Complete One-Pan Meals That Save The Day

Hero Dinners
Complete One-Pan Meals That Save The Day

By: Linda Kissam
Photos Courtesy of William Morrow Publishers

Creating an entire meal in one skillet or sheet pan makes cooking—and cleanup— can now be pretty darn easy. This kind of cooking is quick to assemble, quick to cook, and quick to wash afterwards.  It’s like a dream-come-true for home chefs.

I found a cookbook for those of you who like these features.  Hero Dinners: Complete One-Pan Meals That Save The Day by Marge Perry and David Bonom. This cookbook may just transform your meal routine and the way you cook on busy days. NPR just chose this book as a Favorite of the Year!

The authors have well-rounded resumes. Marge Perry is an author and a teacher. Marge writes, teaches, broadcasts and speaks about cooking, food, nutrition and travel. She is a respected guide for anyone who cooks, eats and travels. Ms. Perry writes, teaches, broadcasts and speaks about cooking, food, nutrition and travel. Marge is an accessible and authoritative guide for anyone who cooks, eats and travels.

Marge Perry and David Bonom


David Bonom, CCP is a recipe developer, food writer, and restaurant consultant. He is a contributing editor to Cooking Light Magazine and his writing and development clients include Weight Watchers International Publications, Weight Watchers Magazine, Rodale, Self, Health Magazine, Fine Cooking, Coastal Living, Better Homes and Gardens and  Prevention Magazine.

Gochujang Skirt Steak w Scallion Polenta and Broccoli


One-pan dinners from this cookbook are inspired to work for taste, style and flavor … however readers should note, the recipes do require dirtying bowls, plates and utensils. They can also require some prep time that stretches the “quick” factor to medium or slow. Plan accordingly.

Lemon Cornmeal Poundcake Two Ways


The authors offer some really great flavor combinations inspired by global cuisines, including Harissa Chicken (North Africa) and Minted Lamb Burgers (Greece). There are five main chapters. Each one is unique and should hit a note with every palate. Chapter one features chicken, duck and turkey. Chapter two showcases beef, pork and lam. Chapter three is a platform of fish and shellfish.  Chapter five is all about meatless dishes.  The final chapter shares desserts and snacks recipes. There are plenty of appetizing photos to guide the reader to success.

Hero Dinners includes 100 tasty one-pan meals including:

Apricot Honey Glazed Spareribs with Smash-Roasted Potatoes

Skillet Lasagna with Caramelized Onions and Spinach

Shrimp with Thai Coconut Green Curry Glaze *

Turkey Chorizo Tacos

Salmon on Tomato-Jalapeno Jam

Fig, Asparagus and Goat Cheese Galette

Skillet Cinnamon Buns

Take this cookbook for a test drive with this recipe.


Shrimp with Thai Coconut Green Curry Glaze


*Shrimp with Thai Coconut Green Curry Glaze
Pair with Demarie Moscato D’Asti

While Indian curry relies on dried ground spices for its flavor, Thai curry is based on a paste made from spices and fresh herbs. Thai curry paste is sold in most grocery stores in small jars; it is often made with lemongrass and Thai ginger in addition to the usual herbs and spices.

For this dish, rather than drowning the shrimp and vegetables in a heavy coconut curry sauce, we created a glaze. It is a lighter, less cloying way of delivering the same zippy, pungent flavor.

Makes 4 servings

1 (12-ounce) russet potato, peeled and cut in 1/2-inch dice

8 ounces green beans, trimmed and halved

1 1/2 pounds shrimp, peeled and deveined (16-20 per pound)

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper

2 tablespoons canola oil, divided

1 medium onion, chopped, (about 1 cup)

1 medium red bell pepper, cut into thin strips

2 garlic cloves, minced

1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger

3/4 teaspoon jarred green curry paste

1 cup unsweetened coconut milk

1 tablespoon fish sauce

1 tablespoon brown sugar

2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro


  1. Place the potatoes in a large skillet and fill with enough cold water to cover them by 1 1/2-inches. Bring to a boil and cook 6 minutes, at which point the potatoes should be nearly done. Add the green beans and cook until they are crisp-tender and the potatoes are tender but still hold their shape, about 2 minutes more; drain
  2. Season the shrimp with the salt and pepper. Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in the skillet over medium-high heat and add half the shrimp. Cook, turning once, until the shrimp are slightly browned and just cooked through, about 1 1/2 minutes per side. Transfer them to a plate and repeat with the remaining shrimp.
  3. Heat the remaining 1 tablespoon of oil over medium-high heat. Add the onion, bell pepper, garlic and ginger and cook until slightly softened, 2 to 3 minutes. Stir in the curry paste and cook, stirring, 30 seconds.
  4. Reduce the heat to medium and add the coconut milk, fish sauce, and brown sugar; bring to a simmer and cook, stirring occasionally, for 1 minute. Return the potatoes and green beans to the skillet and cook until heated through for 2 minutes. Add the shrimp and cook until heated through, 1 to 2 minutes. Remove the skillet from the heat and stir in the cilantro.

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Hero Dinners: One-Pan Meals That Save The Day

Marge Perry and David Bonom

Morrow, $29.99 (288p) ISBN 978-0-06-285606-7

Note from the author of this review.  Although a complimentary copy was sent to me for review, the opinions are my own.

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