30 Recipes to Learn (or at Least Try) by Age 30

Kristen Bousquet
STYLECASTER | Recipes to Know by Age 30

Scroll To See More Images

When you’re in your 20s—early 20s, especially—a creative spin on Cup O’Noodles might qualify as a veritably gourmet dish. But once you age out of the cereal-and-Bagel-Bites period of your life, it’s time to tackle greater culinary challenges—dishes that require more than a microwave and a cup of water. There are a handful of recipes you might want to learn (or at least try) by the time you turn 30, because seriously, you’re a real-ass adult now—you can handle it.

Here at StyleCaster, we don’t like to get prescriptive. If Cup O’Noodles and Bagel Bites bring you bliss unmatched by any legitimately home-cooked meal, do you. We aren’t here to judge. We just know that cooking—seriously cooking—is a thing a lot of people like to tackle in their young adulthood, and we’re here to help you usher in this phase of culinary achievement. But where to begin? With some ambitious dish you saw on Pinterest years ago? By working your way through a cookbook your grandma gave you when you first graduated high school?

Our recommendation: Start by building a foundation. Learn some of the classics, and challenge yourself to take on a couple out-of-the-box meals. These fundamentals will combine to create a cooking repertoire that’ll serve you in any scenario; you can get pretty far knowing how to make a couple basic desserts, a handful of party-worthy snacks and a bunch of killer entrees.

Consider this a crash course in Cooking 101, targeted toward beginners who want to master an array of simple recipes—or at least, who want to give it the old college try. Even if you’re not wowing your loved ones with your domestic goddess abilities right off the bat, rest assured knowing you’re building a skillset that’ll make you more self-sufficient—and if that’s not life-affirming, we don’t know what is.

STYLECASTER | 30 Recipes to Learn (or at Least Try) by Age 30

Two Peas and Their Pod.

1. Chocolate Chip Brownie Cookies

Chocolate chip cookies are an absolute classic. Adding the brownie element makes them more decadent—and sure to impress—without making them much more complicated.

STYLECASTER | 30 Recipes to Learn (or at Least Try) by Age 30

Bojon Gourmet.

2. Creamy Cardoon Mac and Cheese

Upgrade your mac and cheese situation from Kraft to this creamy, baked option, and you’ll never look back.

STYLECASTER | 30 Recipes to Learn (or at Least Try) by Age 30

Averie Cooks.

3. Easy 30-Minute Homemade Chicken Noodle Soup

Because mom isn’t around to make you chicken noodle soup when you’re home sick anymore. (Plus, this go-to is easy to whip up—and will make for a sweet surprise if you make some for friends any time they’re hit with a common cold.)

STYLECASTER | 30 Recipes to Learn (or at Least Try) by Age 30

Eating Bird Food.

4. Shrimp Fried Quinoa

Shrimp fried quinoa might just be the ultimate gourmet-ish meal prep dish.

STYLECASTER | 30 Recipes to Learn (or at Least Try) by Age 30

Well Plated.

5. One-Bowl Brownies

I mean, knowing how to make brownies is just downright necessary.

STYLECASTER | 30 Recipes to Learn (or at Least Try) by Age 30

Iowa Girl Eats.

6. Swiss Pan Burgers with Rosemary-Mushroom Pan Sauce

A classic with a seemingly fancy twist, this pan burger will delight anyone you make it for. (Seriously, you’ll seem like a bona fide cook if you whip one of these up.)

STYLECASTER | 30 Recipes to Learn (or at Least Try) by Age 30

Minimalist Baker.

7. 1-Pot Red Lentil Chili

Because chili is too easy to not know how to make.

STYLECASTER | 30 Recipes to Learn (or at Least Try) by Age 30

Gimme Some Oven.

8. Kale Caesar Salad

Because sides are essential if you’re cooking full-on meals for others. And kale Caesar salad is about as delicious (and nutrient-packed) as sides get.

STYLECASTER | 30 Recipes to Learn (or at Least Try) by Age 30

Lexi’s Clean Kitchen.

9. Slow-Cooker Roasted Chicken

This slow-cooker roasted chicken will help you feed a crowd—without consuming your entire day.

STYLECASTER | 30 Recipes to Learn (or at Least Try) by Age 30

Flavorite.

10. Classic Beef Stew

Because stews are a super underrated way to whip up a delicious dish full of protein and veggies.

STYLECASTER | 30 Recipes to Learn (or at Least Try) by Age 30

Recipe Girl.

11. Chicken Fried Steak with Country Gravy

If Southern food is your thing, this chicken fried steak needs to be in your rotation.

STYLECASTER | 30 Recipes to Learn (or at Least Try) by Age 30

Two Peas and Their Pod.

12. Chicken Pot Pie

Chicken pot pie is a family-friendly classic that’s just worth knowing how to make.

STYLECASTER | 30 Recipes to Learn (or at Least Try) by Age 30

The Food Charlatan.

13. Classic Shepherd’s Pie

Another family-friendly classic, this shepherd’s pie is a great hearty meal for a crowd.

STYLECASTER | 30 Recipes to Learn (or at Least Try) by Age 30

Olivia’s Cuisine.

14. Classic Cheesecake with Raspberry Sauce

Because you don’t deserve to live your life buying cheesecake from a store every time you have a craving for it.

STYLECASTER | 30 Recipes to Learn (or at Least Try) by Age 30

Life Made Sweeter.

15. Instant Pot Beef Stew

This Instant Pot stew practically cooks itself—and its the perfect cozy, hearty meal for winter.

STYLECASTER | 30 Recipes to Learn (or at Least Try) by Age 30

Brown Eyed Baker.

16. Buffalo Chicken Dip

The Super Bowl is right around the corner. Treat your friends—and yourself—to buffalo chicken dip. You deserve it.

STYLECASTER | 30 Recipes to Learn (or at Least Try) by Age 30

Foodie Crush.

17. Classic Tiramisu

Yup, tiramisu is officially, totally a thing you can make.

STYLECASTER | 30 Recipes to Learn (or at Least Try) by Age 30

Baked by an Introvert.

18. Baked Apple Fritters

Baked apple fritters are like cupcakes, but way better.

STYLECASTER | 30 Recipes to Learn (or at Least Try) by Age 30

12 Tomatoes.

19. Best Ever Apple Pie

I mean, come on, you know you want to be able to make apple pie.

STYLECASTER | 30 Recipes to Learn (or at Least Try) by Age 30

Simply Stacie

20. Chicken & Broccoli Casserole

It’s always useful to have a go-to casserole or two (or 10).

STYLECASTER | 30 Recipes to Learn (or at Least Try) by Age 30

The Recipe Critic.

21. Mozzarella Stuffed Meatballs

Meatballs with a surprising—and delightful—twist? Sign us up.

STYLECASTER | 30 Recipes to Learn (or at Least Try) by Age 30

Cupcakes and Kale Chips

22. Easy Beefaroni Recipe

Because pasta isn’t suddenly off the table now that you’re tackling more complex dishes.

STYLECASTER | 30 Recipes to Learn (or at Least Try) by Age 30

The Bewitchin’ Kitchen.

23. Gluten Free Buttermilk Pancakes

A delicious breakfast treat

STYLECASTER | 30 Recipes to Learn (or at Least Try) by Age 30

Recipe Tin Eats.

24. French Onion Soup

French onion soup is the kinda thing you order at a fancy restaurant when you’re high-rolling. And now you can make it from the comfort of your own kitchen.

STYLECASTER | 30 Recipes to Learn (or at Least Try) by Age 30

The Diary of a Real Housewife.

25. BBQ Chicken Quesadilla

Upgrade your quesadilla situation from microwaved tortilla with shredded cheese in it to decadent BBQ chicken dish. Because you can.

STYLECASTER | 30 Recipes to Learn (or at Least Try) by Age 30

Cooking with Cocktail Rings.

26. Classic Homemade Cannoli

Want a delicious dessert that looks more impressive than it is? Homemade cannoli should be your go-to.

STYLECASTER | 30 Recipes to Learn (or at Least Try) by Age 30

Dreaming in DIY.

27. Sweet Potatoes with Maple Pecan Drizzle

The perfect side, dessert substitute or fancy breakfast dish, these maple pecan-drizzled sweet potatoes are sure to be a hit with anyone you make them for.

STYLECASTER | 30 Recipes to Learn (or at Least Try) by Age 30

Averie Cooks.

28. Classic Traditional Stuffing

I mean. We’d be remiss not to include a classic stuffing recipe, right?

STYLECASTER | 30 Recipes to Learn (or at Least Try) by Age 30

Roti n Rice.

29. Baked Ham with Pineapple Brown Sugar Glaze

Another holiday necessity, this baked ham is sure to delight you and your loved ones, alike.

STYLECASTER | 30 Recipes to Learn (or at Least Try) by Age 30

Diethood.

30. Slow-Cooker Stuffed Peppers

Slow-cooker stuffed peppers make for a seriously delicious contribution to any dinner party.

 

A version of this story was originally published in January 2018.

Promoted Stories

share