After a long day at work, preparing a five course dinner may be the last thing that you have in mind. The first thing that might be on your mind after arriving home from a long commute from work would be to get food on the table as quickly as possible, especially if there are cranky kids who are just as tired as you are. While pizza deliveries or microwave dinners might seem like a win-win solution for everyone, they are not necessarily ideal as they can take a toll on your weight and your health as well. Eating out is also not the healthiest option either so here are some quick meal ideas.
There are plenty of ways to serve fast and healthy dinners without having to slave over the stove for hours. You can prepare quick and healthy dinners within thirty minutes or less, saving you energy and allowing you to have more time to do other things right after.
So go wash your hands first, give the young ones a light healthy snack (just enough to ease crankiness, you don’t want them full during dinner time and start working on that healthy dinner.
1. Healthy Sandwich
Remember that dinners do not necessarily have to be big festive meals. Your dinner can be a light one, but can still be filling as well. If you really need to get dinner quick, why not try making healthy sandwiches? Sandwiches are easy to make – and as long as you have the key ingredients, there are endless possibilities when it comes to what you can put in it. To make sandwiches, you will need whole grain bread, low calorie toppings and spreads, low calorie dressings or sauces and vegetables. Make sure that you choose toppings such as cheese or ham that are fat reduced or low calorie. You can also make use of leftover meat that you have from last night’s dinner. Don’t forget to load up on salad leaves, tomatoes and onions – as these contribute to making your meal a healthy and filling one.
Preparing sandwiches for dinner is a quick and fun way to bond with your kids. Why not lay out all the ingredients on the kitchen counter, and have them make their own sandwich with you? This can save you more time, and can be a fun, bonding experience for the whole family too.
2. Whole Grain Spaghetti With Tomato Sauce
It’s very helpful to keep stocks of healthy food items in your pantry, and you can never go wrong with whole grain pasta and tomato pasta sauce. Boil the pasta according to package instructions (this usually takes around 10 to 15 minutes); while waiting, stir fry some onions, garlic, carrots, tomatoes and other vegetables of your choice. Pour in the jar of tomato sauce and serve the over the cooked pasta. Enjoy.
3. Steamed or Fresh Vegetables and Meat
Marinate slices of skinless chicken or fish with lemon juice, salt and pepper, garlic and onions for several minutes, and then fry using a non – stick pan. Steam some vegetables and serve them on the side. You can also serve fresh salad (with vinaigrette or low fat dressing) as a variation. If you do not have time to cook, you can open up some canned white chicken or tuna and serve along with your vegetables.
4. Chicken Burrito
Season chicken with some salt, pepper and your choice of spices and grill until cooked. Add grilled chicken, canned black beans, frozen or canned corn, sour cream and barbeque sauce and cook for at least four to five minutes. Arrange the burrito wraps by arranging lettuce leaves on top of the tortilla. Top with the chicken mixture and serve. You can also use minced beef for this recipe.
5. Rice and Veggies
This recipe is very simple. Steam some brown rice and then sauté some carrots, peas, mushrooms, and other vegetables of choice. Stir in the rice, add a little soy sauce, some salt and pepper and serve. You can add some leftover meat or ham to the rice mixture as well.
There are more quick recipes that you can use in order to prepare easy and healthy dinners. The key is to stock up on healthy staples inside your pantry and refrigerator with whole wheat grains, canned produce and vegetables and fruits. With the right ingredients at hand, you’ll certainly enjoy making quick healthy dinners, and your family will enjoy eating them too.
If you have your own receipes, post them as comments below. Also remember to practice healthy snacking - this will ensure you do not over indulge.