Healthy Dinners in a Dash
After a long day, who wants to spend hours over the stove? Sometimes it just seems easier to grab a bag of chips or take a spoon to the peanut butter jar.
Unfortunately, these options lack nutrients and could contribute to a larger waistline over time. And, while, you can reheat a portion-controlled frozen meal on occasion (as long as you add some microwaved veggies on the side to help fill you up), it’s not ideal to make freezer foods a habit. (Be sure to skip these 6 Worst Frozen Diet Foods)
Instead, whip up one of these six quick and nutritious dinners. They're as easy to prepare as frozen meals, but also deliver the nutrients you need.
Breakfast for Dinner
Veggie Omelet and Whole Grain English Muffin
An omelet stuffed with veggies is healthy, satisfying, and takes just five minutes to prepare. The secret is using ready-to-go veggies. Think: pre-washed spinach, pre-sliced mushrooms, chopped broccoli, or bell peppers slices. We typically use frozen veggies (they’re just as good for you as fresh ones) and allow them to defrost during the day in the refrigerator. When we get home they’re ready to toss right into the eggs.
Mix low-sugar, fat-free vanilla yogurt with quick oats and berries for a nutrient- and antioxidant-packed meal. You can also sprinkle in slivered nuts for some extra crunch and good-for-you fats.
A Healthy Twist on Typical Calorie-Loaded Meals
Italian Stuffed Potato
Microwave a five-ounce baked potato (150 calories) and then top it with fat free ricotta cheese, broccoli, and tomato sauce. You can stir the ricotta and tomato sauce together while the potato is in the microwave. We blend the tomato sauce and ricotta for a creamy protein-packed red sauce and keep it frozen in individual portions until we’re ready to thaw and use it.
Easy Open-Face Burrito
Open a can of black beans or low-fat refried beans and spread them over a whole-grain tortilla. Sprinkle it all with low-fat cheese before popping it in the microwave. Then, top the whole thing off with lots of chopped peppers, tomatoes, onions, and salsa. The secret to keeping the calories in control: Choose a tortilla with 140 calories or less, or cut a large tortilla in half.
Sandwiches that Satisfy
Open a can of tuna packed in water and mix it with lemon juice and a teaspoon of olive oil or low-fat mayo. Slice a whole-wheat pita pocket in half. Stuff it with the tuna, pre-washed, chopped lettuce, tomatoes, and peppers. You can even add water chestnuts for a great crunch. Complement the sandwich with a piece of fruit (the original fast food), and you’ve got a complete low-calorie, nutrient dense meal.
Veggie Burger Salad and Sweet Potato
Pick your favorite veggie burger (ideally one with at least 10 g of protein) and microwave it with some low-fat cheese on top. Place it on a bed of pre-washed spinach. Add a sweet potato on the side, which you can bake in the microwave in less than five minutes, for 150 nutrient- and fiber-packed calories.
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