Emergency Last Minute Dinner Ideas

Last minute dinner ideas when delivery isn’t good enough or fast enough.  They’re easy to prepare, don’t require a specific recipe and, because you’re probably not in the mood, don’t require a lot of clean up either.last minute meal ideas

And remember to delegate and get others to help!


  • scrambled eggs with raw cut veggies on the side
  • omelette made with frozen veggies and cheese
  • frittata with whatever veggies are in the fridge
  • egg salad sandwiches

Fried Rice

  • leftover rice with eggs and frozen veggies
  • rice with veggies from fridge and leftover meat
  • rice with frozen veggies and frozen shrimp
  • rice with veggies and canned beans

Soups & Curry

  • use veggies from the fridge or freezer with canned beans and tomato sauce
  • Very quick Butter Chickpeas
  • veggies (fresh or frozen), quinoa and broth


  • mixed veggies with canned beans or chickpeas
  • lettuce greens with grated veggies and cheese
  • greens with fresh or canned fruit and nuts
  • Mexican flavored bean, corn and tomato salad – Quinoa and Black Bean Salad
  • quinoa with veggies and beans – see Quinoa & Beans

Breakfast for Supper

  • oatmeal with fruit
  • toast and eggs with raw cut veggies
  • whole wheat pancakes with yogurt, fruit and a smoothie


  • any pasta with veggies (from fridge or freezer), canned beans and cheese (cream cheese, feta, goat cheese, cheddar, etc,)
  • pesto pasta or pasta with fresh tomatoes and basil
  • pasta with canned tomato sauce or salsa

Sandwiches, Panini, Wraps

  • grilled cheese with soup
  • tuna sandwich
  • ham and cheese 
  • chickpea salad pitas or sandwiches
  • BLT – bacon, lettuce and tomato
  • cheese quesadillas
  • egg salad sandwich
  • veggie wrap

Stir Fry

  • frozen stir fry veggies with frozen shrimp
  • frozen stir fry veggies with peanuts, almonds, edamame or cashews
  • frozen stir fry veggies with frozen marinated chicken, pork or beef strips (but you gotta prep this ahead)

Post this list on your fridge for those crazy days when you lack the energy or creativity to come up with last minute meal ideas.

Let me know what your go to meals are when you’re in a crunch. Comment down below or send me an email.

Sign up to get articles by Getty delivered to your inbox. You’ll get recipes, practical tips and great food information like this. Getty is a Professional Home Economist,  speaker and writer putting good food on tables and agendas.  She is the author of Manitoba’s best-selling Prairie Fruit Cookbook, Founder of Fruit Share, a mom and veggie gardener.


  1. Thank you so much for these recipes, I am always stuck into what has to be done for dinner when I am back from office these tips will surely help me to decide what to prepare at the end moment thank you so much for sharing this amazing post.

    1. You’re welcome! I know how frustrating those last minute dinner nights can be. It makes me happy to think these ideas can help reduce the stress. Be well!

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