30 Low-Calorie Dinners That Support Healthy Aging
Try one of these healthy low-calorie dinner recipes tonight. These dinners are packed with colorful vegetables, which can help you get the necessary nutrients your body needs as you get older. Recipes like Lemon Chicken Orzo Soup with Kale and Charred Shrimp & Pesto Buddha Bowls are delicious, bright and the perfect addition to your weekly menu.
Lemon Chicken Orzo Soup with Kale
This healthy, easy soup is loaded with vegetables, protein and fiber to keep you full and fueled. Serve this winter soup topped with a sprinkle of Parmesan cheese, and a side of garlic toast.
Mediterranean Chickpea Quinoa Bowl
Quinoa and chickpeas pack this vegetarian grain bowl with plenty of plant-based protein. Whip up a batch of these Mediterranean meals and pack in containers with lids to stash in the fridge for easy, healthy grab & go lunches all week long.
Shrimp Cauliflower Fried Rice
Cut down on carbs and amp up your veggie servings with this healthy cauliflower fried rice with shrimp, broccoli, bell peppers and garlic. Everything is cooked in one wok or skillet, but in stages, so each element keeps its integrity in the finished dish instead of being all mushed together--it may seem fussy, but it's worth it and actually quite easy. Resist the urge to stir the cauliflower rice right away; letting it cook undisturbed for a few minutes allows it to brown and develop sweet, nutty flavors. This better-than-takeout healthy dinner comes together in just 25 minutes, so it's perfect for busy weeknights.
Philly Cheesesteak Stuffed Peppers
Mounding a classic Philly cheesesteak mixture in a colorful bell pepper and melting cheese on top is an easy way to skip the bread and cut the carbs.
Greek Chicken with Roasted Spring Vegetables & Lemon Vinaigrette
This Greek-inspired chicken and vegetable sheet-pan meal is bursting with flavor. The chicken is coated in a mayonnaise and bread crumb mixture, roasted alongside asparagus, cremini mushrooms and grape tomatoes and then served with a lemon-feta vinaigrette.
Charred Shrimp & Pesto Buddha Bowls
These shrimp and pesto Buddha bowls are delicious, healthy, pretty and take less than 30 minutes to prep. In other words, they're basically the ultimate easy weeknight dinner. Feel free to add additional vegetables and swap the shrimp for chicken, steak, tofu or edamame.
Cornbread-Topped Chili Casserole
In this healthy casserole recipe--sometimes called tamale pie--the cornbread gets crusty at the edges, thanks to a cast-iron skillet. For the best texture, use yellow cornmeal with a medium grind. Serve with lime wedges for a little extra tang.
Vegetable Weight-Loss Soup
A big bowl of this veggie-packed minestrone will leave you satisfied for hours without consuming a lot of calories--plus it's an easy way to boost your vegetable servings for the day. Top with a dollop of pesto before devouring this delicious skinny vegetable soup.
Sheet-Pan Chicken Fajita Bowls
Skip the tortillas in favor of this warm fajita salad, which features a nutritious medley of chicken with roasted kale, bell peppers and black beans. The chicken, beans and vegetables are all cooked on the same pan, so this healthy dinner is easy to make and the cleanup is easy too.
Avocado & Shrimp Chopped Salad
The smoky flavors of grilled shrimp and corn in this healthy chopped salad recipe are a tasty match for the creamy cilantro dressing.
Roasted Root Veggies & Greens over Spiced Lentils
This earthy bowl of lentils bursting with Middle Eastern flavors is topped with leftover roasted root veggies from a large batch for an easy weeknight dinner. Keep it vegan or add a drizzle of plain yogurt for extra richness.
Garlic Roasted Salmon & Brussels Sprouts
Roasting salmon on top of Brussels sprouts and garlic, flavored with wine and fresh oregano, is simple enough for a weeknight meal yet sophisticated enough to serve to company. Serve with whole-wheat couscous.
Honey-Garlic Chicken Thighs with Carrots & Broccoli
In this easy and healthy dinner recipe, sweet and savory baked honey-garlic chicken thighs come with a side of veggies that cook on the same sheet pan as the chicken. The honey-soy-garlic marinade for the chicken does double duty as an irresistible sauce to drizzle over everything. Lining your baking sheet with foil will protect your pan from the sticky honey-soy-garlic sauce, so cleanup will be a breeze too. If you can't find small carrots, cut medium carrots in half lengthwise.
Vegan Minestrone Soup
Is minestrone soup vegan? It can be, with the right ingredients! This vegan minestrone soup is heavy on the green vegetables (it has peas, zucchini and kale, to name a few!), setting this quick healthy soup recipe apart from the rest. If you miss the tomatoes, feel free to add them to the mix. Last but not least, enjoy the crispy garlic croutons that float on top and soak up the flavorful broth.
Chopped Rainbow Salad Bowls with Peanut Sauce
Make good use of crunchy and colorful seasonal produce in these meal-prep-friendly vegetable bowls. With just 30 minutes of prep, you get four healthy lunches that are ready to grab-and-go. We use bulgur, which cooks faster and is higher in fiber than brown rice, but you could swap in quinoa (or any hearty whole grain). Feel free to add chopped cooked chicken, shrimp or tofu for extra protein.
Greek Burgers with Herb-Feta Sauce
These healthy burgers get a Mediterranean twist with a yogurt sauce seasoned with oregano, lemon and feta cheese. If you can't find ground lamb, ask the butcher to grind some for you.
Kung Pao Chicken with Bell Peppers
Here's an easy chicken recipe you'll definitely want to add to your dinner repertoire. A quick marinade tenderizes the chicken and infuses flavor in this healthy version of a take-out favorite. Adding a little oil to finish the marinade coats the chicken and helps keep it from sticking to the pan.
Italian Wedding Soup
This Italian Wedding Soup recipe is Italian comfort food at its best, and this easy soup recipe lends itself to countless variations. Substitute spinach, chicory, chard or any other leafy green for the escarole or kale, and any leftover cooked (or canned) beans for the white beans in this healthy Italian wedding soup recipe.
Superfood Chopped Salad with Salmon & Creamy Garlic Dressing
Curly kale forms the base of this salad, but you could use chard or spinach. To the greens, add a multitude of chopped veggies, such as broccoli, cabbage and carrots. Finish with rich salmon for protein and a drizzle of creamy yogurt dressing to bring it all together.
Shrimp and Cauliflower Bake
This quick and easy seafood casserole gets bright flavor from fresh dill and feta cheese.
Chickpea & Quinoa Buddha Bowl
It seems Buddha bowls have as many variations as there are stars in the sky, and there is no wrong way to build one! But we prefer to keep things classic and simple with hummus, quinoa, avocado and loads of veggies!
Mediterranean Chicken with Orzo Salad
Baked chicken breasts cook in the oven while you mix together a Mediterranean salad--packed with veggies, whole-wheat orzo and an easy homemade Greek vinaigrette--for a weekend-worthy dinner on the table in under an hour. The leftovers from this healthy 400-calorie meal make a delicious packable lunch for the next day.
Beer-Battered Fish Tacos with Tomato & Avocado Salsa
Lovers of fried fish get the taste without all the calories, and the salsa adds a fresh, clean note. To complete the Baja theme, serve with black beans, some diced mango and a bit of light sour cream.
Lemon-Garlic Chicken Penne with Pesto and Spinach
Fresh pesto brilliantly compliments the lemon and garlic flavors of this juicy chicken dinner.
Bean & Barley Soup
This hearty bean and barley soup tastes like it has simmered for hours, but actually it's quite quick to throw together. Plus this recipe for healthy bean and barley soup freezes beautifully. If you have cooked barley on hand, omit the quick-cooking barley and stir in 1 1/2 cups cooked barley along with the broth in Step 2.
Smoky Shrimp, Corn & Pea One-Pot Pasta
Make your sauce and pasta all at once with this fast weeknight pasta dinner recipe. By using the exact amount of water you need to cook the pasta--no colanders here--the starch that cooks off into your pasta water, which you usually drain away, stays in the pot, giving you delectably creamy results.
Pistachio-Crusted Chicken with Warm Barley Salad
Barley and pistachios give this healthy chicken recipe a double dose of nutty flavor. For an easy change-up, swap in your favorite whole grain, such as brown rice, farro or quinoa.
"Egg in a Hole" Peppers with Avocado Salsa
Colorful bell pepper rings stand in for bread in this healthy version of egg in a hole. Cook an egg inside the peppers and top with a vibrant avocado salsa for a cheerful breakfast.
This creamy tortellini and vegetable pasta is a real crowd pleaser. To make it even quicker, use frozen chopped vegetables instead of fresh. Serve with: A green salad and whole-grain baguette.
Chicken-Spaghetti Squash Bake
In this version of a chicken-and-broccoli casserole, spaghetti squash takes on a creamy texture when baked with cream of mushroom soup.