High-Protein 500-Calorie Dinners

By: Victoria Seaver, M.S., R.D., C.D., Digital Meal Plan Editor

Counting calories might be an effective strategy for watching your weight, but it can also feel like a drag. In this healthy 7-day dinner plan, we already did that hard work for you. Each of the recipes come in right around 500 calories, and are high in protein, with at least 15 grams per serving, to help you feel full and satisfied. Even if you aren't trying to lose weight, these healthy recipes are a delicious choice for dinner.

Watch: How to Make a High-Protein Dinner Salad

Day 1:

Korean BBQ Short Ribs

Per serving: 514 calories, 32 grams protein

Korean BBQ Short Ribs

Korean BBQ Short Ribs: The longer you marinate these Korean sweet-and-savory ribs, the better—the intensely flavorful marinade tenderizes the meat and makes for a seriously delicious dish. Tucked into a lettuce wrap with brown rice and savory Ssamjang sauce, this dinner is healthy and satisfying.

 

Day 2:

Gruyère, Asparagus & Pea Baked Pasta

Per serving: 489 calories, 23 grams protein

Gruyère, Asparagus & Pea Baked Pasta

Gruyère, Asparagus & Pea Baked Pasta: This healthy casserole recipe contains tons of veggies and whole-wheat pasta for a satisfying vegetarian dinner the whole family will enjoy.

 

Day 3:

Spring Roll Salad

Per serving: 523 calories, 31 grams protein

Spring Roll Salad

Spring Roll Salad: All the tastes, color and fun of a spring roll without all the work! This healthy salad recipe is bursting with the colors of rainbow from generous amounts of fresh vegetables, shrimp and whole grains all topped with a peanut dressing for the ultimate satisfying salad.

 

Day 4:

Mediterranean Chicken Quinoa Bowl

Per serving: 520 calories, 34 grams protein

Mediterranean Chicken Quinoa Bowl

Mediterranean Chicken Quinoa Bowl: Olives, cucumber, roasted red peppers and spices come together magically in this healthy chicken quinoa bowl recipe. The chicken and quinoa together combine to provide 34 grams of filling protein per serving. Serve with a squeeze of lemon to finish off the dish.

 

Day 5:

Summer Corn & Scallop Pasta

Per serving: 473 calories, 28 grams protein

Summer Corn & Scallop Pasta

Summer Corn & Scallop Pasta: The naturally sweet taste of scallops partners beautifully with summer corn in this healthy high-protein pasta recipe. To get the most corn flavor into the creamy pasta sauce for this recipe, we use the dull side of a knife to remove the extra bit of the corn kernels and the sweet corn "milk" from the ear after cutting off the fresh kernels.

 

Day 6:

Barbecue Chicken & Chard Quesadillas

Per serving: 506 calories, 36 grams protein

Barbecue Chicken & Chard Quesadillas

Barbecue Chicken & Chard Quesadillas: In this high-protein quesadilla recipe, lean chicken, cheese, dark leafy greens and tangy barbecue sauce make for a healthy and delicious dinner. Serve the quesadillas with guacamole, sour cream, shredded lettuce and/or salsa.

 

Day 7:

Mixed Grill with Balsamic-Mustard Vegetables

Per serving: 488 calories, 22 grams protein

Mixed Grill with Balsamic-Mustard Vegetables

Mixed Grill with Balsamic-Mustard Vegetables: This healthy dinner recipe features protein-rich beef tenderloin and savory sausage plenty of delicious veggies. It's the perfect recipe for using up whatever fresh vegetables you have on hand. Just pay attention to cook time: denser vegetables, such as peppers and onions, take a bit longer than softer ones like zucchini and squash. Smaller ones, like cherry tomatoes, may need to be cooked in a grill basket.

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