Healthy Make Ahead Dinner Recipes

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

Staff Picks

Sweet Potato & Black Bean Chili

Rating: 4.52 stars
96
Make a double batch of this quick vegetarian chili, full of black beans and sweet potatoes, and eat it for lunch the next day or freeze the extras for another night. We love the smoky heat from the ground chipotle, but omit it if you prefer a mild chili. Serve with tortilla chips or cornbread and coleslaw.

Slow-Cooker Mediterranean Chicken & Chickpea Soup

Rating: 3.5 stars
16
This set-it-and-forget-it slow-cooker recipe simmers away all day so you come home to a warm and healthy dinner the whole family will love. Using bone-in chicken is the key to making rich soup without adding broth.

Cauliflower Soup

Rating: 5 stars
1
A healthy take on a loaded baked potato, this creamy cauliflower soup recipe has all the fixings of a loaded potato (bacon included) but for way fewer calories and carbs. Ready in a quick 20 minutes, this easy soup is great for busy weeknights or can be meal prepped ahead of time to take for lunch or frozen for a ready-made meal down the road. This recipe was originally made for one serving but can be easily adapted to serve more.

Roasted Cauliflower & Potato Curry Soup

Rating: 4.8 stars
46
In this healthy cauliflower soup recipe, roasting the cauliflower first adds depth and prevents the florets from turning to mush. A little tomato sauce and coconut milk give the broth a rich, silky texture. Serve with a dollop of sour cream or yogurt, if desired.

Carrot Soup

Rating: 4.72 stars
36
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.

Easy Chicken Enchilada Casserole

Rating: 4.29 stars
7
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.

Kale & White Bean Potpie with Chive Biscuits

Rating: 4.67 stars
9
In this vegetarian white bean potpie recipe, kale and hearty white beans are topped with easy, homemade chive biscuits. If desired, add a little shredded Gruyère or Cheddar cheese to the biscuit dough.

Slow-Cooker Braised Beef with Carrots & Turnips

Rating: 4.86 stars
7
The spice blend in this healthy beef stew recipe--cinnamon, allspice and cloves--may conjure images of apple pie, but the combo is a great fit in savory applications too. Serve over creamy polenta or buttered whole-wheat egg noodles.

Southwestern Vegetable & Chicken Soup

Rating: 4.5 stars
18
Who wouldn't want to eat their vegetables when they're tucked into a fragrant broth with bits of tasty chicken and spiked with a shot of fresh lime and cilantro? This healthy chicken vegetable soup seems even richer with the smoky flavor from roasted poblano peppers and garlic. Serve this healthy chicken soup recipe with tortilla chips.

Vegan Superfood Grain Bowls

Rating: 4.8 stars
5
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.

Vegetarian Enchilada Casserole

Rating: 4.67 stars
9
Think of this vegetarian enchilada casserole as a veggie-packed Mexican lasagna with corn tortillas standing in for the noodles! If your peppers are mild and you like heat, opt for spicy pico de gallo. This easy vegetarian dinner recipe is sure to become a new family favorite.
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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.

Spaghetti with Quick Meat Sauce

Rating: 4.2 stars
15

Instead of opening a jar of sauce, try this easy spaghetti with meat sauce on a weeknight. Serve with steamed broccoli and garlic bread. The recipe makes enough for 8 servings. If you're serving only four for dinner, cook 8 ounces of spaghetti and freeze the leftover sauce.