You may think that preparing healthy, delicious dinners at home is a complicated process, but I’m here to tell you that it doesn’t have to be.
Even though I love food and enjoy cooking, I like to keep it simple when it comes to mealtime. This means choosing recipes that are easy to follow and don’t involve complicated cooking techniques or seemingly never-ending steps.
Here are 10 of my go to simple meal recipes that can help you get a healthy meal on the table quickly.
Grains provide an important source of fiber and other nutrients like magnesium. Studies have found that diets rich in grains are linked to a lower risk of several health conditions, including colon cancer, heart disease, and type 2 diabetes.
To prepare a grain bowl, top a serving of cooked grains with cooked or raw veggies and a protein source like chicken, fried or hard-boiled eggs, grilled shrimp, or salmon.
Then top it with a store-bought or homemade dressing, or keep it simple with a drizzle of olive oil and lemon juice.
For example, this Green Goddess Buddha Bowl uses an irresistible combination of brown rice, roasted broccoli, sugar snap peas, avocado, hard-boiled eggs, toasted pumpkin seeds, and a creamy yogurt-based sauce.
Here are a few more grain bowl recipes that make a perfect dinner option for nights when you’re short on time:
- Thai Chicken Buddha Bowls
- Salmon Grain Bowls with Lemon Tahini Sauce
- Sweet Potato & Chickpea Buddha Bowl
Sweet potatoes are loaded with beneficial nutrients like beta carotene, vitamin C, potassium, and fiber
This meal is super versatile, and you can choose from a variety of flavor combinations. You can try out one of the simple recipes below or wing it and simply pile your favorite ingredients onto a roasted sweet potato.
- Chicken Pesto Stuffed Sweet Potatoes
- Taco Stuffed Sweet Potatoes
- Vegetarian Stuffed Sweet Potatoes
- Mediterranean Baked Sweet Potatoes
3. Dinner salad
The problem with most salads is that they’re not well composed, and you end up feeling hungry again just a short while after finishing your meal. The key to making a hearty dinner salad is making sure that you include plenty of protein, healthy fats, and fiber.
Start with a base of your favorite greens, such as spinach, mixed greens, arugula, kale, or romaine. Add a few more veggies, such as peppers, cucumbers, carrots, broccoli, or red onions, to your greens to bump up the fiber content.
Then choose a protein source like grilled chicken, shrimp, salmon, or hard-boiled eggs. Adding a fiber-rich carb source, such as beans or roasted sweet potatoes, will bump the fullness factor even higher.
Top your creation with roasted sunflower or pumpkin seeds for a crunchy texture, then drizzle it with a healthy dressing like olive oil and balsamic vinegar, or follow this recipe for Homemade Green Goddess Dressing.
Here are a few more dinner salad ideas:
Most everyone loves a good pasta dish, but most pasta dishes don’t contain the necessary ingredients, such as protein and fiber, to keep you feeling satisfied
First, choose your pasta. I am a big fan of Tinkyada brown rice pasta, but you can use any pasta you like. You can also use zucchini noodles in place of pasta if you’re following a lower carb dietary pattern.
Next, pick a source of protein. I like to use chicken breast or ground chicken or, if I want plant-based protein, I will add chickpeas.
Next, choose your veggies. I love a classic combo of spinach and broccoli, but almost any vegetable will work. Lastly, pick a sauce, such as pesto, marinara, or olive oil.
Here are a few recipes to try out the next time you’re craving a pasta dish:
- Broccoli Pesto Chicken Pasta
- Roasted Vegetable Chickpea Pasta Salad
- Zucchini Noodles with Mini Chicken Feta and Spinach Meatballs
5. Whole roasted chicken
Even though roasting a whole chicken may take some time, it couldn’t be any simpler. Check out this guide on how to roast a perfect chicken.
Stuff the bottom of the roasting pan with potato wedges, onions, and carrot chunks so the veggies cook along with the chicken.
When your chicken is done roasting, let it rest for 15 minutes before carving it. You can use that time to make a quick salad like the ones listed below: