By the time you turn 25, you’ve *hopefully* gotten good enough at adulting that you can at least keep yourself fed throughout the workweek. But WELL-fed? That’s a different story. When you’re halfway through your 20s, it’s not so unreasonable to expect more out of your culinary experience than ramen and mac and cheese (not that there aren’t some great ramen recipes and mac and cheese recipes out there). Pull out your pots and pans, because you need to know how to make these 15 basic but delicious recipes as you approach your later 20s.


1. The BEST Birthday Cake Recipe: Let’s start off with one of life’s most important foods: birthday cake. By the time you’re 25, you’d better know how to whip your BFF up a delicious homemade cake. Let this recipe be your guide. (via Craftsy)


2. Easy Homemade Ramen: Like we said, there are lots of delicious homemade ramen recipes out there. Do yourself a favor and skip the foam cup in lieu of this AH-mazing soup featuring garlic, sesame oil, ginger, shiitake mushrooms, chicken broth, soba noodles and baby spinach. (via Damn Delicious)


3. Slow Cooker Tacos Al Pastor: Tacos aren’t just for ordering at restaurants… you can (and should) make them at home too. These slow cooker tacos are super simple to make. Just mix the seasoning together, add it to your meat, throw the ingredients into your slow cooker and give them a few hours to cook. (via Gimme Some Oven)


4. Creamy Avocado and Spinach Pasta: Gone are the days when pre-made pasta sauces were your only options for topping your noodles. Avocado is a healthy and delicious way to flavor any kind of pasta. Pro tip: Be sure to buy very ripe (that is, extremely soft) avocados to make your sauce is nice and creamy. (via Jo Cooks)


5. The Yummiest Pancake Recipe: Everyone should know how to make pancakes from scratch. Now that you’re a grown up, it’s time to keep basic ingredients like flour, baking soda, sugar and eggs on hand at all times. That way, you can easily whip up these bad boys on a Saturday morning. (via Created by Diane)


6. Easy Better-Than-Takeout Chicken Fried Rice: Fried rice tastes amazing, and it may surprise you to know that it’s SUPER easy to make at home. Feel free to choose from long-grain, white or brown rice… whatever suits your fancy. (via Averie Cooks)


7. Easy Healthy Baked Lemon Chicken: It definitely helps to have a fresh, healthy, clean meal in your recipe arsenal, and this baked chicken is a perfect candidate. Flavored with lemon, honey, garlic and rosemary, this chicken is both incredibly flavorful and ridiculously healthy. (via Le Creme de la Crumb)


8. Mexican Egg White Omelet: Egg white omelets are a delicious, healthy and light way to get protein and veggies into your diet. Take this omelet, for example, which packs in the nutritional benefits of tomatoes, onions, jalapeño peppers, avocados and cotija cheese. (via Gimme Some Oven)


9. Extra Crispy Oven Baked French Fries: Not that there’s anything wrong with good, old-fashioned French fries, but making fries in the comfort of your own home really can’t be beat. Bonus points for the fact that these fries are baked instead of fried, so they’re also comparatively healthy. (via Layers of Happiness)


10. The Best Apple Pie Ever: Apple pie is about as American as it gets, so every household needs to be able to make it. This delicious apple pie is best when made with local, in-season apples — we personally recommend tart Granny Smith. (via Audrey’s Apron)


11. Creamy Stovetop Macaroni and Cheese: Making mac and cheese from the box is admittedly an amazing guilty pleasure, but cooking it on the stove can be equally (if not more) amazing. Macaroni noodles are the most classic choice for cheese sauce, but feel free to use any kind of noodles you’d like. (via Brown Eyed Baker)


12. The Vegan Buddha Bowl: For days when you feel like you need a little detox, whip up this healthy and delicious Buddha bowl. Avocado, fresh greens, brown rice and chickpeas are topped with sesame seeds and drizzled with homemade red pepper sauce for good measure. (via Well and Full)


13. Super Simple Spaghetti Bolognese: Bolognese is a classic pasta sauce that happens to be a major crowd-pleaser. As a bonus, this easy bolognese is also a pretty affordable dish to make. (via The Kiwi Country Girl)


14. Asian Garlic Tofu: It can be hard to learn to make tofu. It needs to be marinated just right in order to maximize its capacity for absorbing flavor. But once you master it, this vegan protein source will likely be a perennial favorite on your recipe rotation. (via Spicy Southern Kitchen)


15. Crock Pot Beef Stew: Last but not least, beef stew is a classic, hearty dinner option that every grown-up woman should know how to make. Potatoes, carrots, corn and beef are stewed for hours in your crock pot, resulting in a super yummy dinner that’s also easy to make. (via Iowa Girl Eats)

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