Five Easy & Delicious Shelter in Place Recipes

Five Easy & Delicious Shelter in Place Recipes 

You’re self-quarantining and this question pops into your mind, “What are we supposed to make to eat with all of these pantry essentials?”. Well, I love just about all things food so I have considered that plus the COVID-19 situation we’ve all found ourselves in and came up with five easy dishes that you can make during shelter in place. Most of the ingredients listed in the recipes are things most of us already have in our pantry’s, fridge, or freezer. If you come across something you don’t yet have, not a problem; there are always ways to substitute by finding alternative ingredients online. 

Here are five shelter in place recipes to practice or share with you or your loved one.

The Best Tuna Salad

There are lots of different kinds of tuna salad out there, but this is an easy and classic version. There are also some additions/substitutions mentioned that aren’t so traditional but may help brighten up the flavors.


  • 2 6oz cans white meat tuna packed in water (drained)
  • 2 tablespoons minced celery
  • 2 tablespoons minced red onion
  • 1 teaspoon minced flat leaf parsley (sub dried parsley)
  • 1/3 cup mayonnaise (sub miracle whip)
  • 1 tablespoon whole-grain mustard (sub yellow mustard or dijon)
  • 1 pinch ground black pepper
  • 1 pinch salt
  • 2 tablespoons sweet pickle relish (optional)
  • 2 boiled eggs roughly chopped (optional)
  • Freshly squeezed lemon juice (optional)


In a mixing bowl, break up the tuna with a fork. Toss in the celery, onion and parsley. Add the mayonnaise, mustard, and season with pepper and salt to taste. Stir to combine all the ingredients and then add lemon juice to taste (if using). You can eat this with crackers, bread as a sandwich, or with lettuce as a wrap. The possibilities are almost endless.

 Super Simple Minestrone Soup

Light and vibrant, this soup packs a flavorful punch. The addition of soy sauce to this dish adds a necessary depth and flavor that accompanies all the veggies so effortlessly well.


  • 1 tablespoon olive oil (plus more for serving)
  • 1 8oz can whole kernel sweet corn (drained)
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • ½ teaspoon dried rosemary chopped
  • ¼ teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1-quart chicken broth (sub vegetable broth)
  • 1 14oz can diced tomatoes
  • ¾ cup small-cut pasta (small shells, elbows, or ditalini)
  • 1 14oz can white beans with half the liquid drained
  • 1 teaspoon soy sauce
  • Kosher salt
  • Ground pepper
  • 1 14oz can cut green beans (drained)


Heat oil in a medium sized soup pot over medium to high heat. Add in corn and cook until it starts to brown a bit, about 3 minutes, stir once or twice. Add in tomato paste, rosemary and oregano and continue to cook, stirring constantly until the tomato paste beings to darken in color, about 1 minute. Slowly whisk in your chicken broth until the paste is smooth and incorporated into the liquid. Add the can of diced tomatoes including the liquid and then bring everything to a boil. Stir in the pasta, white beans and the reserved liquid from the beans, and the soy sauce. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Cook the pasta until it is al dente, 7-8 minutes, stirring in the can of green beans during the final 2 minutes of cooking. Drizzle a little oil on top when serving.

Pasta with Meat Sauce

This meat sauce is a simple, all-purpose meat sauce that goes great with any shape of pasta. My favorite to pair it with is penne, or farfalle (bow ties). You could also pair it with gnocchi or tortellini.


  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 medium onion peeled and chopped
  • ½ lb. ground beef
  • ½ lb. ground pork
  • Kosher salt
  • Ground pepper
  • 2 cups tomato sauce (homemade or store bought)
  • 1 lb. pasta dried or fresh
  • Fresh basil for serving (optional)


Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium heat, add chopped onion, ground beef, ground pork. Stir ingredients together and break up the meat with a wooden spoon. Season well with salt and pepper. Let cook for about 20 minutes or until onions are translucent and meat is browned. Make sure to stir frequently. Drain the meat in a colander then pour the drained meat back into the skillet and add the tomato sauce. Reduce the heat and let it simmer for about 20 more minutes. While the meat and sauce mixture simmers, grab a large pot of water with a bit of salt added to it , and bring it to a boil over high heat. Add in the pasta and cook about 10-12 minutes or until it is done to your liking. Drain the pasta in a colander, transfer the pasta to a large bowl and stir in the meat sauce. If you have some handy, sprinkle parmesan cheese over the top.

Beef & Asparagus Pasta Toss

You’ll get nothing but classic Steakhouse flavors from this super easy pasta bowl.


  • 1 lb. ground beef
  • 3 cups bow tie pasta (sub another pasta of choice)
  • 1 lb. fresh asparagus cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • ¼ cup minced shallots (sub yellow/white onion)
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • Kosher Salt
  • Ground pepper
  • ¼ cup shredded parmesan cheese (optional)


Cook pasta in boiling salted water about 10 minutes. Add the asparagus to water and continue to cook for about 3-4 minutes. Drain well into a colander. In a large skillet over medium heat add ground beef and salt and pepper. Cook about 8-10 minutes, breaking up the meat and stirring occasionally. Drain the meat and return to the skillet. Add oil to the same skillet over medium heat and add minced shallots and garlic and cook for about 4 minutes stirring frequently. Remove skillet from heat and add beef. Combine beef mixture with pasta and asparagus in a large bowl and toss well. Sprinkle with parmesan if desired.

The Ultimate Chili

There are so many variations and things to add and substitute to make this recipe just the way you like it. But you can’t go wrong with a classic like beef chili and this one’s a winner.


  • 1-2 lbs. ground beef
  • 5 slices thick cut bacon diced
  • 1 medium white onion diced
  • 1 medium red bell pepper diced
  • 4 cloves garlic minced (sub pre minced garlic)
  • 1 ½ cups beer
  • 1 ½ cups beef stock
  • 2 14oz can fire-roasted diced tomatoes (with juices)
  • 2 14oz can beans of your choice rinsed and drained
  • 1 4oz can diced green chiles
  • 1 can chipotle chili in adobo sauce diced (plus 1 teaspoon adobo sauce)
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • Sea salt (sub kosher) and ground pepper
  • 1 avocado (optional)
  • Chopped fresh cilantro (optional)
  • Diced green or red onions (optional)
  • Shredded cheddar cheese (optional)
  • Sour cream (optional)
  • Lime wedges (optional)


In a large stockpot over medium to high heat, add diced bacon and sauté, stirring occasionally for about 3 minutes. Add ground beef and cook thoroughly stirring and breaking up meat. Use a slotted spoon to transfer cooked meat to a clean plate or bowl and set aside. Reserve about 1-2 tablespoons of grease in the pot from the meat and discard the rest. Add the onion, and bell pepper to the pot and sauté for about 5 minutes before adding in minced garlic and letting the mixture cook for another 2 minutes stirring occasionally.  Add beer, cooked meat, beef stock, tomatoes, beans, green chiles, chipotle, chili powder, smoked paprika, and cumin to the pot and stir to combine. Cook until chili starts to simmer. Reduce the heat to medium-low and cover to let it continue to simmer for another 20 minutes. Taste the chili and season with salt and pepper as needed. Feel free to garnish with avocado, sour cream, cheese, green onion, and lime.

Emmaris O’Neal-Womack is the Office Administrator at KWC Dallas

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