Pressed For Time? 7 Healthy Dinners You Can Make In 20 Minutes Or Less!

At the end of a long work day, a healthy, home-cooked meal sounds ideal. Trouble is, who has time to prepare one? Whether you are shuttling the kids around, fitting in a workout, prepping for the next day, or any combination of these activities, time is at a premium. Don't turn to take-out or some packaged/frozen meal that is not only loaded with unnecessary ingredients but sure to leave you hungry again in an hour's time, try one of these meals instead! These dishes contain lots of protein, fiber, and healthy fats, which means they take longer to digest which will leave you feeling fuller, longer! The best part? They all come together in 20 minutes or less! For even more quick and easy meal ideas, check out the BodyRock Meal Plan! Have a look:

1. Easy Salmon Piccata

Lemon, capers and salmon. Is there anything better? Ingredients:
  • 4x 6 oz skinless salmon fillets
  • sea salt and lemon pepper (or black pepper), to taste
  • ¼ cup + 3 teaspoons flour, divided
  • 2 tablespoons of ghee (substitute with olive oil if you prefer)
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 4 medium garlic cloves, minced
  • ⅓ cup dry white wine (optional. Replace with extra broth)
  • 1 cup low-sodium chicken stock/broth
  • ¼ cup fresh lemon juice
  • 4 tablespoons rinsed and drained capers
  • 2-4 tablespoons coarsely chopped parsley, to serve
  1. Season both sides of salmon fillets evenly with salt and pepper. Add ¼ cup of the flour to a shallow dish; dredge the salmon in the flour to evenly coat. Shake off excess.
  2. Melt 1 tablespoon of ghee in a large nonstick pan or skillet over medium-high heat. Add 1 tablespoon oil and swirl to mix through the butter. Add salmon; sauté 4 minutes on each side or until just cooked to your liking. Transfer salmon to a warm plate; tent with foil and set aside.
  3. Add remaining 1 tablespoon ghee (or oil) to pan and melt. Add the garlic; sauté for a further minute until fragrant. Add wine; bring to a boil scraping any browned bits off of the bottom of the pan. Cook until liquid almost evaporates, stirring occasionally. Add ¾ cup stock/broth to the pan along with the lemon juice; bring to a boil and cook for a further 3 minutes.
  4. Add the remaining 3 teaspoons flour to reserved ¼ cup stock/broth, whisking well to combine. Pour the flour mixture into the pan, stirring through the liquid to create a sauce. Cook for 1 minute or until slightly thickened. Remove from heat; stir capers through the sauce. Place the salmon fillets back into the pan, gently turning each fillet to evenly coat in the sauce. Sprinkle with chopped parsley and extra pepper. Serve immediately over rice, pasta or vegetables of choice.

2. Ancho Chicken Tacos

Delcious! And, at 150 calories a piece, you can eat more than one! Ingredients:
Ancho Chicken
  • ½ cup white whole wheat flour (all purpose also works)
  • 2 teaspoons ancho chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon southwestern or taco seasoning
  • a generous pinch of salt and pepper
  • 2 tablespoons oil
  • 1½ lb. boneless skinless chicken breasts
Tacos and Toppings
  • 12 small corn tortillas
  • a few green cabbage leaves, shredded
  • one bunch cilantro, chopped
  • toppings: lime wedges, sour cream, jalapeño slices, avocado slices, minced green or red onions
  1. Toss the cabbage and cilantro together. Prep the other toppings.
  2. Combine the flour, ancho chili powder, southwestern seasoning, and salt and pepper in a shallow dish.
  3. In a heavy duty pan, heat the oil to medium high heat. Cut the chicken breasts in half or quarters, toss in the flour mixture, and add to the pan. Cook for a few minutes; flip, and cook for another few minutes until the outside is browned and the inside is no longer pink. Remove from heat, sprinkle with a little more salt, and allow to rest for a few minutes. Cut or shred the chicken into small pieces.
  4. Warm tortillas and assemble with the chicken and toppings. Be generous with the lime juice and jalapeños for extra zing!

3. Thai Chicken Zucchini Noodle Salad

Zucchini noodles make an amazing low-carb sub for regular pasta AND they are just as easy to prepare. Try them tonight! Ingredients:
  • 4 zucchinis, inspiralized
  • ½ rotisserie chicken, shredded
  • 2 mini red bell peppers, sliced
  • 2 mini yellow bell peppers, sliced
  • ½ cup diced green onions
Sesame Vinaigrette:
  • 3½ tablespoons rice wine vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons sesame oil
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh cilantro
  • 2 teaspoons raw honey
  • 1 teaspoon fresh lime juice
  • ½ teaspoon ground fresh chili paste (in asian food aisle)
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • (optional garnish: sesame seeds and fresh cilantro)
  1. To a small bowl, add rice wine vinegar, sesame oil, fresh cilantro, raw honey, lime juice, chili paste, garlic, salt, and pepper. Whisk until blended. Set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, add uncooked zucchini noodles, rotisserie chicken, red pepper, yellow pepper, and green onion. Lightly drizzle dressing over top and toss.
  3. Garnish with sesame seeds and fresh cilantro, serve
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4. Spicy Black Bean Soup

This soup is just like chili without the long simmer time! Ingredients:
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • Half an onion
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • One small bell pepper
  • 1 can of black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 250ml (1 cup) of vegetable broth
  • A small bunch of cilantro/coriander with stems, if you want (1/5 cup)
  • 1.5 teaspoons ground cumin
  • A few red pepper flakes
  • 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • 2 tortillas
  • Half an avocado
  • Optional:
  • A slice of cheddar
  1. Get a pot and add one tbsp of olive oil
  2. Finely dice up half an onion and mince the garlic. Throw both in the pot and let it simmer on low heat.
  3. In the meantime cut the bell pepper into small pieces and add them to the pot.
  4. Rinse and drain the can of black beans
  5. Squash a few of them with a fork or your hands to give the soup a creamy touch, then throw them in the pot.
  6. Add 250ml of vegetable broth to the mix
  7. Cut the cilantro with the stems and add it to the soup.
  8. Now add cumin, red pepper flakes and the balsamic vinegar.
  9. Let the soup simmer for about 10 minutes
  10. In the meantime prepare some avocado slices and heat up the tortilla
  11. Soups on! Garnish the bowl with cilantro, avocado and you’re ready to roll.

5. Skillet Chicken Fajitas

Who says no to making fajitas? Ingredients:
  • 1 lb / 453 gr chicken breast, sliced into thin strips
  • 2 tablespoons chopped cilantro (or parsley)
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon sweet paprika
  • ½ teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1 teaspoon fine grain salt, divided
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • Juice of half lime
  • 2 bell peppers, thinly sliced
  • 1 onion, sliced thin
  1. In a large bowl combine chicken, cilantro, oregano, chili powder, sweet paprika, cumin, garlic, and salt. Toss until chicken is coated and set aside.
  2. Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat.
  3. Add the peppers in a single layer. Try to get them a little charred underneath before you move them around. Once they’ve begun to brown, add sliced onion, and ½ teaspoon of salt. Wait again for some color to develop before you move them.
  4. When peppers are nicely charred in spots and onions have softened and sweetened, scrape mixture onto a plate to clear the skillet.
  5. Return skillet to the burner and heat remaining 1 tablespoon of olive oil.
  6. When sizzling, spread chicken strips in as much of a single layer as you can. Wait until they brown underneath to move them. Saute' strips, regularly pausing so that they can get some color, until cooked through, about 6 minutes.
  7. Add pepper mixture to the skillet along with the lime juice.
  8. Heat again until everything is sizzling.
  9. Sprinkle with a bit of chopped fresh cilantro and serve immediately.

6. Sweet Chili Rubbed Salmon Filets

Looking for something a little sweet and spicy? This salmon filet will satisfy all your needs! Ingredients:
  • 4 - 5oz wild salmon filets
  • 4 cups broccolini stems
  • 2 cups cooked quinoa or rice, or whatever grain you wish!
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon fresh dill (or 1 teaspoon dried dill)
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • ½ teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon powdered stevia extract
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 lemon, cut into 4 wedges
  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Mix the chili powder, dill, garlic powder, ground cumin, onion powder, and stevia in a small bowl.
  3. Once combined, sprinkle the mixture evenly over each salmon filet - rub into the salmon with the back of a wet spoon until evenly distributed (or as much as possible!).
  4. Sprinkle each filet with salt and pepper.
  5. Cook in the oven on a baking pan covered in foil for 15 minutes or until just flaky.
  6. While the salmon is cooking, steam the broccolini in a pan with a small amount of water, and season with salt and pepper.
  7. When the salmon is cooked, squeeze a fresh wedge of lemon (or lime) over it, and enjoy!
  8. Serve with quinoa, rice, or any other grain, or none at all!

7. Avocado Couscous Grapefruit Salad

Beautiful, colorful, and loaded with healthy grains, this salad is perfect for lunch too! That is, of course, assuming you have any left overs! Ingredients:
  • 3/4 cup low sodium chicken or vegetable stock
  • 3/4 cup uncooked whole wheat couscous
  • 2 large avocados, pitted and diced
  • 2 large ruby red grapefruit, sectioned and cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 1, 15-ounce can white beans, such as navy beans, cannelli beans, or white northern beans.
  • 1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese
  • 3 tablespoons finely chopped fresh mint
  • 3 tablespoons finely chopped fresh cilantro
  • 3 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  1. In a small saucepan, bring the stock to a boil. Remove from the heat, stir in the couscous, then cover at let sit 5 minutes. Fluff with fork and set aside.
  2. In a small bowl or large measuring cup, whisk together the dressing ingredients: lime juice, honey, olive oil, and salt, or shake all of the ingredients together in a mason jar with a tight-fitting lid.
  3. In a large bowl, combine beans and couscous. Pour dressing over top and stir to combine. Add the avocados, grapefruit, feta, mint, and cilantro. Toss gently. Serve chilled or at room temperature.
Which will you make first? Source: SELF

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