As Seen On
Nutrition

20 Quick Healthy Meals Ready In Under 20 Minutes

Google+ Pinterest LinkedIn Tumblr

In a hurry and in lack of inspiration?

What about healthy fast food? 

We have compiled a list of 20 quick easy healthy recipes for you that will be on the table within 20 minutes. 

Black Bean-Smothered Sweet Potatoes

Black Bean Sweet Potato
Photo: agirladegree.com

About the Recipe:

It’s a gratifying and fulfilling last-minute meal. Imagine the nutrition-rich sweet potato cooked with fragrant beans and protein-dense tomato all combined in the same bowl. Don’t leave out the potato skin it’s a powerhouse of fiber.

Ingredients:

  • Serves 2
  • Sweet Potatoes (medium size) – 2
  • Black Beans (rinsed) – 15 ounce
  • Diced Tomato (medium size) – 1
  • Extra-virgin Olive Oil- 2 teaspoons
  • Ground Cumin- ½ teaspoon
  • Ground Coriander- ¼ teaspoons
  • Salt- ¼ teaspoon
  • Sour Cream (reduced-fat) – 1 tablespoon
  • Fresh Cilantro (chopped) – 2 tablespoons

Preparation

  • Cooking Time 15 m
  • Prepared In 20 m

Rinse sweet potatoes thoroughly and prick them all over using a fork

Microwave sweet potatoes on High for about 12 to 15 minutes or until they become tender right through the center. Otherwise, you can bake them at 425F for about 1 hour.

While the potatoes are cooking, mix up all the other ingredients in a medium-sized microwave-safe dish/bowl, set the microwave on High and cook them for about 2 to 3 minutes, just to warm them a bit. You may also heat them up in a saucepan over medium heat

Let the sweet potatoes cool down after they are cooked so you can handle them. Slash each of them lengthwise and press open to create a well in the middle

Spoon the bean mixture right inside the well

Top them up with a tablespoon of sour cream for each potato and sprinkle cilantro to garnish

Chickpea Curry (Chhole)

chicken chickpea curry
Photo: scibosnian.com

About the Recipe

The use of canned beans substantially reduces the cooking time of this healthy Indian delight. This recipe is inspired by the authentic Indian chickpea curry, with a slight change from boiled chickpeas to canned ones for minimizing preparation time. To make it even healthier, add more vegetables such as roasted cauliflower florets.

Serving suggestion

Serve the curry with freshly baked naan or brown basmati rice.

Ingredients

  • Serves 6
  • Serrano pepper (medium size cut into thirds) – 1
  • Large size Garlic Cloves – 4
  • Fresh Ginger – 2” piece
  • Yellow Onion (medium size) – 1 (skinned and roughly chopped)
  • Grapeseed or Canola Oil – 5 tablespoons
  • Ground Cumin – 2 teaspoons
  • Ground Coriander – 2 teaspoons
  • Ground Turmeric – ½ teaspoon
  • Unsalted Canned Tomatoes with juice – 2 ¼ cups or a 28 ounce can
  • Kosher salt – ¾ teaspoon
  • Canned Chickpeas – 2 15 ounce cans
  • All Spice (Garam Masala) – 2 teaspoons
  • Fresh Cilantro – to garnish

Preparation

  • Cooking Time 15 m
  • Prepared In 15 m

Place pulse ginger, garlic, and Serrano in the bowl of your food processor and pulse until minced. Keep scraping down the sides

Once thoroughly minced, add onion and pulse again so that it gets finely chopped but doesn’t form a paste

Take a large saucepan, pour oil and warm it over medium-high heat and add the onion mixture

Keep stirring for 3-5 minutes or until the onion gets softened

While cooking the onion add coriander,  turmeric, and cumin powder and stir for two minutes

Meanwhile, put the tomatoes in your food processor and pulse until they are chopped finely and add them to the saucepan

Add salt and reduce the heat. Let the curry simmer for about 4 minutes. Keep stirring occasionally

After 4 minutes, add chickpeas and all-spice/garam masala

After mixing them up on medium-high heat, reduce the heat to a gentle simmer, cover the pot with and let it simmer for 5 more minutes

Stir occasionally. After five minutes, turn off the heat and garnish with cilantro.

Classic Sesame Noodles with Chicken

Classic noodles

About the Recipe:

Addition of lean chicken and vegetables gives this classic Asian recipe a healthy and nutritious twist. Don’t forget to rinse the spaghetti using cold water and drain it well. You can switch the whole-wheat spaghetti with carrot, zucchini, or any other veggie noodles.

Ingredients

  • Serves 4
  • Whole-wheat Spaghetti – 8 ounces
  • Dark, toasted sesame oil – 3 tablespoons
  • Scallions (chopped) – 2
  • Minced Fresh Garlic– 1 tablespoon
  • Minced Fresh Ginger – 2 teaspoons
  • Brown Sugar – 1 teaspoon
  • Soy Sauce (low-sodium) – 2 tablespoons
  • Boneless Chicken breast (Skinned, Cooked & Shredded) – 1 lb
  • Ketchup – 8 ounces
  • Carrots (julienned) – 1 cup
  • Snap Peas (sliced) – 1 cup
  • Toasted Sesame seeds – 3 tablespoons

Preparation

  • Cooking Time 20 m
  • Prepared In 20 m

Follow the package directions to cook the spaghetti

Boil, drain and rinse the spaghetti thoroughly and transfer it to a big bowl

Mix sesame oil, brown sugar, garlic, ginger, and scallions and heat them in a small saucepan over medium heat. Let them sizzle a bit, which may take 15 seconds

Turn off the heat and add soy sauce and ketchup in the pan. Give it a good stir

Add the spaghetti, chicken, sesame seeds, snap peas, and carrots.

Gently toss everything until they are well combined

Smoky Maple-Mustard Salmon

Maple Mustard Salmon
Photo: epicurious.com

About the Recipe:

Nothing can be more delectable than smoky salmon. This recipe is quite easy to make and quick to prepare. Addition of maple on roasted salmon gives this recipe the much-needed balance while the tangy mustard adds the right amount of flavor. When buying the fish, get the skin removed and cut the fish into four 4-ounce fillets

Serving suggestion:

Serve it with whole-wheat couscous or roasted green beans garnished with chives and pecans.

Ingredients

  • Serves – 4
  • Dijon or whole-grain mustard – 3 tablespoon
  • Skinless and center-cut Salmon Fillets (preferably wild-caught) – 4 Fillets, 4 ounces each
  • Ground chipotle pepper or smoked paprika powder – ¼ teaspoon
  • Pure Maple Syrup -1 tablespoon
  • Ground Pepper – ¼ teaspoon
  • Salt – 1/8 teaspoon

Preparation

  • Cooking Time 10-12 m
  • Prepared in 15 m

Preheat your oven to 450°F. Cover the baking tray with foil or baking sheet and generously coat it with cooking spray

Put the fish fillets on the tray

Mix maple syrup, mustard, pepper, chipotle or paprika powder, and salt in a bowl

Evenly spread this mixture onto the salmon fillets

Bake the fish until cooked, for about 8-12 minutes

Skillet Chicken with Cranberries & Apples

Skillet Chicken with Cranberries & Apple
Photo: eatingwell.com

About the Recipe:

This dish would give you a unique flavor of the fall season with the use of apple-cranberry sauce to cook the chicken. If you don’t prefer the tart-like taste of this dish, you can use dried cranberries and skip the fresh ones.

Serving suggestion:

Serve the chicken with quick-cooking wild rice and add roasted Brussels sprouts to boost the nutrition count.

Ingredients

  • Serves 4
  • Diagonally cut and trimmed Chicken Tenders – 1 pound
  • Dried Thyme – ¾ teaspoon
  • Salt – ¾ teaspoon (divided)
  • Freshly ground pepper – ¼ teaspoon (divided)
  • Canola Oil – 2 tablespoons (divided)
  • Crisp, thinly sliced red Apples (preferably Gala, Fuji or Braeburn) – 2
  • Red Onion (large size) – 1 (quartered and sliced)
  • Apple juice or Apple Cider – ¾ cup (divided)
  • Thawed cranberries (frozen or fresh) – 1 cup
  • All-purpose Flour –  1 tablespoon

Preparation

  • Cooking Time 20 m
  • Prepared in 20 m

Sprinkle half of the dried thyme, salt, and pepper on each side of chicken tenders

Over medium-high heat, add one tablespoon oil in a large size skillet. Reduce the heat to medium after the oil is warm

Add the chicken to the skillet and stir for 3-4 minutes or until both sides get lightly browned.

When cooked, transfer the chicken to a clean plate

Add the remaining oil to the same pan and add onion, apples, two tablespoon apple juice or cider and remaining salt and thyme

Stir them well and cook for about a 4 minutes or until the apples and onion get softened

Add cranberries and all-purpose flour and cook for 1 minute

Add the remaining juice/cider and add the chicken to the pan as well

Let them cook for 3 minutes, keep stirring occasionally

When chicken is cooked and the sauce thickens, turn off the heat

Pork & Broccoli Thai Noodle Salad

Pork Noodle Salad
food stylist: Marian Cooper Cairns; prop stylist: Claire Spollen and Lindsey Lower

About the Recipe:

The secret ingredient that makes this recipe a winner is the addition of crunchy broccoli slaw. It is easily available in supermarkets, usually at the coleslaw mixes counter. Not only does it make the recipe super-quick to prepare but very delicious. You can make broccoli slaw on your own too. Just shred the broccoli stems by passing it through the largest holes on your box grater. To save time, cook the pork patties while heating the water for the noodles.

Ingredients

  • Serves 4
  • Rice Noodles (wide variety) – 8 ounces
  • Ground, lean Pork – 1 pound
  • Fresh Mint (chopped) – 2 tablespoons
  • Fish Sauce – 6 teaspoons (divided)
  • Sweet Red Chili Sauce – 2 tablespoons (divided)
  • Lime Juice – 2 tablespoons
  • Toasted Sesame Oil – 1 tablespoon
  • Broccoli Slaw – 1 bag (12 ounces)
  • Lime wedges for garnishing

Preparation

  • Cooking Time 20 m
  • Prepared in 20 m

Boil five cups water in a large pot and add noodles. Stirring frequently, cook the noodles for 4-6 minutes or until they turn soft.

When cooked, drain and rinse the noodles using cold water

In a large bowl, combine pork, two teaspoons fish sauce, and one tablespoon mint. Mix everything well

Make eight patties (ideally 3 inches)

Turn on the heat and keep it medium-high. Coat a large cast-iron skillet or a grill pan with cooking spray. Allow it to get warm a bit and then add the patties

Cook them partially for 3 minutes on each side until thoroughly cooked

Add the remaining four teaspoons fish sauce, lime juice, sesame oil, and chili sauce in another bowl

In the same pan, add the cooked noodles and broccoli slaw. Toss them until well-combined

In a platter, place the noodles and top them with the pork patties. Sprinkle one tablespoon mint and garnish with lime wedges

Mozzarella, Basil & Zucchini Frittata

Mozzarella, Basil & Zucchini Frittata
Photo: eatingwell.com

About the Recipe:

Frittatas are usually quickly prepared, and this veggie stuffed mozzarella filled treats are no different. This recipe is excellent for breakfast, but you can serve it at lunch or dinner as well.

Serving Suggestions:

Add a slice of crusty baguette drizzled with olive oil or with a hand-tossed salad.

Ingredients

  • Serves 4
  • Red Onion (thinly sliced) – ½ cup
  • Extra-virgin Olive Oil – 2 tablespoons
  • Zucchini (chopped) –  1 ½ cups
  • Well-beaten Eggs (large) – 7
  • Salt – ½ teaspoon
  • Freshly ground pepper -1/4 teaspoon
  • Fresh Mozzarella Balls (baby or pearl-sized) – 2/3 cup or 4 ounces
  • Sun-dried Tomatoes (chopped) – 3 tablespoons
  • Fresh Basil (thinly sliced) – ¼ cup

Preparation

  • Cooking Time 20 m
  • Prepared in 20 m

Preheat the broiler/grill after placing the rack in the upper-third row

Take a big size, broiler-safe cast iron or nonstick skillet. Heat oil in it over medium-high heat

Add onion to the skillet along with zucchini and cook for about 5 minutes or until soft. Stir frequently

In a separate bowl, beat the eggs, salt and pepper, and pour the mixture over the veggies in the pan

Be careful to lift the edges so that the egg gets cooked from the center

The egg should be nearly set, which may take 2 minutes

Place the sun-dried tomatoes and mozzarella balls on the egg mixture and place the skillet under the broiler. Let them get slightly browned, about 2 minutes

Take the eggs out and set them aside for 3 minutes or until they get somewhat cooled

Top the frittata with basil

Tip: Use a spatula to release the frittata from the pan. Move the spatula slowly from the edges first and then keep moving towards the center until you can easily lift