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Great Meals in 30 Minutes or Less

If you watch the Food Network often, you've seen host Rachel Ray prepare great meals in just half an hour on her show, 30 Minute Meals. And, while you may not think you're able to make all the food Ray whips up on the show, here are a few 30 minute meals you should definitely try.

Preparing a good meal doesn't have to take forever.

Did you know that the BBC in England had a show where word famous chefs prepared a meal on live television in less then 20 minutes. . It was then judged by the public and a panel of experts. So it had better to be good because their reputation was on the line. We are waiting for permission to feature a few of these marvels.

Pasta

Pretty much any type of pasta will do, whether bow-tie shaped or long and flat and you can make this great meal in under half an hour. All you'll have to do is sauté tomatoes, onion, garlic, parsley and basil in a saucepan until the tomatoes soften, or you can blend these ingredients in a food processor and season to taste. Boil your favorite pasta noodles, put some fresh vegetables in a saucepan, add butter and salt lightly. Then simply place a loaf of French garlic bread in the oven to toast and your meal will be ready in less time than you think. If you want to make a white sauce for your pasta, just add cream, butter and parmesan cheese to the mix.

Tacos

Who doesn't love tacos? This family treat is a great meal if you're into cooking light and you can get the kids to help you with this one. For 30 minute meals, ideas for tacos include sautéing ground beef with seasoning for the taco filling, or you can use grilled tuna or chicken instead. For vegetarian tacos, seasoned beans or tofu are a great alternative. Add extra sides like lettuce, tomato, sour cream, onion and olives. Presto, you've got a healthy meal that's really easy to make.

Pizza

Whether you make your own crust or buy pre-packaged crust, pizza is one of the 30 minute meals that is sure to make a hit with the family. You can buy or make small pizza crusts so that each family member can create their own pizza, or you can make one large pie so that the whole family can add their own favorite toppings. Add pizza sauce (you can use the spaghetti sauce recipe above), along with your favorite toppings and let your pizza bake for about 25 minutes. Add fresh veggies or a salad on the side and you're done!

If you need more information on 30 minute meals, or cooking ideas you and your family can use every day, check out the Food Network website (www.foodtv.com) for great recipe ideas and the best places to purchase your favorite food. You can also tune into the Food Network for cooking basics that will make spending time in the kitchen lots of fun--even when you don't have much time. In today's fast paced world, you still want your family to have the best, nutritious meals possible. So some 30 minute meals may just be the way to go a few nights a week. Enjoy your time with loved ones and create a quick, healthy meal today. Enjoy!

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