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Top 15 Great low-calorie but Nutritious Dinner ideas

Eating dinner has some people torn between eating heavy and eating light but who are we to judge you, consuming food is what provides people with more stamina and makes it possible to make it through the day. However, this energy will be lost if you have a large meal at supper since only a few hours after that meal you will be heading to bed.


If you’re cooking for your family or assigned to be the cook for the day, doing one of these Top 15 low-calorie dinner ideas will help you achieve a well-satisfying meal while not worrying about the calorie intake your body intake.


  1. Grilled Lime Chicken

This grilled lime chicken gets its acidic and delicious flavor from a superb citrus-based marinade. If you want a fuss-free supper, later on, all you have to do is marinade the chicken a few hours before dinnertime.


Ingredients: 


  • 8 boneless skinless chicken breast halves
  • 1/2 cup lime juice
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 4 green onions, chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 3 tablespoons chopped fresh dill, divided
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper

For detailed procedures of cooking, check out the sources below.


  1. Grilled Mahi Mahi

Instead of cooking the standard hamburgers or chicken breasts on the barbecue, try your hand at grilling some Mahi-mahi instead and watch the compliments roll in.


Ingredients:


  • 3/4 cup reduced-sodium teriyaki sauce
  • 2 tablespoons sherry or pineapple juice
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 8 mahi mahi fillets

For the tropical fruit salsa:


  • 1 medium mango, peeled and diced
  • 1 cup chopped seeded peeled papaya
  • 3/4 cup chopped green pepper
  • 1/2 cup cubed fresh pineapple
  • 1/2 medium red onion, chopped
  • 1/4 cup minced fresh cilantro
  • 1/4 cup minced fresh mint
  • 1 tablespoon chopped seeded jalapeno pepper
  • 1 tablespoon lime juice
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes

For detailed procedures of cooking, check out the sources below.


  1. Saucy Beef with Brocolli

A partially handmade, one-pot meal is the most efficient method for a busy family to get supper on the table in a timely manner.


Ingredients:


  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1/2 cup reduced-sodium beef broth
  • 1/4 cup sherry or additional beef broth
  • 2 tablespoons reduced-sodium soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1 teaspoon minced fresh ginger root
  • 2 teaspoons canola oil, divided
  • 1/2 pound beef top sirloin steak, cut into 1/4-inch-thick strips
  • 2 cups fresh small broccoli florets
  • 8 green onions, cut into 1-inch pieces

For detailed procedures of cooking, check out the sources below.


  1. Kimchi Cauliflower Fried Rice

This nutritious variation on kimchi fried rice has the potential to become a household favorite due to its adaptability. You may substitute in any of your favorite vegetables for the bacon if you have a vegetarian in the household.


Ingredients:


  • 2 bacon strips, chopped
  • 1 green onion, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 cup kimchi, chopped
  • 3 cups frozen riced cauliflower
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 to 3 tablespoons kimchi juice

For detailed procedures of cooking, check out the sources below.


  1. Garlic Lemon Shrimp

You won't believe how fast and easy it is to prepare this sophisticated pasta in only a few minutes. To ensure that every last drop of the garlic lemon sauce is absorbed, serve over crusty bread.


Ingredients:


  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 pound uncooked shrimp (26-30 per pound), peeled and deveined
  • 3 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley
  • Hot cooked pasta or rice

For detailed procedures of cooking, check out the sources below.


  1. Pepper Steak with Potatoes

Who doesn’t love food with potatoes, right?


Ingredients:


  • 1-1/2 pounds red potatoes, sliced
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 cup beef broth
  • 4 teaspoons cornstarch
  • 1/8 teaspoon pepper
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • 1 pound beef top sirloin steak, thinly sliced
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1 medium green pepper, julienned
  • 1 small onion, chopped

For detailed procedures of cooking, check out the sources below.


  1. Air Fryer Squash Soup

Have you ever heated soup in a deep fryer? Squash, carrots, and aromatics all get a nice roast before being blended in, thanks to the stove's uniform heat.


Ingredients:


  • 2 1/2 lb. butternut squash, peeled, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 2 medium carrots, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 large onion, cut into 1/2-inch-thick wedges
  • 4 cloves garlic, 2 whole and 2 thinly sliced divided
  • 1 Fresno chile, seeded
  • 4 sprigs of fresh thyme
  • 4 tbsp. olive oil, divided
  • Kosher salt
  • 2 tbsp. pepitas
  • 1/4 tsp. smoked paprika
  • Sour cream and crusty bread, for serving

For detailed procedures of cooking, check out the sources below.

 

  1. Vegetable Ramen with Mushrooms and Bok Choy

Your own shiitake mushroom, snow pea, and bok choy ramen may be ready in less than an hour if you have the time.


Ingredients:


  • 3 scallions
  • 1 3-oz piece ginger, peeled and very thinly sliced
  • 5 tbsp. low-sodium tamari or soy sauce
  • 6 oz. ramen noodles
  • 6 oz. shiitake mushroom caps, thinly sliced
  • 2 heads of baby bok choy, stems thinly sliced and leaves halved lengthwise
  • 4 oz.  snow peas, thinly sliced lengthwise
  • snow peas thinly sliced lengthwise
  • 1 tbsp. rice vinegar
  • 2 soft-medium boiled eggs, peeled and halved
  • 1/2 c. cilantro sprigs
  • Thinly sliced red chile, to taste

For detailed procedures of cooking, check out the sources below.


  1. Crispy Tofu Bowl

Whoever claimed fried food is unhealthy wasn't eating it. The addition of tangy zucchini and toasty cashews to crispy tofu disproves this.


Ingredients:


Fried Tofu


  • 9 ounces firm tofu
  • 3 tbsp cornstarch
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • ⅛ tsp chili powder
  • oil for frying

Spicy Sweet Chili Sauce


  • 2 tbsp rice vinegar
  • 1 tbsp maple syrup
  • 1 tbsp tomato paste
  • 1 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 tsp sesame oil
  • ½ tsp chili powder
  • ½ tsp cornstarch
  • Bowls
  • 1 cup cooked brown rice
  • 1 avocado
  • chopped green onions, carrots, sesame seeds

For detailed procedures of cooking, check out the sources below.


  1. Chicken Rice Bowl

This chicken rice bowl dish is so simple to make on a hectic evening that you will probably already have all of the ingredients available in your kitchen.


Ingredients:


  • 1 cup uncooked instant rice
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 1/2 cup chopped frozen green pepper, thawed
  • 1/4 cup chopped onion
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 1 package of ready-to-use grilled chicken breast strips
  • 1/2 cup frozen corn, thawed
  • 1/2 cup frozen peas, thawed
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1 teaspoon rubbed sage
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon pepper

For detailed procedures of cooking, check out the sources below.


  1. Okra Bean Stew

When this flavorful stew is slowly cooking on the stove, you won't be able to make it all the way until supper without sampling it every so often. It has the consistency of a substantial tomato-based soup and is loaded with okra, brown rice, and beans for added substance.


Ingredients:


  • 4 cups water
  • 1 can diced tomatoes, undrained
  • 1-1/2 cups chopped green peppers
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/2 to 1 teaspoon hot pepper sauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 4 cups cooked brown rice
  • 2 cans kidney beans, rinsed and drained
  • 3 cans tomato sauce
  • 1 package frozen sliced okra

For detailed procedures of cooking, check out the sources below.



  1. BLT Skillet

This simple midweek dinner will bring to mind a BLT due to the bits of bacon and tomato that are included in it. The linguine made with whole wheat adds both additional flavor and texture to the meal cooked in the pan.


Ingredients:


  • 4 ounces uncooked whole wheat linguine
  • 4 bacon strips, cut into 1-1/2-inch pieces
  • 1 plum tomato, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons lemon juice
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh parsley

For detailed procedures of cooking, check out the sources below.


  1. Egg Roll Noodle Bowl

Many are big fans of Asian egg rolls, but rolling them up properly may be tricky. Using this deconstructed egg roll that is cooked on the burner and placed in a bowl will make things much easier.


Ingredients: 


  • 1 tablespoon sesame oil
  • 1/2 pound ground pork
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 6 cups shredded cabbage
  • 2 large carrots, shredded
  • 4 ounces rice noodles
  • 3 green onions, thinly sliced
  • Additional soy sauce, optional

For detailed procedures of cooking, check out the sources below.


  1. Cajun Beef and Rice

Rice prepared in a Cajun style, whether it comes from a restaurant or a package, may contain high levels of salt and fat. The following ingredients are a hearty and nutritious approach to losing weight.


Ingredients:


  • 1 pound lean ground beef
  • 3 celery ribs, chopped
  • 1 small green pepper, chopped
  • 1 small sweet red pepper, chopped
  • 1/4 cup chopped onion
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 cup instant brown rice
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh parsley
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 teaspoons reduced-sodium beef bouillon granules
  • 1 teaspoon Cajun seasoning
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/8 teaspoon garlic powder

For detailed procedures of cooking, check out the sources below.


  1. Turkey Curry

This meal in a pan may be made mild, medium, or hot by altering the amount of curry powder used.


Ingredients:


  • 1 cup sliced celery
  • 1/2 cup sliced carrots
  • 1 cup fat-free milk
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 3/4 cup reduced-sodium chicken broth
  • 2 cups diced cooked turkey or chicken
  • 2 tablespoons dried minced onion
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 to 4 teaspoons curry powder
  • Hot cooked rice, optional

For detailed procedures of cooking, check out the sources below.



Sources:

  1. When should you be eating your biggest meal? - ChubbLifeBalance Insights
  2. 80 Tasty Low-Cal Dinners Ready in 30 Minutes or Less (tasteofhome.com)
  3. 50 Easy Low-Calorie Meals - Low Cal Recipes That'll Fill You Up (goodhousekeeping.com)
  4. Chili Crispy Tofu Bowls - Full of Plants

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