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16 Fast Feasts for Those in a Hurry

All of the flavor, less of the fuss.

Credit: Shutterstock/Hihitetlin

There will always be days when we don’t feel like cooking or days when we just don’t have the time.

That’s totally fine! We’ve all got those moments. Whether it’s because you’re too busy or you’re just not up to it, these kinds of days happen.

However, your meals don’t have to be complex and unfulfilling to satisfy the fast qualification. Unless you like them, forget the salad and PB&J sandwiches, and look into something equally nutritious and delicious.

Credit: Shutterstock/DUANGJAN J

It will be more work than that peanut butter sandwich, but in the end, wouldn’t you rather think, ‘Wow, that was good’, than force yourself to eat something for sustenance?

And by fast feasts, I don’t mean fast food. Just because you put two fast foods together doesn’t mean you get faster food.

So sit down and check out these 16 recipes to kickstart some ideas.

1. Feta-Fried Eggs

@graceelkus

5-minute feta fried eggs: you’ll thank me next time you’re hangry 🍳 Inpired by Ali Slagle’s potato, egg, and cheese tacos 🧀 Heat small nonstick skillet over medium heat. Crumble in feta around perimeter. Crack egg into center; season w/ black pepper & red pepper flakes (no need to add salt, the feta is plenty salty) Cover pan and cook until white is set, yolk is still runny, and cheese is unbelievably crispy. Serve atop toast, w/ hash browns, or my personal fave: in a charred tortilla with avocado & lime. You can oil the skillet, esp. if you’re not using nonstick, but I find the cheese gets crispier w/o More tips on my IG @graceelkus #friedeggs #feta

♬ Midnight City – M83

It can be used in many ways, including this egg recipe by graceelkus. All you need is an egg, feta cheese (full-fat is recommended), black pepper, and red chili flakes. No salt is needed since feta cheese is salty on its own. One user suggests using chili crisp oil before putting the egg to add some kick. 

In the video, graceelkus puts the feta-fried egg on top of a charred tortilla and mashed avocados, but you can also eat it with hash browns or toast. Totally up to you!

2. Chicken Wrap

If you’ve got these three things, you already have the beginnings of a chicken wrap! If you’ve never had a Caesar salad, the base ingredients are lettuce, parmesan cheese, and croutons. You can buy Caesar dressing, but ranch works, too, if you don’t have that on hand. 

Toss your chicken tenders in the oven, heat your tortillas, and throw your Caesar salad together. After that, all you have to do is put everything in a warm tortilla and wrap it up. Done!

3. Adult Lunchables

@nourishedbynic

ADULT LUNCHABLES are the best lunch and you can’t convince me otherwise!! As a dietitian having meal prepped easy lunches like these adult lunchables (or snack plate lunch) are a great way to make sure youre nourishing your body!! #easyrecipe #adultlunchables #mealprep #dietitian #lunchideas #worklunch

♬ Music Sounds Better with You – NEIL FRANCES

Lunchables as a kid may not have been the healthiest, but they were fun to assemble. 

The bonus of this recipe is that it can be prepped days before, depending on what ingredients you’re using. And you can customize it to your stomach’s content, which is the best part! 

As recommended by Addision, this is more of a light lunch or a snack. If you want something heavier, you may want to change the ingredients or double the serving size.

4. Rice Krispies and Peanut Butter Snack

No baking or cooking involved!

All you need is peanut butter, rice krispies, powdered sugar, vanilla extract, and butter. Mix them together and roll them into little balls. All you do now is stick them onto a plate and freeze them for 10 minutes. 

You can always play with the measurements to achieve the perfect ratio, but that’s all there is to it!

5. Bang Bang Air-Fryer Chicken

@eman_inthekitchen

Bang Bang air fryer chicken If your looking for an easy and delicious chicken recipe that comes together in no time make this bang bang chicken, I served it over some white rice. ——Ingredients—— 3 chicken breasts 1 teaspoon garlic powder 1 teaspoon onion powder 1 teaspoon paprika 1 teaspoon seasoned salt : ——bang bang sauce—— 1 cup mayonnaise 1/2 cup sweet chili sauce 2 tablespoon chili garlic sauce or Sriracha : 1. Score the chicken breasts about 1/8-inch deep and 1/2-inch apart. Make cross-hatch cuts. Mix all the spices together (garlic powder, onion powder, paprika, seasoned salt) and season the chicken breasts on both sides. 2. Make the bang bang sauce – mix together the Mayo, sweet chili sauce and chili garlic sauce or sriracha. Make sure you reserve about a couple tablespoons of the sauce for drizzling on top when serving the dish. 3. Place the chicken breasts in the air fryer basket and spread about 2 tablespoons of the bang bang sauce on top, then air fry at 390° for about 20 minutes depending on the size of the chicken breasts or until the internal temperature hits 165 degrees. 4. Once done let the chicken rest for about 10 minutes , then serve over white rice drizzle with the reserved bang bang sauce, garnish with some cilantro or green onions and enjoy. #bangbangchicken #airfryer #recipe #family #favorite #easyrecipe #mealideas

♬ Tom’s Diner – 7″ Version – DNA

It’s got “air-fryer” in the name, which is already a promising start.

The prep work’s not that bad; after you stick it in the air fryer, you’re pretty much done. The trick is to clean up your used dishes as your chicken’s cooking, so by the time the chicken’s done, there’s not much cleaning left. 

You can eat it with your side of choice or serve it atop a bed of fluffy rice. You can even eat it by itself if that suits you.

6. Air-Fryer Pizza Pockets

If you’ve ever had a hot pocket, this would be the make-it-yourself version.

Coming back with another air-fryer recipe, this one might bring back some memories. You only need some bread, marinara sauce, cheese, and pepperoni. 

There’s no kneading or start-from-scratch sauce—unless you want to—necessary. If you want to add to the recipe, go for it!

7. Garlic Parm Chicken & Potato

@cookerofdeliciousness

Great recipe @Luke , we will certainly make this again! @Luke ⬅️ Click link for written recipe in caption! #easydinner #easydinnerideas #dinnerideas #dinnerrecipe #easyrecipe #easyrecipetutorials #easymeal #familymeal

♬ original sound – Matt Ramsey

Don’t let the cooking time scare you away because this recipe is definitely worth it. This recipe was inspired by cookinginthemidwest, who uses a crock pot instead of a cast iron pan.

Cheesy and garlicky are two words that have my mouth watering! While the total cook time might be a bit longer than what you expect, the overall recipe’s quite simple.  

You can find the recipe here

8. Spicy, Garlicky Cherry Tomato Pasta

When the intro includes “Welcome to meals that got me through college”, how can you not want to know?

It might not cost $3 in your area (depending on the cost of your local ingredients), but it’s definitely cheaper and healthier than some fast-food options. 

Some suggestions from other watchers include using canned tomatoes if fresh cherry tomatoes turn out to be a no-go. Others suggest adding prawns or shrimp and some onions for extra flavor. 

Simple and delicious!

9. Italian Stuffed Bread

@erekasfood

My easy to assemble ITALIAN STUFFED BREAD is perfect for lunch, brunch & can even be served as an appetizer. Why do we remove the guts? Just so we can fit more inside!! Ingredients: 1- 13 inch loaf of thick crusty bread 8 slices fresh mozzarella 2 ripe Roma tomatoes sliced thin 1 tsp fresh or dry oregano 1 tbsp olive oil 3 cloves garlic grated 1/4 tsp salt 3 or 4 slices of prosciutto, ham or turkey 1/2 cup pesto -Preheat oven to 350F -Slice the loaf in half. -Remove most, but not all of the bread from the bottom. Be careful NOT to break through the crust. -Add 4 slices of mozzarella, followed by tomato, then olive oil, oregano, 2 cloves grated garlic, salt, prosciutto & remaining 4 slices of fresh mozzarella. -Brush the top of the loaf with olive oil and grate 1 clove of garlic over the bread. -Bake the bottom in oven for 20 minutes or until the mozzarella has melted and the bread is golden brown. Bake the top for about 10 minutes or until golden brown. -Top the base with pesto, cover, slice and serve as shown! #stuffedsandwich #sandwich #sandwichrecipe #easylunch #easyrecipe #easyappetizers #appetizers #italianfood

♬ original sound – Ereka Vetrini

If you love pesto, this is the recipe for you. 

All you need is some bread with thick crusts, mozzarella, tomatoes, garlic, oregano, prosciutto (ham and turkey work too!) and pesto whether you have store-bought pesto or want to make your own, either work.

Slap that sandwich together and enjoy.

10. One Pot Chicken Pesto Pasta

‘One-pot’ sounds great to me!

Pesto-lovers, gather around because this is a fantastic dish that doesn’t require so many pots and pans. You cook your seasoned chicken, pasta, spinach, and tomatoes all in one pot to save yourself on the clean-up.

11. Sweet Chili Chicken Wrap

@foodinfivemins

Sweet chilli chicken wrap 🌯 48g protein & 500 cals 🤤 Save ingredients below 👇 600g Chicken Breast 1 Red Pepper 1/2 Red Onion 40g Jalepenos 5 Tbsp Sweet Chilli 100g Light Cream Cheese 100g Shredded Mexican Cheese Mix 2 Tbsp Chinese Five Spice 4 Tortilla Wraps #lowcalorie #foodin5 #highprotein #burrito #quickrecipes

♬ SILVER TOOTH. – Armani White & A$AP Ferg

Heavy in protein and low in calories, it’s the perfect meal for someone looking to satisfy their stomach. One of the ingredients lists Chinese Five Spice, but what is that? 

The five refers to the blend’s flavors—Salty, sweet, bitter, sour, and umami. Although the ingredients differ with each brand, the common spices used are cinnamon, cloves, black peppers, fennel, and star anise.

You can find it commonly ground up in the seasoning aisle of most stores if you don’t want to grind them yourself.

12. Marry Me Chicken

Let’s be honest here. Cooking with chicken can be a bit daunting with all the careful handling and clean-up, but this is well worth the effort! 

This simple dish can make anyone fall in love with your dish (and you), so take a quick look. OneStopChop makes it easy to understand and walks you through the whole process.

13. Breakfast Sandwich

@patiispage

Perfect if you don’t have much time in the morning but still want something filling and satisfying🤤🥑✨ Ingredients: – 2 brioche toasts – 2 eggs – mozzarella – tomatoes – 1/2 avocado – handful baby spinach – balsamico dressing – salt & pepper to taste 530kcal | 30g proteins | 38g carbs | 30g fats #breakfastsandwich #easybreakfast #healthybreakfast #quickbreakfast #breakfastidea #healthymeal #intuitiveeating #wholefoods #foodisfuel #fuelyourbody #healthyeating #diet #nutrition #breakfastrecipe #recipeidea #avocadotoast #mozzarella #tomatoes #avocado #omelette

♬ popular the wknd – DNSTY

I don’t know about anyone else, but making breakfast has always been a chore for me. 

So, if you’re looking for something healthy and delicious with protein, look no further! This is also a one-pan recipe, and it’s customizable. Don’t like tomatoes? Substitute it with something else or take it out. 

Morning meals just got a whole lot better.

14. Eggs & Toast: 4 Ways

Many people have eggs and bread in their houses, but what do you make with them other than sandwiches? 

Turn a simple ingredient into something a little more complex with minimal effort. These four recipes are simple and quick—Little to no preparation is needed!

If you’ve got a picky eater, this might convince them since they’re more likely to eat something they’ve made with their hands.

15. Rice Paper Dumplings

This is one way to get someone to eat more vegetables and clear out the veggies in your fridge. With a savory filling and a crispy exterior, what’s not to like about it?

Of course, you can substitute ingredients to your liking! If you don’t like tofu or you can’t eat it, you can always use your choice of protein. This recipe is beautiful because it’s easily adjusted to your taste.

16. Milk Pudding

Last, but not least, we’ve got 4-ingredient milk pudding!

All you need is milk, cornstarch, sugar, and shredded coconut. No baking is required here.

One user suggests using coconut milk instead of cow’s milk to give it more coconut flavor. Another mentioned they used crushed peanuts instead of shredded coconut. 

To conclude

So, when you find yourself hungry again, look back to this article for inspiration. Like everything in the cooking world, you can always change it until you’re happy. You might find your new favorite go-to dish.

Happy cooking!

Written By

Creative Writing Major/Comparative World Lit Minor (CSULB '25) Aspiring author (she/her)

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