What's for Dinner? Start the Year Right with These Weeknight Dinner Recipes for January

Roasted Carrot Nicoise
Photo: Chris Simpson

Let's face it: In the middle of winter, the most appealing dinner recipe is one that will be warm and hearty. We've got you covered with 21 family-friendly dinner recipes that take less than one hour to prepare—they'll carry you through each of January's weeknights, taking the guesswork out of crafting a healthy, delicious, and easy meal plan for your family.

As always, Mondays are meatless, so whether you're vegetarian or just wanted to start the week off with a plant-based meal, these recipes will do the trick. The Roasted-Carrot Niçoise, pictured here, is the perfect example. The traditional version of this salad from the south of France is made with tuna but we swapped in roasted carrots; the rest of the accompaniments—haricot verts, hard-boiled eggs, and black olives—are total classics. When temperatures are in the single digits, stews are a staple. Our Black-Bean and Sweet-Potato Stew is packed with nutritious ingredients including quinoa and garlic. If your New Year's resolution was to eat more vegetables, a bowl of this stew will certainly help you achieve that goal.

We often turn to pasta for weeknight dinners, and this month is no exception—our picks include a baked take on tortellini, a brothy orzo dish with pork meatballs, and a shrimp spaghetti that also stars kale and cherry tomatoes. From delicious salmon dishes to comforting soups and stews, our weeknight dinner recipes for January are sure to be a hit every Monday through Friday.

01 of 21

Baked Farro Risotto with Golden Vegetables and Goat Cheese

baked farro risotto with golden vegetables and goat cheese
Chris Simpson

Happy New Year! Start the first week of the first month with this creamy risotto made with farro instead of the usual short-grain arborio rice. Butternut squash and golden beets are the stars and fresh sage and goat cheese make delicious accents.

02 of 21

Crispy Baked Chicken Flautas

Crispy Baked Chicken Flautas
Justin Walker

It's taco Tuesday, so it's time to make these rolled crispy flautas filled with a smoky, spicy ground chicken mixture rather than the usual cheese. Don't forget the DIY toppings—we like pico de gallo, sour cream, and cilantro.

03 of 21

Coconut-Curry Monkfish Soup

Coconut-Curry Monkfish Soup in speckled bowl with spoon
Ryan Liebe

It has a texture and flavor similar to lobster, which is why monkfish deserves more attention. Here, it stars in a dairy-free stew that's loaded with spicy ginger, green curry paste, and sweet bell peppers.

04 of 21

Creamy Baked Tortellini with Spinach

creamy baked tortellini with spinach
Nico Schinco

This baked pasta dish is easy, delicious, and something everyone will love. There's a quick turkey ragu made with jarred marinara and plenty of spinach, which means this dinner is a savvy way to get your family to eat their greens.

05 of 21

Sausage-and-Mushroom Burgers with Broccoli Rabe

Bryan Gardner

With sweet Italian sausage and mushrooms, this patty is rich and irresistible. It's served in a ciabatta roll dressed with mayo and Provolone. Broccoli rabe provides a fresh, peppery contrast.

06 of 21

Black-Bean and Sweet-Potato Stew

black bean and sweet potato stew recipe
Lennart Weibull

This cozy one-pot stew is just right for a meatless Monday in chilly January. It's packed with black beans, sweet potatoes, and quinoa.

07 of 21

Creamy Mustard Chicken with Couscous

Creamy Mustard Chicken with Couscous
Chris Simpson

We are big fans of using boneless, skinless chicken thighs because they're flavorful and forgiving. Here, they're pan-seared until crispy, then finish cooking in a creamy sauce made from leeks, white wine, chicken broth, whole grain mustard, and thyme.

08 of 21

Cheddar, Beef, and Potato Casserole

cheddar beef and potato casserole
Chris Simpson

Next time you're looking for an ultra-comforting, family-friendly dinner recipe, turn to this hearty recipe. It's a creative and delicious twist on Shepherd's Pie. Instead of mashed potatoes, the beef and mushroom mixture is topped with frozen shredded potatoes.

09 of 21

Spaghetti with Shrimp, Kale, and Burst Tomatoes

Spaghetti with Shrimp, Kale, and Burst Tomatoes
Chris Simpson

Here's a stellar pasta dinner that takes just 35 minutes to make. It's one of the reasons we always keep a bag of frozen shrimp in the freezer.

10 of 21

Kielbasa and Lentil Rice with Spinach

kielbasa and lentil rice with spinach
Chris Simpson

Green lentils and long-grain white rice serve as the base for this hearty dinner recipe. Kielbasa simmers along with crushed tomatoes, apple-cider vinegar, and spinach to top it off.

11 of 21

Customizable Vegetable Soup

homemade vegetable soup with toasted bread on cutting board
Marcus Nilsson

On the coldest of nights, nothing hits the spot like a comforting bowl of soup. Make this choose-your-own-adventure version is loaded with seasonal vegetables. Serve with cheese and plenty of crusty bread to make the most of every last drop of broth.

12 of 21

Crispy Salmon with Collard Greens

crispy salmon with coconut-ginger collards served with fresh cilantro
Nico Schinco

For this healthy dinner, salmon fillets are paired with collards cooked with coconut milk, ginger, and chickpeas. It's a delicious and unexpected combination.

13 of 21

Quick Pork Goulash

Quick Pork Goulash recipe
Lennart Weibull

Pork tenderloin is the base for this 55-minute meal. Using this tender cut of pork means this fast take on goulash can be made for a weeknight dinner. Serve over buttered egg noodles for a complete meal.

14 of 21

Chicken-and-Mushroom Congee

Chicken-and-Mushroom Congee recipe
Lennart Weibull

Another comforting meal for a cold January night, our take on the much-loved savory Chinese rice porridge uses starchy and creamy arborio rice rather than long-grain white rice. It's topped with chicken thighs cooked with ginger and shiitake mushrooms.

15 of 21

Baked Potatoes with Assorted Toppings

Alpha Smoot

Set up a DIY baked potato bar for dinner tonight. Get inspired by what's in your refrigerator, freezer, and pantry for a selection of fillings—we like that this is a dinner that can use up leftover cheese, bacon, frozen vegetables, canned beans, salsa, and just about whatever else you have hanging around. Plus. it's a crowd-pleasing meal; everyone gets to add their choice of toppings and customize the dish to their liking.

16 of 21

Golden Dal with Gingered Tomatoes

golden dal with gingered tomatoes atop wooden surface
Sidney Bensimon

Here's a truly warming, soulful vegetarian dish to make for meatless Monday. This red lentil stew is packed with golden vegetables like carrots and orange bell peppers, turmeric adds to the glow, and a topping of cherry tomatoes sautéed with ginger finishes it all off. Serve with rice or naan bread.

17 of 21

Cashew Shrimp

spicy cashew shrimp with rice
Justin Walker

For this quick and easy dinner, shrimp are pan-seared, then cooked in oyster sauce along with garlic, ginger, and red pepper flakes. Serve over steamed white or brown rice.

18 of 21

Taco Salad with Sweet Potatoes

sweet potato taco salad served in pink bowl
Lennart Weibull

Mix things up for dinner tonight and serve this hearty vegetarian salad. There are the elements you'd expect—like black beans, jalapeños, crunchy romaine, and plenty of tortilla chips—as well as unexpected (but totally delicious) roasted sweet potatoes. Goat cheese makes a punchy yet creamy topping.

19 of 21

Brothy Orzo and Pork Meatballs

Brothy Orzo and Pork Meatballs
Ryan Liebe

Fresh and flavor-packed, this 35-minute one-pot dinner tastes really special. Maybe it's the pork meatballs, made with a touch of Parmesan? Maybe it's the delicious broth flavored with lemon juice and dill that the meatballs and orzo cook in? Maybe it's the whole package? It's a bright dinner to end the week on.

20 of 21

Instant Pot Chicken Curry

instant pot chicken curry
Bryan Gardner

Made with chicken thighs, warm spices like coriander and cumin seeds, and zippy fresh garlic and ginger, this dish packs a lot of flavor and takes just 30 minutes to make thanks to the Instant Pot.

21 of 21

Mushroom Tortellini with Arugula

mushroom tortellini with arugula atop purple cloth surface
Chris Simpson

Here's an excellent way to use store-bought cheese tortellini. Toss the cooked pasta with an easy, creamy sauce made crème fraîche, Parmigiano-Reggiano, and a touch of starchy pasta water. Then top with sautéed mixed mushrooms and sliced leeks.

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