I Tried This Viral “Lazy Girl Dinner” and I’ve Already Made It Twice in a Week

published Sep 14, 2023
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Mediterranean bean and tomato stew in baking dish with dollop of yogurt on top.
Credit: Nathan Hutsenpiller

Easy recipes are like a lifeline when it comes to feeding yourself during a hectic week. When the goal is to avoid eating out, save a little money, and actually use those groceries you bought earlier in the week, it helps to be creative in your meal-making endeavors. Although your week may have been tough, that is no reason to have a battle in the kitchen as well. 

After recently stumbling upon a post shared to Instagram by Jenna Hunter, aka The Healthy Hop Head, I was intrigued by a recipe in which she was describing a simple Mediterranean-inspired “girl dinner.” The meal consisted of cherry tomatoes, garlic, and olive oil with some seasonings and toasted bread. Right away, the visual of roasted tomatoes and garlic drenched in olive oil was all I could focus on, compelling me to figure out just what I had been missing out on. 

It’s always a pleasure to find new recipes that don’t require meat, as it helps to break up my eating habits throughout the week. I was beyond excited to unlock my inner girl boss and re-create this delicious-looking meal for myself.

How to Make a Mediterranean-Inspired Lazy Girl Dinner

As advertised, this is a lazy meal, so expect the following instructions to be a breeze. Go ahead and pour yourself a glass of wine to set the mood, and preheat your oven to 345°F to get started

Add tomatoes, garlic, olive oil, rosemary, chili pepper flakes, salt, and pepper to a baking dish and bake for 20 minutes, or until the tomatoes and garlic are soft. When ready, take the dish out of the oven and remove the rosemary stems. Mash the garlic and tomatoes together using a fork until well combined, add cannellini beans and more olive oil, then bake for 10 more minutes. Once removed from the oven, garnish with crème fraîche and serve with toast. 

Credit: Nathan Hutsenpiller

My Honest Review of Mediterranean-Inspired Lazy Girl Dinner

I was most impressed by the punch of flavor that was packed into each bite. For such a short list of ingredients, this recipe still yields maximum results while still doing its job of satisfying your appetite. I’m a huge fan of roasted garlic already and I thoroughly enjoyed the way the ingredients complemented each other after spending half an hour in the oven. As a meal on its own, some people may prefer to have something with a little more substance, but I found that I was actually pretty full after three slices of toast.

Even though this recipe is being advertised as a lazy dinner, I really think that it would make an impressive appetizer along with some other Mediterranean-inspired dishes, and would turn any dinner party into a restaurant-quality meal. I’ll definitely be keeping this one in rotation, as I’m always on the hunt for more vegetarian-friendly meals that I can incorporate into my eating habits. 

Credit: Nathan Hutsenpiller

Three Tips for Making a Mediterranean-Inspired Lazy Dinner

  • Bake longer if needed: After the first 20-minute interval of baking, the tomatoes and garlic should be fairly soft. If necessary, leave the dish in the oven longer if these ingredients can’t be mashed easily.
  • Add a little more olive oil: If things are turning out a little dry, add more olive oil to your liking. I found that the 2 tablespoon recommendation at the beginning of the recipe was not enough to get my dish looking similar to Hunter’s, so I measured with my eyes and had a much more satisfying result.   
  • Splurge on the good bread: While any toasted bread or pita will do for this recipe, it doesn’t hurt to treat yourself to one of the nicer loaves to really take this recipe to the next level. Make sure to get a good crisp toast going for maximum results.