Part of being an adult means that you will one day be in a situation where you need to prepare a meal that will impress someone or someones. This could be a dinner for your significant other, a dinner for your significant other's parents, dinner for your parents, a dinner for your parents as well as your significant other's parents, etc. Or even on a professional level, inviting co-workers or managers over for dinner isn't always an uncommon thing, depending on the work environment.
Now, you could boil some pasta in water and slap some pre-made sauce on it, but I can promise you that it won't leave the impression you are aspiring to leave.
Cooking doesn't have to be hard or scary. It can be fun, exciting and actually really rewarding.
No matter what the special occasion is or if you're just looking to add some meals to your mental recipe list, I collected some easy, tasty and impressive meals that you are more than capable of preparing.
1. Chrissy Teigen's Chinese Chicken SaladChrissy Teigen’s Chinese Chicken Salad
If you're skipping the traditional romaine lettuce and ranch dressing salad vibe, luckily Chrissy Teigen has got your back. This salad is fresh, easy and a great healthy option for a lunch date or a starter course. Of course, you should totally do yourself a favor and buy yourself Chrissy Teigen's cookbook, but in case you need something asap, there is an adapted recipe available here.
2. Garlic Butter Turkey Meatballs with Lemon Zucchini NoodlesGarlic Butter Turkey Meatballs with Lemon Zucchini Noodles
Never discredit the ease of the pasta with meatballs dinner, but who says it has to be traditional? This recipe takes a home-cooked favorite into a culinary masterpiece. While it may seem a bit intimidating at first, give a chance. If you need to cut corners a bit more, you can purchase pre-cut zucchini noodles at Trader Joes, and probably other food stores. You can find this recipe, here!
3. Rachael Ray's Baja Beer Battered Fish TacosRachael's Baja Beer-Battered Fish Tacos
You're probably thinking, heck no. I can not complete a meal like this, but you can. Rachael Ray is the ultimate person for beginner-friendly yet impressive recipes. This dish is more casual of a feel, but will still make anyone go "wow, this is a person who can really cook and that is a notable trait." Find this dish here!
4. Instant Pot Beef Stew
If your cooking appliances are limited, fear not! This recipe doesn't require too many full-kitchen requirements, but still has that warm, made from love, feeling that we all aspire to produce in a meal. Plus, this recipe is actually Whole30 friendly, dairy-free and gluten-free. Find it here!
5. Black Bean & Chicken EnchiladasBlack Bean & Chicken Enchiladas For An Easy, Cheesy Dinner
This is a fool-proof recipe that will be SURE to make someone's taste buds explode with flavor. Plus, this meal only takes 30 minutes to prepare so if you're currently reading this on a time crunch, bookmark this recipe and head to the store asap.
6. Jamie Oliver's Killer Macaroni and Cheese
This is no Kraft Mac and Cheese (but we still love and respect you Kraft). This ooey-gooey American goodness, created by someone who is British. Interesting. Anyways, this may seem like more steps than your traditional pasta plus cheese, but seriously, it's worth it. Nothing says I'm a grown up like homemade macaroni and cheese.
7. Jamie Oliver's Greek Vegetable KabobsGreek vegetable kebabs
Where are my vegetarians at? Woot. Woot. Jamie Oliver has got you covered with these colorful, healthy and tasty Greek kabobs. Only eight ingredients, very non-intimidating but very delicious. Find this goodness here!
8. Cereal Milk Cinnamon RollsCereal Milk Cinnamon Rolls
When you're faced with a brunch challenge, you don't open a can of pre-made cinnamon rolls you little winner. You instead can bake these cereal milk cinnamon rolls. I know, genius, right? This may be a two hour process, but you will receive a lifetime of "wow, remember when (your name) made those amazing cinnamon rolls?" Oh yeah, get prepping and find the recipe here!
9. California Style Bison BurgersCalifornia-Style Bison Burger | foodiecrush.com
If you're feeding a crowd or a person who isn't a self-proclaimed foodie, prefers the classics in life, then this is the recipe that will please. California style burgers are arguably the best burgers and to prove it, make this baby for dinner and watch mouths drool. I'm hungry just looking at that picture. Get the recipe here!
10. Ina Garten's Tomato Soup with Grilled Cheese CroutonsIna Garten’s Easy Tomato Soup & Grilled Cheese Croutons
Oh yeah, I saved the most mouthwatering for last. Imagine, you, cooking this amazing dish and announcing what it is that you have prepared. Did you just impress yourself? Well, this can be a reality. Ina Garten's recipes are not only easy peasy, but also really impressive. You should also purchase her cookbook, but you can find this recipe here!