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Sheet pan specials: Lazy but delicious all-in-one dinners as simple as turning on the oven

Chop, cook and eat.

ONE-TRAY, SHEET PAN, tray bake… Whatever name you use, recipes that call for just one roasting tin or baking tray and a hot oven are some of the most rewarding, most efficient meals you can make as a home cook.

Straightforward, speedy and super adaptable, a one-pan recipe makes for a satisfying dinner with very little washing up.

These are two recipes I rely on heavily midweek. The beauty of both and indeed most one-pan recipes is their adaptability, so don’t be afraid to swap out and add ingredients.

Cheat’s Roast Pork

nor Source: Ali Dunworth

This recipe came about when I fancied a roast pork dinner midweek but knew it was not a realistic wish, considering my time and motivation was low.

A note: if left at full size, the potatoes will take much longer to roast than the Brussels sprouts. To even up the cooking time, chop the spuds into small cubes and slice the sprouts in two. This means they should roast at the same speed. Sometimes I’ll add sage if I have it, often a bit of black pudding too.

Ingredients

  • 250g potatoes
  • 250g Brussels sprouts
  • 1 red onion
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • Small bunch thyme
  • 1/2 lemon, zested
  • 6 – 8 pork sausages
  • 1 apple
  • 1-2 tbsp olive oil
  • Salt and pepper

Method

  1. Preheat your oven to 180c.
  2. Wash your potatoes and chop them into smallish pieces, about 2cm cubed. No need to peel them! Chop your Brussels sprouts in halves, no need to trim. Peel your onion and chop it into chunky pieces. Peel your garlic and chop it finely.
  3. Place all the vegetables into a large bowl. Drizzle with olive oil and mix around to coat everything.
  4. Pick the thyme leaves off the stalks, add the leaves to the bowl and season everything with salt and pepper. Add the zest of half a lemon. Mix again and then spread your vegetables onto your baking tray.
  5. Separate your sausages and arrange them amongst the vegetables.
  6. Chop and slice your apple and spread out on the tray.
  7. Pop your ‘roast’ into the hot oven for 35-40 minutes, turning your sausages halfway through cooking and moving the vegetables around. Keep an eye on it so nothing burns.
  8. Remove from the oven and divide out on to plates. You can serve with gravy if you have some handy and hot.

Spiced Vegetable And Chickpea Roast

rrem Source: Ali Dunworth

For this dish, anything goes. I love combining root veg or any starchy veg, letting them sweeten up as they roast. If you don’t fancy using tomatoes, try an aubergine instead.

I try to get all the veg well coated in the garlic-spice paste so the flavour is similar throughout but the textures are all mixed up. It’s a good idea to make extra and eat it the next day for lunch. This colourful dish tastes great on a bed of baby spinach leaves with a squeeze of lemon.

Ingredients

  • 3cm cube fresh ginger, grated
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled and grated
  • 2 tsp paprika
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp ground coriander
  • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 4 tbsp plain yoghurt
  • Sea salt
  • 1 small sweet potato, cut into 2cm chunks
  • 1 red onion, peeled & cut into wedges
  • 1 small cauliflower, cut into small florets
  • 2 tomatoes, chopped
  • 400g tin chickpeas

Method

  1. Preheat your oven to 180c.
  2. In a large bowl add your plain yoghurt, ginger, garlic, one tsp of paprika, cumin, coriander, lemon juice and mix well together.
  3. Add in all your chopped vegetables and coat them well with the mix.
  4. Drain and rinse your chickpeas. Add them to the bowl mix to coat.
  5. Then spread your mixture on your baking tray.
  6. Season with salt and sprinkle on the rest of the paprika.
  7. Put into your hot oven and bake for 35-45 minutes, moving the vegetables around on the tray once or twice while cooking and keeping an eye that they don’t burn. You want your sweet potato to get a bit chewy, your cauliflower a bit charred and the tomatoes should have melted.
  8. Remove from the oven, pile into a bowl and enjoy with some fresh herbs chopped on top. Any leftovers will make for a great lunch.

More: Pasta, steak, roast dinner – 8 off-the-shelf sauces you can make better at home>

More: Have a posh night in – Dishes to make when you want to feel fancy (but you’ve got less than an hour)>

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About the author:

Ali Dunworth

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