Open-Faced Prosciutto and Plum Sandwiches
Sweet fig preserves balance the tartness of the plums. Choose red or purple plums with bright, unblemished skin that are firm and plump to the touch.
Creole Chicken and Vegetables
Healthful convenience ingredients such as frozen vegetables and canned tomatoes make this a great weeknight staple to add to your repertoire. For a filling meal, serve over rice.
Everybody's used to bottled salsa, which is why telling your guests you made this one yourself will impress them far more than you'd ever expect. It's an easy-as-pie recipe whose secret is using one can of tomatoes drained and the other undrained for the perfect scoopable texture. It's easy to adjust to your taste―add more or less garlic, cilantro, jalapeño, and lime as you see fit, and try stirring in diced avocado, radish, or jicama for extra interest. This is a good salsa to have on hand for more than just parties, too: You can put it on tacos, quesadillas, or anything else that needs flavor.
Greek Yogurt with Warm Black and Blueberry Sauce
Substitute fresh berries for frozen when making this year-round treat in the summer. This sauce also pairs well with biscuits or as a stand-in for syrup on pancakes.
Linguine with Two-Cheese Sauce
This pasta will come together quickly and might just become a household favorite. Parmigiano-Reggiano and mascarpone cheese make a creamy and flavorful combination.
The food processor makes quick work of this basic dip that's rich in heart-healthy monounsaturated fats. We like the heat from leaving the seeds in the jalapeño, but you can seed the pepper for a milder guac. Serve with tortilla chips or crudités.
Smoked Paprika Pork Chops with Bell Pepper and Corn Relish
Smoked paprika, called pimentón in its native Spain, brings amazing meaty, savory flavor to any dish without adding any fat, salt, or calories. It should be a critical part of every pantry. If you love that smoky flavor, toss some potato wedges with salt, pepper, smoked paprika, and olive oil and roast until crisp for a great side to serve with this dish.
Bombay Shrimp Curry with Coconut Rice
This recipe brings a bit of cultural flair to the table in minutes. Buy U.S. or Canadian wild-caught or farmed shrimp for the best sustainable option.
Southwest Salsa Burgers
Chipotle chiles and fresh salsa give these burgers a Southwestern kick that will heat up the dinner table in less than 20 minutes.
Pasta with Anchovy-Walnut Sauce
This delicious pasta is full of bright colors that mirror the bright flavors of the dish. Fresh parsley and black pepper are two simple ingredients that make all the difference in this recipe.
Green Beans with Toasted Garlic
Try one of our three variations on this easy recipe: Sesame-Soy, Citrus-Nut, or Peppery Bacon.
Roast Chicken Chimichangas
A few minutes in a blazing-hot oven gives these chimichangas the same browned, crunchy exterior as traditional deep-frying, but keeps the fat content under 10 grams each. A spicy filling with crumbly queso fresco contributes authentic flavor. A simple side salad topped with your favorite salsa makes a good partner to this dish.
Spicy Fish Cakes
Flaky halibut and tender scallops combine here for a unique dish. Panko gives the cakes a crispy exterior, but they're cooked quickly, leaving the inside moist. Ginger adds a hint of Asian flavor, while chile paste kicks up the heat. Serve atop a simple salad or on a bun dressed with Dijon mayonnaise.
Seared Chicken with Tomatillo-Avocado Salsa
Tangy tomatillos join buttery avocados and peppery radishes in an unusual salsa that transforms an ordinary chicken breast into something special.
Andouille and Red Beans with Rice
The key to using flavorful but indulgent ingredients like bacon and andouille sausage in a healthful way is to let a small amount shine through in the finished dish. This recipe uses just one ounce of andouille per serving, but it cooks the vegetables in the sausage drippings, so everything acquires some of its spice-and-smoke flavor.
Endive Spears with Spicy Goat Cheese
You can make the cheese mixture up to a day ahead. It also makes a great sandwich or bagel spread or a thick dip for crudites.
Pan-Seared Scallops with Cilantro-Celery Mayonnaise
Mayonnaise may not be the most common sauce for scallops, but perhaps it should be. Mixed with celery and cilantro to make a sort of high-class tartar sauce, it's a perfect match for the crispy breadcrumb-dredged scallops. Serve with something starchy, whether that's bread, pasta, rice, or potatoes.
Roasted Red Pepper on Mini-Bagel Sandwiches
For the very busiest of times, this recipe requires zero cooking and can be made ahead. A garlic- and onion-infused cream cheese spread matches with flavorful roasted bell peppers in an extremely easy recipe to put together. If you cut the mini bagels in half, this recipe yields 24 hors d'oeuvre servings, but two whole sandwiches make a meal with only 248 calories and 8 grams of fat.
Artichoke and Arugula Pizza with Prosciutto
A balance of flavors is the key to this recipe. The bitter arugula, sweet artichoke, salty prosciutto, and creamy mozzarella are in perfect equilibrium atop a crisp-and-chewy crust and pesto sauce. Not only is the combination of tastes more satisfying than pepperoni and red sauce, this pizza takes just 11 minutes to bake―no longer than a frozen one.
Chicken Cobb Salad
Creamy avocado is the standout ingredient in a Cobb salad. Full of nutrients and monounsaturated fat, it's a nutrition star as well. Pair this salad with a soup or sandwich for an enjoyable meal.
Pan-Grilled Salmon with Red Pepper Salsa
Pan-Grilled Salmon with Red Pepper Salsa pairs rich fish with bright flavors. While the fish cooks, prepare the easy red pepper and tomato salsa.
Garlic-Rosemary Lamb Pita
Break out of a rut with this tasty dish. Juicy Greek-spiced lamb with cool-and-tangy tzatziki sauce in a pita makes for a great meal that takes less than 10 minutes to prepare. Pair with oven fries, baked potatoes, or rice pilaf, plus kalamata olives for a full meal.
Fresh Tortellini with Mushrooms and Pancetta
Pancetta is an Italian version of bacon that isn't smoked, so it has a slightly more delicate flavor than its American cousin. But it still brings a salty, meaty punch to this dish, which matches well with the earthy, savory flavor of cremini mushrooms. If you have any pancetta left over, use it to make luscious, creamy pasta carbonara for another Italian meal.
Fajita Turkey Burgers
Zesty seasonings set these burgers apart, along with an avocado-tomatillo salsa topping that's refreshingly different from ketchup and mustard. Super busy? Make the patties and salsa ahead of time and refrigerate until needed―the burgers only take eight minutes to cook. Better yet, make a double or triple batch and freeze the extra for a no-work dinner later.
Peanut Butter, Banana, and Flax Smoothies
Peanut butter and banana smoothies are usually a splurge item. Luckily, we have a healthy version that doesn't skimp on flavor. If the smoothies seem too thick, add another tablespoon or two of milk.
Panzanella with Crab
The key to a great panzanella (a.k.a. bread salad) is a mix of textures: Crunchy onion, juicy tomato, flaky crabmeat, and chewy bread are brought together in each bite here by an herbal vinaigrette with hints of licorice-like fennel. There's no cooking involved, so the salad is fast as can be, but don't assemble until just before serving―you don't want the bread to get soggy.
Soba Noodle Salad with Citrus Vinaigrette
Who says pasta is exclusively Italian? This fresh and healthy salad uses soba, chewy Japanese buckwheat noodles, along with edamame for soy protein and shrimp for color and and flavor. The orange-lime-sesame dressing is a great alternative to plain old vinaigrette on any salad. Can't find soba? Use a rice- or wheat-based Asian noodle like somen, lo mein, or udon.
Pressed Cubano with Bacon
Cuban sandwiches are a great way to deliver big, hearty flavor in a very short time. This recipe includes the traditional mustard, pickle, and Swiss cheese, but uses Hawaiian bread to add a little sweet contrast (if you're more traditional, use Cuban, Italian, or French bread). Then we add bacon for its salty crunch, and toast the sandwiches in garlic oil for even more deliciousness. Add sweet or hot peppers if you like.
Chicken, Carrot, and Cucumber Salad
This is no run-of-the-mill chicken salad. Cucumber gives this salad a cool crunch, while sliced radishes and cilantro add a distinctly different flavor. Try it for a light dinner, and save the leftovers for tomorrow's lunch.
Oysters with Pink Peppercorn Mignonette
Even appetizers fancy enough for a black-tie New Year's Eve party can be made superfast. Raw oysters are delicious enough on their own, but this light dressing elevates them into the stratosphere. The subtly sweet acidity of champagne vinegar, fruity spice of pink peppercorns, and licorice-like herbalness of tarragon contrast with and highlight the briny, sweet, and mineral elements of the raw oysters. For an extra elegant presentation, freeze the mignonette on a baking dish, then scrape with a fork as for a granita and top the oysters with the icy shards just before serving.
Summer Cherries Jubilee
A cherry pitter makes short work of this recipe, but if you don't have one, just place two or three fruits at a time under the flat side of a knife and hit the knife lightly (not as hard as you would to crush garlic). The pits will pull right out with the stems, bringing this surprisingly sophisticated dessert together in a flash.