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5 Quick and Healthy Meals to Cook When You’re Short on Time

INTRO

Eating healthy meals can be tough when you’re too busy to cook every night. Instead of ordering another pizza or going out for fast food, try one of these quick and healthy meals that take little to no time to cook but will still fill you up and give you the energy you need to get through the rest of your day.

 

1) Easy Crockpot Salsa Chicken Recipe

This easy Crockpot salsa chicken recipe is healthy, flavorful, and perfect for a busy weeknight meal. Simply throw all of the ingredients into your slow cooker in the morning, and let it do the work for you. At dinnertime, you’ll have tender and juicy chicken that’s ready to be shredded and served. Plus, with just one dish, dinner will be done in less than 15 minutes! The best part? Clean-up is even easier because all you need to do is toss out the crock pot liner when dinner’s over.

To make this salsa chicken, simply place 1 lb. boneless skinless chicken breasts or thighs (chopped into bite-sized pieces) in a 4-quart crock pot; sprinkle 1 tsp chili powder and 1⁄2 tsp salt over the top; pour 2 cups reduced sodium low-sodium chicken broth (or water) around the meat; then add 2 diced onions, 2 diced green bell peppers, and 8 oz. jar of mild or medium salsa verde. Cover and cook on high heat for 3 hours or until chicken shreds easily with a fork. Remove lid, shred chicken with two forks, and stir in salsa. Cover again and cook 30 more minutes.

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2) One Pot Chicken Alfredo Pasta

This One Pot Chicken Alfredo Pasta is a quick and easy meal that the whole family will love. It’s packed with flavor, but light on calories. And it only takes one pot to make! If you don’t have an Instant Pot, use a medium sized pot to boil the pasta before adding it in with the sauce ingredients. Add everything into the pot (except for pasta) and let simmer for 10-15 minutes until pasta is cooked through.

Then add your fresh or dried pasta, stir well, cover and cook for another 3-4 minutes or until pasta is cooked through and coated in sauce! Top with parmesan cheese if desired. Serve over zucchini noodles or brown rice for additional vegetables! Stir together roasted veggies like bell peppers, onion, carrots and garlic in olive oil before roasting them for 20 minutes at 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Sauté onions and garlic with ground beef until browned. Add jar of tomato sauce or diced tomatoes and water to pan, then season with salt, pepper, Italian seasoning and oregano.

Simmer on low heat for 30 minutes uncovered to reduce liquid slightly – this will thicken the meatballs as they cook more. Divide into four servings and serve with brown rice, quinoa or cauliflower rice. Tasty Taco Bowls: These tasty taco bowls are perfect for those busy nights when you need something fast but still want to stick to your healthy eating plan. All the usual taco fixings are here: chicken, black beans, corn salsa and avocado – except they’re served up in delicious half bowls of yummy goodness instead of full tacos!

 

3) Sweet Potato Veggie Burgers

1. Preheat your oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.

2. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.

3. In a large bowl, mix together 2 cups of cooked and mashed sweet potatoes, 1 cup of cooked black beans, 1⁄2 a cup of bread crumbs, 1 teaspoon of chili powder, and 1⁄2 a teaspoon of salt.

4. Form the mixture into patties and place them on the prepared baking sheet.

5. Bake for 25 minutes, or until golden brown. 6. Heat a skillet over medium-high heat and coat it with cooking spray. 7. Place burgers in the pan to cook for about 3 minutes per side, or until heated through.

8. Serve immediately on whole wheat buns with lettuce, tomato, onion, mustard and mayonnaise as desired. 9. Eat one burger each day during lunch or dinner to meet the daily recommended intake of vegetables, fruit, protein and whole grains. 10. Consider making a double batch at once to save time when you are short on time!

 

4) Kale Pesto Pizza

Pizza is usually thought of as an unhealthy food, but it doesn’t have to be! This Kale Pesto Pizza is a quick and easy meal that’s packed with nutrients. The pesto is made with kale, garlic, olive oil, and Parmesan cheese, which makes it a great source of healthy fats. The pizza dough is whole wheat, so it’s higher in fiber than traditional pizza dough. And the toppings are all healthy choices like tomatoes, onions, and mushrooms. It might take more time to prepare this pizza than your average delivery or frozen one, but it will also make you feel better knowing you’re fueling your body with good food. Plus, the leftovers make for a delicious lunch the next day.

Don’t have time to cook? Consider downloading some healthy recipes onto your phone or tablet from my favorite recipe site, Foodie Crush. They’ve got tons of nutritious options to choose from including breakfast, lunch, dinner, and dessert. I love how they offer slow cooker recipes too because I can set them up before I go to work in the morning and come home to a ready-to-eat meal! There’s no need to keep eating fast food when there are healthier options available.

 

5) Burrito Bowl with Coconut Rice

If you’re looking for a quick, healthy meal, look no further than this burrito bowl with coconut rice. It’s packed with nutrients and will leave you feeling satisfied. Plus, it’s easy to make and can be tailored to your liking. Add in some beans if you want more protein or swap out the brown rice for quinoa if you want more fiber. The next time you’re short on time but still want to eat healthily, this is the perfect dish! Start by cooking the rice according to package instructions.

Then heat up some olive oil in a large pan and add 1/2 an onion diced, 1 clove of garlic minced, 3 tablespoons tomato paste, 1 teaspoon cumin powder, 2 teaspoons chili powder, salt and pepper to taste. Stir for about 5 minutes then add canned tomatoes (or puree from a can) water (according to how thick you want your sauce), peas and corn kernels if desired then simmer uncovered until ready.