Whipping up a healthy meal doesn’t have to be a source of agita — or a gigantic time commitment. Each of these good-for-you dinners is ready in 25 (make that 24!) to 40 minutes.
Swiss Chard Soup: 40 min (above, from Food Network Magazine)
Swiss Chard is in charge when it comes to this satisfying soup. Cooked in a spicy caraway- and cumin-scented broth, the greens go wilt-y before being topped with hard-boiled eggs and Greek yogurt. Dinner is done in 40 minutes, i.e., less than the time it takes to catch up on an episode of Downton Abbey.
Poached Ginger Chicken: 35 min
Watercress, radishes and cucumbers tossed in a sweet-and-spicy dressing steal the show of this simpler-than-it-seems dish. After a short poach, the chicken is topped with a flavorful shallot and ginger broth.
Steak with Avocado Sauce: 30 min
In this healthier version of steak tacos, the meat takes a quick turn on the skillet before meeting up with a guacamole-inspired combination of avocado, cilantro, garlic and lime juice — not to mention a very nice hearts of palm and tomato situation. Devour the elements on their own or wrap them up in tortillas.
Sloppy Joes: 30 min
Made with extra-lean beef, this retro fave is nevertheless still big on flavor, thanks to powerhouse ingredients like garlic, jalapeno and red pepper, all of which join forces here. Serve up the burger spin-offs on fiber-filled, whole-wheat burger buns.
Soy-Glazed Salmon: 25 min
Salmon is cooked with a simple soy-and-honey glaze and accompanied by a refreshing cucumber-avocado salad. The result is a healthy, Asian-inspired meal that looks a whole lot like snazzy restaurant material.
Stuffed Sweet Potatoes: 25 min
Nothin’ wrong with enlisting the microwave for this healthy spin on a loaded baked potato. Nutrient-dense sweet potatoes lend themselves perfectly to crispy pancetta and garlicky broccoli rabe and mushrooms. The I-can’t-believe-this-is-better-than-sour-cream sauce, made with a nutmeg-laced mixture of ricotta and Parmesan cheese, coupled with the snappy cook time, will make this veggie-centric meal a regular in the rotation.
Shrimp and Snow Pea Salad: 24 min
In this light yet satisfying salad, crunchy snow peas replace traditional greens and get tossed with radishes, scallions and shrimp in a refreshing sesame-ginger dressing. The meal comes together in a flash, but if you want to get supersonic about it, use precooked shrimp to really speed things along.
Abigail Libers is a freelance writer and editor living in Brooklyn. She is also the creator and editor of notesonfatherhood.tumblr.com.