I’m not sure how people cooked back in the day. I have so much respect for people who come up with recipes on their own and can execute them well. I am not usually one of those people, but I can follow a recipe like a pro. I get 99% of my meal ideas online, mainly Pinterest. With trying to make healthy meals that will please a somewhat picky adult and a toddler (although they are very similar now that I think about it), it is so nice to be able to type in “healthy easy dinners” and up pop hundreds of ideas. I’ve also recently searched “healthy budget friendly meals,” “low carb high protein meals,” and “healthy crockpot meals.” All searches have produced some great options. Of course you don’t really know how good these things are until you make them yourself. I’m going to periodically share some of my favorites, hopefully you’ll like them too! I wasn’t good at taking pictures of my own creations, I’ll work on that. For now, my inspiration pictures and links will have to do!
I love Ree Drummond. I DVR her show and watch it more than I care to admit. Although she has lightened things up a bit recently, I usually have to come up with ways to make her recipes with some healthier options. For this, I used whole wheat spaghetti, all chicken breast and fat free soups. It's a great comfort food option that - when eaten in moderation - fit well into my calorie total for the day.
Pros: Filling, kid friendly, relatively healthy
Cons: A little labor intensive (easier if you use a rotisserie chicken), high in sodium
I came across this recipe when we had over a foot of snow on the ground and it hit the spot. It's similar to the spaghetti in that it is a relatively healthy comfort food. I altered this one a bit...I didn't use celery and I cooked in all it a big skillet! I made the chili in the skillet, put shredded cheese on top and then put the cornbread mixture on top of that. I then put the skillet in the oven for 20 minutes and it was perfect. Andrew really liked this one.
Pros: Easy and only 1 pan (if made my way), lots of protein, great as leftovers, relatively healthy
Cons: Lots of ingredients to get, Aiden didn't like this one
Pros: Super fast, easy and all in one pan, kid friendly - call it pizza, filling, great leftovers, manageable calories
Cons: If you want lean, organic meat, not your best option.
I've been craving roasted vegetables and was excited to try this recipe. It is a bit of work - I cut up the vegetables the night before - but it's very healthy and worth the effort. We had this with a loaf of whole grain bread. As you may have guessed, Aiden ended up with a hot dog and a fruit/veggie pouch. Not his fav.
Pros: Super healthy, you can eat a lot and still keep calories in check
Cons: Lots of work/ingredients, expensive to make, not the best leftovers (veggies get soggy)