Photo: Gregor Schuster/Corbis/Getty Images

Lord knows we relate to the impossible hurdle at the end of the day that is making dinner; it’s why we’re trying to churn out these fairly easy supper recipes. But some days even turning on the stove seems exhausting. Turns out we’re not alone in this evening fatigue, and now we even have the go-ahead from The Wall Street Journal for something called the all-snack dinner, a trend we can get behind just after hearing the words “dinner” and “snack” together.

Says the WSJ, “Snacks aren’t just for snacking anymore. Now, a handful of chips with the right staging—say, alongside carrots and hummus—can count as a meal.” It suggests that people like to just curl up with a tray at the end of a long workday, perhaps with some “mac-and-cheese squares” or “cheesesteak bites,” fresh fruit, chips, salsa, and smoked meats. The article also quotes this guy whose snack dinner sounds at least as complicated as one of our regular ones:

For his once-a-week snack dinner, 32-year-old Benjamin Rapoport likes spreads such as patés or duck rillettes. He pairs them with cheese, tiny pickles called cornichons and a handful of pecans that he roasts in butter earlier in the week for a more savory taste. Mr. Rapoport arranges his solo repast on a slate board, to give it more of a “meal-ey” feel even though it takes only a few minutes to prepare. The snack dinner allows him to maintain a carb-free diet, which was harder when ordering takeout. “I cook a good amount, so this is my non-cooking option,” says the New York-based software developer.

We think Mr. Rapoport and his rillettes seem a little over the top, but he’s given us some ideas for our own all-snack dinner. So we decided to suggest our ideal assortment and and also drafted a few suggestions from our Takeout colleagues:

Kate Bernot

Cheese is normally the anchor of my all-snack dinner: A few squares of this, a couple wedges of that, a handful of Triscuits and I call it a “cheese plate.” I’ll usually pair this with some veggies and hummus, then maybe some popcorn later in the night when I’m feeling peckish. Oh, and a cup or so of chocolate chips—usually in my pantry for baking anyway—are my standard lazy “dessert” when I need chocolate.

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Gwen Ihnat

I like where you’re going with this cheese base, Kate. In fact in my fantasy life as a fancy French lady, I would frequently arrange a dinner tray of a Gloucester and Camembert combo, along with some dried fruit, maybe some salami or ham, and the kind of crackers you can only get in the gourmet aisle. This would probably be a perfect snack dinner for me. But unfortunately, my son eats like he has a tapeworm, especially when he’s in the middle of a growth spurt, so I can’t imagine a snack dinner that would sustain him, unless it was a giant bag of Blaze Dorito’s.

Kevin Pang

  • Terra Original vegetable chips
  • Chip dip of sour cream + ramen packet seasoning
  • Applegate uncured pepperoni
  • Snyder’s cheddar cheese pretzel pieces
  • Steaz unsweetened lemon iced tea

I may actually have this for dinner tonight.

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