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One-dish recipes to save on time (and washing up!)

by Malou Herkes

published on 11 January 2019

The best recipes are those that we can get on the table in minimal time and without compromising on flavour, which is precisely the beauty of one-pan recipes. In fact, cooking one-pan dishes is an easy way to maximise on flavour; boiling pasta in the sauce, for example, will help it to absorb all the delicious flavours from the ingredients it's cooking in. The same goes for fattier cuts of meat, such as chicken thighs or sausages, which release their flavoursome juices into the surrounding ingredients, creating a delicious sauce that requires no intervention or extra work on your part. These one-pot dishes, from Jamie's traybaked chicken to Rukmini Iyer's veggie crispy gnocchi, are the best of the bunch, saving you on time, effort and – best of all – the washing up!

chorizo pepper spaghetti recipe

For an all-in-one pasta dish, try this One Pot Chorizo and Pepper Spaghetti from Eat Well For Less. Make the sauce, add the pasta and let it take on all the delicious flavours of the chorizo and pepper as it bubbles away. Once ready, plonk it on the table and let everyone serve themselves.

baked meatballs recipe

This Baked Meatballs in a Rich Tomato Sauce and melting mozzarella cheese is a family favourite. This recipe comes from One Pan, 100 Brilliant Meals, and shows you how to make the meatballs from scratch, although you can feel free to buy them ready-made if you're in a hurry.

From the book

Mari Mererid Williams

frying pan lasagne

This Frying Pan Lasagne from Student Eats isn't just for students. It's the perfect dish when making a proper lasagne feels like a bit too much effort for a weeknight. Rachel Phipps shows you how to make the meat sauce, which you can make ahead (and pop in the freezer) for a quick win when you're busy.

chipotle chicken

From the best-selling cookbook, The Roasting Tin, these Chipotle Chicken Wings are a weeknight winner. Sticky, sweet chicken wings and sweet potato wedges thrown together and baked in one roasting tin, then served with a yoghurt dip, what more could you want?

sausage and bean casserole

Rosemary Shrager's hearty sausage casserole with chorizo and butter beans is the perfect recipe for an easy midweek dinner that is both warming and full of flavour. From her cookbook, Rosemary Shrager's Cookery Course.

jamie traybake chicken

“Everyone needs a hit ’n’ run recipe like this – it’s the kind of fallback meal you can enjoy when prep time isn’t on your side”, says Jamie with this Hit 'n' Run Traybaked Chicken from his budget cookbook, Save with Jamie. And we have to agree; roasting chicken thighs with lots of veg all in one tray is a guaranteed way to get a flavour-packed dish on the table with minimal fuss. 

sausage and lentil stew

From the cookbook, One Pot Wonders, we're a big fan of this Sausage and Lentil Stew, which is ideal comfort food for the colder winter months. This recipe is finished with chilli, lemon and parsley to really tantalise the tastebuds.

fish pie recipe

Cinty's French Fish Pie from One Pot Wonders is seriously indulgent winter fare. Plenty of leeks, stewed in butter and white wine, topped with tender white fish and finished with a generous layer of full-fat crème fraîche. Plus, a gratin topping of fine fresh breadcrumbs and Parmesan for added crunch. Need we say more?

crispy gnocchi

Crispy Gnocchi With Roasted Peppers, Chilli, Rosemary and Ricotta is a celebration of flavour, colour and texutre. From The Green Roasting Tin cookbook, this vegetarian one-pan recipe is a great weeknight dinner for the whole family. 


Also from The Green Roasting Tin cookbook, Escalivada is an easy one-tin take on the classic Catalan dish of roasted aubergines, tomatoes and peppers. Vegan-friendly and easy to throw together. 

chicken tarragon pie

This Chicken Tarragon Pie is made all in one pan. Combining chicken, mushrooms, leek and tarragon, this recipe from One Pan, 100 Brilliant Dishes is a reliable, fuss-free dinner option that always goes down well with the whole family.


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