Healthy Make Ahead Dinner Recipes

Find healthy, delicious make ahead dinner recipes, from the food and nutrition experts at EatingWell.

Staff Picks

Mediterranean Chickpea Quinoa Bowl

Rating: 4.5 stars 15
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.
By Carolyn Casner

Vegan Superfood Grain Bowls

Rating: 4.5 stars 6
This nutrient-packed grain bowl recipe comes together in 15 minutes with the help of a few convenience-food shortcuts like prewashed baby kale, microwavable quinoa and precooked beets. Pack these ahead to keep on hand for easy meal-prep lunches or dinners on busy nights.

Hearty Chickpea & Spinach Stew

Rating: 4.5 stars 17
This satisfying stew comes together in a snap. Mashed chickpeas add body to the broth, and tomato paste adds a savory note without piling on the sodium. To simplify the prep, look for chopped fresh onion and shredded carrot or a soup starter mix in the produce section.
By Patsy Jamieson

Green Goddess Salad with Chickpeas

Rating: 5 stars 2
In this cucumber, tomato, Swiss cheese and chickpea salad recipe, a healthy green goddess dressing is made from avocado, buttermilk and herbs. The extra dressing is delicious served with grilled vegetables.
By EatingWell Test Kitchen

Black Bean-Quinoa Bowl

Rating: 4 stars 11
This black bean and quinoa bowl has many of the usual hallmarks of a taco salad, minus the fried bowl. We've loaded it up with pico de gallo, fresh cilantro and avocado plus an easy hummus dressing to drizzle on top.
By Katie Webster

Weight-Loss Cabbage Soup

Rating: 4.5 stars 11
Loaded with cabbage, carrots, bell pepper, tomato and plenty of seasoning, this healthy vegetable soup packs in lots of flavor and is ultra-satisfying. This easy recipe makes a big batch for lunches or veggie-packed snacks all week. If you want to bump up the satisfaction factor even more, top with a little cheese or avocado.
By Carolyn Casner

Pea Soup

Rating: 5 stars 14
A simple pea soup makes an elegant start to a spring meal. It's also a great way to use frozen vegetables when the produce section is looking bleak.
By EatingWell Test Kitchen

Carrot Soup

Rating: 5 stars 31
This easy carrot soup recipe is a great way to use up a bag of carrots that were forgotten in your produce drawer. The carrots cook together with aromatics like onions, garlic and fresh herbs before being puréed into a silky smooth soup that's delicious for dinner or packed up for lunch.
By EatingWell Test Kitchen

Chickpea, Artichoke & Avocado Salad with Apple-Cider Dressing

Rating: 4.5 stars 5
This delicious 400-calorie salad is a helpful tool for weight loss because it provides a good balance of fiber, protein and healthy fats from loads of veggies and beans, all tossed in a tangy apple-cider vinaigrette. To meal-prep these for lunch throughout the week, pack the dressing and the salad separately and make sure your veggies are thoroughly dried before packing them together.
By Hilary Meyer

Quinoa-Black Bean Salad

Rating: 5 stars 1
Enjoy this quinoa and black bean salad as a delicious and quick vegetarian main dish or as a side for grilled chicken or steak. And don't forget the leftovers! They make an easy lunch on the go.
By Robin Bashinsky

Miso-Maple Salmon

Rating: 4 stars 2
White miso paste packs an umami punch to this healthy salmon recipe. But being the mildest and sweetest variety of the gluten-free fermented paste, it won't overpower this dish. Use any leftover salmon (within 3 days) to make our Lemon-Garlic Pasta with Salmon, Easy Scallion-Salmon Dip or Spicy Salmon Cakes (see Associated Recipes).
By Adam Dolge

Shrimp Cauliflower Fried Rice

Rating: 4.5 stars 7
Cut down on carbs and amp up your veggie servings with our recipe for 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. 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 healthy dinner comes together in just 25 minutes, so it's perfect for busy weeknights. 
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Inspiration and Ideas

Make-Ahead Mediterranean Bowls
Make this chicken and quinoal recipe on the weekend and pack it into individual serving containers for easy dinners or packable lunches all week.
Make & Take Steak Burritos
Prep a big batch of these better-than-takeout healthy steak burritos to have on hand for packable lunches or easy dinners all week long.
Greek Salad Dressing
Rating: 5 stars 1

This simple Greek vinaigrette is so easy to make and so finger-licking good you'll never want to go back to bottled dressing again! Drizzle it over classic Greek salad, a green salad or even use it as a marinade for grilled vegetables or chicken.