Healthy Dinner Recipes

Discussion in 'The Watercooler' started by JKF, Mar 21, 2013.

  1. JKF

    JKF Well-Known Member

    We're trying to eat a bit healthier here and I was wondering if anyone had any healthy dinner recipes. I'm getting sick of the same old stuff (grilled chicken, Salad, etc) Tonight I'm trying something new and making "Healthy Taco Casserole".

    Smells really good in here so hopefully it's a hit! If anyone has any healthy recipes they want to share please do!
  2. recoveringenabler

    recoveringenabler Well-Known Member Staff Member

    [FONT=arial, helvetica, clean, sans-serif]This is one of my staples, everyone loves it and it's healthy. I serve it with whole grain linguine pasta.[/FONT]

    [FONT=arial, helvetica, clean, sans-serif]Chicken Cacciatore[/FONT]
    2005, Ellie Krieger, All Rights Reserved

    Prep Time:5 minInactive Prep Time: -- Cook Time:35 min
    4 servings

    4 skinless chicken breast halves on the bone, about 2 pounds
    Salt and freshly ground black pepper
    2 teaspoons olive oil
    1 medium onion, thinly sliced
    1 red bell pepper, thinly sliced
    1/2 pound white mushrooms, thinly sliced
    2 garlic cloves, minced
    1/2 cup dry white wine
    1 (14 1/2-ounce) can whole tomatoes in juice, chopped and juice reserved
    1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
    1/8 teaspoon red pepper flakes or more to taste
    Rinse the chicken and pat dry with paper towels. Season the chicken with salt and pepper.

    Heat the oil in a saute pan over moderately-high heat. Brown the chicken on both sides, about 8 minutes. Remove the chicken.

    Reduce the heat to moderate. Add the onion and pepper, cover and cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables begin to soften, about 5 minutes. Add the mushrooms and cook, uncovered and stirring occasionally, until the mushrooms begin to brown. Add the garlic and cook, stirring, for 30 seconds. Add the wine and cook until reduced by half. Add the tomatoes and juice, oregano, red pepper flakes and 1/4 teaspoon of salt and simmer the mixture covered for 10 minutes.

    Return the chicken breasts to the pan and simmer, covered, until the chicken is just done, about 20 minutes longer.

    Serves: 4

    Calories: 302

    Total Fat: 5 grams

    Saturated Fat: 1 gram

    Protein: 45 grams

    Total carbohydrates: 12 grams

    Sugar: 6 grams

    Fiber: 3 grams

    Cholesterol: 105 milligrams

    Sodium: 418 milligrams
  3. JKF

    JKF Well-Known Member

    Mmmmm! That sounds delicious RE! Thank you!!

    The taco casserole I made tonight was a hit. husband and easy child/difficult child were both very pleased. Neither realized that I snuck some kale in. They both loved it. I'm going to try the cacciatore on Sunday. Thanks again!
  4. recoveringenabler

    recoveringenabler Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Here's a great website too JKF, I've made a number of things from here, all delicious, all healthy too!

    I made these last week, yum!

    Turkey Stuffed Peppers
    Gina's Weight Watcher Recipes
    Servings: 6 servings (1/2 pepper) • Time: 55 minutes • Old Points: 4 • Points+: 5
    Calories: 184.7 • Fat: 2.3 g • Protein: 20.8 g • Carb: 20.2 g • Fiber: 1.6 g


    • 1 lb lean chopped turkey meat
    • 1 garlic, minced
    • 1/4 onion, minced
    • 1 tbsp chopped fresh cilantro or parsley
    • 1 tsp garlic powder
    • 1 tsp cumin powder
    • salt to taste
    • 3 large sweet red bell peppers, washed
    • 1 cup fat free chicken broth
    • 1/4 cup tomato sauce
    • 1 1/2 cups cooked rice
    • Olive oil spray
    • 1/4 cup reduced fat shredded cheese


    Heat oven to 400°. Spray a little olive oil spray in a medium size saute pan and heat on a medium flame. Add onion, garlic and cilantro to the pan. Saute about 2 minutes and add ground turkey. Season with salt and garlic powder, and cumin and brownmeat for several minutes until meat is completely cooked through. Add 1/4 cup of tomato sauce and 1/2 cup of chicken broth, mix well and simmer on low for about 5 minutes. Combine cooked rice and meat together.

    Cut the bell peppers in half lengthwise, and remove all seeds. Place in a baking dish.Spoon the meat mixture into each pepper half and fill it with as much as you can.Place all stuffed pepper halves on the baking dish and pour the remainder of the chicken broth on the bottom of the pan. Cover tight with aluminum foil and bake for about 35 minutes. Top with shredded cheddar cheese and enjoy.
  5. JKF

    JKF Well-Known Member

    Ohhhh my friend told me to check out that website and I totally forgot. She swears by it! Thanks! And YUM to the stuffed peppers! That would def be a hit here. We've gotten in kind of a dinner slump and this is exactly the kind of thing I was looking for! You rock RE! :)
  6. nerfherder

    nerfherder Active Member

    Hey, what kind of daily activity levels do you guys have? That way I can know which recipes to share. Many of our household favorites are more "high energy refuel from a day of outdoor work" kind of recipes.
  7. JKF

    JKF Well-Known Member

    Nerf - I'm active but not THAT active. lol Definitely not a ""high energy refuel from a day of outdoor work" kinda girl. I would still like to hear anything you have to offer though if you're willing to share!
  8. SuZir

    SuZir Well-Known Member

    nerf: I would appreciate some of the 'high energy refuel'-recipes. We mostly eat your basic, old-fashioned Scandinavian cuisine and many of the trendy, new things tend to be too low-calorie for us (it's for example laughable, or maybe cryable, how much it would cost to buy take-out sushi for lunch for us.) My difficult child needs around 7000 kcal daily and easy child is only somewhat behind and I do eat at least double of most women who have office jobs. husband is only one who should eat less (or in fact right now he is doing quite well with his weight loss) and even he does need quite a lot of healthy food. His problem has been unhealthy business dinners/lunches/quick something while travelling and unhealthy snacks.
  9. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    I'm mom to a teenage boy with a sky-high metabolic rate who's growing like Jack's beanstalk. Calories are no problem as long as the big-picture is high nutrition. Fire away... I'm listening!
  10. witzend

    witzend Well-Known Member

  11. recoveringenabler

    recoveringenabler Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Isn't that a great website Witz? Everything I've made from there has been very, very good. Let me know how your dinner turns out, that recipe is on my list to make.

    Here is a great one for lower fat chocolate chip cookies from that site which I've made many times, even the teenagers love them. Give it a try.......
  12. JKF

    JKF Well-Known Member

    Witz - that recipe looks amazing! My mouth is watering as I sit here in the waiting room while easy child/difficult child is in with therapist. Definitely adding that to the list of recipes to try!
  13. nerfherder

    nerfherder Active Member

    OK, here's some stuff. Keep in mind we lean strongly towards low-carb/paleo/grain-free diets.

    First - the best most cost effective cut of meat to fill up hungry hard working bodies is probably the whole pork shoulder. Our Safeway carries it pretty regularly at 1.79 to 1.99 lb, and theirs doesn't have the same schmutz "for flavor and enhanced juiciness" added like what I see at WalMart. We can our own salsas, so this is on the cheap side too:

    Brown your shoulder - or not. Put in crock pot with a quart of salsa. Run on low for a long while. Minimum, and this is once the salsa is bubbling, go 20 minutes per pound. Longer won't hurt it. Pull it to pieces when done, salt to taste if needed, serve with, oh, beans, or rice, or both, or salad, or if you can eat grains wrap it in warm, soft corn tortillas with the condiments of your choice. We use tons of salad, probably go through more than half a dozen heads of lettuce a week.

    You can also roast it, covered at around 325*F, 20 minutes per pound, until the last 30 to 45 minutes for amazingly rich carnitas. I season that with garlic, cumin, salt, black pepper.

    Curries. They don't have to be hot, or weird. Think of something like a fricasee of chicken, but use coconut milk and curry powder instead of the standard fricasee treatment of cream and bland spices. Coconut milk is an amazing rich, creamy addition to nearly anything. If you want to make a goulash or paprikash for example, but you're dairy sensitive, try a can of coconut milk. I recommend the Thai Kitchen brand, it's usually as solid as sour cream at a cool room temperature.

    Instead of rice, we usually use cauliflower, riced in a food processor, then saute'd with a lightly browned diced onion until barely tender.

    Bacon! We rarely buy sliced bacon anymore, our WalMart carries the Daily's 3 lb bricks of "ends & pieces." They work out to less than $2 a pound, and the neat thing is at that price? You can grind a pound and add it to your ground meat of whatever variety for meat loaf, meat balls, etc. Today for dinner the RN made baked catfish filets (50% off at Safeway!) with bacon on top, and "Broccoli Crack." seriously, google that recipe. There are a few variations, but the common ingredients are raw broccoli, salt, olive oil. You don't need to get fancy - canola would probably work. Heck, bacon grease would probably work.

    We rarely use potatoes. Too much of that starch all at once and we're all snarly and grumpy an hour later. So we will dice a small amount now and then into soups and stews. Usually with carrots, parsnips, or any other rooty goodness that's not stupid expensive.

    Oh! My special thing, that makes kids eat cooked carrots until they're too full for anything else.

    Slice carrots into french-fry sort of sticks. Toss with your favorite cooking oil (for this, since it's mostly kiddos eating it, I use bacon grease or our own rendered lard - which by the way if it's from local non-industrial pigs is one of your best sources of Vitamin D.)

    Then toss the oiled carrots with:
    SMALL amount of powdered ginger
    LESS SMALL but still not a lot, amount of mild curry powder

    Put in skillet. Cook on medium heat, covered until the carrots are tender, then turn up the heat, uncover and give 'em a good browning. You don't need a lot of oil, and it brings out the sweetness - about the only kids I can think of who wouldn't like it are the kind who can't eat anything that isn't sugared up.

    Beer can chicken. You can use the blandest, cheapest chicken around and it'll still be pretty good. Read up on how to do beer can chicken - what I do is pour a little beer into the baking pan, then add about half a dozen garlic cloves to the beer before mounting the chicken for its final flight. At that point you could probably just give the whole thing to your hungry teen and say "toss the bones into the crockpot when you're done." Because we do make stock, we do. Lots. And it gets used too.

    Y'all already know I make my own mayo. Now, for eggs - ok, we get a lot of our own but it's never enough. When you buy eggs, if you mostly make scrambles or use 'em for ingredients otherwise, consider finding who around you sells jumbo eggs. Compare prices. Our general store sells the jumbos at 1.99 a dozen, which is frequently cheaper per piece than the large or extra large at the regular supermarkets. I've found that often jumbos are same price or cheaper than the more popular large/extra large. And it's simple in our house - half a cup of beaten egg is a serving of scrambled eggs. The size the egg was before I cracked it is less important than how much egg in ounces I'm cooking. And eggs are an awesome cheap and useful source of protein!

    For beef, we try to catch primal cuts on sale or clearance. Roast, or slice thin for steak, but note - even though brisket is often cheap, it also shrinks - sometimes as much as 1/3. Sliced shanks, if you can get them reasonably priced, are a slow-cooked indulgence with lots of fat and collagen to fuel growing bodies. If you favor steak, watch out for well-marbled chuck! If you catch the right piece at the right time, especially the cut closer to the ribs sometimes called "Market Steaks," high speed high heat and medium rare in the center gives you a real treat.

    Tilapia can be seasoned up and oiled up, but I don't favor it as it's pretty dry. Best to cut it into scallop-sized chunks, wrap in half-strips of bacon and bake at 425* until done, then serve on a salad. Did I mention we eat a lot of salad? Even the 2 year old, she loves her raw greens and sprouts.

    Did I leave anything out? I'm guessing y'all already know how to do your own starches, we don't so I don't have any suggestions there. :) And we don't do much casseroles, but sometimes a Spanish Tortilla (see eggs above) or crustless Quiche.
  14. recoveringenabler

    recoveringenabler Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Good morning. I thought of this recipe this morning, it is very tasty, it is another one of my staples because everyone likes it so much, give it a try........

    Tyler Florence's Shrimp Scampi With Linguine[/h]By Meredith .F on October 06, 2008

    • Prep Time: 15 mins
    • Total Time: 25 mins
    • Servings: 4-6

    About This Recipe"Just takes a few minutes to create this awesome & tasty dish!"


        • 1 lb linguine
        • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
        • 4 tablespoons butter
        • 4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
        • 2 large shallots, finely diced
        • 2 garlic cloves, minced
        • 1 pinch red pepper flakes
        • 1 lb large shrimp, peeled & deveined with tails left on
        • fresh black pepper, ground
        • 1/2 cup dry white wine
        • 1 lemon, juice of
        • 1/4 cup parsley, finely chopped

      • Bring large pot of water to boil, stir in linguine and salt until pasta seperates; cover and return to boil. Cook 6-8 minutes until pasta is not quite done. Drain, reserving 1 cup water.
      • In large skillet melt 2 Tbs butter in 2 Tbs oil over medication-high heat. Add shallots, garlic and red pepper flakes; cook, stirring until shallots are translucent, 3-4 minute Season shrimp with-salt & pepper, add to skillet & cook until pink, 2-3 minutes. Remove shrimp & keep warm.
      • Add wine & lemon juice to skillet and bring to boil. Add remaining butter and evoo. When butter has melted return shrimp to skillet along with pasta, parsley and reserved cooking water.
      • Season well, drizzle with a bit more olive oil and a sprig of parsley: serve immediately.
  15. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    Interesting stuff, but not ingredients I can get my hands on at affordable prices (esp that pork shoulder...!)

    How about... what would you do with stewing hens? or chicken legs/thighs/drumsticks? lean ground beef?
    Better yet... what on earth do you do for breakfast if you don't have grains?! (we're big on non-wheat stuff, like hot cooked oatmeal)
  16. recoveringenabler

    recoveringenabler Well-Known Member Staff Member

  17. Mattsmom277

    Mattsmom277 Active Member

    We love crock pot meals. On Friday I made a chicken chili which makes a massive amount so I'm serving it as part of a luncheon tomorrow that I'm hosting here.

    In a crock pot mix:

    2 cans diced tomatoes (You can use those blends with hot peppers if you like, I use large cans)
    1 can tomato sauce (not pasta sauce, just simple tomato sauce)
    3 cans beans (I use a blend. This time I used a six bean blend, a can of black beans and a can of brown beans. I rinsed all but the brown beans)
    1 can corn -drained (You can skip this but I like the crisp) *Can use frozen or fresh off the cob
    1 large onion, chopped
    chili powder to taste
    cumin to taste
    hot sauce to taste
    (Spices are flexible, use your favorites, or in a pinch, the premade chili or taco seasoning packets)

    Turn crock pot on low, place 3-4 boneless skinless chicken breasts on top and push down with spoon until just covered. Cover crock and allow to cook all day, or overnight. (This tastes even better after it sits. I often put it on overnight, turn it off in the morning and then serve at dinner when flavor grows even more)

    Using tongs, remove chicken breasts to plate. Chicken will be so tender you can "shred" it to stringy chicken pieces using two forks. Return back to crock pot for about another hour or so on low.

    This freezes very well, so don't fear the massive amount of chili you get from this recipe. I also sometimes divide leftovers. I freeze two large dinner size portions, enough for a decent meal for all of us. I either just thaw and reheat later, or you can add more beans and cooked rice and use it a couple of ways. Sometimes I use it in a casserole dish and sprinkle some cheese on top and put it in the oven to reheat. Other times I skip the cheese, bake in oven (it helps meld the flavors into the rice and make it drier). I then use it as filling in wraps, top with a little sour cream and fresh cilantro before folding the wrap.
  18. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    IC.....cant you get venison? I have some wonderful recipes for that.
  19. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    No hunters in our family - and the ones in extended family won't share... unfortunately, because we LOVE it.
  20. HaoZi

    HaoZi CD Hall of Fame

    This is an oddball eggdrop and noodles type soup I make sometimes.

    6 cups water
    5 chicken bullion cubes
    whole wheat pasta (or pasta/quinao/rice/grain/whatever of your choice, this is what we use) I don't measure this, I just guess
    eggbeaters (or scrambled eggs, again your choice) I don't measure this either, I just eyeball this as I pour it in the pot and stop when it looks right to me
    Turmeric to taste
    Cayenne to taste

    Bring water, turmeric, cayenne, and bullion to boil, add pasta. When pasta has one minute left to cook, start adding in eggbeaters, quickly stirring constantly to cook egg and keep it from cooking in large chunks. Check pasta to make sure it's done (egg mixture lowers the temp so it might take a little longer to finish cooking). Sometimes I'll add grated Parmesan to the bowls once it's doled out (Storm doesn't like it in hers).