Does your idea of a fast meal mean calling in for take out? Dinner doesn’t have to be an all night affair to be healthy and tasty. In fact, you can prepare dinner in 5-10 minutes! We’ve put together some fast fix tips and meal ideas for you to bring to your kitchen.
1) Stock your cupboards weekly. At the beginning of each week, take inventory and replenish your cupboards and fridge with quick to prepare foods.
2) Focus on healthy time savers. Quick cooking staples include canned beans and soups, whole wheat couscous, frozen waffles, pre-cooked brown rice, pre-cooked shrimp, roasted chicken from the deli, veggie burgers, canned tuna and peanut butter.
3) Buy pre-cut fruits and veggies. Fruits and veggies often go unused because we don’t want to cut them up. You can save time and money (from wasted produce) and eat your veggies too by buying them pre-cut. Or, stock up on frozen fruits and veggies.
4) Freeze leftovers. Spend a little more time on Sunday and prepare extra cooked chicken or healthy casseroles to use during the week. My favorite is to freeze enchiladas or lasagna in small containers to pull out when I don’t feel like cooking – all you need to add is a side salad!
5) Be unconventional. Have breakfast for dinner to save time and add whole grains, fruit and low-fat dairy to your day.
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Need a meal in a hurry? Keep your hands out of that easy-to-grab bag of chips and whip up these meals and snacks in no time to get a healthy meal without hard labor!
Egg & Sausage Burrito
½ cup egg substitute
1 veggie sausage link, chopped
2 tbsp reduced-fat cheese
1 tbsp salsa
1 small whole wheat tortilla
1 piece of fruit
Curry Chicken Salad over Greens
½ cup canned chunk chicken
1-2 tbsp low-fat mayo or non-fat plain yogurt
½ tsp curry powder
1-2 tbsp raisins
1 tbsp chopped cashews
3 cups pre-cut dark leaf lettuce
½ whole wheat pita bread, toasted
1 cup 1% or non-fat milk
Beans and Wieners
¾ cup canned vegetarian baked beans
1 veggie dog, sliced
2 cups frozen vegetables, steamed in the microwave
1 green apple & 1 oz reduced-fat sharp cheddar
1 cup light non-fat vanilla yogurt, ½ cup raspberries and 1 tbsp chocolate syrup