We gave these recipes a real workout: very satisfying food, very light.
We're not interested in low-calorie eating for low-calorie's sake. The first principle is taste. But with so much fresh produce around, it's a pure pleasure to cook this way.
First up is our Tomato Tart.
A summery spectacular, but also a creamy, cheesy calorie and sat-fat bomb. Ours is meat-free and cream-free, but olives add satisfying richness.
Fast-food chicken pies can contain 800 calories per serving. We deploy full-flavored chicken thighs and smoky bacon to add depth. Store-bought piecrust keeps prep easy.
A healthy take on pad thai, this dish stretches 12 ounces of shrimp to feed four and keeps the noodle portion in check. Sauce has some pumped-up kicks, comparable to many restaurant versions.
Satisfy beef cravings with skirt steak, an ultra-flavorful cut that does well on the grill in no time. The veggie-based sauce with tangy tomatillos is a perfect match for charred beefiness.
Chicken is pure lean protein (use a good brand for chickeny flavor). Cherries and nectarines lend a sweet-tart counterpoint. Brown rice adds whole-grain goodness.
Because it's sustainably farm-raised and widely available, tilapia is a great option. And since it doesn't have an assertive flavor, it pairs well with a variety of ingredients.
Don't let the low-calorie count fool you, these Greek-inspired spinach- and feta cheese-stuffed pork chops have earned rave reviews from our readers.
Filet mignon is extra delicious with a rub of herbs and garlic. Serve this quick-fix recipe with roasted red potato wedges and steamed broccoli florets.
Turning the steak on the grill about every five minutes helps keep the marinade from scorching as the meat cooks. Garnish the serving platter with chopped green onions.
Chef Ed Kenney uses Hawaiian fish such as mahimahi and onaga (long-tailed snapper), but any type of meaty, white fish like snapper will work in this low-calorie recipe.
Look for Japanese soba noodles in the ethnic-food section of your supermarket. At just 256 calories per serving, this is one dinner recipe that you can indulge in.
The rich flavors of chicken and goat cheese join forces in this impressive 5-star, low-calorie main dish. Serve with orzo or rice to soak up the shallot-thyme sauce, but keep portions in check to keep this a low-calorie meal.
This piquant herb sauce gets depth from anchovies and brightness from lime juice. To tone down the contrast, start by using less of each and taste and add as you go. If your grill is large enough, you can cook the vegetables and chicken all at once. Serve with a scoop of brown rice, and you're all set.
Flaky halibut is dressed with light and refreshing lemon-herb sauce for a delicious dish that will only take 22 minutes to prepare. Serve with a side vegetable and a cold glass of wine for a satisfying meal.
Mahimahi is simple and easy to prepare, as is the bacon-tomato butter. It's rich and sweet, and the dish is great served with a salad, pasta, or fresh vegetables.
Who says dinner party food can't be low-calorie? For ease, make the pork mixture for these tamales a day or two ahead. The recipe makes quite a few servings; serve with Spanish saffron-flavored rice for a fun evening with friends.
Watercress offers a refreshing change from spinach and other greens. Scallops are a sustainable buy, but for the best choice, pick diver-caught scallops from Mexico.
Chermoula, a North African herb and spice paste, imparts bold flavors with minimal effort. This low-calorie recipe will need to marinate for 8 hours or overnight, so be sure to plan ahead.
Fresh and light describe the flavors of this salad. With pops of green onions, herbs and cucumber, and bright red bell pepper, this dish will be a delight for both the eyes and the palate.
For convenience, you can make the tomatoes and fritters in advance, then reheat them to serve. Reheating the fritters in an oven or toaster oven will keep them from being soggy.