Imagine what early settlers or even cave men had to do to put dinner on the table – hunt, gather, clean and cook. It is more work than I can imagine. Today, our struggle with dinner is different, but still real. That question, “What’s for dinner tonight?”plagues us all.

If you are like me, you might stare at the open fridge looking for inspiration or try to remember what might be hiding in the freezer that could become dinner.

Of course, going out is an option, takeout from most restaurants is available and FoodieCall or Grubhub can deliver straight to your home. But sometimes, you want a home-cooked meal with not a lot of fanfare.

Here are six ways to answer the question, “What’s for dinner?”

(1) Berrybrook Farm Natural Food Pantry

Berrybrook Farm Natural Food Pantry has an all-vegetarian menu. Soups and hot sandwiches are made in house. Two fresh soups are available each day with names like Uncle Buck Succotash, Bilbos Underground Stew, Harvest Gold, Russian Bean and Barley, Mama Wolf and Mama Iguana’s Chili. Every Thursday, you can expect a different type of vegetarian chili. Soups come in 8, 12, 16 and 32-ounce containers. $2.75-$8.50

1257 East Blvd.
Monday-Thursday 9 a.m.-7 p.m., Friday and Saturday 9 a.m.-6 p.m., (704)334-6528

(2) Hawthorne’s Pizza

Hawthorne Pizza has multiple locations throughout the Charlotte area offering pizza dough and marinara sauce for quick pick-up. This could be your chance to show off your tossing skills. Freshly made dough is $5 for an 18 inch, and $3 for a 9 inch. Large marinara sauce is $5 for 16 ounces.

(3) Pasta & Provisions

Pasta & Provisions makes everything in-house. They have 15 flavors of fresh pasta that cooks in 2 minutes in boiling water. They also have sauces, 18 flavors of ravioli, ready-to-bake lasagna, take and bake pizzas, chicken Marsalis, chicken piccata, chicken parmesan, eggplant parmesan, chicken Viennese and short ribs. $10-$20

1528 Providence Road
Monday-Friday 9 a.m.–7 p.m., Saturday and Sunday 12-5 p.m., (704)364-2622

4700 Park Road with smaller retail section with hot foods ready-to-go.
Monday-Thursday 11 a.m.-8pm, Friday-Saturday 11 a.m.–9 p.m., Sunday 12-6

(980) 938-6433

(4) Queen City Pantry (now part of Vin Master)

Queen City Pantry, now under the Vin Master name, is a small, gourmet grocery that sources only from local, small producers and farmers, regional to North and South Carolina. They offer Rio Bertolini Pasta with a gluten free option available. Pasta may be paired with Cannizzaro Sauce and Windy Hill grass-fed ground beef to make meatballs. Pre-made pizza dough from Two Foodies Gluten-Free Kitchen is paired with choices of sauces, cheeses and meats. $23-$30

2000 South Blvd., Suite 610


(5) Yafo Kitchen

Yafo Kitchen serves Mediterranean street food. Hummus bowls, wraps and salads are $9-$12. If you are planning to invite friends over for dinner, splurge on the whole rotisserie chicken with three sides and in-house baked laffa bread. $22

720 Governor Morrison St.
Sunday-Thursday 11 a.m.-9 p.m., Friday and Saturday 11 a.m.-10 p.m., (704)365-7130

(6) Zone 7 Foods

Zone 7 Foods makes frozen prepared TV Dinners, Pizzas and Soups with local sustainably sourced, organically reinforced ingredients. They offer Shepherd’s Pie TV Dinner; Bean, Cheese and Sweet Potato Enchiladas TV Dinner as well as Pepper and Onion Pizzas. $7-$15

4113-A Monroe Road
Thursday-Friday 11 a.m. -2 p.m., Saturdays – Local Farmers Markets, (704)620-2094


Photos: Yafo Kitchen, Queen City Pantry, Zone 7 Foods

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