We all know it can be a struggle to put a tasty dinner on the table when you’re busy. Sure, you’ve got your 30-day dinner plan in order, have memorized a slew of dump dinner recipes for the slow cooker, and can turn a rotisserie chicken into just about anything. But the simplest solution yet to making meals exciting with minimal effort may be this: Just add capers. The pickled flower buds add a pop of bright acidity and much-needed salt to any dish. These 14 caper recipes make sure you never have to suffer through a boring dinner again.
1. Gnocchi With Cauliflower, Lemon, and Capers: There are some ingredients that always work well together. Lemon and capers — a bright and punchy duo if there ever was one — always play nice. (via Delish Knowledge)
2. Crispy Cauliflower With Capers and Raisins: Cauliflower tastes totally different after a good oven roasting. Pair it with earthy-sweet raisins and briny capers for a dish that will keep your taste buds guessing. (via Flavor Quotient)
4. Brussels Sprouts With Anchovy Caper Butter: Jazz up this famously divisive vegetable with big flavors that offset any of its bitterness. Brussels sprouts and capers were practically made to go together, and the addition of anchovies adds a deep umami to what is definitely not your typical boring veggie dish. (via Coley Cooks)
5. Sheet Pan Mediterranean Chicken: Chicken is mild enough to work with any combination of ingredients, and capers lead the charge in this sheet pan dish. They’re joined by juicy grape tomatoes, sweet red peppers, and a fresh-tasting lemon, orange, and honey sauce. (via Peas and Peonies)
6. Spaghetti With Frazzled Capers and Breadcrumbs: Here’s a trick that works to make pretty much any ingredient taste better. Drop capers in hot oil and fry for a few seconds until “frazzled” — it adds a nuttiness to their flavor that helps balance all that brine. (via I Ate the Whole Thing)
7. Parchment-Steamed Cod: Parchment packets keep fish moist and tender after a quick trip to the oven. The steam in the packets also helps flavor the fish, especially with a mix of punchy capers, olives, and artichokes thrown in. (via Killing Thyme)
8. Oven Roasted Spanish Mackerel: Offset mackerel’s slightly fishy flavor with bold ingredients like capers, dried chili flakes, and sweet grape tomatoes, and you might have a new favorite on your hands. (via Peas and Peonies)
9. Mahi-Mahi With Onion, Lemon, and Caper Relish: Sometimes fresh fish needs a little something to boost its flavor. An onion relish is just the thing to enhance the mahi-mahi in this dish without overpowering it. (via Inspiration Kitchen)
10. Mediterranean Baked Beans: If you’re tired of gloppy, sweet baked beans flavored with molasses, you’re in for a treat. This flavorful white bean dish is surprisingly light, and totally ideal for serving alongside grilled meats and veggies. (via Melly Cooks)
11. Spaghetti Puttanesca With Capers and Olives: A classic puttanesca pasta is one of the fastest, most flavorful meals you can cook on busy evenings. Make a big batch, and you can even enjoy the leftovers for lunch the next day. (via Savory Tooth)
13. Trout With Caper, Garlic, and Lemon Butter Sauce: Sure, you can make this dish with salmon in a pinch, but it’s a delicious way to try out trout. Pair with a punchy sauce and you’ve got an easy dinner that tastes surprisingly luxurious. (via Julia’s Album)
14. Zoodles With Lemon Caper Butter: You shouldn’t have to make too many compromises for healthy eating, and this dish strikes the balance perfectly. Zucchini noodles are a healthier option than traditional pasta, but a buttery lemon-caper sauce keeps them from tasting *too* healthy. (via Umami Girl)
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