20 Takeout-Inspired Recipes (That Taste So Much Better)
On nights when you feel like picking up the phone to order in, try making these takeout-inspired recipes instead. They're less expensive, healthier, and offer a fun cooking experience that the whole family can participate in. From spicy Chinese dishes like Kung Pao Chicken to delicious pizza recipes and Indian curries, there's a meal here for every palate.
Of course, one of the most popular takeout options is Asian food. Sweet and sour sauces, tender cuts of meat, crisp vegetables, and rice are all characteristic of our favorite takeout dishes, such as the Japanese Fried Rice pictured here. We've also created a standout recipe that dresses up beef and broccoli with a black-bean garlic sauce. Or try our recipe for Fried Rice with Chinese-Style Sausage, which is creamy and chock-full of vegetables; the sausage is made with rose wine, soy sauce, and rice wine vinegar, all of which add a unique flavor to the dish.
In the mood to take a tour of essential Italian-American dishes? Start with Classic Margherita Pizza, which can be made in 20 minutes if you prepare the pizza dough in advance (or use store-bought). Keep it simple with fresh mozzarella, basil, and olive oil but feel free to add on your favorite toppings too. Or try our healthier take on Chicken Parmesan, which is crispy, flavorful, and delicious atop pasta, salad, or on its own. Another winner is Creamy Baked Ziti, otherwise known as the ultimate comfort food on a cold day.
We also have plenty of warm and spicy curry-inspired dishes. Use everyone's favorite weeknight appliance—a pressure cooker—to make Thai Red Curry or Healthy Chicken Tikka Masala, which swaps in plain yogurt for heavy cream. We have two recipes for sushi here, too—vegetarian Avocado Sushi and Baked Salmon Sushi. Both use sticky white rice, crunchy carrots, cool cucumber slices, and creamy avocado as delicious and healthy fillings.
Put down the phone and pick up your knives, vegetable peelers, and tongs—you can make a satisfying takeout-style dinner in the comfort of your own kitchen.
Beef and Broccoli with Black-Bean Garlic Sauce
Test Kitchen's Favorite Buffalo Wings
Fried Rice with Chinese-Style Sausage
If you can find Chinese-style sausage in your grocery store, take advantage of it—the fatty, rich flavor that it brings to this dish is fabulous. The rest of this fried rice recipe features essential add-ins like soy sauce, garlic, peas, and eggs for creaminess; feel free to use chicken, shrimp, or pork instead of the sausage.
Classic Margherita Pizza
This homemade pizza is nearly as good as the slices from your favorite brick-oven spot. Top with fresh mozzarella, Parmigiano-Reggiano, and fresh basil for a slice that will transport you to Italy. Make the dough in advance (or use store-bought) so that the whole pie comes together in just 20 minutes.
Pressure-Cooker Thai Red Curry
Classic Burger-Joint Cheeseburger
Instead of grabbing a burger from your favorite fast-casual burger spot, craft your own #1 combo at home. Our special of the day features juicy, grass-fed beef, American cheese, thick tomato slices, dill pickle slices, and a shortcut special sauce of mayonnaise and ketchup.
General Tso's Chicken
Healthy Chicken Tikka Masala
Creamy Baked Ziti
Take a trip to southeast Asia with this warm and spicy stew. It's a hearty, cold-weather meal made with a whole chuck roast, Yukon Gold potatoes, and roasted peanuts.
Baked Salmon Sushi
Here's an easy introduction to homemade sushi. Baked, flaky salmon is paired with cucumbers, carrots, and creamy avocado. Sticky sushi rice and a little bit of mayonnaise keep all of the ingredients from falling out of nori sheets.
There's nothing like that first bite of a crisp, steaming fry—make them at home so your bite is fresher than ever. The key to fries that are crisp and golden on the outside and fluffy on the inside is blanching them in oil first, then frying them again after they have cooled.
Brisket or another large cut of beef is traditionally used in pho, but here we're using a combination of fresh and dried shiitake mushrooms for flavor and substance. Vegans and vegetarians alike will love this Vietnamese dish.
This is a flavorful Italian-American main that's a little healthier than a typical restaurant preparation (chicken cutlets are baked, not fried!).
Kung Pao Chicken
If you're a fan of spicy food, then this Chinese chicken dish will do the trick. In a very hot wok or skillet, lightly fry peanuts, scallions, Chinese red peppers, and garlic, then add chicken coated in cornstarch (which helps it to develop a thick glaze). Serve it over basmati rice for a filling dinner.
BBQ Chicken Pizza
Dan Dan Noodles
This popular Sichuan dish is made with ground pork and fresh ramen-style noodles and characterized by strong flavors—warm Chinese five-spice powder, ginger, garlic, scallions, tahini, and hot chile oil.