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Healthy Living Blog

Information and inspiration to help you make a habit out of living healthy.


8 Healthy Recipes to Kick Start 2018

Friday, January 05, 2018

By , YMCA Registered Dietitian Nutritionist

It’s a New Year and many of us are looking to jump start healthier habits. After what seems like months of holiday parties, our favorite desserts, and tight pants to show for it—we are making resolutions to eat healthier and move more. We have the motivation, but sometimes lack the inspiration!

Taking into consideration the common obstacles to preparing healthy meals, I wanted this collection of recipes to be versatile, easy to throw together, family-friendly, and enough to make for great leftovers. That’s asking a lot! But I think these eight recipes fit the qualifications.

SLIDESHOW: Family-friendly, winter recipes

  • 1. Slow Cooker Carnitas by From Cats to Cooking

    These slow cooker carnitas are full of flavor without all the hassle. Just let your crockpot do the work. Serve with tortillas, or have your family create their own burrito bowls and serve with rice and beans. Top with your choice of veggies for a balanced dinner. Enough for a crowd or lunch the next day!

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  • 2. Stuffed Sweet Potatoes by Alaska from Scratch

    Are you considering Meatless Mondays? This vegetarian recipe is a winner! These stuffed sweet potatoes are full of flavor and simple to prep. If you have kids who aren’t fans of stuffed potatoes, you could serve the salad on the side.

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  • 3. Greek Chicken Gyros by The Seasoned Mom

    This chicken prepared in the slow cooker is bound to be a favorite in your house. Seasoned with fresh herbs, lemon, and cooked with carrots and onions, these are full of flavor. Let your family create their own gyros with various toppings, and use the leftover chicken to make a delicious Greek salad for lunches.

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  • 4. Quinoa Chili by Peas and Crayons

    Another vegetarian option, this one-pot quinoa chili is sure to be a hit this winter. If you haven’t experimented with quinoa in soups or stews, this is a great recipe to start with. This chili can be prepared using a pressure cooker, slow cooker, or on the stove. It’s a great meal to toss in the crockpot before work and have dinner waiting when you get home.

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  • 5. Teriyaki Rice by Life Made Sweeter

    A flavorful one pot stir-fry is another great dinner staple. This recipe is loaded with veggies (which can be altered to suit your family’s favorite veggies or what you have on hand!) and can be thrown together in 30 minutes. It’s great for those busy weeknights. And your co-workers will be jealous of this leftover lunch!

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  • 6. Sheet pan Italian Chicken by Skinny Taste

    One pan + 30 minutes = A complete meal of chicken and veggies. What’s not to love? Prep your chicken and marinate the night before. Dice veggies after bringing them home from the grocery store, or look for bags of pre-cut veggies to save on time.

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  • 7. Ginger Soy Glazed Salmon by Eat Yourself Skinny

    Trying to add more fish to your diet? It’s currently recommended that individuals eat fish three times a week. This one pan salmon and veggies dinner is easy to prepare and ready in no time. Add this into your meal rotation and throw in whatever veggies you have on hand.

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  • 8. Sausage, Beans, and Kale Pasta by The Lean Green Bean

    Our final delicious recipe to try this winter is a white bean, kale, and sausage pasta dish. It requires only a few steps and can be ready in 30 minutes. Some kids may not like the green leafy veggies in their pasta, so you can opt to leave it out and serve with a side of broccoli or salad.

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Hungry for more?

View more delicious, nutritious recipes on our healthy living blog. You can also learn about nutrition counseling classes offered by our experienced team of RDs at a Y near you. Let us help you reach your wellness goals!

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