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72 Spring Dinner Ideas to Celebrate the Season

spring dinner ideas: spring pea soup
Photo: Liz Andrew/Styling: Erin McDowell

Soups, stews, casseroles: We’ve had a good run, but it’s springtime now. We’re moving on to lighter, brighter meals, like strawberry-soba noodle salad and creamy pea soup with mint—and you should, too. To whet your appetite, we’ve rounded up 72 spring dinner ideas, most of which only take 30 minutes to prepare. We’ll cook our favorite hearty recipes all over again next fall, but in the meantime, we need to tend to some asparagus.

63 Spring Desserts Starring *All* the Seasonal Produce


What Fruits and Vegetables Are in Season in Spring?

Before you craft your ultimate dinner menu, here’s a quick primer on the produce that’s at its peak in spring. While most fruits won’t trickle into the farmers market until summer, rhubarb, strawberries and pineapple are all jewels of the season. And there are plenty of bright, green veggies to help you bid adieu to winter too (think artichokes, arugula, asparagus, fava beans, leeks, morels, peas, radishes and ramps, to name a few).

1. Seared Scallops with Green Peas, Mint and Shallots

  • Time Commitment: 20 minutes
  • Why We Love It: <30 minutes, special occasion-worthy, <10 ingredients

Not only is it totally gorgeous, it’s also ready to eat in 20 minutes flat. The key is thoroughly drying the scallops before searing them for a drool-worthy crust.

2. Spring Pea Soup with Mint

  • Time Commitment: 40 minutes
  • Why We Love It: crowd-pleaser, beginner-friendly, make ahead

What better way to get your fill of fresh produce than in a creamy-yet-light soup? Use vegetable broth instead of chicken broth to make this spring dinner recipe vegetarian.

3. Double Pea, Prosciutto and Burrata Platter

  • Time Commitment: 10 minutes
  • Why We Love It: crowd-pleaser, <30 minutes, beginner-friendly

Your guests (or roommates) will adore this verdant spin on charcuterie. Personally, we were hooked at the first mention of burrata.

4. One-Pot, 15-Minute Pasta Limone

  • Time Commitment: 15 minutes
  • Why We Love It: one pot, <30 minutes, kid-friendly, <10 ingredients

Skip the marinara—all you need is grated Parm and fresh lemon for this winning spring dinner idea. Your picky eater just might ask for seconds.

5. Mackerel Asparagus Salad with Sesame Vinaigrette

  • Time Commitment: 15 minutes
  • Why We Love It: beginner-friendly, special occasion-worthy, <30 minutes

A little spring produce can transform tinned fish into a dinner-ready salad like magic. The recipe calls for charring the asparagus for a touch of smokiness.

6. Skillet Gnocchi with Sausage and Broccoli Rabe

  • Time Commitment: 30 minutes
  • Why We Love It: crowd-pleaser, one pan, high protein

Gnocchi, sausage and one-pan meals: These are a few of our favorite things. Better yet, this filling spring dinner recipe feeds six in one fell swoop.

7. Instant Pot Spaghetti with Goat Cheese, Mint and Peas

  • Time Commitment: 30 minutes
  • Why We Love It: crowd-pleaser, Instant Pot recipe, beginner-friendly

If you thought your Instant Pot was only good for quickly cooking bulky cuts of meat, allow this spring dinner recipe to change your mind. Drop in the dry noodles with the aromatics for flavor, then quick-release the pressure once cooked to keep them al dente.

8. Honey-Lime Chicken and Veggies in Foil

  • Time Commitment: 30 minutes
  • Why We Love It: high protein, special occasion-worthy, beginner-friendly

An easy upgrade for chicken night—and the perfect excuse to fire up the grill at the first sign of warm weather. Cooking this spring dinner idea in foil means you'll be left with minimal mess.

9. Shaved Spring Vegetable and Apple Salad with Ginger-Dijon Dressing

  • Time Commitment: 15 minutes
  • Why We Love It: <30 minutes, no cook, special occasion-worthy, make ahead

The zingy homemade dressing has a secret: It all comes together in a blender for a creamy consistency and minimal effort. The produce ranges from cauliflower to snap peas to fresh herbs.

10. Fresh Shiitake Spring Rolls

  • Time Commitment: 25 minutes
  • Why We Love It: <30 minutes, make ahead, special occasion-worthy

Filled with shiitake mushrooms and pink radicchio, they taste as good as they look. The only cooking this spring dinner recipe requires is briefly sautéing the mushrooms.

11. Joanna Gaines’s Asparagus and Fontina Quiche

  • Time Commitment: 1 hour and 20 minutes
  • Why We Love It: crowd-pleaser, special occasion-worthy, <10 ingredients

This stunner may look like brunch, but it's filling enough to serve as a spring dinner recipe. Bring on the flaky crust and gooey cheese, please.

12. Green Goddess Roasted Carrot Salad

  • Time Commitment: 35 minutes
  • Why We Love It: beginner-friendly, vegetarian, special occasion-worthy

What’s the complete opposite of a sad dinner salad? This spring dinner recipe is what. Don't get us started on the tangy, avocado-based green goddess dressing.

13. Wild Mushroom Chowder with Bacon and Leeks

  • Time Commitment: 40 minutes
  • Why We Love It: make ahead, one pot, beginner-friendly

Soup season can be a year-round state of mind if you want it to be. This soul-soother starts with thick-cut bacon and butter, in case you need more convincing.

14. Oven Risotto with Garlic Roasted Mushrooms and Arugula

  • Time Commitment: 40 minutes
  • Why We Love It: special occasion-worthy, beginner-friendly, kid-friendly

What? No stirring? Call it a dinnertime miracle. This low-maintenance, cheesy gem cooks to perfection in the oven instead of on the stovetop.

15. Greens Mac and Cheese

  • Time Commitment: 1 hour
  • Why We Love It: crowd-pleaser, beginner-friendly, vegetarian

This decadent number gets its hue from leeks and broccolini, but might we suggest swapping in some ramps to make it even more of a testament to spring?

16. Sugar Snap Pea Salad with Chèvre Ranch

  • Time Commitment: 15 minutes
  • Why We Love It: crowd-pleaser, <30 minutes, make ahead

There’s something about the tanginess of goat cheese that always tastes like spring to us. It's paired with goat's milk and goat's milk yogurt in the dressing for maximum earthiness.

17. Curry Noodles with Broccoli Rabe and Purple Cabbage

  • Time Commitment: 35 minutes
  • Why We Love It: beginner-friendly, make ahead, dairy free

So much tastier (and cheaper) than takeout. Finish each bowl of this spring dinner recipe with sesame seeds, sliced scallions and cilantro.

18. Fish Taco Salad

  • Time Commitment: 1 hour
  • Why We Love It: high protein, special occasion-worthy, dairy free

Ahhh, tastes like (almost) summer. All that's missing is a generous drizzle of crema, salsa verde and hot sauce.

19. Cacio e Pepe Pasta

  • Time Commitment: 20 minutes
  • Why We Love It: <30 minutes, <10 ingredients, kid-friendly

Some classics never go out of style. This beauty only requires one pot and five pantry staples to come together.

20. Shrimp Boil Skewers with Corn, Sausage and Potatoes

  • Time Commitment: 45 minutes
  • Why We Love It: crowd-pleaser, high protein, special occasion-worthy

Low-lift, mess-free and totally delicious, this twist on an old-school shrimp boil begs to be eaten outdoors. Line the patio table with newspaper, place the skewers on top and dig in.

21. Thai Beef Bowls with Rice Noodles

  • Time Commitment: 30 minutes
  • Why We Love It: high protein, gluten free, beginner-friendly

If only all salads were this beautiful (and filling). Bonus? This spring dinner recipe is gluten free, thanks to the rice vermicelli base.

22. Chicken Tinga Tacos

  • Time Commitment: 30 minutes
  • Why We Love It: high protein, beginner-friendly, make ahead

These tacos are doubly ingenious. Why? They start with rotisserie chicken and the easy marinade, starring chipotles in adobo, is made in the blender.

23. Bibimbap Bowls

  • Time Commitment: 50 minutes
  • Why We Love It: vegetarian, beginner-friendly, make ahead

Spicy, crunchy and satisfying, they’re super easy to whip up on a whim. Substitute maple syrup or agave for honey to make this spring dinner idea vegan-friendly.

24. Shrimp with Cauliflower “Grits” and Arugula

  • Time Commitment: 30 minutes
  • Why We Love It: high protein, beginner-friendly, low carb

Is there anything our favorite cruciferous vegetable can't do? We think not. The goat cheese "grits" just might eclipse the spiced shrimp and garlicky greens.

25. Buddha Bowl with Kale, Avocado, Orange and Wild Rice

  • Time Commitment: 40 minutes
  • Why We Love It: vegetarian, beginner-friendly, make ahead

Filled to the brim with the freshest ingredients, from pumpkin seeds to pomegranate arils. Prepare the rice and eggs ahead to save time before dinner.

26. Thai Lettuce Wraps

  • Time Commitment: 45 minutes
  • Why We Love It: crowd-pleaser, high protein, beginner-friendly, low carb

Trust us, you won't even miss the carbs. This spring dinner recipe calls for ground chicken or turkey, but you can sub beef or pork if you'd prefer. (While this recipe takes 45 minutes from start to finish, the actual cook time is just 30—and we think it's worth a bit of prep.)

27. Spicy Shrimp Tacos with Mango Salsa

  • Time Commitment: 20 minutes
  • Why We Love It: <30 minutes, high protein, special occasion-worthy

Best enjoyed with a cold glass of white wine. Might we suggest topping them with a dollop of homemade guac, if you're feeling ambitious?

28. Quick Guacamole Quinoa Salad

  • Time Commitment: 30 minutes
  • Why We Love It: vegan, gluten free, beginner-friendly

It’s basically a giant bowl of dip masquerading as a salad—and we're not mad about it. Black beans give it a little extra protein, and the avocado is a solid source of healthy fat.

29. Slow Cooked Salmon

  • Time Commitment: 45 minutes
  • Why We Love It: <10 ingredients, high protein, make ahead

This fish takes only 45 minutes, but tastes like it’s been cooking for hours. Leave it to fresh dill, lemon and fennel to pull it off.

30. Cheesy Artichoke Skillet Flatbread

  • Time Commitment: 30 minutes
  • Why We Love It: kid-friendly, beginner-friendly, vegetarian

It's as if spinach-artichoke dip and pizza had a baby. Save yourself some time and effort by using store-bought flatbread or pizza dough.

31. One-Pan Roasted Salmon with Potatoes and Romaine

  • Time Commitment: 40 minutes
  • Why We Love It: <10 ingredients, sheet pan recipe, high protein

Break up your dinner routine with this simple-to-prepare salmon dish. The key to this spring dinner idea is roasting the potatoes first, then adding the salmon and lettuce so they finish cooking at the same time.

32. Spinach and Three-Cheese Stuffed Shells

  • Time Commitment: 1 hour and 10 minutes
  • Why We Love It: kid-friendly, crowd-pleaser, high protein

Nothing complements spinach quite like cheese (and Italian sausage, for that matter). Warning: Your picky kids will want this for dinner every night once they have a taste.

33. Rainbow Spring Rolls with Ginger Peanut Sauce

  • Time Commitment: 30 minutes
  • Why We Love It: crowd-pleaser, make ahead, gluten free

No frying required, friend. This spring dinner recipe stars a rainbow of produce, like beets, bell peppers, carrots, mango and herbs.

34. Salami, Artichoke and Ricotta Pasta Salad

  • Time Commitment: 20 minutes
  • Why We Love It: <30 minutes, crowd-pleaser, make ahead

You can never have too many one-bowl recipes, especially picnic staples that come together in no time at all. Better yet, it tastes delicious served warm and cold.

35. Sticky Orange Chicken with Caramelized Onions and Fennel

  • Time Commitment: 2 hours (includes marinating time)
  • Why We Love It: crowd-pleaser, high protein, special occasion-worthy

Just about as easy as saying "for delivery, please." Don't let the time commitment deter you: It's mostly hands-off marinating time. Best of all, you'll only need nine ingredients to putt his spring dinner recipe off (and odds are some of them are in your pantry right now).

36. Shrimp and Pasta Stew

  • Time Commitment: 45 minutes
  • Why We Love It: crowd-pleaser, beginner-friendly, dairy free

Sure, it's delicious on its own, but it'll be even more so served with a loaf of crusty bread for dipping. Finish it with fresh lemon zest and chopped parsley.

37. Pesto Zoodles

  • Time Commitment: 25 minutes
  • Why We Love It: low carb, beginner-friendly, kid-friendly

A super simple spring dinner recipe for nights when you just can't even. We won't tell if you substitute jarred pesto for homemade.

38. Avocado Chicken Salad

  • Time Commitment: 45 minutes
  • Why We Love It: crowd-pleaser, make ahead, high protein

Salad night should never be boring, and this twist on chicken salad is far from it. Your guests will never know you started with a store-bought rotisserie bird.

39. Baked Caprese Chicken Skillet

  • Time Commitment: 30 minutes
  • Why We Love It: crowd-pleaser, high protein, kid-friendly

We'd put melted mozzarella on every dish if we could. This kid-friendly delight comes together in a single pan, BTW.

40. Thai Chili Salmon Skewers

  • Time Commitment: 30 minutes
  • Why We Love It: high protein, special occasion-worthy, beginner-friendly

Isn't food on a stick the best? The salmon marinade is equal parts nutty, citrusy, herbaceous and spicy, so it'll check all your boxes.

41. Spring Crudités with Romesco Sauce

  • Time Commitment: 45 minutes
  • Why We Love It: vegan, special occasion-worthy, beginner-friendly

OK, you can’t really call a crudités plate dinner…unless you serve it with plenty of toasts, charcuteries and cheeses on the side. Just don't skip the homemade romesco.

42. Orecchiette with Spring Greens

  • Time Commitment: 15 minutes
  • Why We Love It: crowd-pleaser, make ahead, beginner-friendly

It’s low maintenance enough for a weeknight but elevated enough for a weekend dinner party. Make it ahead if you'd like—it'll taste just as good reheated or served cold.

43. Spring Panzanella Salad

  • Time Commitment: 25 minutes
  • Why We Love It: crowd-pleaser, <30 minutes, beginner-friendly

Any salad starring bread is one we want to devour. Add plenty of spring asparagus and peas to the mix, and we’re completely sold.

44. Joanna Gaines’s Spring Vegetable Risotto

  • Time Commitment: 1 hour and 40 minutes
  • Why We Love It: crowd-pleaser, special occasion-worthy,

Feel free to use the vegetables that speak to you most at the farmers market, but this spring dinner recipe calls for mushrooms, leeks, radishes and peas as is.

45. Chopped Italian Salad Pizza

  • Time Commitment: 1 hour
  • Why We Love It: crowd-pleaser, beginner-friendly, vegetarian

This chopped Italian salad pizza is a far better way to eat your greens. We wouldn't blame you for crowning it with salami or prosciutto, though.

46. Veggie Niçoise Salad with Red Curry Green Beans

  • Time Commitment: 1 hour
  • Why We Love It: beginner-friendly, special occasion-worthy

Since the veggies are the star of the show, it’s worth seeking out the prettiest produce you can find. The eggs, olives and red curry paste will do the rest of the heavy lifting.

47. Asparagus, Pea and Ricotta Tarts

  • Time Commitment: 1 hour and 10 minutes
  • Why We Love It: beginner-friendly, special occasion-worthy, <10 ingredients

Thanks to store-bought puff pastry, these cuties are low effort—and high payoff. Fresh mint brings the spring produce to life.

48. Cold Soba Noodle Salad with Strawberries

  • Time Commitment: 20 minutes
  • Why We Love It: crowd-pleaser, make ahead, beginner-friendly, <30 minutes

Strawberries in a noodle salad? Trust us, it’s delicious. The buckwheat noodles offer plenty of pleasant earthiness to every bite.

49. One-Pan Eggs with Asparagus and Tomatoes

  • Time Commitment: 30 minutes
  • Why We Love It: <10 ingredients, low carb, beginner-friendly, sheet pan recipe

Dealing with a surplus of asparagus? No worries: Plop it on a sheet pan, crack a few eggs on top and call it a meal.

50. Skillet Steak with Asparagus and Potatoes

  • Time Commitment: 1 hour
  • Why We Love It: one pan, high protein, special occasion-worthy

We love a one-pan dinner, and even more so when it looks (and tastes) fancy, despite being totally foolproof. Be sure to let the steak rest for 15 minutes before slicing it so it retains its juiciness.

51. Asparagus Caesar Salad

  • Time Commitment: 35 minutes
  • Why We Love It: crowd-pleaser, beginner-friendly, special occasion-worthy

Trade in your hearty kale salad for something bright and new. This spring dinner recipe calls for making traditional Caesar dressing, but use store-bought if you don't feel like it—it'll be our little secret.

52. Broccoli Margherita Pizza

  • Time Commitment: 55 minutes
  • Why We Love It: gluten free, low carb, keto-friendly

Broccoli is the secret ingredient in this homemade ’za that’s better for you (but doesn’t taste like it). It's a key component of the gluten-free crust, made with almond meal, Parmesan cheese and eggs.

53. Pan-Fried Cod with Orange and Swiss Chard

  • Time Commitment: 30 minutes
  • Why We Love It: high protein, special occasion-worthy, beginner-friendly

FYI, this spring dinner idea goes from fridge to the table in 30 minutes flat. Substitute kale, collard greens or spinach for Swiss chard if you'd prefer.

54. Crispy Goat Cheese Salad

  • Time Commitment: 30 minutes
  • Why We Love It: <10 ingredients, vegetarian, beginner-friendly

We’ll admit it: This salad is basically a vehicle for pan-fried goat cheese. You can thank us later.

55. Rainbow Collard Wraps with Peanut Butter Dipping Sauce

  • Time Commitment: 30 minutes
  • Why We Love It: make ahead, vegan, beginner-friendly, no cook

Collards are at their best through April, so stock up and make these easy wraps ASAP. The swicy, nutty dip is a total game-changer.

56. Chicken with Feta Cheese, Dill, Lemon and Harissa Yogurt

  • Time Commitment: 50 minutes
  • Why We Love It: high protein, beginner-friendly, special occasion-worthy

Fresh dill, spicy yogurt and briny feta cheese are nothing to sneer at, but the real star is the chicken. Thighs (and drumsticks, if you'd like) are so much more succulent than breasts.

57. Squash and Squash Blossom Frittata

  • Time Commitment: 25 minutes
  • Why We Love It: crowd-pleaser, <30 minutes, vegetarian

We’re only willing to hit the market before 8 a.m. if there are squash blossoms awaiting us. They don't add much flavor to this frittata, but they definitely make it Insta-worthy.

58. Family-Style Chicken Caesar Salad

  • Time Commitment: 35 minutes
  • Why We Love It: high protein, kid-friendly, beginner-friendly

Even picky kids can get down with this crisp, never-gets-old salad. The egg- and anchovy-free dressing, made with mayo and yogurt, won't disappoint their finicky palates.

59. Potato and Burrata Pizza

  • Time Commitment: 30 minutes
  • Why We Love It: kid-friendly, special occasion-worthy, vegetarian, <10 ingredients

This spring dinner recipe calls for store-bought pesto, but you can also make a quick version at home with the fresh herbs hiding in your fridge, if you're feeling ambitious.

60. BLT Pasta Salad

  • Time Commitment: 40 minutes
  • Why We Love It: make ahead, crowd-pleaser, beginner-friendly

Mmm, black pepper bacon. It's not yet picnic season, but this way, you'll be prepared for when it comes with this creamy, crunchy dish.

61. Greek Chicken Skillet

  • Time Commitment: 40 minutes
  • Why We Love It: high protein, one pan, special occasion-worthy

All dinners should be this easy, gorgeous and delicious. The broiled lemon slices on top are a stellar finishing touch.

62. Salmon and Fennel Dinner Salad

  • Time Commitment: 55 minutes
  • Why We Love It: high protein, special occasion-worthy, beginner-friendly

Complete with herby yogurt dressing. The salmon is rich, the fennel is crisp and a few strategic strawberries add a sweet-tart pop.

63. Spinach Artichoke Squares

  • Time Commitment: 35 minutes
  • Why We Love It: crowd-pleaser, special occasion-worthy, <10 ingredients

Meet the 21st-century version of our favorite retro dip. This spring dinner idea comes together in a flash, thanks to store-bought puff pastry.

64. Pasta Florentine with Grilled Chicken

  • Time Commitment: 40 minutes
  • Why We Love It: high protein, <10 ingredients, kid-friendly

Charring the poultry adds a certain je ne sais quoi to this classic French dish. Bypass the baby spinach at the grocery store in favor of the fresh batch you saw at the market.

65. Sheet Pan Lemon Butter Veggies and Sausage

  • Time Commitment: 40 minutes
  • Why We Love It: crowd-pleaser, sheet pan recipe, beginner-friendly

Whatever less-than-perfect produce you have in have in the crisper drawer can be revived in this simple sheet pan meal. The spring dinner idea calls for carrots, radishes, bell peppers, tomatoes and eggplant, but you can add whatever you see fit.

66. Bacon-Wrapped Black Cod with Spinach and Capers

  • Time Commitment: 40 minutes
  • Why We Love It: <10 ingredients, high protein, beginner-friendly

Bacon lends savory flavor and crunchy texture to the fish, while a bed of sautéed spinach keeps everything light. Color your dinner guests impressed.

67. Goat Cheese Pasta with Spinach and Artichokes

  • Time Commitment: 25 minutes
  • Why We Love It: <30 minutes, vegetarian, beginner-friendly

The secret to a creamy pasta that takes less than 30 minutes to make? Goat cheese, of course. It's the ideal tangy match for briny artichokes and earthy spinach.

68. Roasted Chickpea Shawarma

  • Time Commitment: 30 minutes
  • Why We Love It: vegan, special occasion-worthy, beginner-friendly

Let us introduce you to the delicacy that is roasted chickpeas. Oh, and the garlic dill hummus sauce? You'll want to drizzle it on *everything*.

69. Lemon Butter Scallops

  • Time Commitment: 20 minutes
  • Why We Love It: beginner-friendly, high protein, special occasion-worthy

Simple? Check. Sophisticated? Check. Delicious? Check. Most importantly, this stunner only needs 20 minutes from start to finish. Wins all around.

70. Creamy Asparagus and Pea Soup

  • Time Commitment: 30 minutes
  • Why We Love It: vegan, beginner-friendly, special occasion-worthy

The in-season veggies make this soup a drool-worthy spring dinner recipe for still-kinda-chilly nights. Use wheatless bread for the garlic-herb croutons to keep it gluten free.

71. Sheet Pan Roast Chicken with Potatoes, Radishes and Olives

  • Time Commitment: 1 hour
  • Why We Love It: sheet pan recipe, high protein, special occasion-worthy

This Insta-worthy main is fit for your Easter table, but won't leave you with a million dirty dishes to wash after the egg hunt. The trick is spatchcocking the chicken (aka removing the backbone) to flatten it, which shortens the cooking time and ensures crispy skin.

72. Bitter Greens Salad with Herby Ranch Dressing

  • Time Commitment: 15 minutes
  • Why We Love It: no cook, <30 minutes, crowd-pleaser, make ahead

You may as well make a double (or triple) batch of the ranch dressing—you'll want to drizzle it on everything from pizza to fried chicken. Here, it's tossed with radicchio, frisée, green apples and toasted pistachios.


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Senior Food Editor

Katherine Gillen is PureWow’s senior food editor. She’s a writer, recipe developer and food stylist with a degree in culinary arts and professional experience in New York City...

taryn pire

Food Editor

Taryn Pire is PureWow’s food editor and has been writing about all things delicious since 2016. She’s developed recipes, reviewed restaurants and investigated food trends at...