30 Healthy and Delicious Dinners You Can Make in 30 Minutes or Less
Quick, tasty, and good for you, there's a lot to like about these entrées.
Healthy eating can be a rather intimidating goal—that is, if you tend to associate it with wheatgrass shots, quinoa, and long-winded recipes that take the better part of an afternoon! This collection will show you that adopting a healthier diet can be as easy as taking it one recipe at a time, perhaps starting with the Curried Lentil-Salmon Salad, shown here. It's a balanced superfoods meal with Greek yogurt, arugula, and a warming curry vinaigrette that ties it all into a fast and delicious dinner.
The main course recipes ahead were carefully selected with the busy family in mind, because we understand that wanting to eat more whole and nutrient-dense foods doesn't magically clear your schedule to cook all day. This means that any recipe you encounter in the slides ahead will take 30 minutes or less to prepare, and they'll have manageable ingredient lists and achievable results. Best of all, they won't require any fancy gadgets like juicers or spiralizers.
Our health goals often get derailed by the all-or-nothing mindset, where sky-high expectations are set in stone and entire categories of foods are ruled out. In reality, studies have shown that it is the small and incremental changes we make in our day-to-day lives that have the biggest impact on longevity and well-being. That's right—sometimes taking the path of least resistance really does pay off.
We took this advice to heart by making just a few subtle tweaks and sensible swaps with these recipes, so we were able to keep trusted favorites in the mix like real pasta and rice. For instance, tender beef meatballs are still on the table—just add in a little shredded zucchini with the breadcrumbs! Don't worry, the vegetables melt into the meat mixture and the flavor is barely detectable. Using your spice cabinet can also go a long way in making a healthy dinner taste like a special treat as opposed to a punishment, as the picadillo chili and spicy chicken stir-fry prove.
Cooking a little lighter doesn't mean you need to forgo big and bold flavors, and nothing proves that point better than the meals like the Turmeric-Scented Chicken Noodle Soup or the Beef-and-Broccoli that's deep flavor is thanks to a spoonful of funky and umami-rich black bean garlic sauce. If you're already accustomed to healthy cooking but are in a bit of a rut, look out for the Mediterranean-inspired Swiss Chard and Feta Pasta, or the Orange-Glazed Pork Kebabs. Surprising flavors and pleasing textures abound in this gallery and are sure to shake up the repertoire of even the most avid healthy home cooks.
Instant Pot Chicken Curry
Whether you need to sneak vegetables into your meals in order to please a picky eater, or you're trying to use up a glut of summer produce, this easy meatball recipe will deliver. Pair them with a jar of your favorite marinara sauce and a whole-wheat spaghetti for an extra-easy healthy weeknight dinner.
Easy Chicken and Hominy Soup
This streamlined soup is inspired by pozole, a traditional soup or stew from Mexico. The trick to this soup only taking about 10 minutes? Leaning on conveniences like store-bought broth, rotisserie chicken, and a prepared chile salsa.
Seared Halibut Tacos
You know you're eating a super healthy meal when you look down and see practically all of the colors of the rainbow on your plate! Bright and fresh ingredients like grapefruit, cilantro, and avocado dress up these quick halibut tacos that will take just minutes to cook up in the skillet.
Greek Mezze Salad
Chicken Cutlets with Summer Squash and Feta
These chicken cutlets cook up to tender perfection in a matter of minutes and are perfect alongside a pile of sunny summer squash.
Stir-Fried Sweet-and-Sour Shrimp
Ample amounts of minced ginger and fresh chiles will keep your taste buds on their toes in this light and super-quick stir-fry.
Creamy Leftover-Turkey-and-Rice Soup
Intended for Thanksgiving leftovers, this light and creamy soup is a year-round winner with shredded rotisserie chicken, too.
Swiss-Chard and Feta Pasta
This bold pasta has a sauce made in the style of agrodolce (which is Italian for sweet and sour). Capers, anchovies, currants, orange juice, and feta are combined with wide noodles and Swiss chard for a fast, vegetable-forward dinner.
Chili-Lime Pork with Corn Salad
When cut into thick slices known as medallions, the cooking time for pork tenderloin is cut in half. This recipe will come in especially handy for summer weeknights, when the last thing you want to make is a slow-going roast in the oven.
Spring Chicken Niçoise
Because the chicken, potatoes, and snap peas steam together in the same basket, this refreshing springtime meal is extra-easy to clean up.
Thanks to a base of clam broth thickened with a little flour, only a 1/4 cup of cream is needed to make this hearty and wholesome salmon chowder sing.
Spicy Basil Chicken Stir-Fry
Fast and super flavorful: It's the oyster sauce in this stir fry that brings an unparalleled depth and complexity.
Orange-Glazed Pork Kebabs with Zucchini
Pork loin is a lean and economical protein to reach for that can cook super-fast when needed, like in this zesty kebab recipe.
A quick and fragrant way to use ground beef, picadillo is a very popular dish in Latin American and Caribbean countries, and variations abound. The flavors in this take are inspired by Spain's version, which seasons it with almonds, olives, and currants.
Pork Chop with Sautéed Apples and Wild Rice
This quick and easy meal is bursting with the flavors of fall and will be a cozy dinner that won't weigh you down on chillier nights.
Mussels with Corn, Cherry Tomatoes, and Tarragon
Beef and Broccoli with Black-Bean Garlic Sauce
A rich and super-savory Chinese condiment, Black-bean garlic sauce supercharges this stir-fry into a guaranteed hit.
Miso Soup with Tofu and Kale
Linguine with Turkey Sausage and Peppers
With all of the different flavors and textures going on in this pasta—like bright bell peppers, peppery arugula, and al dente linguine—you'll hardly notice that lean turkey sausage is subbed in for traditional pork.
Flat-Iron Steak with Cauliflower and Arugula
In this speedy dinner, the steak is seared and then set aside to rest, while the side dish uses the same skillet to cook. This won't only make cleanup easier, it'll make the cauliflower a lot more flavorful, too.
Flank Steak Kebabs with Peanut Sauce
Flank steak and summery vegetables like zucchini and bell peppers are skewered and grilled to perfection in a flash. Coconut milk and peanuts dress up this simple meal, making it special enough to be requested for future dinners.
Sweet-and-Sour Chicken-Noodle Bowl
There's barely any cooking needed to make this quick noodle bowl, especially if you use leftover roast chicken or pick up a rotisserie at the store.
Broiled Striped Bass with Cauliflower and Capers
Turmeric Ginger Chicken Soup
Pork Medallions with Parsnips and Grapes
This one-pan recipe is fabulous for a solo dinner at home, but it can easily be doubled if you're cooking for two.
Steak and Pear Salad
Flank steak is a lean and quick-cooking cut of beef that is a perfect match for an entrée salad. Combining it with in-season pears and a tangy buttermilk dressing will keep it interesting until the very last bite.