Quick & Easy Weeknight Recipes for Busy Families

Nothing symbolizes domestic bliss like a family gathered around the dining table sharing a home-cooked meal. However, getting a tasty and nutritious meal on the table every night is a struggle for many busy families. Cooking from scratch is easier said than done when you’re juggling a busy schedule, but there are ways to make it easier. Keep a well-stocked kitchen with the help of Passanante’s Home Food Service, plan meals in advance as much as possible, and have a reliable list of go-to recipes you can make in a pinch!


Pasta Puttanesca

Pasta Puttanesca is a flavorsome dish requiring just a bit of chopping and throwing everything into one pan! Sauté garlic, anchovy and red pepper flakes in olive oil. Add diced tomatoes, water, and salt and bring to the boil. Reduce heat, add spaghetti, and simmer until cooked. The sauce will thicken and cling to the pasta. Mix in olives, capers, and fresh parsley — and serve! Leftovers keep in the refrigerator for five days and make a great cold lunch next day.

Roasted Chicken & Beets with Coconut Yogurt Dressing

This satisfying meal comes to together quickly with many ingredients you already have to hand. Roasted beets are the standout ingredient! They add sweetness while offering anti-inflammatory health benefits. On a baking tray, toss chicken thighs with olive oil, paprika, and cumin. Combine beets and olive oil on a separate tray — or add them to the chicken for simplicity. Roast at 425 F for about 30-35 minutes until tender. Meanwhile, cook the quinoa. Prepare the dressing by whisking coconut yogurt, lime juice, and cilantro together in a bowl. Plate up the meal and serve with lime wedges.

One-Pot Bean Chili

Not only is one-pot chili a popular meal, but using one pot means faster cleanup. Sauté onion, garlic, chili powder, cumin, and paprika. Add chopped tomatoes, water, red lentils, corn, and black beans. Black beans are rich in magnesium which supports bone health, while corn boosts the immune system. Simmer for twenty minutes so flavors meld. Serve with brown rice (cook grains in large batches to serve throughout the week). Double the recipe and you’ll have enough for two-dinners worth. Store leftovers in the fridge, or freeze for one month.

Home-cooked meals shouldn’t be complicated — preparation and planning are key! Make sure your pantry is always stocked with staples like rice, quinoa, beans, and chopped tomatoes, and don’t forget to stay on top of your reorders so you’re never short on your family’s favorites!

-Jane Bannister (Freelance Writer)

Recipe: Barbecued Lamb, Stuffed Mushrooms, Plantation Tomatoes

Tasting PartiesWant to host one more blow out barbecue before the end of summer AND give your friends and family an opportunity to try our delicious foods? Contact us about hosting a tasting party and we’ll come out to your home and prepare all the food you need to ensure your end of summer soiree is a huge success!

We look forward to partnering with our customers at tasting parties to show them new ways to prepare the foods they already love, and give their friends and family an opportunity to see what we’re all about.

Call 800-772-7786 extension 208 or click here to email Steve Fahey for more info!

The Perfect Lamb Dinner

Feel free to whip up your favorite potato recipe as a side, and top off the meal with a rich and delicious dessert like Buttermilk Pie.

Barbecued Lamb

  • 2 tablespoons barbecue sauce
  • 1 teaspoon hickory smoked salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/8 teaspoon celery salt
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 1 cup corn oil
  • salt and pepper
  • 6-pound leg of lamb

Blend ingredients and marinate lamb several hours. Smoke, covered, over low coals about 25 minutes per pound or until meat thermometer registers desired degree of doneness. Baste frequently. Let rest 20 minutes at room temperature before carving.

Stuffed Mushrooms
  • 1 pound mushrooms
  • 2 tablespoons minced onion
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 1 tablespoon sherry
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon white pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg

Remove mushroom stems and mince; saute stems with onions in butter until limp. Add cream, sherry and seasonings and cook slowly until thick, stirring constantly, 10-15 minutes. Fill mushroom caps with mixture and place on greased baking sheet. At this point mushrooms may be refrigerated or frozen. When ready to serve, broil until brown and bubbling.

Plantation Tomatoes (while they’re still in season!)

  • 8 tomatoes, at their peak
  • 2 fresh green hot peppers, minced, or 1/2 teaspoon cayenne
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons minced green or red onions
  • salt and pepper to taste

Peel and cut tomatoes into wedges, removing every woody part. Toss with remaining ingredients. Chill several hours. The secret of this dish is to select perfectly ripened tomatoes and to use only the best sections.

Baked Veggie Egg Rolls and Dipping Sauce

Up next on the blog we have a treat that’s perfect for those nights when you want to eat chinese food, turn on a good movie and veg out. This simple recipe by Cooking Channel TV for baked vegetable spring rolls with sesame lime dipping sauce is a delicious addition to our sweet and sour pork or any Asian cuisine. Feel free to add cabbage, carrots, glass noodles, egg, shrimp, chicken or pork for an additional punch of flavor – it’s really hard to mess these up!

Vegetable Spring Rolls

For The Baked Veggie Egg Rolls

  • 2 Tablespoons toasted sesame oil
  • 2 Tablespoons reduced-sodium soy sauce
  • 1 Tablespoon minced ginger
  • 1 Tablespoon hoisin sauce
  • 1 Clove garlic, grated
  • 2 Tablespoons canola oil, plus more for brushing
  • 1 1/2 Cups broccoli slaw
  • 1 1/2 Cups julienned or shredded sweet potatoes
  • 3 Green onions, chopped
  • Two 16-ounce packages egg roll wrappers
  • 1 Banana, cut in half
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Spray a large baking sheet with nonstick cooking spray and set aside.
  3. Mix together the sesame oil, soy sauce, ginger, hoisin and garlic in a small bowl or measuring cup.
  4. Heat the canola oil in a large skillet or wok.
  5. Add the broccoli and sweet potatoes and cook for 2 to 3 minutes.
  6. Add the soy sauce mixture and green onions and continue to cook, tossing frequently, until the vegetables are wilted, 4 to 5 minutes.
  7. Place 1 egg roll wrapper on a clean flat surface with one corner pointing towards you.
  8. Rub around the edges of the wrappers using the banana.
  9. Spoon 1/4 cup of the filling into the center of each egg roll wrapper.
  10. Fold the bottom corner of the wrapper over the filling. Fold left and right corners over filling. Tightly roll the filled end towards the remaining corner, pressing gently to seal. The end result should look like an envelope.
  11. Transfer the rolls to the prepared sheet and brush with canola oil. Bake, turning once halfway through, until golden brown, 12 minutes.

For The Dipping Sauce

  • 1/2 Cup reduced-sodium soy sauce
  • 3 Tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice
  • 2 Tablespoons toasted sesame seeds
  1. Whisk together the soy sauce, lime juice and sesame seeds.
  2. Serve the rolls with the dipping sauce.

At Passanante’s Home Food Service we are more committed than ever to the quality and safety of our foods. If we wouldn’t put it on our own dinner table, we wouldn’t consider delivering it to your door. If you would like to schedule a time to talk with one of our sales reps about our home food delivery service feel free to give us a call at 1-800-772-7786.

Brunch Recipe: Cheese and Herb Soufflés with Mushrooms

Valentine's Day Soufflés

Haven’t nailed down your Valentine’s Day plans just yet? Show your sweetheart how much you care with a homemade brunch to remember. This gourmet recipe for cheese and herb soufflés with sautéed mushrooms will make you look like a seasoned chef and is sure to warm your darling’s heart. As with any recipe, this one is best when prepared with super fresh organic eggs and chemical free produce available for delivery if you’re a Passanante’s Home Food Service customer. Feel free to make these in advance as they will keep for up to 24 hours in the refrigerator without the topping.

What you need for 6 soufflés:

  • 2 Ounces of butter
  • 1/3 Cup all-purpose flour
  • 2/3 Cup milk
  • 1 Heaping cup of ricotta cheese
  • 1 Cup light cream
  • 1-2 Cups sautéed white mushrooms
  • 4 Egg yolks
  • 6 Egg whites
  • 2 Tablespoons finely chopped fresh parsley
  • 2 Tablespoons finely chopped fresh thyme
  • 1 Tablespoon finely chopped fresh rosemary
  • 2 Tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
  • Salt and pepper to taste

How to make Cheese & Herb Soufflés with Mushrooms:

  1.  Preheat oven to 350* F
  2. Coat six 3.5inch souffle dishes with melted butter
  3. Melt 2 ounces of butter in a medium sauce pan, add flour and cook for 30 seconds, stirring constantly
  4. Whisk in the milk and continue whisking over low heat until thick
  5. Cook for about 30 seconds more and remove from heat and beat in ricotta cheese
  6. Add egg yolks and herbs and season well with salt pepper
  7. Beat egg whites until they form stiff peaks and gently fold them through the ricotta mixture
  8. Spoon into the soufflé dishes, filling them to the top (do not over fill)
  9. Place in a baking dish and pour in enough boiling water to come about half way up the soufflé dishes
  10. Bake 15-20 minutes or until soufflés have risen and browned
  11. Remove from oven and let cool for 10 minutes before gently removing from their molds
  12. Place souffles in a lightly greased dish and increase oven temp to 400*F
  13. Pour cream evenly over the tops, sprinkle with Parmesan and bake for an additional 15 minutes
  14. Garnish with sautéed mushrooms and serve right away.

Happy Valentine’s Day!

Recipe: Chilled Cucumber Soup

There’s nothing better than a nice cold side item to help take the heat out of a long summer day.  This incredibly simple recipe for Chilled Cucumber Soup is light, cool, and satisfying; a perfect side item or light lunch option.

Have a favorite type of food — Thai, Indian, Mexican? At Passanante’s Home Food Service we are always looking for great additions to your recipe repertoire and would love to know what kinds of recipes you are interested in. Leave us a line in the comments section below or write on our Facebook wall to tell us what you want to see.


  • 1 large cucumber peeled and coarsely chopped (set aside 1/4 cup for use as garnish)
  • 1 large onion peeled and chopped
  • 3 cups milk
  • 3 cups chicken stock
  • Salt and fresh ground pepper to taste
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh mint
  • 3/4 cup heavy cream or low fat sour cream

How to make Chilled Cucumber Soup:

Place all but 1/4 cup of the cucumber in a large saucepan with chopped onion, milk, stock, salt and pepper.

Simmer slowly for 30 minutes uncovered.

Set mixture aside to cool slightly.

Transfer to a blender and puree (you may need to split in two batches.)

Melt butter in a clean pan. Add flour and whisk for 2 to 3 minutes.

Remove pan from heat and add pureed mixture slowly while whisking.

Return pan to medium heat and stir 5 or 6 minutes. Stir in mint.

Pour into soup tureen, cover with clear plastic film to prevent skin from forming and chill for 3 hours.

Sprinkle remaining cucumber with a pinch of salt and refrigerate.

Just before serving, whip the cream into the soup, garnish with the refrigerated cucumber and serve.

Looking for other light recipes?

Italian Summer Salad

Ensalada Caprice

Zesty Romaine Crunch Salad