“I wish every day was Sunday,” I told my roommate a few days ago. Why not a Friday or Saturday, you may ask? It’s simple. While the earlier days of the weekend are typically filled with excitement, travel, or novelty, there’s something about Sundays that cultivates 24 hours of pure coziness. And the best part about this sacred day is coming up with cozy Sunday night dinner ideas that are the best way to wrap up any week.
We’re leaving the Sunday Scaries in 2023 and learning to love the end of the week for all it brings. Contrary to what your anxiety may tell you, Sundays are the perfect opportunity to reset. Lean into your favorite comfort foods, or try your hand at a new recipe. Whether you’ve established rituals or plan to embrace the unknown, these Sunday night dinner ideas are suitable for any and every vibe.
What makes a good Sunday night dinner?
There are several components that can set your Sunday night dinner apart from your weekday meals. Most importantly, I love leaning into coziness and comfort at the end of my week and making sure there are plenty of leftovers to munch on the next day. (Because let’s be honest, Mondays can come at us way too quickly). What’s more, the majority of these recipes can be prepped in advance and saved for up to a week in the fridge. I call that Sunday night dinner ideas, perfected.
15 Sunday Night Dinner Ideas for Every Weekend Vibe
If you’re ready to transform your home into a place of comfort and calm at the end of your week, these Sunday night dinner ideas are exactly what you’ve been looking for. Read on for our top picks, from creamy pasta dishes to slow cooker classics.
Sweet Potato Gnocchi
Why We Love It: Potato pasta… how could one dish be more perfect for a Sunday night supper? I could eat gnocchi every day, but this recipe with brown butter and sage is one of the best variations I’ve ever discovered. If you’re a sweet potato connoisseur like me, this dish is the best way to create a rich and decadent dinner that everyone will love.
Hero Ingredient: Haven’t mastered browned butter yet? This is your chance! Trust me, you won’t regret it.
Vegetarian Lentil Chili
Why We Love It: Chili is a Sunday classic, but all the red meat can sometimes take its toll. That being said, this plant-based alternative is great for both vegetarians and those looking for a lighter option. Made with lentils, beans, and your favorite chili toppings, it’s a feast that will leave everyone happy and full.
Hero Ingredient: Fresh jalepeños are the perfect bit of heat.
Creamy Butternut Squash Pasta
Why We Love It: Sundays can be the perfect day to load up on carbs as fuel for the week ahead. This butternut squash pasta recipe is a healthier alternative to your typical grains and is gluten and dairy-free. Need I say more?
Hero Ingredient: Chickpea pasta is an “in” for 2024.
Why We Love It: With sweet caramelized squash and a variety of herbs, this pasta dish is a one-pot wonder. Combine rigatoni (or your favorite pasta) with the rich summer squash for a bowl full of nutty, creamy, and bright flavor.
Hero Ingredient: Red pepper and pasta go hand-in-hand.
Cauliflower Tikka Masala
Why We Love It: Tikka masala is one of my all-time favorite cozy dishes for when the weather starts to cool down. The spice blend, featuring coriander, cumin, garam masala, and turmeric, is one that always satisfies my taste buds. This meatless recipe replaces the chicken with cauliflower as its base. It makes for a meal that’s equally as tasty as the classic.
Hero Ingredient: Greek yogurt acts as a creamy base to temper the spicy heat.
Zuppa Toscana Soup
Why We Love It: Sunday is usually the day that I want to indulge in a cuisine I don’t normally get to enjoy during the week. Italian-inspired dishes can make for some of the coziest meals, and this Zuppa Toscana soup is no exception. With soft potatoes, Italian sausage, and fresh kale, each bite will transport you straight to the Italian countryside.
Hero Ingredient: This soup is served best with a warm, fresh loaf of bread. Not exactly an ingredient, but an essential nonetheless.
Vegetarian Coq au Vin
Why We Love It: Coq au Vin is a French dish filled with a variety of cozy and savory ingredients that make it the perfect small-batch Sunday night dinner idea. Made with red wine, mushrooms, and a blend of fresh herbs, this vegetarian take on a traditionally chicken-centered dish keeps things lighter with all of the same flavors.
Hero Ingredient: Lentils add a little heft to this French-inspired favorite.
Vegan Red Pepper Pasta with Charred Corn & Basil
Why We Love It: I’m a big fan of just about any dish involving red pepper, and this pasta is one of my favorites. Veggies are the star of this show, creating a bowl of nourishing ingredients while still maintaining a cozy feel.
Hero Ingredient: Cashews are every vegan’s secret to a creamy sauce.
Why We Love It: If you’re looking for a one-pan dish to satisfy all your Sunday night dinner needs, make this vegetable lasagna on repeat. It’s a satisfying balance of nutritious and hearty ingredients that’s so much simpler than you’d think.
Hero Ingredient: Don’t you dare skimp on the garlic-infused butter.
Why We Love It: Sundays are for soup—no argument. This tortellini soup is one of my cold-weather favorites but can be enjoyed year-round whenever you need an extra dose of cozy. Top with rich parmesan cheese and you’ve got yourself a warm bowl of deliciousness. Bonus: you can freeze this soup to enjoy next Sunday, too.
Hero Ingredient: Fresh or pre-made, good quality tortellini is a must.
Skillet Eggplant Lasagna
Why We Love It: Pulling out my cast iron skillet has become a weekend tradition in my house. There’s something about the presentation and cooking method that makes it the perfect way to curate cozy and warm dishes. This eggplant lasagna is a lighter version of your favorite Italian dish and cooks so elegantly in a skillet.
Hero Ingredient: Eggplant, of course!
Vegan Spaghetti and Meatballs
Why We Love It: I could never say no to a bowl of spaghetti and meatballs at the end of the week. This vegan take on the classic recipe isn’t too filling but delivers the perfect amount of warmth and flavor.
Hero Ingredient: The secret to these meatless meatballs? Cannellini beans!
Braised Indian Chickpea Stew
Why We Love It: Whether it’s a beef stew, veggie stew, or any member of the stew family, I always love indulging in variations of this one-pot meal on Sunday nights. This chickpea stew with an Indian-inspired twist delivers the perfect creamy-to-spicy ratio I’m always striving for in my coziest meals.
Hero Ingredient: Top with a bit of cilantro for freshness in every bite.
Cheesy Pesto Gnocchi Skillet
Why We Love It: Another delicious skillet recipe, this cheesy blend of gnocchi and nutty pesto makes it hard to put down your fork. The best part? This recipe uses plenty of nutrient-rich spinach, helping you get your greens without a boring side salad.
Hero Ingredient: Cream cheese adds a nice little tang to balance out this rich dinner.
Stuffed Portobello Mushrooms
Why We Love It: Stuffed mushrooms are a highly underrated Sunday night dinner idea. But the right filling is essential to keep the meal from being boring and bland. These mushrooms are stuffed with spinach, onions, and parmesan, and topped with creamy mozzarella and breadcrumbs. Needless to say—they’re anything but boring.
Hero Ingredient: Caramelized onions are *chef’s kiss.*