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4 Delicious Dinners You Can Make with Pancake Mix (Plus 1 Dessert!)

It's just flour, leavening, salt and a dash of sugar -- but the base can help you make some speedy suppers that have nothing at all to do with maple syrup.

By Lynn Andriani

  • An Anytime, Easier Quiche
    This recipe for a savory egg, cheese and veggie pie is one of the most versatile you can have in your repertoire. You mix shr
    Ron Manville
    This recipe for a savory egg, cheese and veggie pie is one of the most versatile you can have in your repertoire. You mix shredded zucchini, eggs, chopped onion, shredded Cheddar, oil, seasonings and pancake mix, pour into a pie dish and bake. Cut it into wedges and serve hot, room temperature or cold for a filling brunch, lunch or dinner.

    Get the recipe: Savory Zucchini Pie
  • Hand-Held Pizzas
    These muffin-tin pizzas have all the hallmarks of a regular-sized pie -- mozzarella, tomatoes, basil, even pepperoni -- but t
    Lynn Andriani
    These muffin-tin pizzas have all the hallmarks of a regular-sized pie -- mozzarella, tomatoes, basil, even pepperoni -- but they're small enough to hold in your hand. The crust is a quick blend of pancake mix, melted butter and egg, and you don't even have to roll it out; instead, press spoonfuls into muffin tin cups. Lay the pizza "toppers" on the crust, then pour a mixture of beaten eggs, milk and half and half over it all to hold everything together. They bake up in minutes and are great on their own or over a bed of greens.

    Get the recipe: Muffin-Tin Pizzas
  • The Crispiest Fish Tacos
    The best fish tacos have the perfect contrast of soft tortilla, crunchy lettuce (or cabbage), and seafood fillets that are cr
    Ditte Isager
    The best fish tacos have the perfect contrast of soft tortilla, crunchy lettuce (or cabbage), and seafood fillets that are crisp on the outside and tender inside. Dipping the fish in beer batter made with pancake mix is one trick to getting it just right; the beer's carbon dioxide, foaming agents and alcohol make the crust light and crisp, and the pancake mix includes a leavening agent, so there's no need to add additional baking soda or powder. Another trick: fry the fish twice. The first time cooks it; the second time gives it a deep golden hue.

    Get the recipe: Ensenada Fish Tacos with Pancake Beer Batter
  • Pancakes, But Not Like Any You've Tasted Before
    Italian ham and cheese are a brilliant way to transform a kid-friendly breakfast food into a dinner that will please any grow
    mamahoohooba/iStock/Thinkstock
    Italian ham and cheese are a brilliant way to transform a kid-friendly breakfast food into a dinner that will please any grown-up. It's as simple as stirring a half-cup each of diced prosciutto and shredded mozzarella into the batter (use a cup of mix, 3/4 cup milk, 1 tablespoon oil and 1 egg). Cook the pancakes as you normally would, and finish with sliced tomatoes and a drizzle of extra-virgin olive oil.
  • The "Wait…What Are Those?" Desserts
    Thin slices of fruit dipped into pancake batter and pan-fried is a fun way to reverse the usual fruit-with-pancakes. In fact,
    Lilechka75/iStock/Thinkstock
    Thin slices of fruit dipped into pancake batter and pan-fried is a fun way to reverse the usual fruit-with-pancakes. In fact, it's such an eye-catching (and delicious) dish, we'd just as soon serve it for dessert as we would for breakfast. We first saw Carla Hall make it with apples on The Chew and then realized it also works for pears, bananas and peaches. You cut the fruit into 1/8-inch-thick slices, dip each one into the batter using a toothpick or wooden skewer, then cook until golden brown on each side. Powdered sugar on top, of course.

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BEFORE YOU GO

  • A Fresh, Crispy Dinner Salad
    Dining out can be one of the most fun aspects of vacation, but it can get expensive and exhausting. Often, by the third or fo
    Erin Kunkel
    Dining out can be one of the most fun aspects of vacation, but it can get expensive and exhausting. Often, by the third or fourth night, we're itching to stay in and cook something easy. When in an unfamiliar kitchen, though, we don't want to experiment. Instead, we rely on tried-and-true crowd pleasers, like this refreshed version of the ubiquitous taco salad, with lean chicken and chopped vegetables piled high on a crispy tortilla. For a shortcut, omit frying the tortillas and serve the chicken salad over large handfuls of good-quality corn tortilla chips.
    Get the recipe: Chicken Tostada Salad
  • A Steak And A Sauce That Anyone (Even A Beach Bum) Can Make
    Your vacation rental may have a view and even some bare-bones cooking utensils, but a food processor? Not so much. That's why
    Jody Horton
    Your vacation rental may have a view and even some bare-bones cooking utensils, but a food processor? Not so much. That's why this steak dinner is just right: it has a zippy, herby sauce you can make by just chopping up some parsley with a paring knife (if you're driving to your destination, pack one that comes with its own sheath, such as one of Kuhn Rikon's colorful carbon-steel blades). And the vegetable hash that goes with the meat is totally versatile: swap in whatever you can find at the local market--cherry tomatoes, corn, zucchini and baby spinach all work well.
    Get the recipe: Flank Steak with Chimichurri and Summer Squash Hash
  • The Quickie-Mart Quiche
    Whipping up a pie crust may sound like an elaborate undertaking after you've spent the day hiking (or snoozing on the beach).
    Christopher Baker
    Whipping up a pie crust may sound like an elaborate undertaking after you've spent the day hiking (or snoozing on the beach). But this recipe has a genius shortcut: make the crust out of Ritz or Saltine cracker or tortilla chip crumbs. The rest of the ingredients -- grated cheddar, chopped ham, cottage cheese, onions -- can be found in any supermarket. One more reason this tart makes an ideal vacation supper: leftover slices are excellent for breakfast or lunch and pack well, so you can eat them wherever you are.
    Get the recipe: Double Cheese and Ham Quiche
  • The Pasta With A Twist
    If penne with veggies sounds too much like one of your weeknight dinner standbys, try this stepped-up version on your next ge
    Photo: Dana Gallagher
    If penne with veggies sounds too much like one of your weeknight dinner standbys, try this stepped-up version on your next getaway; you'll still get the combination of tomatoes plus pasta, but with a delicious salty twist. The dish includes quartered Italian or Greek black olives and about a half of a can of tuna packed in olive oil.
    Get the recipe: Penne with Tuna, Plum Tomatoes and Black Olives
  • The Laid-Back Greek Dinner
    This is another meal you can tweak based on whatever you have: if you've got skewers, make kebabs; if not, just grill the chi
    Caroline Lubbers
    This is another meal you can tweak based on whatever you have: if you've got skewers, make kebabs; if not, just grill the chicken breasts whole and slice them after they've cooked. Pile the meat into pita bread and top it with spoonfuls of yogurt-cucumber sauce (any leftover dip is great with raw veggies).
    Get the recipe: Chicken Souvlaki with Tzatziki Dip
    Next: Foods you never thought you could grill
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