Sometimes you want to eat well but you don’t have the time. Or you just don’t feel like cooking! These convenient healthy meals will have dinner on the table in 15 minutes so you can get back to work, yoga, or Netflix!
Though we are in the thick of the holidays, you might be craving healthy foods to balance out all the cookies. But if time is an issue, these healthy 15-minute meals require little effort but serve up big flavor!
One of the keys to making a quick meal is stocking healthy convenience foods in the kitchen.
First up is one of my most popular recipes and it goes way, way back!
Smoky Chickpeas and Spinach
This is one of the most popular recipes on this site. I shared it as a Facebook live and racked up over 26k views. I cooked it in real-time and people loved the idea.
To make this recipe, you’ll need cooked chickpeas and fresh greens. I use organic, low sodium chickpeas that I typically buy for a dollar – the Simple Truth brand but you can buy whatever is near you. I use fresh packaged salad greens – spinach, baby kale, chard, or any combination of super greens.
Note: Regular kale or collard greens will require significantly more cook time.
But what makes this recipe so good is the spices. You’ll use toasted garlic, smoked paprika for a deep, almost meaty flavor, and turmeric for earthiness. Serve it up with warm pita bread or over your favorite grains or quinoa.
Chickpea Pesto Pasta
This vegan Chickpea Pesto Pasta recipe uses chickpea pasta for a healthy, gluten-free pasta that tastes good!
The homemade vegan pesto sauce is made in a blender using a raw spinach, lemon, walnuts, and nutritional yeast. You can also use a traditional pesto or this kale walnut pesto to toss over the chickpea pasta. This one works great for a one-bowl dinner or you can add it to this week’s meal prep!
Another recipe that comes in just over 15 minutes is my Roasted Broccoli Pasta with Walnuts. It’s equally as tasty as this pesto pasta dish but with more texture. And I can’t ever really get enough roasted broccoli!
Vegan Egg Roll in a Bowl
This Vegan Egg Roll in a Bowl recipe is a veggie-packed take on a traditional egg roll – minus the wrapper!
You’ll need a bag of pre-shredded coleslaw, which is simply shredded green cabbage, red cabbage, and carrots (no dressing). You’ll get big flavor by sauteing the vegetables in toasted sesame oil! To keep it vegan, I used frozen edamame for protein and fiber and added a hefty sprinkle of cashews for crunch.
Though the edamame works great, you can make this recipe meat-eater friendly too. Simply saute shrimp in the skillet, remove and set aside. Follow the recipe as written and add the warm shrimp back to the skillet once the vegetables are all done. Another option? Brown seasoned ground chicken in the skillet. Drain. Follow the recipe as written for a protein-packed egg roll in a bowl.
Black Bean “Fried” Quinoa
With sweet, smoky ancho chili powder, this easy Vegan Black Bean “Fried” Quinoa is a winner at dinner. It’s so easy. This quinoa stir fry combines fresh peppers and onions with cooked quinoa and black beans. This fast, gluten-free and vegan recipe is packed with flavor and it’s actually pretty good for you too!
For this recipe, you’ll use cooked or canned black beans. When I cook quinoa or any other grain, I always make extra. Cooked grains can be stored in a sealed container in the fridge for up to a week. Or make it easier on yourself. Buy frozen quinoa to make this recipe in a snap!
I keep this recipe vegan and find it to be quite filling. You can add shredded chicken to the stir fry if you want. I’d add the cooked chicken in with the quinoa so that it all has a chance to heat through and pick up the onion and pepper flavors.
Bourbon Peach Glazed Salmon
Sounds fancy. I know. But I promise this Bourbon Peach Glazed Salmon recipe takes only 15 minutes.
Broiling is the secret to getting succulent salmon on the table in minutes. The broiler seals in moisture while delivering a perfectly charred and flavorful finish. And this one is good enough to serve your sweetheart on date night.
TIP: Buy pre-cut salmon fillets. If you buy a whole salmon, it will take decidedly more time to prepare!
I use homemade peach jam so I get to control the sugar content. But odds are you don’t have that sitting around the house. It’s perfectly fine to use a high-quality, store-bought peach jam. Simply look for those that are made with just a few ingredients: peaches, sugar, and maybe citric acid.
Serve this salmon with roasted broccoli, asparagus, or green beans. I recommend making the vegetables fresh. Either broil the vegetables alongside the fish or saute in a skillet on the stovetop while the salmon cooks.
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Want more 15-minute meal recipe inspiration? Check out these 11 Healthy Meals You Can Make in 15 minutes over NBC News Better article I was featured in for more ideas!
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