5 Ingredient Meals

by Mary Beth Wallace

Requiring just five ingredients, these flavorful main courses prove that less really is more.
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The 5: Chicken, Cream of Potato Soup, Milk, Frozen Vegetables, Pie Crusts


Sandra Cretton Cleveland

Sandra Cretton, Cleveland

Chicken Pot Pie

  • 2 cups cooked chicken breast, chopped
  • 2 cans cream of potato soup
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1 large bag of frozen mixed vegetables, cooked
  • 1/2 tsp. black pepper
  • 2 deep dish pie crusts

Preheat oven to 375°. Mix together the chicken, cream of potato soup, milk, vegetables, and pepper. Spoon the mixture into one of the pie crusts. Place the other crust on top and use a sharp knife to cut a few slits in it. Bake for 40 minutes.

(above) photos by Rich Smith

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The 5: Tortellini, Edamame, Cherry Tomatoes, Olives, Bell Pepper


Margaret Summersell Red Bank

Margaret Summersell, Red Bank

Italian Pasta Salad

  • 1 package cheese-filled tortellini
  • 1 10 oz. bag frozen edamame
  • 2 cups cherry tomatoes, chopped
  • 1 jar olives (black or green)
  • 1 orange bell pepper, diced

Prepare the tortellini and edamame according to package directions, then set aside. Mix together your fresh ingredients, along with the tortellini and edamame, in a large bowl. You can add a drizzle of Italian dressing if you prefer.

(above) photos by Rich Smith

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The 5: Sweet Potatoes, Black Beans, Avocado, Bell Pepper, Sour Cream


Hannah Lancaster Red Bank

Hannah Lancaster, Red Bank

Mexican Stuffed Sweet Potatoes

  • 2 medium sweet potatoes
  • 1 can black beans
  • 1-2 avocados
  • Your preferred seasonings
  • 1 small or medium bell pepper, chopped
  • 2 generous dollops of sour cream

Preheat oven to 375°. Rinse the sweet potatoes and poke a few holes in them with a fork. Wrap them up in tinfoil and bake for 60-70 minutes. While the potatoes are baking, pour the black beans into a pot on medium-low heat. Add any seasoning, such as garlic powder, cumin, chili powder, salt, pepper, and onion powder. Cut your avocado and remove the pit. Mash up the insides and set aside. With 5 minutes left on the potatoes, add the chopped bell pepper to the black beans. When the potatoes are done, remove from the oven and let cool for 10-15 minutes. Carefully unwrap the tinfoil and slice the potato down the center. Press on the ends of the potato to open it a bit more. Using a draining spoon, scoop some of the black bean mixture onto each potato. Top with as much avocado and sour cream as you prefer.

(above) photos by Rich Smith

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The 5: Whole Chicken, Celery, Carrots, Onion, Red Potatoes 


Yvonne Alvarez Lookout Valley

Yvonne Alvarez, Lookout Valley

Great Granny’s Chicken Soup

  • 1 whole chicken
  • 5 Tbsp. lemon pepper seasoning, plus more to coat chicken
  • 2 cups celery, chopped
  • 4 large carrots, chopped
  • 2 large onions, chopped (keep half an onion whole for the stock)
  • 4 red potatoes, cubed
  • 2 Tbsp. butter
  • 2 Tbsp. pink salt

Preheat oven to 425°. Rinse the chicken inside and out and pat the outside dry. Cover the entire chicken inside and out with lemon pepper seasoning. Place in a 9×13 baking dish with 2 cups of water, and roast 1.5 hours or until the juices run clear. Let the chicken cool, then remove from the bone and set aside. Place the gravy from the dish into a large stock pot with 6 more cups of water. Add the chicken carcass and wings with a head of celery, the ends of the carrots, and half of 1 onion. Add 3 Tbsp. of lemon pepper to the pot and bring to a boil, then simmer for 1 hour to produce a savory stock. Using a large skillet, sauté the chopped celery, carrots, onions, and potatoes in butter. Add 2 Tbsp. of lemon pepper and the chicken, and sauté all together another 3 minutes. Remove the carcass, celery, carrots, and onion from the stock. Add the sautéed vegetables and chicken to the stock and bring to another boil. Simmer for 30 minutes and serve.

(above) photos by Rich Smith

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