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Thursday Night Dinner Ideas

Use these Thursday night dinner ideas to use up your groceries, reduce food waste and make it till the weekend.

I’ve written before about easy dinners throughout the week and how they can be life savers.

I’ve even talked about how to make Wednesday night dinners easy (something about mid-week is when motivation starts to wane), so I figured a post about Thursday night meal ideas would be ideal.

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I know you’re thinking: What’s the difference between Wednesday and Thursday night meals?

Well, to me, there are a few differences, such as:

  • Your groceries may be running low or expiring (veggies going bad? I can relate)
  • You are a day closer to the weekend, so you may be forecasting for the weekend but not thinking about a Thursday night meal idea
  • You’re tired and can’t think about cooking something extravagant from scratch
  • You just feel tired of what you’ve been eating all week and want something different
  • You may not have any leftovers “left over” from your week
  • Kids activities taking up your time and energy
Confused Woman Looking In Open Refrigerator

I’m sure there are plenty more, too! Basically, there’s a big difference between Wednesday suppers and Thursday night supper ideas.

This post will help form an easy Thursday night dinner because these meals have minimal ingredients and a quick cook time. If you need some more inspiration for Thursday night vegetarian meals and proteins, or even quick vegan meals (30 minutes), we have more specific resources on those, too!

And of course, there’s nothing wrong with relying on meal delivery too! I wrote a post about the best athlete meal delivery services, but would apply to family dinners too.

We even keep our kitchen stocked with freezer options from Thrive Market to just reheat, and we hit up Wegman’s hot bar when we need to.

thrive market block

Making Thursday Night Meals Easier

Here’s what I’ve found to be helpful.

  1. Choose recipes that have 6 or less ingredients. We don’t want to spend tons of time in the kitchen or buy anything new. Ideally, these ingredients are pantry staples or can be found in our fridge or freezer. No weird ingredients!
  2. Make sure to utilize some tips for meal prep ideas for the family.
  3. Recipes that take 20 minutes or less. Again, easy and things we can do with minimal brain power.
  4. Less pots and pans with to cook with, and less bowls to dirty. Sheet pan meals come in handy here!
  5. Throw things together. This is where stir fries, hashes and bowls come in handy to reduce food waste and use up fruits and veggies on their way out
  6. Breakfast for dinner is always super easy and quick!
  7. Enlist the help of helper electronics, like an instant pot, crockpot or air fryer. They get a lot of use in our kitchen! This instant pot tortellini soup is the best weeknight meal, and makes easy leftovers!

Tips To Include All Macronutrients

Another tip for easy weeknight meals is including all of your macronutrients in one meal, as we practice with our performance plates.

This is great for one pot meals, sheet pan meals, or matching leftovers with an easy 10 minute recipe.

The goal is to feed yourself adequately (which means carbs, fat and protein!) so you can move on with your night, whether it’s activities, putting the kids to bed, or just feeding yourself with an enjoyable glass of wine.

If some of these recipes are missing a component, think about easy ways to add that in.

For example, my favorite ways to add a carb are microwaving a sweet potato (takes just 5-6 minutes), using a microwave pack of rice, or adding a tortilla or toast to something.

Easy ways to add protein include canned beans, rotisserie chicken, deli meat, or chicken sausage, which cooks quickly.

Fats are the easiest to add because you can add olive oil, olives, avocado or cheese to something, plus it makes it more satisfying.

So, let’s get to these 15 easy, all star recipes for you!

Thursday Night Dinner Ideas

These easy dinner ideas for Thursday night will help make dinner more seamless and easy, so you can get to the weekend quicker!

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