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Do-It-All-in-One-Pan Suppers

02/18/2011 05:06 pm ET | Updated May 25, 2011

By Wendy Ruopp, Managing Editor of EatingWell Magazine

Mad skills I may have (I’m a whiz at spelling, for instance), but getting the timing right for dinner is not one of them. Like an unsuccessful comic whose jokes aren’t clicking, I haven’t mastered the rhythms of the genre—the smooth coordination of getting all the parts of the meal to come together. I start cooking the chicken, and then realize it will be done in 10 minutes, while the brown rice won’t be ready for another 40. Leisurely, one-dish-at-a-time dinner, anyone? As you can imagine, this is not too popular with hungry hecklers. (Or you can have it all done by the time you get home with these Easy, Crock Pot & Slow Cooker Recipes.)

I keep trying, though. And when it comes to making dinner, anyone can learn how to do it all in one pan.

These five easy one-pot recipes allow me to practice my standup at the stove and, for once, get my timing right. Rice, lima beans and shrimp or chicken sausage, potatoes and sauerkraut will go into my trusty skillet together and 30 minutes later out comes most of my meal. (Find more recipes for your cast-iron skillet here.) I’ll use the Dutch oven I got as a wedding present—still going strong after 25 years—to make Orange-Tomato Couscous with Chicken. The 5-minute resting period at the end of the recipe gives me time to toss together the suggested spinach salad without looking like I almost forgot to make it a complete meal. (One of these simple side salad recipes will come in handy here.) And the one-skillet cleanup makes everybody happy.

Do-It-All-in-One-Pan Suppers

In your house, who does the cooking and who cleans up ?

By Wendy Ruopp, Managing Editor

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Wendy Ruopp has been the managing editor of EatingWell for most of her adult life. She has a B.A. from Swarthmore College and an M.S. in Counseling from the University of Vermont. She's lived in Vermont since 1982, has been married 25 years, and has a son and twin daughters all in their early twenties. Although she writes about food, her husband does most of the cooking.

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