Healthy Budget Dinner Recipes

Find healthy, delicious budget dinner ideas, from the food and nutrition experts at EatingWell.

Staff Picks

Middle Eastern Chicken & Chickpea Stew

Rating: Unrated
21
This quick, protein-rich chicken stew recipe gets great flavor from cumin, lemon juice and garlic. Make a double batch and freeze it for a quick healthy dinner. Serve the stew with couscous and steamed broccoli.

American Goulash

Rating: Unrated
7
American goulash, also known as old-fashioned goulash, is the perfect economical family meal. The pasta cooks right in the sauce, so this satisfying dish can cook in just one pot.

Slow-Cooker Mediterranean Chicken & Orzo

Rating: Unrated
16
Perk up basic chicken breast and whole-wheat orzo with the vibrant flavors of the Mediterranean, like lemon and olives. This load-and-go recipe makes a complete and satisfying meal; just add a green salad.

Vegetable Weight-Loss Soup

Rating: Unrated
21
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.

Mediterranean Chickpea Quinoa Bowl

Rating: Unrated
10
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.

Cornbread-Topped Chili Casserole

Rating: Unrated
4
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.

Baked Penne Florentine

Rating: Unrated
2
This comforting and flavorful vegetarian dish is packed with protein.

Hasselback Caprese Chicken

Rating: Unrated
11
Using the hasselback technique (cutting crosswise slits every half-inch along the chicken breast) cooks the chicken faster and ensures you get a burst of flavorful gooey filling with each bite. This quick one-pan high-protein and veggie-packed dinner is easy to make and the whole family will love it.

Roasted Root Veggies & Greens over Spiced Lentils

Rating: Unrated
2
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.

Cabbage Roll Chicken Enchiladas

Rating: Unrated
5
This 5-ingredient dinner recipe uses two genius hacks to make dinner healthy and get it on the table in under an hour. First, swap in cabbage leaves for tortillas to cut the carbs and get an extra serving of vegetables. Second, use prepared ingredients--spicy refried beans and enchilada sauce--to add tons of flavor without a long ingredient list.

Easy Chicken Enchilada Casserole

Rating: Unrated
5
Casseroles make perfect meal-prep dinners--this enchilada version is so easy to prep ahead. The whole casserole can be built and left to hang out in the refrigerator for up to three days. Then all you have to do is bake it off on a busy night and you have a healthy dinner on the table in a jiff. The quick homemade enchilada sauce in this recipe is great when you don't have any of the canned sauce on hand--just season crushed tomatoes with spices and salt for an instant enchilada sauce.

Creamy Chicken, Brussels Sprouts & Mushrooms One-Pot Pasta

Rating: Unrated
19
You'll only have to dirty one pot in this easy pasta recipe that cooks chicken and vegetables right along with the noodles. Plus, by using the exact amount of water you need to cook the pasta, the starch that usually gets drained off with your pasta water stays in the pot, giving you delectably creamy results.

Inspiration and Ideas

Quick & Easy Budget Recipes

These crazy-fast recipes are perfect for weeknights—easy, cheap and healthy!

Make-At-Home Burrito Bowls

Smoky chipotle peppers take this easy recipe to next-level deliciousness for a quick meal that's cheaper than takeout.

Slow-Cooker Vegetable Soup

Rating: Unrated
13

Make a big batch of low-calorie veggie-packed soup with ease in this load-and-go crock pot recipe. After simmering away in the slow cooker, portion it into individual serving containers and store in the fridge or freezer for fast, healthy lunches or an easy, satisfying snack. This weight-loss vegetable soup fills you up without a lot of calories, plus it's an easy way to eat more vegetables.