5 Healthy Dinner Ideas

Short on time but looking for a healthy meal?  Here are 5 healthy dinner ideas that you can make in under 20 minutes.

We all want more delicious, healthy, home-cooked meals. But with the hectic pace of life these days, cooking a gourmet meal from scratch isn’t always realistic.  (If you can pull it off though, you’re our hero!)  For those of us with little time but good (nutrition) intentions, here are 5 healthy dinners that you can make for yourself or your family in 20 minutes or less.

Spaghetti and turkey meatballsSpaghetti and Turkey Meatballs — and a Side Salad!

Let’s face it: it’s hard to go wrong with spaghetti and meatballs.  You can turn your pasta meal into a healthy dish that you can feel good about serving your family.  For good nutrition without sacrificing taste, choose a whole wheat pasta.  And the sauce is a great place to add extra veggies — zucchini, broccoli, peppers — or whatever veggies suit your taste.

Rotisserie Chicken and Spring VeggiesRotisserie Chicken and Veggies

I got this tip from our resident AppforHealth.com “RD Mom” Ilaria St. Florian.  She is a huge fan of the rotisserie chicken — for nutrition and time-saving!  When you want a satisfying meal in just minutes, pick up a rotisserie chicken from your local grocer.  Chicken is a terrific source of lean protein.  Steam or saute some chopped mixed veggies (buy a bag pre-chopped to save even more time), add a whole grain roll, and you’ve got a balanced meal in well under 20 minutes!

Pizza and SaladPizza and a Salad

Who says pizza can’t be healthy?  You can make your own (and have the kids join in) by simply toping a whole wheat pita with tomato sauce (or fresh tomatoes), your favorite veggies (think brocoli, eggplant, peppers, onions), and some part-skim mozzarella cheese. Serve with a side salad and you’ve got a nutritious meal that will make everyone in your family healthy and happy!

Soup and PaniniSoup and Panini

One of my all-time favorite dinners is also one of the simplest: soup and a sandwich! (Ok, we’ll get a little fancier and make it a panini sandwich).  The key here is to make some soup on the weekends.  Broccoli and carrot are easy and loaded with important vitamins and minerals.  Or you could buy a hearty minestrone or veggie soup — just look for one with less than 500 mg sodium per serving.  On the side do a whole wheat panini with veggies (or your favorite lean meat like turkey or ham), and low-fat cheese.

Turkey Burger and Sweet PotatosTurkey Burger and Sweet Potatoes

Burgers and fries — with a healthy twist.  Swap out a beef patty for a lean turkey patty, and load up with lettuce, tomatoes, and even a few slices of avocado.  Skip oil-soaked french fries and instead do some baked sweet potato chips or fries.  (Just coat very lightly with olive oil or an olive oil-based spray and pop in the oven for 10-12 minutes or until they turn slightly golden).  Under 20 minutes and healthy!  Promises kept.



  1. mmmmm, rotisserie chicken, one of my favorites!


  1. [...] 5 healthy dinners made in 20 minutes or less - Appetite for Health [...]

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