|August 10, 2021

Easy Weeknight Dinners That Take 30 Minutes or Less

By Amanda Suazo
Reviewed for Scientific Accuracy

Easy Weeknight Dinners That Take 30 Minutes or Less

Every busy weeknight, it’s the same struggle: What can you make for dinner (and fast)? If you only have a half-hour on your hands, you don’t need to worry. These 30-minute easy weeknight dinners take minimal prep time to create and deliver wow-worthy meals. Plus, many of these dishes are keto-friendly, paleo and totally versatile.

Whether you crave beef, chicken, seafood, or soup and salad, this roundup of easy weeknight dinners delivers big flavor (without the extra carbs).

Easy weeknight dinners: Beef recipes

Low-carb beef stir fry with noodles and broccoli

Slow Cooker Pot Roast and Brussels Sprouts

Got one extra minute in the morning? Throw your beef in your slow cooker of choice with spices like turmeric and oregano for a slow-roasted, totally tender main dish by the end of the day.

Roast up crispy brussels sprouts for a fiber-packed and keto-friendly side dish.

Low-Carb Egg Roll in a Bowl

Get takeout taste without the crash: This quick and easy weeknight dinner fries up shredded cabbage with ground beef for a budget-friendly dish that comes together in 15 minutes.

It’s also easy to adapt to your taste. Switch the beef out for ground turkey or even pork, depending on what you have on hand. This is also a great dish to use up your veggies in the fridge. Broccoli, cauliflower and almost any root vegetable would be a great addition to this versatile one-pot dish.

Keto Slow Cooker Mexican Shredded Beef

Take 30 minutes in the morning to prep this easy weeknight dinner, and you’ll come home to tender, fall-off-the-bone meat.

Pastured short ribs get coated in a warm spice blend and simmer in your slow cooker for an ultra-low-carb dinner that pairs perfectly with lettuce wraps, guacamole or roasted veggies.

Hot tip: This recipe is also a great way to meal prep future quick dinners for the week. Use this beef for anything from enchiladas to meaty quesadillas ,or even a Tex Mex lasagna.

Steak Fajita Roll-Ups

No tortilla necessary for these keto tacos from Diethood! Take a quick half-hour to saute peppers and onions, roll them in strips of beef and sear on all sides. Then, your easy weeknight dinner is ready to serve with guacamole and salsa.

To add more fat to this dish, fry your meat and veggies in Bulletproof Grass-Fed Ghee instead of olive oil.

Cauliflower Fried Rice

Ready in 20 minutes, this easy weeknight meal levels up this popular take-out dish with fresh veggies, warm spices and bacon. Let the contents of your fridge guide you in changing this recipe to fit your mood for the evening.

Add cilantro and green onion with a wedge of lime for a fresh spin, or swap the bacon out for chicken or even chorizo. (Or keep the bacon and add additional meat.)

Gluten-Free Mac and Cheese

This easy, dairy-free mac and cheese uses pumpkin, ghee and spices to create a savory, creamy “cheese” sauce perfect for the pasta of your choice. (Also pairs well with shirataki elbow pasta for those on keto.)

Add bacon for the meat-eaters and substitute ghee with a rich oil alternative if you’re feeding vegan friends. You can also add cheese if you can tolerate dairy.

Low-Carb Beef Stir Fry

Thin slices of beef fry up with zucchini noodles, broccoli and bok choy for a keto-friendly spin on takeout.

Serve this easy recipe with a big pat of grass-fed butter for a complete feast in 20 minutes.

Related: Best Easy Keto Breakfast Recipes With 10 Net Carbs or Less

Seafood dinners in under 30 minutes

Wild-caught butter shrimp get the royal treatment, thanks to a creamy fat sauce and fresh, succulent herbs. Whole30, keto, and paleo.

Keto Poached Butter Shrimp

Butter makes everything better, especially when you use it to blanket tender, wild-caught shrimp.

Simply heat butter or ghee with fresh herbs, then gently poach for an elegant dinner in 25 minutes—perfect for serving with mashed cauliflower or roasted asparagus.

Keto Shrimp Scampi

Shrimp get a light and flavorful upgrade with this 30-minute dinner idea.

Spiralize your veggie noodles and toss with cooked shrimp and a lemony sauce for a recipe that’s ready to impress.

Salmon Protein Bowl

Quick and easy, this salmon dish cooks up in 20 minutes. Leek, celery and broccoli form the base of this protein bowl, spiced with rosemary, chili and curry powder.

Serve on top of rice, quinoa, sweet potatoes or more vegetables for a satisfying dinner.

Low-Carb Shrimp Pad Thai With Shirataki Noodles

No zoodles here—konjac root noodles get tossed in a nutty sauce with wild shrimp and Bulletproof Brain Octane C8 MCT Oil for a Thai-inspired 20-minute meal.

With 5 grams of net carbs, you can upgrade this quick weeknight meal with a side of bok choy or cauliflower rice.

Poached Cod in Tomato Broth

This easy fish dinner is too good to be true: With a super-simple broth and few elegant herbs, wild-caught cod gets gently cooked in a light tomato sauce with minimal hands-on prep. (Perfect for new home cooks to try.)

Since this recipe contains under 2 grams of net carbs per serving and only takes 20 minutes, you have time to whip up a quick salad while it cooks.

Roasted Lemon Garlic Butter Shrimp and Asparagus

Get gourmet taste in a miraculous 15 minutes with this easy weeknight recipe from Carlsbad Cravings. Throw raw shrimp on a sheet pan with asparagus and spices for a buttery and satisfying meal that pairs well with zoodles or cauliflower rice.

Use melted grass-fed ghee instead of the butter and olive oil to toss your shrimp and veggies (and grease your pan), and get amazing buttery taste in this easy sheet pan dinner.

Easy weeknight chicken dinners

Low-carb angel hair pasta with chicken

One-Pan Pesto Chicken and Veggies

High-fat chicken thighs cook up with tomatoes, asparagus and an herby pesto sauce for a 30-minute weeknight dinner recipe from Julia’s Album with 8 grams of net carbs.

Partner with low-carb pasta if you’re craving a pasta dish, or serve over greens for an extra vitamin boost.

Low-Carb Angel Hair Pasta With Lemon Chicken

Quick-cooking shirataki noodles swim in a creamy lemon sauce with tender chunks of chicken for a 20-minute, easy, Italian-inspired chicken dinner that satisfies your pasta cravings.

Serve with roasted asparagus, steamed broccoli or sauteed zucchini for a fast, fancy-feeling meal.

Low Carb Keto Bok Choy Cashew Chicken

This easy chicken recipe from That’s Low Carb?! mingles satisfying flavor and texture at just 7 grams of net carbs. Chicken breast cooks up with slices of bok choy and celery in a coconut milk-based glaze for the perfect 30-minute meal.

Chicken and Asparagus Lemon Stir Fry

This spin on stir fry from Skinnytaste takes 30 minutes and makes the perfect topper for cauliflower rice. Simply saute chunks of chicken breast with bites of asparagus in a spiced sauce with lemon juice and ginger.

Not a fan of canola? Grass-fed ghee is a great alternative with fantastic butter flavor.

Easy weeknight soups and salads

Vegetarian curry in black bowl

Easy Vegetable Curry

Want a savory, filling stovetop dish in 30 minutes? This easy curry is for you. Completely versatile, you can add vegetables from your fridge, any meat you have on hand or you can use coconut oil instead of ghee to make this weeknight meal vegan.

Some quick additions: rotisserie chicken, artichokes, bell peppers, sweet potatoes, chickpeas or any other “stew” ingredients you have on hand for a comfort food classic.

Roasted Carrot Soup

Simple and perfect for a busy weeknight, this roasted carrot soup is ready in under 30 minutes. Partner with your favorite low-carb bread (like Collagen Keto Bread), as your diet allows, and settle back for a warming, easy meal.

Low Carb Hamburger Salad

Craving a juicy burger, without the bun? This salad has all the fixings of a hot-off-the-grill burger, without any additional carbs. All you need is quality, preferably grass-fed, ground beef and your typical burger toppings.

Keto-friendly and gluten-free, this recipe is a perfect way to share a kid-friendly meal without having to deviate from your diet or create multiple dishes.

Thai Salad With Steak

If you’re looking for a crisp, refreshing dinner with a protein punch, this Asian-inspired salad is for you.

Pop the steak in the fridge to marinate in the morning, and come home to cook up a delicious, quick dinner full of healthy veggies and protein.

Not feeling like steak, or don’t eat beef? Boneless pork chops can work with this recipe in a snap.

Keto Cobb Salad

The beauty of a healthy, easy weeknight meal is twofold: You get to eat a dinner you can feel good about, and it doesn’t take hours you don’t have in the kitchen.

This simple Cobb salad is versatile and can contain anything from rotisserie chicken to black beans. Skip the olive oil in your normal salad dressing and try the MCT oil in our golden vinaigrette in this unique, filling dinner salad.

More dinner ideas from Bulletproof

Have more than 30 minutes, and looking for paleo and keto-friendly, low-carb meals to satisfy the whole family? Take a look at what Bulletproof has to offer:

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