21 Spring Dinners for Weight Loss
Spring has arrived and these dinner recipes are perfect for the new season. Full of fresh seasonal produce, these dinners are also low in calories and high in fiber, which is a key combination if you’re looking to lose weight. Recipes like Lemony Linguine with Spring Vegetables and Vegetarian Stuffed Cabbage are healthy, bright and delicious.
Chicken & Kale Taco Salad with Jalapeño-Avocado Ranch
This healthy, super-fast salad recipe swaps out romaine for kale, giving you more than 10 times the vitamin C. Easy flavor hacks like store-bought ranch and pickled jalapeños help make a creamy, tangy and spicy dressing you'll want to drizzle on everything from salad to sliced veggies and shredded poached chicken.
Cilantro Bean Burgers with Creamy Avocado-Lime Slaw
Lighten up your burger! Bean patties have less saturated fat and more fiber than beef patties. They're also cheaper and easier to cook indoors--and we promise they're just as satisfying, especially with the mouthwatering creamy slaw on top.
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.
Lemon-Tahini Couscous with Chicken & Vegetables
When you want pasta in no time, couscous is your best friend! The tiny pasta balls cook up in minutes, and absorb all the water so you don't have to fuss with draining. Tossed with sautéed vegetables plus leftover chicken, it's a fast and tasty meal in a bowl that's perfect as an easy dinner recipe.
Lemony Linguine with Spring Vegetables
Instead of cooking pasta in a huge pot of water, here we use just 3 1/2 cups for this one-pot pasta recipe. When the pasta is al dente, most of the water has evaporated and the bit that's left is thickened with the starch that cooks off the pasta. With just a few add-ins like lemon and Parmesan cheese you have a delicious silky sauce. Want to use up your veggie stash in the freezer? Swap in 8 ounces frozen spinach for fresh.
Pan-Seared Steak with Crispy Herbs & Escarole
This easy dinner takes just 20 minutes to prepare, meaning that seared steak can be a weeknight meal. Cooking herbs in the pan with the steak releases their aroma, infusing it into the meat while creating a crispy garnish. After the steaks and herbs are pan-seared, the escarole is cooked in the same skillet, so this healthy dinner requires minimal cleanup too.
Vegetarian Stuffed Cabbage
Though traditional stuffed cabbage recipes are made with meat, here Savoy cabbage leaves are stuffed with a combination of rice, mushrooms, onions, garlic and herbs for a healthy vegetarian stuffed cabbage recipe. The stuffed cabbage leaves gently bake in a simple tomato sauce. This easy stuffed cabbage recipe can be made ahead of time and baked just before serving.
Chicken & Vegetable Penne with Parsley-Walnut Pesto
Homemade pesto may seem daunting, but in this quick pasta recipe you can make a simple sauce in minutes while the pasta water comes to a boil. You can substitute frozen green beans and cauliflower for fresh; in Step 4, cook the frozen vegetables according to package directions before tossing with the pasta and pesto.
Beans & Greens Enchiladas
Any type of canned bean will work in these easy layered enchiladas, but our favorite combination is a mix of black and pinto beans. Serve as a vegetarian main dish or as a tasty side for roasted pork or chicken.
Roast Pork, Asparagus & Cherry Tomato Bowl
In this healthy grain bowl dinner recipe, hummus may seem like an unconventional dressing ingredient, but here we thin it with some hot water to make a rich, creamy drizzle.
Creamy Scallop & Pea Fettuccine
This rich pasta dish is full of sweet seared scallops and plump peas. Low-fat milk and flour thicken the sauce, giving it creamy texture without the extra calories and fat found in traditional cream sauces. Serve with a small Caesar salad on the side.
Open-Face Italian Chicken Sandwiches with Avocado Slaw
The quick tomato topping on these hearty and healthy chicken sandwiches will remind you of pizza. The accompanying slaw swaps out mayo for healthier avocado. Cook the chicken breasts on the grill if you prefer (see Tip) and consider making a double batch of the chicken for lunches and dinners later in the week.
Easy Pea & Spinach Carbonara
Fresh pasta cooks up faster than dried, making it a must-have for fast weeknight dinners like this luscious yet healthy meal. Eggs are the base of the creamy sauce. They don't get fully cooked, so use pasteurized-in-the-shell eggs if you prefer.
Spring Vegetable Stew
This rich, satisfying vegetable stew celebrates the first vegetables of spring--artichokes, leeks, carrots and peas. For a truly indulgent flair, omit the butter at the end and drizzle each serving with a little truffle oil.
Cabbage Rolls with Spiced Lamb
These cabbage rolls are stuffed with lamb and infused with the flavors of turmeric, ground ginger and allspice.
Charred Vegetable & Bean Tostadas with Lime Crema
Pile vegetables and black beans onto crisp tostadas and top them off with lime crema for a vegetarian dinner the whole family will love. Charring the vegetables under the broiler infuses them with smoky flavor while cooking them quickly.
Leek & Lemon Linguine
This simple pasta recipe has bold lemony flavor. It's nice with a salad for a light supper or serve it along with seared fish, shrimp or chicken. Vary it as you please--add a bit of crumbled goat cheese, chopped rinsed capers, shelled edamame or thin strips of yellow bell pepper.
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.
Split Pea Soup with Chorizo
For this easy slow-cooker split pea soup, look for raw smoky, spicy chorizo. If you can't find raw chorizo, Italian sausage or merguez makes a fine substitute.
Vegetarian Spinach Enchiladas
This vegetarian enchilada recipe is weeknight-fast when you skip the step of filling and rolling the enchiladas and make a stacked enchilada casserole instead. Just layer the tortillas, sauce and cheesy spinach filling the way you would lasagna and have the casserole in the oven in 20 minutes.
Shrimp and Cauliflower Bake
This quick and easy seafood casserole gets bright flavor from fresh dill and feta cheese.