6 Healthy Recipes in 35 Minutes or Less
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6 Healthy Recipes in 35 Minutes or Less

These six healthy recipes are certified delicious from the FITNESS Healthy Test Kitchen. Don't miss the decadent Double Chocolate Brownies (under 120 calories!) and the satisfying Ginger Chicken with Rice Noodles (under 350 calories!).

Healthy Dinner: Asian Spring Rolls

Start to finish: 30 minutes
Makes: 4 servings

  • 8 8-inch round spring-roll wrappers (available in grocery stores)
  • 2 cups shredded Bibb lettuce
  • 8 ounces fresh or frozen cooked, peeled, and deveined shrimp, coarsely chopped
  • 1 cup shredded carrot
  • 1/4 cup sliced scallion
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
  • 5 tablespoons bottled peanut sauce
  • 2 tablespoons seasoned rice vinegar

Fill a shallow dish with warm water. Dip each spring-roll wrapper in water; place between damp paper towels for 10 minutes. In a large bowl, combine lettuce, shrimp, carrot, scallion, cilantro, 2 tablespoons peanut sauce, and 1 tablespoon rice vinegar. Toss.

In a small bowl, stir together the remaining 3 tablespoons peanut sauce and 1 tablespoon rice vinegar; set aside. Place 1/2 cup of the shrimp mixture half an inch from the bottom edge of a wrapper. Fold bottom edge of the wrapper over the filling. Fold sides over and roll up. Repeat with remaining filling and wrappers. Cut each in half; serve with dipping sauce.

Nutrition facts per serving:
207 calories
15g protein
28g carbohydrate
3g fat (1g saturated)
3g fiber

Healthy Dinner: Ginger Chicken with Rice Noodles

Start to finish: 27 minutes
Makes: 4 servings

  • 4 tablespoons finely chopped scallion
  • 3 teaspoons grated fresh ginger
  • 8 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 4 4-ounce skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
  • 4 ounces dried rice noodles
  • 2 limes
  • 2 teaspoons packed brown sugar
  • 1 cup shredded carrot
  • 4 tablespoons snipped fresh cilantro
  • 4 tablespoons chopped peanuts

In a small bowl, combine scallion, ginger, 6 garlic cloves, olive oil, and salt. Coat chicken breasts with mixture and place on the unheated rack of a broiler pan. Broil 4 to 5 inches from the heat for 12 to 15 minutes, turning once.

Slice chicken diagonally; keep warm. Cook noodles in a large saucepan in boiling water for 3 to 4 minutes until tender; drain. Shred 2 teaspoons lime peel and squeeze 2 tablespoons lime juice into a bowl. Add sugar and remaining 2 garlic cloves; stir until sugar dissolves. Add noodles, carrot, cilantro and peanuts; toss. Spoon onto plates; arrange chicken on top.

Nutrition facts per serving:
337 calories
30g protein
34g carbohydrate
8g fat (1g saturated)
3g fiber

Easy: Harvest Bran Muffins

Start to finish: 30 minutes
Makes: 12 servings

  • Nonstick cooking spray
  • 14-ounce oat-bran muffin mix, like Krusteaz*
  • 1/3 cup finely shredded carrot
  • 1/4 cup chopped dried apple
  • 1/4 cup dried cranberries or coarsely chopped dried tart cherries
  • 3 tablespoons finely chopped walnuts

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Coat twelve 2-1/2-inch muffin cups with nonstick cooking spray; set aside. Prepare muffin mix according to package directions; fold in carrot, dried apple, and cranberries. Divide evenly among the prepared muffin cups; sprinkle with chopped walnuts. Bake for 15 to 18 minutes or until golden. Let muffins cool in the pan on a wire rack for 5 minutes; loosen edges and gently remove from muffin cups. Best served slightly warm or at room temperature.

Nutrition facts per muffin:
161 calories
3g protein
28g carbohydrate
4g fat (1g saturated)
2g fiber

shopping tip: We loved the way these muffins tasted when we made them with Krusteaz oat-bran muffin mix. Other oat-bran muffin mixes may also call for an egg so be sure to have one on hand.

Guilt-Free: Double Chocolate Brownies

Start to finish: 35 minutes
Makes: 16 brownies

  • Nonstick cooking spray
  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 2/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup cold water
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 cup mini semisweet chocolate pieces
  • 2 teaspoons powdered sugar

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Coat the bottom of a 9-x-9-inch baking pan with nonstick spray. In a medium saucepan, melt butter; remove from heat. Stir in sugar, water, and vanilla. Mix in flour, cocoa powder, and baking powder until combined. Add chocolate pieces. Pour batter into pan; bake for 15 to 18 minutes. Cool in pan on wire rack. Sprinkle with powdered sugar.

Nutrition facts per brownie:
111 calories
1g protein
18g carbohydrate
4g fat (3 g saturated)
1g fiber

Fast: Cobb Salad Wraps

Start to finish: 20 minutes
Makes: 4 servings

  • 1/2 cup reduced-fat blue cheese or ranch salad dressing
  • 4 8- to 10-inch whole wheat or tomato-flavored flour tortillas
  • 4 romaine lettuce leaves
  • 4 slices lean bacon, cooked
  • 4 scallions, cut into thin strips
  • 2 Roma tomatoes, seeded and cut into thin wedges
  • 1/2 cup shredded reduced-fat mozzarella cheese
  • 1 cup shredded cooked chicken breast

Spread salad dressing on one side of each tortilla. Top with lettuce, bacon, scallion, tomato, cheese, and shredded chicken. Roll tightly and serve.

Nutrition facts per serving:
357 calories
29g protein
35g carbohydrate
11g fat (4g saturated)
3g fiber

Fast: Roast Beef Sandwiches with Horseradish Slaw

Start to finish: 15 minutes
Makes: 4 servings

  • 1/3 cup light sour cream
  • 2 tablespoons snipped fresh chives
  • 2 tablespoons spicy brown mustard
  • 1 teaspoon prepared horseradish
  • 1/2 teaspoon sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup packaged shredded broccoli
  • 8 ounces thinly sliced cooked roast beef
  • 8 slices sourdough bread, toasted

In a medium bowl, combine sour cream, chives, mustard, horseradish, sugar, and salt. Add shredded broccoli; toss to coat. Divide roast beef onto four slices of bread. Top with broccoli mixture, then with remaining bread slices.

Nutrition facts per serving:
255 calories
17g protein
30g carbohydrate
6g fat (2g saturated)
2g fiber


Originally published in FITNESS magazine, October 2007.