18 Fancy Dinners Ready in 30 Minutes
Whether it's an anniversary, a special birthday, a first date, or Valentine's Day, there'll come a time when you want to spoil someone with a fancy homemade dinner. When the time does come, however, you might find yourself short on time and need to make something fancy and quick. Never fear, we're here to help save that special occasion. Here are quick-and-easy recipes that will make someone feel special — and make you look like a top chef.
Sesame Grilled Salmon
Salmon is a great quick option for dinner, and this Asian-style marinade makes it taste exotic and delicious. This dish is perfect served with some simple noodles or rice.
Bourbon Pecan Chicken
This dish looks and sounds like it comes from a fancy restaurant, but in a mere 30 minutes, it could be ready in your kitchen with some mashed potatoes on the side. Yum!
Filet Mignon with Rich Balsamic Glaze
Make this tender steak and red wine glaze in just 20 minutes, giving you more time to enjoy dinner with that special someone. Serve with some seasonal vegetables and potatoes.
Grilled Cod with Spinach and Tomatoes
This cod fillet with tomatoes, spinach, and balsamic vinegar is simple and sumptuous. Serve with a fresh green salad and bread.
Chicken Breasts in Caper Cream Sauce
Serve this creamy chicken and caper dish with some mashed potatoes to soak up all that tasty sauce.
Quick and Easy Chicken Piquant
This chicken dish is deliciously sweet, salty, tangy, and spicy all at once. Serve with some plain white rice.
Patti's Mussels a la Mariniere
Mussels cooked in wine are so tasty, yet take just minutes to whip up. Serve with some crusty white bread and a chilled glass of white wine.
Chicken Breasts with Balsamic Vinegar and Garlic
Upgrade your regular pasta dinner with this garlicky, balsamic chicken. Serve with a glass of gutsy red wine.
Tomato Basil Salmon
This tomato basil salmon is as simple as it gets, but looks super posh. Serve on a bed of pasta.
Awesome Baked Sea Scallops
"This recipe is awesome. I made this to the directions for my wife's 40th birthday party. The only problem is the guests wanted more!" — HOLLYROY
To Die For Fettuccine Alfredo
There's no time like a special occasion to indulge in cheesy, buttery fettuccine alfredo.
Alaska Salmon Bake with Pecan Crunch Coating
"Easy, very classy, and delicious! I make it all the time. I keep a container of the pecan topping in my freezer. All I do is spoon on the mustard and sprinkle on the ready-made topping and bake." — RENEERN
A classic, crowd-pleasing dish like Chicken Marsala (which averages almost five stars) would be fit for a large gathering or a dinner for two alike.
"This is by far one of the best recipes on this site. This is beyond restaurant quality. Every time I make this everyone has to have the recipe," John OBrien says.
Chef John's Steak Diane
Ready in 30 minutes. Seared steaks cook with shallots and a splash of cognac to deglaze. Dijon, Worcestershire, tomato paste, cayenne, and cream complete the scene. "Steak Diane was a staple on menus in fine dining establishments back in the day," says Chef John. "Prepared tableside where the server ignited the cognac, it was an impressive sight. You don't need to flame the cognac; just keeping it on the heat will eventually evaporate the alcohol."
Savory Sea Scallops and Angel Hair Pasta
Easy meets elegance. Tender sea scallops are seared and served over angel hair pasta with a super quick sauce of lemon juice, butter, parsley, and fresh basil. Add cream or Parmesan cheese if you like. "Scrumptious!" raves margordon. "Both my love and I thoroughly enjoyed this dish. Made last night and he raved about it. Very easy to make.
Crab-Stuffed Lobster Tail
Lobster tails are treated to a New England-style cracker and crabmeat stuffing. "Serve with fresh lemon wedges and homemade dinner rolls for an exquisite but surprisingly simple meal," says Lotus.
Sesame Seared Tuna
"This recipe is amazing. I've made it twice now and both times it has been perfect," writes KDMEWS. "I made it for a friend the second time, and he commented that it was better than anything he ever had in a restaurant."