Here Are 70 Slim-But-Filling 300-Calorie Dinners
Here Are 70 Slim-But-Filling 300-Calorie Dinners
Addictive, Crunchy Ham Croquettes
Nobody complains about eating leftovers when these are on the menu. Addictively crunchy, these crispy, cheesy croquettes make a great dinner or an afternoon snack. To make them gluten-free, substitute gluten-free baking mix for the all-purpose flour and use gluten-free breadcrumbs.
Potato Pancakes With Apple Butter
Frozen hash browns make it possible to whip up latkes in minutes. Enjoy the combo of crisp potato pancakes and a simple green salad for a light entrée, or serve alongside roast chicken or beef for a protein punch.
One-Pan Crispy Chicken Thighs With Potatoes and Chard
One-skillet dinners like this one make weeknight cooking a breeze—and since it comes together in 30 minutes, you spend less time cooking and more enjoying the meal. Starting the chicken in a cold skillet renders flavorful fat that crisps up the chicken and potatoes to golden perfection. Use a cast-iron skillet; its even heat distribution delivers delicious results.
Instant Pot Turkey and Sage Dumpling Soup
Can’t find turkey cutlets? Use chicken cutlets or breasts. Serve the soup with a crunchy salad and citrus vinaigrette.
Hearty Vegan Spiced Winter Squash Soup
Smooth and custardy, silken tofu blends perfectly with the butternut squash and pumpkin to create the ultimate velvety texture. And thanks to its protein and fiber, the dish is quite filling—your family won’t even know it’s 295 calories and completely vegan.
Grass-Fed Flat Iron Steak With Grilled Ratatouille
Pounding the flat iron steak breaks down the muscle fibers and tenderizes the meat. Grain-fed flat iron steaks are a relatively tender cut. But with grass-fed steak's lower fat content, we find pounding the meat before cooking ensures tenderness. It also helps the steaks cook quickly—they only need about 3 minutes on a searing hot grill to hit medium-rare.
Winter Greens Pesto Pizza
Hearty collard greens pack this pesto with vitamin K, an essential nutrient for bone health. Buttery Castelvetrano olives make any extra pesto perfect for adding big flavor to pasta and grilled cheese sandwiches; substitute any green olive if you can’t find them.
Lemony Greek Chicken Soup
This 20-minute dish provides 32g of protein and is just 261 calories per serving. To ensure this comforting soup’s velvety texture, whisk a little of the hot broth into the eggs before adding them to the pot; it cooks them gently and prevents curdling.
Charred Shrimp and Okra Bowl
We love a great gumbo, but the dish can feel a little too hearty for warm summer days. This dish keeps the classic elements of gumbo but with a fresh identity. Traditional? No. Completely delicious? Yes!
Red Wine-Marinated Steak With Balsamic Onions and Slaw
Cook this with either hanger or flank steak, whichever you prefer. The onions add a hit of umami, but feel free to omit them.
Curry-Poached Cod With Snap Pea Slaw
While a lot of curry paste makes a fantastic marinade, just a little can make a light, fragrant poaching liquid for delicate cod fillets. A crunchy, colorful slaw makes this a refreshing summer main.
Shishito and Shrimp Skewers With Chimichurri
Ridged shishito peppers are usually pleasantly bitter with mild to medium heat, but watch out: Every so often, you'll get one that packs a fiery punch.
Pan-Roasted Pork With Baby Vegetable Salad
A mandoline is the best tool for shaving the vegetables into thin, even slices, but the salad would be just as delicious with thinner shaved ribbons (using a vegetable peeler) or slightly thicker slices (using a sharp knife). If you don't have pecorino romano, you can substitute, you can substitute Parmesan cheese.
Sesame Shrimp With Smashed Cucumber Salad
A bright and tangy Asian cucumber salad makes a crisp compliment to quick sauteed shrimp. Gently smashing fresh cucumber slices helps them absorb more vinaigrette, almost as if they've been marinating overnight. It’s a popular technique in many parts of Asia because cucumbers take on sweet, sour, and spicy flavors so well.
Chicken, Mushroom, and Bok Choy Bowls
If ground turkey is a staple protein in your kitchen, try ground chicken—the blend of light breast and rich thigh meat is just as flavorful and quick-cooking. A cast-iron skillet helps with browning, but any large skillet will do. True to most stir-frying techniques, we separate the tough stems of the bok choy from the tender leaves and cook them first so that everything has just the right doneness. One large bok choy can stand in for the baby ones; be sure to trim off the wide, fibrous ends and cut the stems into thin slices. Serve with Scallion-and-Cilantro Barley to make a hearty grain bowl.
Cod With Fennel and Fingerling Potatoes
Fingerling potatoes add some satisfying heft to a light dish of fish and veggies in a clean broth.
Beef Tenderloin With Balsamic Asparagus
Beef tenderloin steaks are often considered a special-occasion cut, but when they go on sale (or you're ready for a splurge), this classic preparation is foolproof. Use a timer rather than turning, prodding, or overcooking the steaks, and set the timer again while they rest so you don't slice too soon.
Pork Ragù With Polenta
Create a flavorful, golden crust on the pork roast by browning it well before placing it in the slow cooker. Red wine, tomatoes, and plenty of aromatics enrich the ragù with savory depth as it cooks low and slow.
Broiled Flat Iron Steak With Brussels Sprouts and Sweet Potatoes
This one-pan meal is a crowd-pleaser and testament to how 4 ingredients can come together to form a supremely satisfying dish, ready in a flash. We broil the steak over the veggies so the meat juices baste them as they cook. Choose multifaceted flat iron steak. Butchered from the shoulder (chuck), it gives you the best of both beefy worlds: One end of the cut is tender and mild, while the opposite end has sirloin-like chew and deep, mineral flavor.
Skillet Chicken and Root Vegetable Potpie
Classic potpies use several pans to simmer and sauté vegetables, build a sauce, and bake the pie. The skillet does it all here, and it is the perfect size for a golden, flaky piecrust lid. No chicken collection is complete without a potpie. You can substitute diced Yukon Gold potatoes and kale or chard for the turnips and turnip greens.
Greek Spaghetti Squash Toss
Spaghetti squash is a great lower-calorie, lower-carb alternative to pasta. It’s a neutral tasting veggie that absorbs all the flavors of this simple skillet, so be sure to toss well to coat every strand. The end result is a veggie-based meal in a bowl that you can quickly throw together—a nice alternative to salads when you want to fill up on vegetables.
Roasted Tomato Mac and Cheese
The gorgeous tomatoes are the icing on top of this creamy, decadent mac and cheese. You’ll love the artichokes, too. Make this dish gluten-free by using the brown rice elbow pasta and brown rice flour options listed in the ingredients.
Skillet Chicken with Escarole and Pecorino
Escarole is amped up with a salty kick from fish sauce and pecorino and is brightened with sweet, crunchy carrots.
Seared Steak with Tomato and Blue Cheese Salad
For a finishing touch of color and light, herby flavor, garnish the dish with chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley.
Roasted Zucchini and Black Bean Tostadas With Crisp Radish Relish
The radish relish gives a hit of bright crunch to the tostada; sour cream adds a cool, creamy finish.
Roasted Shrimp With White Beans and Feta
Roasting shrimp in the oven is a hands-off route to bringing out robust flavor; the method also helps prevent overcooking, keeping shrimp tender. Prep tip: It's easier to grate the rind before juicing the lemon.
Crunchy Shrimp Tostada
A dollop of Mexican crema adds a cooling finish to the vibrant pairing of grilled shrimp and cabbage.
Peppered White Bean, Kale, and Egg Stack
One egg adds 6g protein to this vegetarian plate; the yolk is also a creamy dressing.
Sesame Barley With Greens and Teriyaki Tofu
Don't skip the chilling step: It gives flavors time to soak into the barley.
The recipe title here is a playful pun, taking its cues from the pronunciation of the star ingredient. Mushrooms and chiles play surprisingly well together, and this peppy concoction highlights the maitake's robust, roast chickenlike flavor.
'Shroom subs: Oyster, pioppini, portobello, shiitake, chanterelle
Creamy Broccoli-Cheese Soup
We like our version extra chunky, so we only puree about a third of the broccoli mixture. For a thinner, smoother consistency, add more soup to the blender.
Grilled Chicken Thighs With Pineapple, Corn, and Bell Pepper Relish
We love the high-impact flavors in this recipe. The vibrant, colorful relish will not only look divine when plated atop grilled chicken thighs, but will taste just as amazing.
Crispy Fish With Lemon-Dill Sauce
Crispy breaded fish is a weeknight favorite, and you can have it without reaching into the freezer case. What we love about this recipe is that you don't even need to pan-fry the fillets; they get breaded and go right under the broiler. Be sure to use a broiler pan; the air vents keep the fish from getting soggy. Our only change was to slightly decrease the amount of salt—it's still fantastic.
Mom's Creamy Chicken and Broccoli Casserole
Traditional creamy chicken casserole can have more than 800 calories per serving, but we’re serving up this classic comfort dish with a fraction of the calories.
Grilled Chicken and Spinach Salad With Spicy Pineapple Dressing
Chicken with kick, paired with a spicy pineapple dressing, makes this Cooking Light main-dish salad recipe one to add to your repertoire.
Capturing the simplicity found in sun-drenched Mediterranean cuisine, these braised chicken thighs melt under the influence of bright, vibrant lemon, briny olives and capers, and juicy plum tomatoes. Serve with rosemary mashed potatoes or over hot basmati rice.
Cheesy Meat Loaf Minis
We add white cheddar cheese to this comfort-food favorite making it seem more indulgent than it actually is at less than 300 calories per serving.
Maple-Glazed Chicken With Apple-Brussels Sprout Slaw
Chicken cutlets can range in size from about 2 ounces each to close to 5 or 6 ounces each. For this dish, we chose the smaller ones.
Sweet and Tangy Short Ribs
This saucy dish is worthy of a dinner party; just serve with a side of brown rice or rice noodles. Cola is the secret ingredient, yielding a luscious sauce with great body.
Herb and Sausage-Stuffed Peppers
You can set up this recipe in less than 15 minutes, turn on the slow cooker, and go. Come back in four hours, and your supper will be ready.
Spinach, Green Onion, and Smoked Gouda Quiche
We like the creamy, custardy consistency of this quiche when it's baked for 35 minutes. If you prefer a firmer texture, bake an additional 5 minutes.
Sweet and Spicy Satsuma Turkey
Fresh mandarin oranges, riesling, and orange marmalade provide the highlights for the sweet profile, while crushed red pepper adds the spicy kick to this Asian-inspired turkey dish. Serve with hot steamed rice as an accompaniment to soak up the delicious sauce.
Grilled Skirt Steak and Roasted Tomatillo Sauce
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.
Our Tomato Tart is a classic dish that's a summery spectacular, but it can also be a creamy, cheesy calorie and sat-fat bomb. Ours is meat-free and cream-free, but olives add satisfying richness.
Chicken, Potato, and Leek Pie
Fast-food chicken pies can contain 800 calories per serving. We deploy full-flavored chicken thighs and smoky bacon to add depth. Store-bought pie crust keeps prep easy.
Sweet and Spicy Shrimp With Rice Noodles
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.
Stone Fruit Chicken-Rice Salad
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.
Barbecue Salmon and Snap Pea Slaw
Salmon is low in calories and rich in healthy fats, and goes beautifully with a sweet, salty, spicy glaze and this ingenious summery slaw.
Broiled Tilapia With Frisée-Apple Salad and Mustard-Parsley Sauce
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.
Shrimp Tacos With Green Apple Salsa
This unexpected taco filling is crunchy and delicious. Serve with mashed black beans.
Pork Chops Stuffed With Feta and Spinach
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.
Pan-Roasted Fish With Mediterranean Tomato Sauce
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.
Grilled Jicama, Radishes, Scallions, and Chicken with Asian-Style "Chimichurri"
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.
Poached Halibut With Lemon-Herb Sauce
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.
Grilled Steak With Baby Arugula and Parmesan Salad
Peppery arugula is a fantastic bed for grilled steak. Don't skip on the shaved Parmesan, it gives a salty bite.
Grilled Chicken Caesar Salad
This salad dressing mimics the flavor of a typical Caesar but in a vinaigrette form that allows this salad to stay under 300 calories.
Sautéed Halibut With Romesco Sauce
Highlight the sweet and subtle flavor of halibut with a smoky homemade romesco sauce.
Marinated Lamb Chops
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.
Mahimahi With Bacon-Tomato Butter
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.
Seared Scallops With Wilted Watercress and Bacon
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.
Lemony Orzo-Veggie Salad With Chicken
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.
Tuscan Pork Kebabs
Coming in at under 200 calories per serving, this colorful grilled summer dish is perfect for a light picnic on the patio. Sautéed chard makes a simple side.
Corn Fritters With Roasted Tomatoes and Lime Aioli
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.
Pork and Ancho Chile Tamales With Mexican Red Sauce
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.
Chicken Breasts Stuffed With Goat Cheese and Sun-Dried Tomatoes
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.
Brined Pork Tenderloin With Plum and Jicama Relish
A quick brine keeps the pork moist and juicy, while the Plum and Jicama Relish provides sweet and spicy flavors.