Best Weeknight Dinner Recipes to Make in October

It’s that time of day again: The kids are home from school, you’re home from work (or you’ve closed your laptop and left the home office), and you’re staring blankly into the fridge as you ask yourself, “What should we have for dinner tonight?” When weekdays are busy and minutes fly by, it’s easy to order a pizza to-go, but it’s more delicious, satisfying, and enjoyable to cook a balanced and healthy meal that you and your loved ones can sit down to. Here, we’re giving you some ideas and guidelines to help make preparing a weeknight dinner for your family more manageable.

Every month, we share dinner recipes that serve four people and take less than one hour to prepare (that means prep work, cook times, and any necessary marinating, cooling, or resting are complete in the time that it takes to watch an episode of your favorite primetime drama). We always suggest something meatless on Monday, but feel free to mix in these vegetarian and vegan recipes throughout the rest of the week, too. When Friday rolls around, we’re ready to indulge, and that means something like the Instant Pot Chicken Thighs Marbella, pictured here, or a delicious sheet-pan supper. 

Throughout the month of October, plan to stock up on hearty leafy greens like Swiss chard, spinach, and kale, winter squashes from butternut to acorn, and wild mushrooms. When you want to make an easy and healthy side dish recipe, roast or sauté any of these vegetables; after all, a healthy side helps to balance all of the extra candy you’ll be consuming around Halloween.

Ahead, you’ll find weeknight chicken dinner recipes, noodle bowls, stir-fries, and other dishes your family will love.

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