On a leisurely Sunday, it’s nice to break out the complicated recipes. During the week however, we’re all about the straightforward and simple meals. These 9 recipes only have 5 ingredients or less, but you’d never know it from their layered and complex flavor.

1. Rice Crackers with Goat Cheese and Edamame

Learn this recipe and you’ll feel a kitchen master. Starting with packaged rice crackers is a smart shortcut that still yields a delicious snack with a homemade vibe to it. Pairing goat cheese and edamame with the salty crackers is unexpected but pleases a crowd every time. Break out this recipe for a cocktail party; it’s perfect drinking fare. Get our Rice Crackers recipe.

2. Basic Chocolate Mousse


With only three ingredients, this sophisticated recipe couldn’t be easier to make. Be sure you choose the best quality chocolate and cream that you can find, as you’ll really taste them in the final dish. This is the perfect dessert to make for a dinner party: elegant, rich, and simple to make. Get our Basic Chocolate Mousse recipe.

3. Basic Tomato Sauce


Very good tomato sauce is a cinch to cook at home, and we recommend it. Homemade sauce avoids all the preservatives that you get with canned sauce, and it’s cheap and quick. We promise you’ll be impressed at the transformation that four simple ingredients undergoes in this recipe. Get our Basic Tomato Sauce recipe.

4. Dulce de Leche


If we told you one of your favorite rich desserts only uses two ingredients, would you believe us? You should. Dulce de leche is made from cooking down condensed milk with a touch of salt. It turns creamy and caramelized in the oven while you wait. Spread it on pastries or ice cream, use it as a filling for cakes, or dip fruit into it. Get our Dulce de Leche recipe.

5. Peanut Butter Chocolate Fudge


Salty peanuts combine with intense chocolate in this creamy fudge. With just five ingredients, you can prepare it in minutes, but you’ll have to wait an hour for it to cool! Use bittersweet chocolate to balance out the sweetness of the miniature marshmallows and sweetened condensed milk. Get our Peanut Butter Chocolate Fudge recipe.

6. Cacio e Pepe Pasta

This pasta is an Italian classic for good reason. You turn four ingredients (dried pasta, cheese, butter, and pepper) into a creamy and warm meal in minutes. It’s the perfect foolproof dish for entertaining and an excellent late-night recipe to make when you’re low on ingredients and energy. Get our Cacio e Pepe recipe.

7. Tater Tots


Tater tots are one of those diner classics that you rarely think to make at home. Turns out, you only need four ingredients and you can whip them up. We suggest making an extra-large batch of these fried potatoes and freezing them. Next time you have a craving, just bake them off and dinner is ready. Get our Tater Tots recipe.

8. Basic Steak


An important life lesson in becoming an adult is mastering a perfect steak. Since this recipe only has four ingredients, the meat really does matter. Befriend your local butcher or ask around to find a shop with high-quality meat. Then follow along with our steps, and go forth and grill. Get our Steak recipe.

9. Cheese Nachos


You’re hungry, tired, and need food quickly. Enter cheese nachos. You need two ingredients and oven and you’re in business. We like to dress ours up with toppings like olives, hot sauce, crumbled chorizo, and pickled vegetables, but that’s up to you. Get our Cheese Nachos recipe.

Header image: Cacio e Pepe Pasta from Chowhound

Posie Harwood is a New York City-based writer and photographer. She grew up on a farm and likes raw milk, warm bread with butter, and plenty of fresh air. Follow her on Instagram, and her blog 600 Acres.
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