35 Delicious Recipes That Don't Require an Oven


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Whether you don't have access to an oven and stovetop or simply don't want to heat up your house in the summer, you can prepare diverse and satisfying recipes without those conveniences. Instead, rely on smaller appliances such as a microwave, slow cooker, a pressure cooker like the Instant Pot, or a blender — or just a bowl, a fridge, and a little time. Here are 35 morning-to-night recipes to get you started.

Overnight Oats
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Oats are one of the cheapest grains available and a true superfood, containing tons of beneficial fiber to keep you full for a long time. Let oats soak up moisture in a bowl in the fridge overnight, so a fresh portion is ready to enjoy in the morning with your favorite toppings

Recipe: Kath Eats Real Food

Chia Pudding
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This cheap and nutritious alternative to rice pudding tastes like dessert for breakfast. It requires only three ingredients and takes just five minutes of active prep time to make a batch that could last all week — just soak and refrigerate. 

Recipe: Oh She Glows

Yogurt Parfaits
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A yogurt parfait is a quick and easy way to assemble breakfast, dessert, or a snack for yourself or a crowd. Simply layer yogurt with favorite fruits, preserves, nuts, or cereal.

Blueberry and Strawberry Smoothie
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Smoothies can be enjoyed any time of day or act as a meal replacement. There are endless variations on blender smoothies that are cheap to make at home using seasonal ingredients as well as freezer and pantry staples.

Smoked Fish Spread on Toasted Bread
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This blended spread comes together quickly and easily with a packet of healthy and flavorful smoked mackerel or trout, both of which tend to be less expensive than salmon. Use this on crackers or bread as an appetizer with a glass of wine, or as breakfast or lunch. 

Recipe: Jamie Oliver

Raw Zoodles With Pesto
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Turning a fresh zucchini into long noodles is even quicker than boiling instant ramen. Tossed with a favorite jar of sauce or, better yet, homemade pesto, one inexpensive vegetable becomes an entire meal. 

Recipe: Cookie + Kate

Chef's Salad
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Turn a no-cook salad into a hearty meal by adding plenty of lean protein. A traditional chef's salad contains ham, but you can try any combination of cooked meats, beans, and cheese. Use what's on sale at the local deli counter to keep the cost low.

Recipe: Epicurious

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Bacon lovers would do themselves a favor to master the art of cooking bacon in a microwave. There are so many ways to turn simple dishes into satisfying meals with it. A classic bacon, lettuce, and tomato sandwich is just the most obvious.

Recipe: Genius Kitchen

Loaded Potatoes
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A baked potato is one of the ultimate low-cost meals — and microwaving works as well as baking in the oven. Top the steaming potato with just about anything, from indulgent cheese and microwaved bacon to virtuous broccoli and tahini. 

Recipe: The Kitchn

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This cold vegetable soup is a hybrid of a salad and a salsa. It's a popular dish for entertaining during warm weather, which means you can still have a signature dish to bring to summer parties with only a blender on hand. 

Recipe: Simply Recipes

Tortilla Casserole
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Layering fully cooked ingredients and finishing in the microwave allows for a complex casserole. Adapt the ingredients any way you like, using frozen veggies and a can of refried beans instead of meat and cheese, for example. 

Recipe: Southern Plate

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Microwave ramen is a nostalgic food for an entire generation. If the bare-bones version seems a little elementary, add toppings such as fresh vegetables and sauces to make a satisfying meal

Recipe: wikiHow

Deli Sandwich
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Keep ingredients such as deli meat and cheese, mustard and mayonnaise, and sliced bread on hand to allow you to whip up a sandwich when hunger strikes with no kitchen appliances needed.

Veggie Taco Salad
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This Southwestern-style salad combines fresh vegetables with taco condiments to create a crunchy, cheesy, and slightly spicy meal. Cheap and easy to make with just a bowl, it's a cheap, practical way to get a Mexican fix

Recipe: Taste of Home

Baked Beans
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A welcome side dish at just about any gathering, these beans cook up fast in an Instant Pot, which is another handy kitchen accessory if you’re looking to keep the heat down. This recipe combines inexpensive beans with rich pork flavor. The Instant Pot makes beans taste as if they had been cooking for 12 hours over an open hearth. 

 Recipe: This Old Gal

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Sometimes a dish of hot, bubbly enchiladas is the kind of comfort food you need. This recipe uses the microwave for every step of the cooking. Proteins such as eggs, tofu, beans, or mushrooms can stand in for beef. 

Recipe: Genius Kitchen

Vegetable Sushi
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What can be cooler in the kitchen than sushi? While sushi is often expensive at restaurants and for takeout, it can be incredibly cheap to make at home from small amounts of rice, seaweed, and fillings. Stick to vegetable fillings to keep costs low and eliminate health risks. 

Recipe: The Green Plate 

Cajun Dirty Rice
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A hearty mix of vegetables, sausage, and rice, this pressure-cooker meal yields perfectly cooked rice in a saucy blend of spices. The (optional) chicken livers in this recipe give the dish a distinct, authentic flavor. To ensure proper cooking time, be sure to use long-grain rice, which holds up better than short-grain varieties. 

 Recipe: Hip Pressure Cooking  

Tomato Soup
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This classic can be made in a blender from inexpensive pantry staples and enjoyed at room temperature, chilled, or warmed in a microwave on cold nights. 

Recipe: Serious Eats

Crustless Quiche
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You can prepare a warm, satisfying brunch even without an oven. There are plenty of recipes for crustless quiche made in a slow cooker, including versions with chopped veggies, herbs, and breakfast meats. Use leftovers and frozen produce to keep costs low.

Recipe: Betty Crocker

Spicy Jalapeno Mango Chicken
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This simple-to-prepare salad combines plenty of chilies with sweet mango to balance out the spice level and protein-rich chicken to make it a complete meal. Take the easy route and use a store-bought rotisserie chicken

Recipe:BBC’s Good Food 

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The microwave actually does a great job of cooking salmon. It's super quick and easy and comes out consistently each time, taking the guesswork out of stovetop or oven cooking times. 

Recipe: Joy Bauer

Mac and Cheese
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You might think that, without a stove, the only option for mac and cheese is the packet of yellow powder and microwaved noodles, but there's a better way: A slow cooker recipe that turns out rich and creamy with the press of a button. Starting from scratch saves money compared with the box version. 

Recipe: Delish

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Ravioli makes an inexpensive yet complete meal — even in a microwave. A mix of ripe tomato and herbs complements the pasta well. 

Recipe: Delish

Split Pea Soup
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This soup can be whipped up with a blender until smooth and creamy and enjoyed cold or warmed in a microwave. Using frozen peas keeps the cost low.

  Recipe: Babble

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Couscous is one of those magical foods that seems to tick all the right boxes: nutritious, inexpensive, versatile, and quick and easy to prepare. All that's needed is boiling water, so a microwave works as well as any stovetop. 

Recipe: The Kitchn

Ground Beef Chili
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It doesn't get much easier or more satisfying than slow cooker chili. Drop in inexpensive pantry staples such as canned beans and enjoy a warming meal hours later. 

Recipe: Cooking Light Slow Cooker Tonight

Buffalo Chicken Wings
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Wing lovers will save a lot of money on takeout once they realize how simple it is to make these spicy treats at home using nothing but the microwave. 

Recipe: Food.com

Shrimp Risotto
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This dinner party dish is elegant and indulgent — and made entirely in a slow cooker. Add mushrooms and spinach as suggested for a nutritionally rounded meal. 

Recipe: Taste of Home

Pulled Pork
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Just five ingredients and eight to 10 hands-off hours of slow cooking makes piping-hot and indulgent pulled pork. 

Recipe: Southern Living

Blueberry Vanilla Popsicles
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To make popsicles, just blend fruit, yogurt, and sugar and pour into paper cups to freeze. Homemade popsicles have the benefit of being healthier and cheaper than store-bought and, of course, can be customized. 

Recipe: Allrecipes

No-Bake Cheesecake
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This is an easy go-to when you need to make an indulgent dessert without an oven. Top with fresh fruit, caramel, or chocolate sauce. 

Recipe: Martha Stewart

No-Bake Peanut Butter Cookie Balls
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These treats are an ideal stand-in for freshly baked cookies. They have a similar shape, size, and texture and can be customized in similar ways. Try using other nut butters or a combination of many. 

Recipe: Recipe Girl

Chocolate Bark
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Chocolate bark tends to be expensive to buy but is so easy to make. The microwave melts the chocolate; the freezer sets trail mix into it.

Recipe: PBS Kitchen Explorers

Mug Cake
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By mixing up cake batter from scratch in a microwave-safe mug, you can indulge a craving in just minutes. 

Recipe: Allrecipes

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