker. When chicken has cooked 2 hours on high, drain and pour cream of celery soup over and cook on high 2 more hours. Makes a wonderful gravy for mashed potatoes or rice. – Dianne W., Facebook
- Easy Italian Chicken – Place Chicken breasts (or tenderloins) in a baking dish. Pour zesty Italian dressing over them. Bake at 350 for 45 min (until chicken is done). Serve with whatever sides you choose. – Renee E-R., Facebook
- Easy Baked Chicken + Pasta – Mix 1/2 & 1/2 Ranch and Italian dressings and pour over chicken. Bake and serve over pasta. Serve with garlic bread and a salad. – Lori M., Facebook
- Cast Iron Oven Fried Chicken – 4 pounds Bone in, skin on chicken pieces such as breasts, legs, or leg quarters. Oil, for frying (vegetable, corn, or peanut). 2 cups flour. 1-2 packages Ranch Dressing mix (or 1 tablespoon of salt and 1/2 tablespoon pepper in its place), Buttermilk. Pour oil to a depth of 1/4—1/2 of an inch into a deep cast iron pan. Place in oven and preheat to 450. In a shallow dish, stir together flour and seasonings, In another shallow baking dish, pour about 1/4 inch of milk. Dip each piece in the milk to coat all sides, then into the flour mixture, then milk again, and flour mixture again. Place on platter when done. Five minutes after oven is preheated, remove your skillet and carefully, (using tongs) place each piece of chicken in the skillet, positioning so that they don’t touch. Return to oven for 40 minutes. Remove from oven, use tongs to flip each piece of chicken over, and return to oven for 15 minutes more. Remove to drain onto paper towel lined platter. – Gloria M, Facebook
- Tuna Casserole – Tuna fish, cream of mushroom soup, elbow macaroni and crushed potato chips on top. Bake at 350 for 25 minutes. – Vicki L., Facebook
- 3-Ingredient Chili Salmon– 4 oz salmon, 3 fillets, half a cup chili sauce, 1/4 cup fresh scallions. Bake 400 for 12-15 minutes. – Linda E., Facebook (via Tasty)
- Salsa Chicken – Salsa and chicken, slow cooked in my iron skillet, cheddar cheese melted on top after it’s done cooking. Takes about 45 minutes, tops. – Karen H., Facebook
- Burger + Rice Skillet – Ground beef browned, cup of salsa, cooked rice, whatever spices. Can also add drained can of corn or black beans. – Me.
- Salmon Patties – Canned salmon (cleaned and deboned), egg, cornmeal, salt and pepper. Form into patties and pan fry in oil. – Me.
- Hamburger Casserole – Cook hamburger meat, put in bowl, top with mashed potatoes and cheese. Heat till cheese melted. Can add veggies if your family not picky ✋ – Suzanne W., Friend
- Taco Beef + Rice – Ground beef browned in microwave, 1 large jar salsa, Taco seasoning, 1 cup uncle Ben rice. Cook for 17 minutes on level 7 Covered. Add grated cheese. – Laura R., Facebook
- Easy Beef + Rice – 1 bag of instant rice cooked to package directions, 1ib ground beef and and diced onion cooked mix together. – Lois L, Facebook.
- Macaroni + Tomato with Beef -1 box of elbow macaroni cooked to package directions 1 can diced tomatoes and add seasonings and spices of your choice you can add ground beef, Turkey, or chicken too. – Lois L., Facebook
- Easy Kraft Dinner – Package Kraft dinner pack Hamburg and onion cook and just say yummy. – June D., Facebook
- Easy Hamburger Mac – My mother owned a daycare back in the 1970’s and 1980’s..Lots of picky eaters. She had one recipe that they all seemed to love. Ground beef, crushed canned tomatoes, box of macaroni and cheese. Prepare the macaroni and cheese per box instructions. Cook the beef (she used a potato masher to break it up, some children didn’t like chunks). Drain the beef, pour in tomatoes and add any spices you like. Pour all the macaroni and cheese in and stir. Serve. Mom sometimes added carrots or green beans, but usually served veg on the side. She served green salads too, but most of the children refused to eat them. She sometimes served with cornbread, or white bread and butter or crackers. She never wrote down the amounts, so just prepare it all to your personal taste. – Vicki T., Facebook
- Chicken Bog – Chicken, onion and rice! – Al M., Facebook
- Le Boullet – Hamburger, flour, onion. Make into meatballs simmer in a little water. Thicken with flour for a litttle gravy. – Linda R., Facebook
- Chuck Roast with Gravy – (roast plus one can cream of chicken) ………..that’s it!!! DELISH – Leah M., Facebook
- Shrimp – Shrimp sauteed in butter, with italian seasoning . – Cynthia R., Facebook
- Easy Beef Noodle Skillet – Ground beef, brown & drain. Cavatappi noodles (or any shape will do), cook to desired texture, drain. Cream of mushroom soup. Stir all ingredients together, reheat until hot and enjoy – Kellie S., Facebook
- Sausage, Potatoes + Beans – Smoked sausage, fresh green beans and gold potatoes. Bring to boil, turned down to simmer until potatoes and beans are done! Tada! Dinner. – Sharon E., Facebook
- Minnesota Hotdish – Maccaroni with hamburger, onion, celery, stewed tomatoes, tomato sauce, salt, pepper, a little Italian seasoning. Cooked in a skillet on the stove.🌷 – Shellie A., Facebook
- Mom’s Tuna on Toast – One of my moms go to,s was cream tuna on toast very cheap very fast and still not bad in a pinch – Ken C., Facebook
- Crescent Sausages – My go to when I’m rushed and such, is canned cresent rolls wrapped around a good polish or German sausage and baked for 12-15 minutes. My favorite sausage to use is Hillshire farms Cheddarwurst. Quick, yummy and liked by all. – Chris W. F., Facebook
- Pork + Sauerkraut – Pork and sauerkraut. It’s 3 beside the pork. Sear your pork loin in oil and one julienned onion. Add 2 more onions sauerkraut ( I used the bag don’t like canned) and 2 julienned apples. Simmer it about 3-4 hours till fork tender. Serve with your favorite rice dish and salad – Kathy H., Facebook
- Beef Pasta Gravy Skillet – Ground beef, beef gravy packets (2), can of drained corn, pasta. You can add whatever you want like mushrooms, onions, When my kids were young they loved it! – Chantal R., Facebook
- Easy Hamburger Steaks + Gravy – hamburger onion make into patties add can of beefy mushroom soup serve with mashed potatoes – Stephanie S., Facebook
- Tuna Mac – Mac and cheese, tuna and peas – Sue D., Facebook
- Easy Grilled Chicken – Marinate chicken and grill. – Beverly H., Facebook
- Soy Lime Grilled Roast – One of my go to meals-a tri-tip roast, (cheap) marinade overnight or a day..?? In ALLEGRO SOY LIME. Grill it Pittsburgh style-charred on the outside a bit and medium rare in the center. DELISH!!! Everybody loves it! I usually serve it with cheesy mashed potatoes and asparagus or a green vegetable. – Tami P., Friend
- Slow Cooker Beef – Chuck roast, bell pep, white onion both quartered, taco packet, slow cook until shreds.. delicious for tacos burritos , Tina C.A., Facebook
- Russian Chicken Bake – Get between 2-3 lbs of Diced Boneless Chicken Br. 1 Bottle of Russian dressing, 1 Jar of Apricot Preserves & 1 packet of onion soup mix. Put cubed Chicken in a 9×13 Pan, sprayed with pan release. Then mix up the 3 other ingredients, pour over Chicken & Bake at 350° for approx. 30-35 minutes. Then serve over Rice, or Noodles or mashed potatoes then serve. Its Delicious. – Mike M., Facebook
Easy Soups + Chili
- Easy Beef Veggie Soup – My dad has a soup recipe … I bag mix veggies, beef, 1 large can crushed tomatoes, I use beef broth but he uses water. Then season to taste. – Debora S., Facebook
- Simple Mushroom Soup – On a budget? Beef broth, sautéed mushrooms and onions (add spices if desired). – Carmen T., Facebook
- Cannelini Bean Salad – Drain and rinse cannelini beans. Add a can of tuna in olive oil. Add fresh vegetables that you like. Mix all with Italian dressing, salt and pepper. – Donna M., Facebook
- Italian Tuna Pasta Salad – Drained tuna tossed with cooked pasta and Italian dressing. – Me.
- Mixed Salad with Pears – 1 bag of mixed Lettuce 1, purple onion sliced, 1 can of pears drained and chopped and mayonnaise with salt and pepper to season. Only enough mayonnaise to coat lettuce, depending how big the salad is. – Lois L., Facebook
- Roasted Potatoes – Wash and dry. Cut into bite-sized pieces. Toss in oil, season as desired. Roast on a baking sheet at 400 until done, stirring halfway. You can also do this with carrots, brussel sprouts, asparagus, any fresh veggie you can get your hands on. . – Me.
- Twice Baked Potatoes – Bake potatoes for a couple hours. Cut in half long ways, scoop potato out into a bowl. Add butter & cheddar cheese, salt or pepper to liking. Mix together. Put potato back into potato skin & bake for 20 minutes. – Michaela R., Facebook
- Pick a Pasta + Sauce – Pasta sauce, pasta, + cheese. The options are limitless. – Vanessa W., Facebook
- Slow Cooker Beans – A pound of any dry bean, 8 cups of water, one diced onion and seasoning of choice. Cook on low for 8 hours. – Me.
- Homemade Noodles – Flour eggs and salt. Combine, roll out. – Cindy W-K., Facebook
- Brown Butter Pasta or Rice – Brown butter, Parmesan and rice or pasta. Delicious . – Kathy H., Facebook
- Fried Cabbage – Chopped cabbage, onion, bell pepper, whatever you have. Fry in a little oil with your fave seasonings and hot sauce. Can also add drained tomatoes and more. – Me.
- Garlic Cheese Knots – can of pilsbury biscuit dough, cheese strings and garlic butter. Cut each biscuit in quarters, cut cheese strings in bite size pieces. Wrap dough around cheese and then coat with garlic butter and bake using pkg directions until golden brown. – Bobby-Jo L., Facebook
- Baked Sweet Potatoes with Butter – Lois L., Faceboook
- Classic Grilled Cheese – Bread,cheese and butter. Classic grilled cheese sandwich! – Marcus B., Facebook
- Banana + Egg Pancakes – Mash a ripe banana with eggs, cook like normal pancakes. – Amma M., Facebook
- Potatoes Over Easy – Fried diced potatoes with onions plus eggs over easy. – Sharon Z., Facebook
- Easy Breakfast Burritos – Scrambled eggs, salsa, tortillas. Add whatever leftover chicken, sausage or ground beef, peppers, etc. – Me.
- PB + Banana Toast – Toast, peanut butter, banana slices on top. 😋- Megan B., Facebook
- Chili Cheese Dip – Two cans of chili, 16 ounces of cream cheese, 1 cup of sharp shredded cheddar. Put all in crockpot, high for 2 hours, stir. – Connor A.Q., Facebook
- Pineapple and Cream Cheese Dip – 2 Ingredients. Tastes Like Summer!!! Love It!!!! (Serve with Nilla Wafers) Can Use Potato Chips Also..:) – Michael H., Facebook
- Tomato Sandwiches – bread, tomatoes and dukes mayo. – Larry A., Facebook
- Tomato + Cheese Toasts – Toast, slice of hard cheese, I like sharp, and a slice of tomato. Yum. – Nancy E-W., Facebook
- Sausage Stars – 1lb sausage fried drained and crumbled. 6 cups grated Sharpe cheddar cheese, pack ranch dressing made to directions mix to directions. Wonton wrappers place in cup cake pan bake 400 degrees till barely started to brown , then fill with mixture and bake till bubbly , For a twist on it put pickled jalapeno slice on top of each one for a little spice and have added diced black olives to mixture before baking . – Adam M, Facebook
- Sausage Dip – 1 can rotel tomatoes , can pkg cream cheese mix all into 1lb sausage crumbled fried and drained. Great potato chip dip. – Adam M., Facebook
- Cinnamon Roll Apple Bake – Cut up a can of cinnamon rolls. Stir in a can of apples. Bake to package directions. Can also used cherry pie filling, peaches, etc . – Me.
- 1-2-3 Peanut Butter Cookies – 1 cup sugar, 1 cup peanut butter, 1 egg. Drop teaspoon full on cookie sheet, use fork to make criss cross. Bake 325 for 8 -10 mins. Sit on pan for 5, cool on rack. – Dawn H., Facebook also Jana J., Facebook
- Gluten Free Peanut Butter Cookies – 1 c sugar, 1 cup crunchy peanut butter, 1 egg. Mix together and drop by spoonfull on cookie sheet at 350 for 12 minutes. Voila! gluten free cookies! Sometimes I add chocolate chips. – Patricia B., Facebook
- Peanut Butter Fudge – Reg jar peanutbutter microwave 1minute 30 seconds. Container of white frosting microwave 1 minute. Mix 2 together and pour in parchment paper lined brownie pan. Cool in fridge still set. 2 hours and cut. BEST EVER. – Michelle D., Facebook
- Easy Fruitcake – Soak 1kg mixed fruit in 600ml chocolate milk overnight. Add 2 cups SR flour and bake 180degrees (Celsius) for 35 minutes. Best fruitcake ever! – Gwen D., Facebook
- Strawberry Ice Box Cake -5 cups Cool Whip, graham crackers, 3 cups chopped strawberries…spread a layer of graham crackers in a square dish, (Don’t break them apart) layer graham crackers on top, layer cool whip, layer strawberries..continue the layers ending with strawberries on top. Refrigerate about 3 hrs. Garnish with crushed graham crackers if you want. Yum! – Beverly H., Facebook
- Blended Ice Cream Treats – Icecream. Beat 600ml cream until thick. Add 395 gm can condensed milk and beat lightly through. Add anything you want to it. My grand daughter loves gummy bears, I love peppermint cream chocolate or passion fruit. Careful with strawberries and they are very moist. Just make sure you cut and allow them to dry for a half hour before mixing them in. Chocolate coated honey come is great. – Gwen D., Facebook
- “Sugar High” – Softened cream cheese , 2 tbs milk, tsp vanilla flavoring , pinch of salt . Mix together well , then add powered sugar till it’s like a thick bread dough, pinch off tennis ball size pieces roll out on powder sugar covered table till about an 1/8 inch thick cover in peanut butter , roll into a log slice into half inch thick pieces . Then repeat till done . Enjoy your sugar high – Adam M., Facebook