Low-Calorie Dinner Recipes on a Budget

Find healthy, delicious budget low-calorie dinner recipes from the food and nutrition experts at EatingWell.

Staff Picks

Zucchini, Corn & Egg Casserole

Rating: 5 stars
2
This healthy casserole is essentially a crustless quiche, brimming with fresh summer vegetables. Bake it up for an elegant summer brunch or a casual backyard barbecue.

American Goulash

Rating: 4.73 stars
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.

Greek Turkey Burgers with Spinach, Feta & Tzatziki

Rating: 5 stars
12
Creamy tzatziki and crisp sliced cucumber add a refreshing twist to this easy Greek-inspired burger recipe loaded with feta, spinach and Mediterranean spices. No tzatziki? No problem! Make your own at home by combining plain Greek yogurt with a squeeze of lemon, dill and finely chopped cucumber.

Lobster & Corn Chowder

Rating: 5 stars
1
The trick to making this healthy lobster chowder recipe have tons of rich flavor is to start with great fish stock. (The best is often in the freezer case at the supermarket.) Then cook the lobsters in the stock to intensify its flavor. There is no flour added in this healthy soup, so it's lighter than a typical creamy chowder--plus it's gluten-free.

Tamari-Ginger Meatball & Eggplant Casserole

Rating: 4.63 stars
7
Eggplant soaks up the flavors of ginger, garlic and tamari in this Asian-inspired casserole recipe. A hot pepper in the topping adds a bit of heat, but opt for sweet if you prefer.

Mediterranean Chickpea Quinoa Bowl

Rating: 4.64 stars
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.

Sheet-Pan Chicken Fajitas

Rating: 5 stars
13
One sheet pan is all you'll need to whip up these zesty chicken fajitas. They're quick and easy to make and cleanup is even faster!

Hasselback Caprese Chicken

Rating: 4.58 stars
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.

Carrot Soup

Rating: 4.72 stars
24
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.

Slow-Cooker Vegetable Soup

Rating: 4 stars
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.

Chipotle Chicken Quinoa Burrito Bowl

Rating: 4.9 stars
25
This chipotle-flavored burrito bowl recipe is even better than takeout and just as fast. Loading it with vegetables and using quinoa in place of rice adds nutrition for a healthy dinner.

Cabbage Roll Chicken Enchiladas

Rating: 4.83 stars
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.
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Inspiration and Ideas

Stuffed Sweet Potato with Hummus Dressing

Rating: Unrated
14
Hearty yet simple to prepare, this stuffed sweet potato with black beans, kale and hummus dressing is a fantastic 5-ingredient lunch for one!

Eggs in Tomato Sauce with Chickpeas & Spinach

Rating: Unrated
9
Simmer eggs in a rich tomatoey cream sauce studded with chickpeas and silky spinach for a super-fast vegetarian dinner. Serve with a piece of crusty bread to soak up the sauce. Be sure to use heavy cream; a lower-fat option might curdle when mixed with acidic tomatoes.

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.