Easy Sunday Afternoon Dinners

Time spent with family and friends can make Sunday afternoon dinners the best meal of the entire week. The in-depth conversations, relaxation, and bonding that can take place as these meals almost make them almost sacred. With that being said, prepping for these meals can be a daunting task.

Preparing more than one flavorful dish can be overwhelming and tiring for the host. Especially when you are trying to impress your family or friends. The fact that there are a variety of meal recipes to choose from that can take hours to prepare doesn’t help at all!
We hear you loud and clear! Here are some easy-to-prepare Sunday afternoon dishes everyone will surely enjoy and won’t leave you exhausted before the meal even starts!

1. Slow-Cooked Sausage Minestrone

Nothing beats a slow-cooked stew.


  • 1 ½ cup elbow macaroni, uncooked
  • 9 ounces smoked sausage, sliced 1/4-inch thick
  • 1 ½ cup onion, chopped
  • 1 ½ tablespoon garlic, chopped
  • 1 cup dehydrated navy beans
  • 1 cup baby limas or dried butter beans
  • 1 cup carrots, chopped
  • 1 cup celery, chopped
  •  ½ cup corn kernels
  • 3 cups collard greens, thinly sliced
  • 7 cups chicken stock
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper


  • Place dehydrated beans in a large bowl.
  • Cover the beans with 4 to 4 1/2 inches of water and soak the beans overnight.
  • Preheat the oven to 375°F.
  • Drain and place the beans in a 6-quart slow cooker (like the ones at https://unocasa.com/products/enameled-cast-iron-dutch-oven
  • Heat the slow-cooker over med to high heat. Drop in the sausage slices and cook until lightly browned. Remove the sausage temporarily.
  • Saute onion and garlic in the slow cooker until it softened.
  • Add the sausage, carrots, corn, celery, chicken stock, salt, and pepper to the slow cooker. Stir regularly, cover, and cook in the oven until beans are tender,
  • Add in collard greens and elbow macaroni. Cover and cook until the macaroni and collards are tender

2. Single Pan Ratatouille

Layers of healthy veggies oven-roasted to perfection.


  • 1 medium eggplant, sliced ¼ inch thick
  • 2 small summer squash, sliced ¼ inch thick
  • 2 medium zucchini, sliced ¼ inch thick
  • 2 big tomatoes, sliced ¼ inch thick
  • 2 small red onion, sliced ¼ inch thick
  • 2 medium bell peppers, cut in half
  • 1 cup tomato sauce
  • 3 teaspoons thyme leaves
  • 2 twigs oregano
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 10 teaspoons olive oil
  • Salt and pepper


  • Preheat the oven to 375°F.
  •  Heat 6 teaspoons of olive oil in a small pan. Add garlic, cook until fragrant. Remove pan from heat, add oregano, and steep for 15 minutes. Remove garlic bits and oregano.
  •  Drizzle 2 teaspoons of the olive oil mixture in the baking dish.
  •  Spread half of the tomato sauce on the baking dish.
  • Layer all vegetables alternately.
  • Brush the remaining tomato sauce on top of the veggies.
  • Drizzle with the remaining olive oil mixture. Sprinkle it with salt, thyme, and pepper.
  •  Roast until the surface turns brown.

3. Chicken Thighs with Green Olives and Pancetta

The tempting golden brown, crispy chicken skin seared in a hot iron cast skillet is mildly irresistible.


  • 10 chicken thighs, dehydrated
  • 8 ounces pancetta, diced
  • 2 1/2 cups green olives
  • White wine vinegar
  • 1 medium garlic, sliced
  • Salt and pepper


  •  Rub the whole chicken thighs with salt and pepper.
  •  Heat the skillet to medium heat.
  • Lay chicken thighs, skin side down, on the heated skillet. Cook until the fat comes out and the skin turns golden brown.
  •  Distribute the diced pancetta around the thighs. Flip thighs to cook the bony side.
  •  Stir pancetta until it browns evenly.
  •  Add olives, garlic, and vinegar and cook for an additional 5 minutes.

4. Southern Sunday Meal

A traditional Sunday meal Southern-style consists of pork and ham, barbecue, chicken, plates of seafood, veggies, rice, and pastries. Here are few other mouthwatering dishes to check out if you are looking to add a little more variety to your Sunday meal plans.

Quick and Easy

Enjoying a meal together at least once a week is more than just a family bonding event. Sunday afternoon dinners may only take a few hours, but the event itself means immeasurably more. Have a blast, and try making these easy, flavorful dishes today.