Make It a Meal: 5 Midwinter Weeknight Dinner Ideas

close up of crispy baked chicken thighs served with roasted cabbage
Photo: Brie Passano

What's for dinner tonight? Try one of these menus! If you've run out of dinner ideas (it happens to everyone), you might appreciate a little help in the meal planning department. To give you a hand, we've paired five main dishes with easy side and dessert ideas along with wine and beer suggestions. All you have to do is plug and play.

01 of 06

Menu #1 Churrascaria-Style Picanha

close up of sliced Churrascaria-Style Picanha Brazilian grilled beef
Brie Passano

Churrascarias are Brazilian-style barbeque restaurants, and picanha is one of their specialties. It's beef cut from a top sirloin cap, or coulotte. This version is a breeze to make.

Wine pick: Clos de los Siete Malbec or other Malbec-based red blend

02 of 06

Menu #2 Crispy Baked Chicken Thighs

close up of crispy baked chicken thighs served with roasted cabbage
Brie Passano

"This is a wonderfully simple and delicious recipe to use for bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs." —John Goddard

Pictured with Easy Roasted Red Cabbage.

Beer pick: Stoudts Brewing Co. Gold Lager or similar German-style pale lager.

03 of 06

Menu #3 Better-Than-Olive-Garden Alfredo

close up of Better-Than-Olive-Garden Alfredo topped with parsley and pepper flakes
Carson Downing

"Whether it's chicken Alfredo or fettuccine Alfredo, the Alfredo sauce has always had my heart. This is a simple and basic recipe for Italian starters. Enjoy!" —str0ngwarri0r

Wine pick: Maison Champy Macon Villages Blanc or similar full-bodied white wine.

04 of 06

Menu #4 Italian Sausage and Mushroom Lasagna with Béchamel

Italian Sausage and Mushroom Lasagna in a square white casserole dish
Brie Passano

The béchamel sauce adds something special to this lasagna. Part-skim ricotta and mozzarella and low-fat milk cut the fat, but it's still wonderfully rich.

Wine pick: Masseria Li Veli Orion Primitivo or other acidic Italian red wine.

05 of 06

Menu #5 Lime-Marinated Baked Salmon

close up of Lime-Marinated Baked Salmon and lime wedges on a cutting board
Carson Downing

"The fresh lime juice and mustard add a nice tang to this moist and flaky grilled salmon. I came up with this marinade after tasting something similar at a friend's house and it is now one of our favorite ways to do fish. You may also use other firm fish steaks instead of salmon; halibut, tuna and swordfish all work well." —whodunitrdr

Cider pick: Eden Specialty Ciders Peak Bloom Harvest Cider or other off-dry cider.

06 of 06
allrecipes magazine covers

This article originally appeared in the February/March 2021 issue of Allrecipes Magazine.

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