Try These Healthy Weeknight Meals

Even when you're time challenged, you can still enjoy healthy meals at home.
Joy E. Zacharia, R.D.

1. Shredded Grilled Tilapia Tacos
2. Fruity Black Bean Salsa
3. Sweet-and-Spicy Slaw
4. Lemon-and-Dill Green Beans
5. Ginger-and-Lemon Fruit Salad
6. Lime-Grilled Portobello Mushrooms
7. Two-Color Rosemary Roasted Potatoes

Doris Pulido of Houston had a case of the bland dinner blues. That was until we arrived for a flavor and nutrition makeover sure to make her husband, Joe, and four kids say, "Thanks for dinner, Mom." Doris's goal was to prepare bold-flavored dishes not too high in calories that did not require a big time investment. "My kids think what I cook is boring, unless I make rich, creamy Mexican dishes such as cheese enchiladas," she says. "They like grilled meats, but I've never even turned on the grill." Joe usually fires it up, but he works long hours, and Doris often needs to get dinner started before he comes home.

As a registered dietician, my job was to create easy, grill-friendly recipes and to teach Doris how to prepare them with confidence. I aimed to include plenty of colorful, cancer-fighting, heart-healthy veggies and fruits. In less than two days, she learned how to infuse fabulous flavor into meats, seafood, vegetables, and fruits with a few spices, seasoning mixtures, and marinades.

Doris was pleased to see how quickly fish cooks, making it a perfect option for weeknight meals. She also enjoyed the new flavors produced by oven roasting sweet potatoes and red potatoes with just a hint of spices.

I thought teaching Doris how to prepare tasty, healthy dishes would be the most gratifying part of this project. But truthfully, what I enjoyed most was hearing her kids--Joshua, Jeremy, Daniella, and Joel--tell their mom how much they liked what we prepared for dinner.

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