In partnership withCampbell's®

3 Easy Skillet Dinners Made Entirely from Pantry Staples

published May 14, 2020
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Credit: Photo: Christopher Simpson; Food Styling: Judy Kim

If you’re looking for a dinner hero, look no further than your trusty skillet. Actually, do look further — to your trusty pantry staples. When you combine a few key ingredients in a skillet, you have all the makings of an easy, crowd-pleasing dinner.

Start with a classic: Campbell’s® Cream of Mushroom Soup is the ultimate dinner shortcut. Use it in place of a time-consuming roux, sauce, or bechamel and it’s the key to pulling together a satisfying meal in next to no time. Plus, it’s now made with more cream, making it an even richer, creamier base for a meal your whole family is sure to love.

These simple recipe equations call for just 6 ingredients and serve 4 people. They all start with a can of Campbell’s® Cream of Mushroom Soup and prove just how versatile the trusty pantry staple is. If you don’t have a can on hand or your grocery store is out, that’s okay! You can easily swap in a can of Campbell’s® Cream of Chicken Soup instead. Just leave out the mushrooms in the Smothered Pork Chops and add 8 ounces sliced cremini or white mushrooms to the Mushroom Salisbury Steak, sautéing them with a drizzle of olive oil until tender, after you’ve browned the patties and before adding the soup.

Easy Skillet Dinner #1: Smothered Pork Chops

Juicy pork chops are always a smart dinner move. These are extra smart thanks to a luxe sauce that’s enhanced with tender mushrooms and fragrant thyme. Serve them over egg noodles or mashed potatoes and you’ve got a winning meal.

The equation: 8 ounces cremini mushrooms + 1 medium yellow onion + 2 teaspoons fresh thyme leaves + 4 (1-inch-thick) bone-in pork chops (about 2 pounds total) + 1 (10.5-ounce) can Campbell’s® Cream of Mushroom Soup + 1/2 cup whole or 2% milk

Thinly slice 8 ounces cremini mushrooms, dice 1 medium yellow onion, and chop 2 teaspoons fresh thyme leaves. Season 4 (1-inch-thick) bone-in pork chops (about 2 pounds total) all over with kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper. Heat 2 tablespoons olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat until shimmering. Add the pork chops, working in batches if needed, and sear until golden brown, 3 to 4 minutes per side. Transfer to a plate. Add the mushrooms, onions, and thyme and sauté until the vegetables are browned and softened, about 5 minutes. Reduce heat to medium and stir in 1 (10.5-ounce) can Campbell’s® Cream of Mushroom Soup and 1/2 cup whole or 2% milk. Return the pork and any accumulated juices to the pan, bring to a simmer, and cook until the pork chops reach an internal temperature of 145°F, 7 to 9 minutes. Garnish with additional chopped fresh thyme leaves, if desired.

If You Can’t Find…

  • Cremini mushrooms, try white mushrooms.
  • Fresh thyme, try 2/3 teaspoon dried thyme.
  • Bone-in pork chops, try boneless pork chops.

Easy Skillet Dinner #2: Creamy Dijon Chicken

Campbell’s® Cream of Mushroom Soup is so rich and creamy, it can handle a vibrant, tangy hit of Dijon mustard. Here, the couple joins forces to make one stellar sauce for crispy chicken thighs. It’s just the kind of fast and fancy dinner that makes weeknights that much easier.

The equation: 2 medium shallots + 1 tablespoon fresh rosemary leaves + 2 pounds bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs (4 to 6) + 1/2 cup dry white wine + 1/4 cup Dijon mustard + 1 (10.5-ounce) can Campbell’s® Cream of Mushroom Soup

Heat oven to 400°F. Dice 2 medium shallots and chop 1 tablespoon fresh rosemary leaves. Pat 2 pounds bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs (4 to 6) dry with paper towels and season with kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper. Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a large cast iron or oven-safe skillet over medium-high heat until shimmering. Add the chicken skin-side down to the pan and sear until the fat is rendered and the skin is crisp and golden-brown, 6 to 8 minutes. Transfer to a large plate and remove all but 1 tablespoon of fat from the skillet. Reduce heat to medium, add the shallots and rosemary to the pan, and sauté until softened, about 3 minutes. Add 1/2 cup dry white wine, scrape up any browned bits at the bottom of the pan with a wooden spoon, and cook until mostly evaporated, 2 to 3 minutes. Stir in 1/4 cup Dijon mustard and 1 (10.5-ounce) can Campbell’s® Cream of Mushroom Soup. Return the chicken skin-side up and accumulated juices to the pan. Transfer to the oven and braise uncovered until the chicken is cooked through and reaches an internal temperature of 165°F, about 15 minutes. Serve garnished with additional chopped fresh rosemary leaves, if desired.

If You Can’t Find…

  • Fresh rosemary, try 2/3 teaspoon dried rosemary.
  • Bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs, try boneless, skinless chicken thighs or breasts.
  • Dry white white, try white wine vinegar.

Easy Skillet Dinner #3: Mushroom Salisbury Steak

When you nestle browned beef patties in a creamy mushroom sauce, you know it’s going to be good. This easy version of the retro dinner favorite is one that’s guaranteed to be made over and over again in your kitchen.

The equation: 1 large egg + 1/2 cup panko bread crumbs + 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce + 1 pound lean ground beef + 1 (10.5-ounce) can Campbell’s® Cream of Mushroom Soup + 1/2 cup whole or 2% milk

Whisk 1 large egg in a medium bowl to lightly break it up. Add 1/2 cup panko bread crumbs, 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce, 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, and several grinds black pepper; stir to combine. Add 1 pound lean ground beef and mix with clean hands until homogeneous. Divide the mixture into 4 portions and shape each into an oval patty about 1/2-inch thick. Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat until shimmering. Add the patties and sear until a dark brown crust forms, about 5 minutes. Flip the patties and cook until the second side is browned, 4 to 5 minutes more. Transfer the patties to a clean plate. Pour 1 (10.5-ounce) can Campbell’s® Cream of Mushroom Soup and 1/2 cup whole or 2% milk into the skillet and stir to combine. Return the patties and any accumulated juices to the pan, cover, and simmer until the patties are cooked through and reach an internal temperature of 160°F, 5 to 8 minutes. Garnish with chopped fresh parsley, if desired.

If You Can’t Find…

  • Panko bread crumbs, try plain dry breadcrumbs.
  • Worcestershire sauce, try soy sauce.
  • Lean ground beef, try ground turkey.