Quick and Easy Spanish Main Courses

Perfect Dishes for the Work Week

Between traffic jams, shuttling the kids to and from sports, and driving to piano lessons, weeknight schedules don't allow much time for cooking. Despite this, most of us prefer home-cooked meals to fast food dining.

We put together our list of quick and easy main courses that use ingredients that nearly everyone has in the pantry or all supermarkets carry. Add a green salad and a baguette to any of these main dishes and complete your meal.

  • 01 of 06
    Arroz Cubano - Cuban Rice
    Lisa Sierra

    Cuban Rice is a popular dish for families in Spain, and as with any dish that is popular, every household has their own version. Some cooks prepare the rice with garlic or a bit of tomato and onion, while others prepare simply white rice. Some may open a can of tomato sauce and sauté it with a bit of olive oil, while ​others use a "sofrito" with onions and peppers.

    This is the Sierra household's version of Arroz Cubano that you can prepare in less than 30 minutes.

  • 02 of 06
    Salmon en Salsa Verde - Salmon in Green Sauce
    Lisa Sierra

    Green sauce, or "salsa verde," is a typical Spanish sauce and is usually served with fish. In this case, the sauce also includes green peppers, which gives it a beautiful green color. The sauce is prepared first, then the salmon is sautéed in olive oil flavored with garlic and served atop the sauce. It is a healthy and quick dish, perfect for a light dinner.

  • 03 of 06
    Albondigas con Salsa de Perejil - Meatballs in Parsley Sauce

    This main course originates in the Balearic Islands of the Mediterranean. The bacon in these meatballs makes them extra flavorful. Combine them with a rich-tasting sauce of broth, parsley, and walnuts and you have a delicious main course.​

  • 04 of 06
    Pork chops a la Madrilene Recipe - Chuletas de cerdo a la Madrilena (c)
    Lisa Sierra (c) 2009 Licensed to About.com Inc.

    In this Spanish favorite, pork chops are sauteed with roasted red peppers, garlic, and brandy, which form rich, flavorful pan juices that are drizzled over the chops. Serve with garlic mashed potatoes.

    Continue to 5 of 6 below.
  • 05 of 06
    Pasta in Chorizo and Tomato Sauce - Macaroni en Salsa de Tomate con Chorizo
    Lisa Sierra

    Macaroni, rigatoni, penne, and spaghetti are often eaten in Spanish homes with a typically Spanish twist to the sauce – Spanish chorizo sausage and Spanish smoked paprika. As in Italy, Spanish pasta is considered a first course rather than the main course, but this recipe will serve 4 adults as a main course.

  • 06 of 06
    Beef with Pasta and Tomato Sauce
    (c) Lisa Sierra 2014 Licensed to About.com Inc.

    Start with very thinly sliced, round, top sirloin steaks (boneless), or "breakfast" steaks, and bread them with a bit of flour and garlic. Quickly fry in hot olive oil and make a green salad. In just minutes you'll have a tasty dinner.