The Best 30-Minute Recipe: Want to Serve Your Grandmother's Chicken and Roast Potatoes Tonight But Don't Have a Grandmother's Schedule? We Streamlined This Dish and 300 More to Be on Your Table in 30 Minutes or Less by Cook's Illustrated Magazine

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Notes about this book

  • cristinb on November 11, 2013

    Quick white chicken chili - page 78. Very flavorful! We've made this several times.

  • Jane on March 14, 2009

    This book is great for every-night suppers.

Notes about Recipes in this book

  • Pan roasted chicken breasts with potatoes

    • jaelsne on June 02, 2013

      This is a basic roasted chicken breast recipe, made even simpler by the step by step instructions that cut back cooking times (microwave potatoes before sautéing) and cleanup. The meal was terrific.

  • Italian sausages with peppers, onions, and potatoes

    • jaelsne on November 07, 2014

      Delicious recipe for a weeknight meal, though (of course) it can't compete with slow-roasted veggies and potatoes.

  • Skillet penne with cherry tomatoes, white beans and olives

    • jaelsne on November 11, 2017

      This is a very good, light, weeknight meal that pulls together quickly with little cleanup. I would add mozzarella cubes for heartier eaters.

  • Skillet American chop suey

    • jaelsne on December 05, 2013

      Perfectly good recipe that has absolutely no resemblance to the chop suey that I'm familiar with. I had all the ingredients at home and gave it a try. It makes a good weeknight supper that kids would probably enjoy.

  • Broiled maple-soy salmon fillets with toasted sesame seeds

    • jaelsne on October 28, 2017

      Very easy and delicious. There are two other related recipes—Broiled Mustard and Brownn Sugar Glazed Salmon Fillets with Dill and Broiled Honey-Lime Salmon Fillets with Scallion that also sound delicious. Few ingredients, usually have at home.

  • Chicken tostadas

    • jaelsne on April 29, 2013

      Simplicity itself. I made this recipe with store-bought rotisserie chicken. My family absolutely loved the tostadas. Sometimes the easiest recipes turn out to be the tastiest.

  • Stir-fried beef and broccoli with orange-sesame sauce

    • Jane on April 30, 2009

      This is one of my dinner standards. It's quick, easy and good. And all the family like it which is unusual in my house that everyone agrees. Also apart from the beef I always have all the ingredients in the house.

  • Crispy breaded turkey cutlets

    • pumpkinang on February 28, 2012

      Couldn't find this recipe in the index, after looking through the book, it's a chicken dish not turkey.

  • 30-minute chicken Provençal

    • ajs on July 05, 2010

      Delicious. I tried making it in the slow cooker and it turned out beautifully. Very well seasoned.

  • 30-minute country captain

    • ajs on July 05, 2010

      Absolutely delicious.

    • Lsperoutka on December 29, 2013

      Given the ease of preparation, this version of an old favorite is a winner. The precook in the microwave is surprising effective, rendering the chicken as tender, juicy and flavorful as a much longer braise. The shopping list should list bacon, not sausage. I have used both Major Grey's or Hot Mango chutney, and each is fine. Serve with Simple White Rice.

  • Orecchiette with sausage and broccoli rabe

    • bernalgirl on March 12, 2012

      Easy, delicious. Best with broccoli rabe, but plain broccoli works well, too.

  • Easy chicken enchiladas

    • bernalgirl on February 07, 2023

      The microwave tips are brilliant, and mixing the refried beans into the chicken filling made for a hearty and uniformly tasty enchilada. We made it with green enchilada sauce and loved it.

  • Pan-roasted asparagus with toasted garlic and Parmesan

    • Analyze on March 12, 2019

      This is a delicious recipe! I've made it four times and we've loved it every time. My husband doesn't care for the garlic, so I get it all :)

  • Carrot ginger soup

    • kiwimary on October 12, 2012

      Good soup for a glut of carrots. Needs all the ginger to give it some depth of flavour. Also needs black pepper I think. I made it with dumplings. Good easy dinner.

  • Skillet strata with sausage and Gruyère

    • CynthiasCooking on April 18, 2020

      This was easy and delicious. Our seasoned cast iron pan worked just fine - no need for a modern non-stick.

  • Skillet-braised bratwurst and sauerkraut

    • Lsperoutka on December 31, 2013

      Good flavor for only 30 minutes! Often use kielbasa in lieu of bratwurst. Always add 1-2 small red potatoes: unpeeled, thinly sliced, then fanned into skillet. Caraway seeds are also a nice addition.

  • Braised cod with peperonata

    • Lsperoutka on April 26, 2016

      This is also good served on grits!

  • Chicken curry with potatoes and cauliflower

    • CindyinOttawa on March 23, 2017

      A good chicken curry; I use what vegetables I have on hand, and it is tasty,

    • mrshalf on March 07, 2016

      Not having had authentic curry, I'm no expert to judge this accurately however :) My family is made of young and old and all love it. Great flavor, comes together quickly and filling.

  • Skillet macaroni and cheese

    • CindyinOttawa on November 22, 2016

      This is our family go-to (me and my teens). We make it a couple times a month...ultimate comfort food. We vary the cheese based on what's on hand...we've used ricotta, cottage cheese, cheddar, monteray jack...anything really. And we've used different noodles if no macaroni on hand, but that's rare. Easy, 30 minutes and done, one pan. Fabulous!

    • Shewi128 on March 12, 2021

      This has been a family favorite for over a decade. It comes together quickly and tastes good every time, even with pre-shredded cheese.

  • Simple fried rice

    • CindyinOttawa on April 02, 2014

      This our go-to fried rice recipe. Fast and easy and we use what we have on hand. We make it about once a month...whenever we've got leftover rice (or we make extra rice just to have this!).

  • Skillet tamale pie

    • sldoug on November 26, 2015

      Made October 2015. Followed the recipe ave used a box of Jiffy corn muffin mix as the topping. One boy liked it, one didn't, and I thought it was best with some sour cream. I'd make it again.

  • Chicken noodle soup

    • sldoug on February 21, 2016

      This is a great, quick recipe for chicken noodle soup. I used thighs instead of breasts and added a parmesan rind to the broth, but otherwise followed the recipe exactly. The flavor was great and the soup had the perfect amount of broth.

  • Chicken soup with potatoes, green beans, and leeks

    • sldoug on November 26, 2015

      Made November 2015. This was a good, substantial soup. I wasn't sure about the tarragon (still not sure) but in the soup it wasn't bad. I'd make this again.

  • Cream of broccoli soup

    • sldoug on May 14, 2016

      I followed this recipe except for slightly upping the cream-to-milk ratio in my half and half and using all chicken stock. The soup was good, but I was expecting something richer, more reminiscent of a magical broccoli soup I had as a child. Next time I'd make it with all cream instead of half and half, but I'm not sure there will be a next time as this soup was not very pleasant reheated the next day. It tasted tinny and smelled really bad.

  • Chinese chicken salad with hoisin vinaigrette

    • sldoug on November 26, 2015

      Made October 2015. Followed the recipe but I had a lot more chicken so I increased the vinaigrette by a third. The flavors were great and one of my sons loved it. I think it would also be great in a wrap.

    • sldoug on March 12, 2016

      Made again March 2016. I used two chicken breasts plus some chicken I'd already cooked and it came out to around 1.75 pounds. I couldn't get a hold of sprouts so I used jicama for a light, sweet crunch. I only made one batch of dressing so I tried to follow the veggie amounts, but in the end I probably used more like 1.5 cups of jicama, 5 cups of cabbage, and my bell pepper was pretty huge, but the dressing was still just right for all of it. I served the salad wrapped in whole wheat tortillas (burrito size) and everyone really liked the wraps (even those who hadn't liked the salad on its own).

  • Broiled honey-lime glazed salmon fillets with scallions

    • mrshalf on March 07, 2016

      I love salmon and this is a nice easy way to get food on the table for 7 in under 30 minutes. Add some veggies and rice/couscous and we're good. YUM.

  • Un-stuffed chicken breasts with Dijon, ham and Gruyère

    • mrshalf on March 07, 2016

      Let's just say you don't fit in with chowhounds. You are barely interested in cooking, and need to feed peeps. THIS is a nice recipe to do. Easy steps, clear instructions and a beautiful presentation. Feel like I'm a kitchen star when I make this because I remember being at that stage. I still am really, just a tiny bit further in my skill set. Make this, we all love it and it's very decadent for peeps who are sick of skillet lasagna.

  • Simplified pad Thai

    • mrshalf on March 07, 2016

      This is the first real cookbook I seriously decided to feed 7 people from on a regular basis. Having had a single mom who fed us chef boyardeedinkyuck and ramen most nights, I am struggling hard to learn to cook. Pad Thai was a gift to my mouth years and years ago when a girlfriend made a group of us go to a Thai restaurant (what?!). Feel in love with it and started making this dish. It's good but I KNOW there are better recipes. One day I'll take the time, find an authentic Thai cookbook, go half an hour to the big city and buy the fancy ingredients and make it. Till then - this'll do.

  • Rotini with summer garden vegetables

    • mrshalf on March 07, 2016

      This is the pasta salad a certain teen in the family thinks of when she asks for pasta salad. Clear sauce, filled with veggies. Makes a ton. I however, think of mayo, celery, maybe?? tomatoes and elbows when I think of summer pasta salad. This recipe, is not that. Good, very good. But not that. :)

  • Penne with chicken, broccoli, and sun-dried tomatoes

    • mrshalf on March 07, 2016

      Great for when you want a little flair with your chicken pasta weeknight dish. Say, if your neighbor stops by and hangs a little longer than you'd like them to with your husband and you obligingly invite them to stay to eat. This, bread and a salad and you're done.

    • jhallen on May 03, 2021

      This was just very tasty. Not necessarily revolutionary, but very tasty.

  • Skillet tuna noodle casserole

    • mrshalf on March 07, 2016

      IKR? Tuna noodle? I mean come on, is it the 80s again? But guess what? It isn't horrible. Think kid chow. Or senior chow. For some reason the sloppy creamy fish noodle stuff is gone each time I make it. Although that isn't often cuz I can't get past the idea of it myself.

  • Skillet chili mac

    • mrshalf on March 07, 2016

      Happy happy joy joy, I found the recipe my mom used to make. Noodles, sauce, meat cheese. Brings me back to the 80s. I just died in your arms tonight in the background and mom yelling at us to eat, finish homework then go clean our rooms. (not healthy really, not much redemptive about it except filling and cheap food for a big family)

    • Shewi128 on June 01, 2023

      This is definitely American comfort food. My kids loved it. Plus, it's a simple one-pot dish with ingredients you probably already have in your pantry.

  • 30-minute chicken tagine

    • mrshalf on March 07, 2016

      This is really nice in a large skillet with couscous. Fast easy flavorful way to change up the weeknight chicken rut.

  • Fast all-American beef chili

    • mrshalf on March 07, 2016

      WHY can't ATK have us drain the beef? (I know, flavor) Blech rating for grease but yummy if you can get past that.

  • Easy vegetarian bean chili

    • mrshalf on March 07, 2016

      I can't believe this isn't highly rated. SOOOOOOOO flavorful and a perfect Sunday after church choice. Make it ahead, load up little dishes with toppings, and invite a crowd. Perfect veg chili in our book. Much requested.

  • Skillet chicken pot pie

    • mrshalf on March 07, 2016

      EXCELLENT reviews at the family table. This is requested, completely demolished and the homemade biscuits come together surprisingly quick. Love it.

  • Quick homemade biscuits

    • mrshalf on March 07, 2016

      Well! worth the time. Awesome topping on skillet pot pie!

  • Skillet beef pot pe

    • mrshalf on March 07, 2016

      Sub easier meat choice. Great! Loved by all.

  • Skillet lasagna

    • mrshalf on March 07, 2016

      This is soo well loved by one kid in this house, she learned to make it all by herself for lunch and dinners. Excellent option for a quick weeknight meal, easy to find ingredients and the fresh basil on top with cheese make for a pretty presentation. Teen friendly which is not saying much UNLESS your kids' have friends like mine whose parents are excellent cooks~

  • Tortilla soup

    • mrshalf on March 07, 2016

      Haven't really tried this which is strange since our fam loves Tortilla Soup. The best I've found so far is Pioneer Woman's believe it or not. Sooo flavorful. Begged for by the kids who love it with sour cream, cheese and avocado on top.

  • Asparagus, ham and Gruyère frittata

    • mrshalf on March 07, 2016

      What a great recipe to have in your arsenal. Fun way to use your cast iron skillet (cook on stovetop then finish in oven). Be sure to let kids help chop, scramble and watch it poof in the oven. Great for stop in guests who need a mid day snack and beautiful at a women's breakfast. Cheese is variable as mentioned as are the veggies really, but Gruyere (sp?) and asparagus with ham are definitely delicious combo to start with. LOvedit!

  • Cilantro-lime vinaigrette

    • mrshalf on March 07, 2016

      Soooo much better than Trader Joe's store bought. The taco salad ATK recommends this for is one of our family faves - loved by young and old. Be warned though - ATK hardly ever says drain the beef - soooo greasy that way :(. Lose some seasonings but I'd rather deal with that than congealed fat on my salad.

  • Fusilli salad with salami, provolone, and sun-dried tomato vinaigrette

    • mrshalf on March 07, 2016

      This is not your everyday healthy green packed salad but!!!!! it is delicious! Great choice for potlucks. Be sure to use quality salami as it really adds to the dish. Fast and filling for a quick pasta salad.

  • Tortellini salad with cherry tomatoes, arugula, and pine nuts

    • mrshalf on March 07, 2016

      Have also made with frozen - and bagged from Trader Joes. This is a quick easy summer meal or a lunch in any other season. I find it needs to be eaten right away though as the arugula and dressing don't hold over. Also the tortellini begs to be eaten right after cooking and cooling a bit but not too much after that.

  • Taco salad

    • mrshalf on March 07, 2016

      See previous comment on the cilantro dressing recipe EYB link.

  • Hearty Mediterranean-style fish stew with chorizo sausage

    • jhallen on May 01, 2021

      This is an easy, yet very tasty recipe. Little work for a great-flavored stew.

  • Un-stuffed chicken breasts with prosciutto, sage, and porcini

    • Shewi128 on October 07, 2022

      Surprisingly good and very easy.. although most things with prosciutto are really good. I loved the one-pan technique for the chicken and broccoli. I used chicken tenderloins instead of breasts, which made it difficult to get all the toppings on, but I just layered them over the tenderloins including the gaps between them. I would totally make this again.

  • Pan-roasted pork tenderloin with tart cherry glaze

    • Shewi128 on October 07, 2022

      Fantastic recipe and method. I've made this several times as the pork tenderloin is cooked perfectly, and we love the cherry glaze on top.

  • Skillet turkey tetrazzini

    • Shewi128 on October 07, 2022

      I make this without the mushrooms. I do love this recipe as a good way to use up leftover turkey. I like the interesting flavor that sherry adds to the pasta. I've made this repeatedly for the past decade.

  • Thai red curry with tofu

    • Shewi128 on March 19, 2021

      Easy, quick, and delicious. Will make again!

  • Skillet-baked pastitsio

    • foodgloriousfood on June 26, 2023

      I made it with lamb. My husband said the dish reminded him of hamburger helper. I haven’t ever eaten hamburger helper but this wasn’t good so I get the sentiment.

  • Creamy Greek dressing

    • TBipp on August 17, 2022

      Excellent salad dressing which is a snap to make in a blender. I use 1 tsp. dried oregano instead of 1 Tbsp fresh, add a pinch of sugar to balance the acid and do not add the feta--we prefer to place on top of the salad. I've probably made this dressing 50 times--it's a family favorite.

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Reviews about Recipes in this Book

  • ISBN 10 0936184981
  • ISBN 13 9780936184982
  • Published Oct 01 2006
  • Format Hardcover
  • Language English
  • Countries United States
  • Publisher America's Test Kitchen
  • Imprint America's Test Kitchen

Publishers Text

Most quick recipes deliver speed but not flavor. They often rely on silly shortcuts (no, you can't stuff bell peppers with raw ground beef and onions) and second-rate convenience products (think canned soup). No wonder most quick recipes are fast but forgettable. In The Best 30-Minute Recipe, America's Test Kitchen turns its crew of test cooks loose on the world of quick cooking in an effort to find flavor, not just convenience.

Many dishes are naturally quick - stir-fries, hearty salads, skillet sautés, and simple pasta dishes - but they also need to be full-flavored and foolproof. They have streamlined these dishes, subtracting an ingredient or shortcutting a cooking method, to make them memorable and dependable.

But some recipes seem impossible to make in a mere 30 minutes. How about a richly flavored chicken stew that typically takes more than an hour at best Parcook chicken thighs in the microwave to jump start the cooking. Meatloaf Downsize one large meatloaf into four individual servings and brown them in a skillet. Baked ziti Make the entire dish in a skillet, where the pasta cooks in a richly seasoned tomato sauce instead of a big pot of boiling water. And forget about second-rate supermarket shortcuts. Once you try our Quick and Crunchy Breaded Pork Chops, you'll never be tempted by a store-bought breading mix again. Our recipe has all the convenience of the shake-and-bake version, but it tastes worlds better.

They also discovered that many quick recipes fail to include prep times. In The Best 30-Minute Recipe, every test cook used a timer to be sure every recipe really can be prepared, cooked, and on the table in 30 minutes or less. And if a recipe was cutting it close, they looked for acceptable shortcuts. When they couldn't make a creamy chicken and rice casserole in 30 minutes, we turned to instant rice (sautéed in butter to improve the rice's texture and flavor) with excellent results.

Special features include Got Extra Time which provides suggestions and recipe alterations that will make a good dish even better if you have a few extra minutes to spend in the kitchen. Other features like Making the Minutes Count and Kitchen Shortcuts help you prep and cook more efficiently, giving you skills you can use for a lifetime of cooking.

Organized around the most logical ways to think about quick cooking, The Best 30-Minute Recipe will lead you right to the type of dish you feel like making. Want to make an entire meal in a skillet Turn to Skillet Suppers for dishes like -Skillet Steak Fajitas and Skillet Paella. Feel like preparing a simple, flavorful sauce while your pasta boils Choose from dozens of options in While the Pasta Cooks. You can also check out Skillet Pasta, recipes that cook the pasta right in the skillet with the sauce, saving you time and leaving you with just one pot to wash. Another chapter, Starting with Leftovers, offers appealing ideas for turning last night's dinner into a completely new meal, such as Asian Spicy Noodles with Beef and Spinach or Curry in a Hurry.

The test kitchen also evaluated dozens of popular convenience foods important to quick cooking, from ready-to-use minced garlic and jarred tomato sauce to preshredded cheese, precooked bacon, and more. If a product didn't make the cut, you won't find it in their recipes.

Put disappointing quick recipes behind you. The Best 30-Minute Recipe will help you get dinner on the table quickly - a dinner that you can really enjoy! Fast food isn't good food unless you use just the right ingredients and the right combination of techniques. So don't sacrifice flavor. Don't sacrifice the pleasures of the table. Let America's most trusted test kitchen show you how to cook both quickly and well. With The Best 30-Minute Recipe, satisfying, home-cooked meals really are just minutes away.

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