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12th Mar 2020

No need to stockpile: 5 delicious dinners you can cook with basic AF ingredients

Jade Hayden

You can do plenty with what you’ve already got.

This week has seen an influx in stockpiling due to updated government recommendations regarding the coronavirus.

But despite the closure of all schools and colleges across the country – and the guidelines that now exist for appropriate social distancing – there really is very little need for stockpiling.

So put your trolley back, exit the supermarket carpark, and go make some delicious, tasty dinners with the regular foods you’ve already got in your home.

The dried pasta and rice will be back in stock again tomorrow, guys.

1. Mushroom risotto 

Delicious, filling, and incredibly easy, batch cook a load of mushroom risotto and you’ll be sorted for the foreseeable future.

Or until you get sick of mushroom risotto.

Cook a pack (or two, or three) of mushrooms on a medium heat in some oil or butter until soft. Add an onion and as many cloves of garlic as you wish. Remove from the heat and set aside.

Cook the risotto as per the instructions on the pack with about 250ml white wine and some vegetable stock. If you’d rather not waste the wine and drink it yourself, that’s fine too.

Once the risotto is cooked, add the mushrooms, throw in some cheese, and mix well.

Eat it all.

2. Veggie pasta bake 

Throw whatever vegetables you’ve got in your fridge into the oven on a high heat for a roast. We’re talking onions, we’re talking aubergine, we’re talking tomatoes and courgette if you’ve got them too.

Meanwhile, bring a pot of pasta to the boil and grab yourself a jar of pasta sauce. If you don’t have pasta sauce, use cream (and failing that, milk) and season with herbs or maybe even spices.

After about 20 minutes, remove the veggies from the oven and combine with the almost-cooked pasta in a dish. Pour you sauce over and stir well. Sprinkle a little cheese on top if you’re into that.

Return back to the oven and bake for about 15 minutes on 200c – or until the cheese starts to crisp.

3. Shakshuka 

A Middle Eastern classic that doesn’t actually require that many ingredients.

Throw some veggies, garlic, and herbs in a pan with a little oil and cook on a medium heat until soft-ish. Add as much paprika as you see fit, and cover with a full tin of tomatoes.

Stir thoroughly and create two wells in the mixture. Crack two eggs into the wells, cover with a lid, and cook on a medium heat for 10 minutes – or until the eggs have cooked and the mixture has achieved a solid enough consistency.

Serve and impress everybody with your basic, but delicious, Shakshuka.

4. Chicken stir fry 

The holy grail of leftover foods: the stir fry.

Pan fry some chicken pieces in a little bit of oil, a little bit (or a lot) of spice, and set aside. Sauté some peppers, onions, garlic, or whatever veg you’ve got lying around until they’re soft. Or until they’re hard, whatever you’re into.

Meanwhile, boil some noodles in a pan until soft enough to eat.

Combine the noodles, the chicken, and the veg and stir in some soya sauce on a low heat. Pop an egg on top if you’re anyway that inclined.

5. Hearty veggie soup 

Put all vegetables you have in your fridge into a blender.

That’s it, that’s the recipe.

Or, if you were looking for a little more information on how to best serve up a delicious soup with all the veggies left in your fridge, look no further:

Add your veggies to a large pot along with seasoning of choice, a few herbs, and a litre of so of stock.

Blitz with a handheld blender (while covered), and leave to simmer for about 20 minutes. Add cream as you see fit.