3 Quick Weeknight Meals with Trader Joe’s Favorites


Who needs some easy dinner ideas? I sure do. By the time dinner rolls around, I have already cleaned a million messes and cooked a billion meals. I’m looking for dinners that: 1) can be prepared quickly, 2) create minimal dishes, and 3) my children will eat without whining throughout the entire family dinner.

Here are three go-to meals using my Trader Joe’s favorites. I keep them on-hand in my freezer and pull them out after a long day. They are fast, delicious, and kid-approved!

Mandarin Orange Chicken with Green Beans and Rice

Three Quick Weeknight Meals with Trader Joe's Favorites by ABQMom

This Mandarin Orange Chicken is so good. It’s fried and battered, so it’s definitely not healthy, but it’s delicious. I like to add green beans to get something nutritious in this meal. The package comes with a lot of sauce, so if you add a bunch of vegetables, it still tastes really flavorful.

I cover a cooking sheet with foil, throw the chicken and veggies on there, and bake in my oven. If you use this Organic Jasmine Rice which steams in the microwave, there is virtually no clean-up.

Quinoa Cowboy Veggie Burgers

Three Quick Weeknight Meals with Trader Joe's Favorites by ABQMom

My kids actually love these veggie burgers. They have a really nice crunch and delicious flavor. My boys will eat them chopped and dipped in ketchup. My husband and I usually eat them on a bun and add some toppings like avocado, tomato, or onion. This is a great option for a meatless meal! With Organic White Truffle Potato Chips? Yes, please.

Cook these burgers on the grill, and you’ve got minimal dishes to clean.


Three Quick Weeknight Meals with Trader Joe's Favorites by ABQMom

This is a unique, delicious meal that takes about 10 minutes to prepare. The strips of meat are warmed up in mere seconds on the skillet. Serve inside a pita or flatbread with tomato, onion, and Trader Joe’s tzatziki sauce. For a healthier option, I’ll put just one strip of meat on my gyro and fill the pita with lots of fresh veggies such as cucumber or bell pepper.

My kiddos will eat a “deconstructed” gyro, so they’ll be served some chopped-up meat, veggies with dip, and pita triangles. They really like that, but apparently, if you try to put it together into a sandwich it becomes disgusting.

Enjoy these three quick, delicious meals that clean up in a snap. They’re kid-approved, adult-approved, and tired-mom approved! For other quick meal ideas, check out these delicious no-cook dinners or these plant-based dinners.

Originally published March 2021.

The opinions expressed in this post are those of the author. They do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of ABQ Mom, its executive team, other contributors to the site, its sponsors or partners, or any organizations the aforementioned might be affiliated with.

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Paige is a stay-at-home mom to three hilarious, energetic boys. In her pre-kid life, Paige worked as a licensed mental health counselor, but she shelved her empathetic listening and insightful questions to change diapers, race cars on the kitchen floor, and mediate toddler wrestling matches. While Paige loves to be there for (almost) every moment with her children, she also loves to get away and connect with other moms for dinner or a walk in the beautiful Albuquerque sun. Paige is married to her high-school sweetheart, Ben, and they work together to raise their three sons with lots of laughter and lots of love.


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