As a Registered Nutritionist, I regularly get asked about healthy dinner ideas that are quick, simple and not too expensive.
There are some great websites out there that provide recipes and healthy dinner ideas that are quick, simple and often delicious too. Some of the websites I use include: BBC Good Food, Jamie Oliver’s recipe books and website, NHS recipe ideas, Love Food Hate Waste and Change 4 Life. Additionally, some of the supermarkets, such as Sainsburys Healthier Recipes, have great healthy dinner ideas that are often vetted by the Supermarket’s Nutritionists.
However, I’ve been meaning for a while to write down some healthy lunch ideas and healthy meal ideas that I can refer people too on my blog. Below is a list of some of my favourite dinner ideas that are – more or less – quick, simple, cheap, healthy and delicious – what more could you want from a “healthy dinner ideas” blog post? I’ve also included some vegetarian recipes and salad recipes in the list too.
- Wholemeal toast with low sugar baked beans and a sprinkling of cheese
Extra tip: Add a side salad to make it at least 2 of your 5 A Day
- Baked potato with tuna and sweetcorn
Extra tip: If you like tuna mayo, try using some plain yoghurt instead of the mayonnaise and add a side salad to make sure you’re getting some of your 5 A Day
- Spanish omelette with mixed vegetables and potatoes
Extra tip: Add some cheese to make it a completely balanced meal with food from all 4 food groups! Use free range eggs.
- Spaghetti bolognaise with wholemeal pasta
Extra tip: Halve the meat in the recipe and add some kidney beans to add fibre, one of your 5 a day and some plant-based protein. For a vegetarian recipe, just add all kidney beans or use Quorn for the mince
- Homemade Caesar salad with salad greens, avocado and one crushed garlic and some lemon juice as a dressing
Extra tip: Make some homemade croutons by grilling some stale bread in a little oil and adding some rosemary. Add some free range chicken if you’d like, too
- Grilled fish – salmon, mackerel with vegetables such as frozen green beans and some boiled potatoes
Extra tip: Try using cheaper, more sustainable fish options. Click here for a list of sustainable fish
- Roasted new potatoes with homemade tomato and vegetable sauce and humous
Extra tip: Use leftover sauce the next day for a bolognaise or as a pasta sauce
- Soups and stews – you can make these with whatever you like of course, but it’s a good idea to add some whole-wheat spaghetti for energy and some beans/lentils or meat and plenty of mixed veggies for a balanced plenty of veggies
Extra tip: Use up any veggies that are almost on their way out this way. It’s a great way to save money and reduce food waste
- Whole-wheat lasagne with vegetables, beans or mince. Add an extra side salad to boost your vegetable intake.
Extra tip: A lasagne isn’t such a quick recipe, so you could try using yoghurt or crème fraiche for a quick alternative to white sauce
- Vegetables with couscous, feta cheese and harissa sauce. One of my favourite ever Delia recipes!
Extra tip: you could try adding chicken or fish on the side for a bit of extra protein
- Sweet potato Shepherd’s pie with Quorn mince and beans and vegetables
Extra tip: Leave skin on some of the sweet potato, it might not look quite as good but it adds extra fibre into the meal
- Baked sweet potato with baked beans, feta cheese and some green beans and carrots
Extra Tip: Try making your own baked beans or use the 5 Beans option from Heinz for added variety
- Mini pitta pizzas with wholemeal pitta bread, tomato puree, plenty of vegetables and some cheese grated on top
Extra Tip: Add some quality meat as an extra topping, if you fancy it
- Free range egg and cress sandwich on whole wheat bread
Extra tip: Use different types of bread to spice up your sandwich, so you don’t get bored and to add variety
- Mixed bean chilli with homemade guacamole (mash avocado, add lemon juice and chilli flakes) and quinoa
Extra Tip: Add some fresh chilli or chilli powder to taste and for some extra nutrients!
Extra Tip: You can actually use avocado instead of butter for this recipe
- Ploughman’s salad with crackers, cheese, humous, grapes and plenty of vegetable sticks
Extra Tip: Make your own dips such as guacamole, tomato salsa and yoghurt dip
- Salad recipes – I have too many ideas for these to list them here. Check out some of my salad recipes on previous blogs and ones I post on SR_Nutrition’s instagram
Extra Tip: Remember ANYTHING goes with salad these days – strawberries, watermelon, grapefruit, nuts, seeds, dried fruits….just toss it in
- Porridge oats with nuts, fruit and yoghurt/milk
Extra Tip: Try making up your own muesli with oats, nuts, seeds and dried fruit for a quick breakfast recipe or as a quick meal idea when you’re in a rush
- Vegetable stir-fry with added beans/chicken/quorn and some whole-wheat noodles
Extra Tip: Add nuts to your stir-fry or use peanut butter as a healthy stir-fry sauce
Extra Tip: Use plain yoghurt as an alternative to sour cream
- Falafel in wholemeal wraps with humous and salad
Extra Tip: Falafel is ridiculously easy to make in a blender. Check out this healthy falafel recipe