For many, a family dinner doesn’t mean a family of four or six or even eight. It means a dinner for two, which can be incredibly difficult. Sometimes, it’s hassle to simply muster the energy or inspiration to cook for just two. While other times, it’s difficult to only cook for two, rather than the larger groups that we’re accustomed to feeding.
As a divorced, yet remarried, mother of two, my husband and I have nights when the kids aren’t at home, and while that does allow us plenty of date nights, the fact still remains that I need to be as comfortable cooking for two as I am cooking for four.
So How Do I Cook for Only Two?
On nights when I cook for only two, we experiment and test recipes. It’s much more affordable to try new ingredients and ideas when I’m only cooking for two, so we take full advantage of it. If you’ve always wanted to try prosciutto, but haven’t because it can be a little pricey, try it in a small dinner for two!
Buy Flexible Portions
Since I have to cook for two weekly, I buy meat in smaller packages or break down the larger, family packs into smaller ziploc bags for two. If the supermarket is having a sale on a family pack of pork chops, I divide the family pack into several smaller packs. Bags of boneless, skinless, frozen chicken breasts are also a great way to get smaller servings. Then, instead of cooking an entire chicken or large package of chicken, I can defrost and cook just what I need.
Leftovers have such a bad rap, but they don’t have to. Think of leftovers as re-purposing dinner. If we have spaghetti & meat sauce for dinner one night, freeze the left over sauce. Then, on a night when you’re cooking for two, use that sauce to make another dinner…just for two! This also works great for leftover pork or beef roast. We defrost the leftover proteins and turn them into tacos for two.
One of Our Favorite Dinners for Two
Peppered Chicken with Saffron Polenta
Easy and elegant dinner for two with Peppered Chicken over Saffron Polenta using Sazon.
- 2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts-cut into 1-2" strips
- 1 TBSP olive oil
- 1/2 c. onion–diced
- 1/2 c. green bell pepper–diced
- ½ c. celery-chopped
- 2 cloves garlic–minced
- 1 (15oz) can diced tomatoes
- 1/4 c. chicken stock
- 1 tsp Italian seasoning
- 1 TBSP dried parsley flakes
- 1/2 tsp crushed red pepper flakes–less if you can’t handle the heat
- 2c. water or chicken broth
- 2 pkts Goya Sazon seasoning with saffron
- 1/4 c. grated parmesan cheese
- 3/4 c. yellow cornmeal–plain…not corn meal mix
- 4-6 TBSP milk
- In a large skillet, brown chicken breasts in olive oil. Add onion, peppers, celery and garlic. Saute over medium heat until onions & peppers are tender. Deglaze the pan with vodka and add diced tomatoes, Italian seasoning, and red pepper flakes. Cook 15 minutes or until flavors taste combined. If the sauce becomes too thick add water.
- In a medium sauce pan, bring chicken broth/water and Sazon seasoning to a boil. Quickly whisk in cornmeal and reduce heat to low. Continue cooking until thick. Add Parmesan cheese and milk (to desired consistency).
- Serve chicken & tomato-pepper sauce over polenta…super yummy!
Simple Dinner Ideas for Two
Entrees for Two
- 4-Ingredient Caprese Stuffed Peppers by Shockingly Delicious
- Air Fryer Cajun Shrimp by Wholistic Woman
- Beef Carpaccio with Truffle Vinaigrette by Caroline’s Cooking
- Butter Poached Cod with Lentils by A Day in the Life on the Farm
- Cacio e Pepe with Parmesan Frico by Pies and Plots
- Chicken Mushroom Stuffed Squash by Cindy’s Recipes and Writings
- Chicken Pot Pie for 2 by Recipes Food and Cooking
- Easy Chicken Pesto Pasta by Brunch-n-Bites
- Filet with Crabéarnaise by A Kitchen Hoor’s Adventures
- Peppered Chicken with Saffron Polenta by Gourmet Everyday
- Sausage and Vegetable Orzo by Hot Eats and Cool Reads
- Sheet Pan Greek Chicken and Potatoes by Sunday Supper Movement
- Shrimp Biranyi by Our Good Life
- Shrimp Canneloni by Bottom Left of the Mitten
- Spaghetti Squash Pad Thai by Take A Bite Out of Boca
- Teriyaki Rice Bowl by Life Tastes Good
Desserts for Two
- Chocolate Cherry Skillet Cookie by The Bitter Side of Sweet
- Deep Dish Chocolate Chip Cookies for 2 by Hezzi-D’s Books and Cooks
- Kahlua Tiramisu for Two by That Skinny Chick Can Bake
The Sunday Supper Movement is committed to bringing our readers delicious recipes that encourage them to gather and eat together around the family table. Search for your favorite ingredients on our Sunday Supper website. Also check out the Sunday Supper Pinterest boards for plenty more ideas and inspiration.