25 Best 30-Minute Dinner Ideas Under $30

25 Delicious 30-Minute Dinner Ideas Under $30

Planning dinner every day can be a little overwhelming, especially when your budget is tight, and you are short on time. But don’t let these two factors stop you from enjoying your delicious dinner. 

Some of the best dinner recipes that are under $30 and get prepared within 30 minutes of time span are one-pot lasagna soup, Pepperoni Pizza Sliders, Four cheese zoodles, Chicken and Broccoli with Dill Sauce, Chicken pie, Shrimp Pesto Pasta, and Hearty Pasta Faggioli.

You can also try Creamy Tomato Macaroni & Cheese, Spaghetti in cherry tomato sauce, Chorizo carbonara, or Spiced parsnip soup. 

As planning dinner is more of a task, with my sorted list, you won’t face any such challenges. I have tried covering different cuisines, so you have something new to try.

Let’s dig into the recipes without any further stretch so that you can plan your dinner without any hustle. I was hoping you could stick with me because I for sure have some best recipes that are a must-try. 

30-minute dinner ideas under $30

Here is a list of quick dinner ideas that you can prepare for under $30. They are both taste and pocket friendly. Have a look!

1. One-pot Lasagna soup

Image Credits – The Girl On Bloor

What can be more comforting than cooking a dish in a single pot? The positive thing about this one-pot recipe is that it is lasagna as well as soup.

You can start with cooking beef and then add some aroma – garlic, and onions. Season the beef, garlic, and onions once cooked with some Italian seasoning and salt & pepper.

Toss in the marinara sauce, followed by beef broth. Add the pasta and let everything simmer for 20 minutes. That is all. Serve the one-pot lasagna soup in a bowl.

You can sprinkle mozzarella cheese and fresh herbs and enjoy an easy peasy dish while watching Netflix. 

Get The Recipe From Here – The Girl On Bloor

2. One-Pot Beef Chili

one pot beef chili
Image Credits – Simply Recipes

If you are tired of eating one pot of pasta, then why don’t you try this exotic one-pot beef chili? 

This recipe does not take much of your time and won’t cost you more than $30 until you make it for a lot of people.

You will need a pressure cooker, and if you are a little uncomfortable using it, just take a deep breath and check the manual. It is an easy process.

Start cooking one pot of beef chili while cooking your vegetables. You can add bell pepper, onion, celery, and garlic. Once the vegetables look good, add beef and stir gently. Now it’s time to add spices.

Start with some chili powder, then some salt and oregano. Pour tomato sauce and cook everything for a while. 

Get The Recipe From Here – Simply Recipes

3. Pasta Salad

Image Credits – Inspired Taste

I had seen many Youtube shorts about pasta salad but never tried it before as I could not fit in the concept of cold pasta and salad.

But as I am a very experimental human, I tried making it a few days before for dinner, and I guess I have a new favorite dish. Pasta salad is not only tasty but healthy at so many levels.

Before Starting the recipe, make sure you use wheat pasta and a lot of veggies. Cook the pasta as usual and rinse with cold water.

Meanwhile, make the dressing for the salad. Add red wine vinegar and mix salt, pepper, oregano, pepperoncini juice, and olive oil. Once the pasta is cooked, coat it with the dressing just prepared.

Now it’s vegetable time. Add zucchini, bell pepper, tomatoes, scallions, and pepperoncini. Pour some more olive oil if needed. Grate some mozzarella and parmesan cheese.

Stir everything really well, and you are ready. Take a bowl and serve your delicious pasta salad.

Get The Recipe From Here – Inspired Taste

4. Garlic and Herb Lemon Chicken

Image Credits – The Recipe Critic

Chicken is always a great idea for dinner, but can cooking chicken fit in the 30 mins cooking time without surpassing the budget of $30? Why don’t you try making garlic and herb lemon chicken, which is cheap and easy to make? 

Simply rub the chicken with garlic and season with some salt and pepper. Heat a large skillet and cook the chicken until golden brown.

Place thinly sliced lemon in the pan with the same garlic we used to rub the chicken. Top with chicken and bake it in a preheated oven. You can add some herbs as well before baking it.

Bake it for 18-20 mins, and you are done. You can add some more herbs before serving and enjoy this delicious garlic and herb lemon chicken. You can also pair it with some rice and call it a day. 

Get The Recipe From Here – The Recipe Critic

5. Beef Barley Soup With Mushrooms

Image Credits – Gather For Bread

We all need some comforting food on some of the nights that are more of lazy type. Beef barley soup with mushrooms will be a little longer than 30 minutes, but it is worth it. 

And we can obviously adjust the extra 10 mins somewhere, right? Take a large pan and add some beef stock. Throw in carrot, celery, onion, mushrooms, and barley. Add some salt and pepper.

Cook everything on low heat and let the vegetables get tender. Once done, adjust the salt and pepper to taste. Serve it in a bowl and enjoy the comforting beef barley soup with mushrooms.

Here we only need the beefy flavor, which is why we have not added the meat. 

Get The Recipe From Here – Gather For Bread

6. Pepperoni Pizza Sliders

Image Credits – Damn Delicious

Pepperoni pizza sliders are so fancy to serve on the table and so easy to cook that you can always put your guests in awe with the taste and appearance. First thing first, get some slider rolls from the nearby store.

Mix some butter with parmesan and dried oregano, along with garlic powder. Cut the sliders from between and brush with the butter mixture.

 Take a spoonful of tomato sauce and spread it between the slides. Add some mozzarella cheese, pepperoni, and some basil. Close the slider with the other and brush some more butter mixture.

Bake the sliders for 10-15 minutes, and you’re done. These sliders are very fulfilling and cheesy. You can obviously add something more like bell peppers or anything you like and enjoy your dinner time. 

Get The Recipe From Here – Damn Delicious

7. Four Cheese Zoodles Spaghetti

Image Credits – Damn Delicious

What’s better than regular cheese – four cheese, right? And this time, we are going to see how to make four-cheese zoodles spaghetti in just 15-20 mins under $30.

Let me tell you one thing about this recipe; you will love it and crave more, so prepare some extra for yourself. Start with cooking the pasta as per the instructions on the packet. 

In another pan, cook some bacon; once done, keep it aside. In the same pan, cook tomatoes and transfer them to a plate.

Add some cream and stock to the pan, and once it is reduced to half, add some parmesan cheese along with Perfect Melt cheese. Add the zoodles ( zucchini noodles) and drained spaghetti.

Sprinkle the bacon and pour the tomatoes. Mix everything really well. While serving, add more cheese and enjoy. 

Get The Recipe From Here – Damn Delicious

8. Creamy Tomato Macaroni & Cheese

Image Credits – A Pretty Life

We all have had macaroni and cheese, but why don’t you enjoy some easy yet delicious creamy tomato macaroni and cheese this time?

I have listed many dishes classified as comfort food, but none of them can beat the comforting flavors of creamy tomato macaroni and cheese. Simply start cooking your macaroni as per the instructions.

 Cook some onion and garlic in butter, and once they are lightly browned, stir in some flour. Add some milk and keep on storing until a thick creamy paste is formed. Pour in some tomato sauce.

You can even add some diced tomatoes. Sprinkle with a pinch of oregano. Cook until the tomatoes are well blended in the sauce. Grate a lot of parmesan cheese and add the cooked macaroni.

Stir everything well. Let the macaroni coat the sauce generously, and then serve it with more cheese. 

Get The Recipe From Here – A Pretty Life

9. Spaghetti in cherry tomato sauce

Image Credits – Erren’s Kitchen

Here is another yummy dinner recipe with some spaghetti and tomatoes that can be cooked within 15 mins of the time frame. It is simple to cook with a lot of great flavors.

You already know that you have to start with cooking the pasta. Meanwhile, the pasta cooks in a pan; heat some butter and add garlic, followed by tomatoes, pepper, sugar, and salt.

Cook the tomatoes for 5-10 mins. You can use cherry tomatoes to look appealing and fancy once they are cooked. Top with the cooked pasta and add some basil.

Sprinkle some parmesan and gently mix everything. This is all you must do, and your delicious dinner will be ready within a few minutes. 

Get The Recipe From Here – Erren’s Kitchen

10. Chorizo carbonara

Chorizo Carbonara
Image Credits – Jamie Oliver

Chorizo carbonara is yet another pasta recipe, but it is obviously very different and a must-try for all pasta and chorizo lovers. You can get fresh chorizo at the supermarket.

Simply peel off the skin and fry the chorizo. In the same pan, add garlic cloves and rosemary. Meanwhile, Take a bowl and whisk some eggs with parmesan and black pepper.

Cook your pasta and take some of the pasta water and add it to the chorizo pan. Add the cooked pasta to the same pan and remove from the heat. Add the egg mixture and more pasta water.

Do this until the pasta is creamy and saucy. Squeeze some lemon juice. And you are done just like that. You can serve the chorizo carbonara with some cracked black pepper and enjoy your dinner.

Get The Recipe From Here – Jamie Oliver

11. Spiced parsnip soup

Spiced parsnip soup
Image Credits – Jamie Oliver

Why is soup a great dinner meal? Because it is fulfilling, warm, and healthy. Let’s make your regular soup a little different. Try spiced parsnip soup that has great flavors and makes a great starter for your dinner.

The soup has a very spicy yet sweet taste that pairs well with toasted bread. Start with cooking some onions. As we have to make this dish more aromatic, add garlic along with parsnip.

Add some curry powder to add more flavor. Stir in some water and simmer until the parsnip is cooked. To check whether they are done or not, make sure that they are soft enough to break.

Add some cream. Season with salt and pepper. You can garnish it with some paprika. 

Get The Recipe From Here – Jamie Oliver

12. Cucumber and lemon soba noodle salad

Image Credits – Taste

I am not over the idea of having salads for dinner because the more light and healthy the dinner is, the better. There is no doubt that soba noodles are so flavorful and have an umami flavor that I love for sure.

Like usual, cook your noodles. Make a dressing with soy sauce, lemon juice, sesame oil, sugar, and garlic in a small bowl. Now to the dressing, add the cucumber, radish, and onion. Mix everything together really well.

Add the dressing to the noodles and serve with some pickles. Sprinkle some sesame seeds, and your dinner is ready. This is a super easy last-minute dinner that will never go wrong. 

Get The Recipe From Here – Taste 

13. Corn Dogs

Corn Dogs
Image Credits – Natasha’s Kitchen

Want some tasty and easy starters for dinner? Then try some corn dogs. They are super crispy and so easy to eat with some sauce.

All you need is some hot dogs from the supermarket and run them through corn batter to fry them in oil. The corn batter is what makes this recipe unique and delicious. You need to mix wet and dry ingredients.

Firstly, take some cornmeal, flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt in a bowl. In another big bowl, mix buttermilk, egg, a tablespoon of oil, and honey).

Now add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix them well until a good and flowy batter is formed. That is it. Simply coat the hot dogs with the corn batter after inserting the stick in the hot dogs.

Golden fry the coated hot dogs in hot oil. You can do the same with sausages and enjoy the dinner, starting with yummy corn dogs. 

Get The Recipe From Here – Natasha’s Kitchen 

14. Green Thai Chicken Curry With Asian Greens

Image Credits – Sugar Salt Magic

What if I tell you that you can enjoy Thai chicken curry by only investing half an hour in preparing the dish? And it is under the budget of $30. This recipe is creamy and has a lot of health benefits.

And if we talk about the dish’s appearance, it is too mesmerizing. You can start by cooking the chicken in a frying pan and then keep it aside.

In the same pan, cook some onions and add some passage to Asian Thai green curry along with some coconut milk. Place the chicken back in the pan with broccolini.

Cook everything for a while, and add some broccoli with green onions. In a bowl, take some rice and pour the curry with chicken over the rice. Sprinkle some basil and more green onions.

Enjoy this hot and delicious chicken curry with a new twist of flavors. 

Get The Recipe From Here –Sugar Salt Magic

15. Chicken and Broccoli with Dill Sauce

Image Credits – Taste Of Home

Chicken and broccoli with dill sauce is a perfect quick dinner idea that you can enjoy with steamed rice. All you have to do is season some chicken breast and cook it in a pan with olive oil. Keep it aside.

Add chopped broccoli and add to the pan. Pour in some chicken broth and boil. Meanwhile, mix some flour, milk, and dill in a bowl and cook in the same pan. Cook it for a few minutes.

Add the chicken to the sauce and simmer it for 10-15 mins. Once done, take a plate and serve the chicken with boiled broccoli and rice on the side.

Pour the cooked dill sauce and have a warm, creamy, and cozy meal.

Get The Recipe From Here – Taste of Home

16. Creamy Chicken & Green Chile Enchiladas

Image Credits – Modern Honey

If there is anything that could be added to the best chicken recipe, then creamy chicken and green chili enchiladas are for sure a part of the list.

Start with cooking chicken in a skillet, and once it is well cooked, add cream cheese and green chilis. 

Once the cheese melts and the chicken is well done, fill the same in the tortillas and roll each of the tortillas really well. Place each tortilla in a baking dish, side by side, and transfer enchilada sauce over the tortillas.

Garnish with some cheese. You can even add some tomatoes and cilantro, which would pair well with cheese. Bake the tortillas for 10-15 minutes and serve it hot.

This is a great meal, especially for dinner, as it is easy and very fulfilling. 

Get The Recipe From Here – Modern Honey

17. Thai-style chicken wings

Image Credits – Krumpli

Bored with regular chicken wings? Why don’t you try Thai-style chicken wings with a twist of lemongrass and chili? Take a bowl or a dish and mix your herbs and spices together.

Start with some lemongrass and add garlic, ginger, chili, golden syrup, and soy sauce along with rice wine vinegar. Now coat your chicken in the mixture. Roast the coated wings for 20-25 minutes.

Keep on coating with sauce and turn from each side to roast until golden. Sprinkle some herbs once roasted and serve with some lemon on the side to squeeze and eat. Isn’t it a very simple yet juicy chicken recipe?

It has a punch of flavors and the right meatiness. 

Get The Recipe From Here – Krumpli

18. Pasta with broccoli and feta

Image Credits – 31 Daily

Doesn’t pasta with broccoli and feta sound like a little adult meal? But I can bet that not only adults but cute kids would also love this version of pasta.

All you have to do is cook your pasta like you always do – boil it in water with some salt and oil. When your pasta lasts 5 minutes, add the broccoli. In a separate pan, cook some garlic and chili.

Now remove the pan from the heat and then add the feta cheese. Pour the pasta water and the boiled pasta and broccoli. Combine everything well and drizzle some oil if required.

And you are done with a simple pasta with broccoli and feta. Consider adding feta cheese generously because not only kids, adults love the cheese too. 

Get The Recipe From Here – 31 Daily

19. Chinese fried eggs with sticky ginger rice

Image Credits – My Food Story

I love eating sticky rice, and if someone asks me to make it more flavorful, then I would go with Chinese fried eggs with sticky rice. Firstly start cooking the rice. Take a saucepan and heat some oil.

Stir in ginger and garlic. Add rice and water and let the rice cook for 10 mins. Now in another frying pan, break two eggs and cook them until golden and puffed.

I prefer to cook the eggs partially so that the yellow part is still runny and mix it well with rice. Plate the rice and transfer the eggs over the rice. Drizzle some oyster sauce and serve with shallots and chili.

Get The Recipe From Here – My Food Story

20. Vegetarian Bean and Rice Burritos 

Image Credits – Recipe Runner

For all Mexican food lovers, bean burritos are close to heaven, but why not go a little further with basic bean burritos this time?

Let’s try vegetarian bean and rice burritos that can be cooked within 30 minutes and are a perfect dinner meal. Start with mixing rice with some cilantro and lime juice. Stir everything and heat on the stove.

 In another pan, cook some onions, garlic, and black beans (boiled). Season the beans and let them cook for a while. Now take the tortilla and spread a good amount of rice mixture, followed by the cooked beans.

You can add some sour cream and other toppings of your choice and wrap the tortilla. That is it. Your yummy and fulfilling burritos are ready.

You can enjoy some sweet and sour sauce and have a great Mexican meal.

Get The Recipe From Here – Recipe Runner

21. Fast Baked Fish

Baked fish
Image Credits – My Forking Life

Get some fish at dinner without a lot of hustle. I know it did not rhyme, but I am sure the recipe is very delicious and super easy to make. You only have two steps to follow.

First, take fish filets and place them into a greased baking tray. While the fish lies on the tray, rub the filets with salt, pepper, and paprika. Make sure to coat the fish from all sides.

Brush off some butter on each side. Now comes the second and most important step – baking. You would need to bake the fish for 10- 15 minutes.

To check if the fish filets are done, use a fork to press them, and the filets should flake easily. 

Get The Recipe From Here – My Forking Life

22. Quick Chicken and Noodle Soup 

Image Credits – Eating On A Dime

I am not getting over the soup dishes because they are so underrated, and I want you first to try enough of the soup recipes until everyone generously appreciates them.

For the next dinner meal, try making some chicken and noodle soup. Add oil and cook carrots, celery, and onion in a pot. Let the vegetables soften. Add chicken broth and some water.

Season with salt and pepper. Now it is time to add the pasta. Cook the pasta for 10 mins, and you are ready to serve the pasta with your choice of sides. 

Get The Recipe From Here – Eating On A Dime 

23. BLT Bean Salad 

Image Credits – Cooking Classy

Salad for dinner is such a great idea for those who want a delicious yet healthy meal. Start with toasting the bread after seasoning with olive oil and salt. Place the bread in the oven and bake until golden brown.

Cook bacon in some oil. Make some dressing using pureed basil, parsley, dill, mayonnaise, yogurt, lemon juice, water, and ground peppers. Bring everything in one place.

Start by adding the beans, romaine, tomatoes, half the croutons, and half the bacon to a large bowl. Add herb mayo dressing.

Now place everything in a bowl, garnish with the remaining croutons and bacon, and drizzle with the remaining dressing. 

Get The Recipe From Here – Cooking Classy

24. 5-Ingredient Instant Pot Mac and Cheese

Image Credits – Natasha’s Kitchen

Instant pot mac and cheese are exactly what you need for an easy peasy dinner without putting any extra effort, and this recipe has only five main ingredients. You will obviously need an instant pot.

Now pour some water, macaroni pasta, salt, mustard, paprika, and garlic powder. Don’t miss going for some butter. Cook it for 3-4 minutes and instantly add evaporated milk (the milk that has been boiled and reduced to half).

Add cheese and stir until cheese is melted. You can season it with more black pepper and adjust the salt. And you are done with very cheesy yet easy mac and cheese just out of an instant pot.  

Get The Recipe From Here – Natasha’s Kitchen

25. Shrimp Pesto Pasta

shrimp pesto pasta
Image Credits – All Recipes

Do you want to have some shrimp but have limited time and budget? Don’t worry, as I have the right recipe for you. *DRUMROLLS* creamy shrimp pesto pasta. 

Shrimps and pasta go great together, and with pesto cream, it is like a cherry on the cake. Start with cooking your pasta, and while the pasta is getting al dente, melt some butter in a pan.

In the butter, add cream and sprinkle a pinch of black pepper. Add in parmesan cheese (a lot of it) and mix everything very well. Now, add prepared pesto with basil and let it blend with the sauce.

Add the shrimp and cook in the sauce. Once the shrimp are done, they will turn pink, and you can either add pasta or else garnish the cooked pasta with shrimp sauce. Whatever suits you.

I add more cheese once I plate the pasta and would recommend you do the same. Enjoy your shrimp pesto pasta which is rich in cream and very cheesy. 

Get The Recipe From Here – All recipes

Printable Version

25 Best 30-Minute Dinner Ideas Under $30

25 Best 30-Minute Dinner Ideas Under $30

Some of the best dinner recipes that are under $30 and get prepared within 30 minutes of time span are one-pot lasagna soup, Pepperoni Pizza Sliders, Four cheese zoodles, Chicken and Broccoli with Dill Sauce, Chicken pie, Shrimp Pesto Pasta, and Hearty Pasta Faggioli.


  • One-Pot Lasagna Soup
  • One-Pot Beef Chili
  • Pasta Salad
  • Garlic And Herb Lemon Chicken
  • Beef Barley Soup With Mushrooms
  • Pepperoni Pizza Sliders
  • Four Cheese Zoodles
  • Creamy Tomato Macaroni & Cheese
  • Spaghetti In Cherry Tomato Sauce
  • Chorizo Carbonara
  • Spiced Parsnip Soup
  • Cucumber And Lemon Soba Noodle Salad
  • Corn Dogs
  • Green Thai Chicken Curry With Asian Greens
  • Chicken And Broccoli With Dill Sauce
  • Creamy Chicken & Green Chili Enchiladas
  • Thai-Style Chicken Wings With Lemongrass And Chili
  • Pasta With Broccoli And Feta
  • Chinese Fried Eggs With Sticky Ginger Rice
  • Vegetarian Bean And Rice Burritos
  • Fast Baked Fish
  • BLT Bean Salad
  • 5-Ingredient Instant Pot Mac And Cheese
  • Quick Chicken And Noodle Soup
  • Shrimp Pesto Pasta


  • Select the recipe you want to cook.
  • Click on the recipe link.
  • Follow the steps mentioned in the recipe.


As we are at the end of the conversation, I am sure the whole list was helpful. I have tried to list the most convenient and cheap recipes that are lower than $30 without compromising the taste and flavors.

Dinner should be comforting and flavorful, which should take away all of your worries.

 That is why I am here with the best possible dinner ideas that you can not only afford but cook within just half an hour.

The list has one-pot recipes along with some cheesy dishes that will satisfy your cravings at once. Let me know if you have tried any of these recipes, and share your experience.

 Let the world know if you have better recipes that are under $30 and don’t take more than 30 minutes to cook. I will be back with more such recipes for you.

Until then, just plan your dinner a day ahead to avoid any last-minute panic. 

Frequently Asked Questions

1. What dish can you make in 30-minute dinner ideas under $30? 

You can try different dishes like : 
1. One-pot lasagna soup
2. One-pot beef chili
3. Pasta Salad
4. Garlic and Herb Lemon Chicken
5. Beef barley soup with mushrooms
6. Pepperoni Pizza Sliders
7. Four cheese zoodles
8. Creamy Tomato Macaroni & Cheese
9. Spaghetti in cherry tomato sauce
10. Chorizo carbonara

2. What are some easy recipes I can cook for dinner?

You can try making : 
1. Chicken pie
2. Nacho’s Traybake
3. Hearty Pasta Faggioli
4. Pasta with broccoli and feta
5. Chinese fried eggs with sticky ginger rice

3. What are some recipes that are under $30?

If you are looking to cook something under $30, then you can try cooking : 
1. Chorizo carbonara
2. Chicken pie
3. Nacho’s Traybake
4. Hearty Pasta Faggioli
5. Pasta with broccoli and feta

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