What happens when it gets to the end of the day and you're just too tired to cook? Do you dial for a pizza? Order Chinese? Eat a couple of slices of toast and then find yourself snacking all night? If you're lucky you can hand the cooking over to your other half, but if that's just not an option, here are some ideas for fast, healthy meals that don't take too much effort.
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- Plan ahead
If you've got a plan for what you're going to be eating all week, you'll be more inclined to shop for the right foods and be able to do some of the preparation beforehand. For instance, can you plan to cook a healthy meal one evening, such as a casserole or low-fat lasagne, that will feed the family again later in the week? Can you spend some time on the weekend preparing food that can be frozen for later in the week?
Have a stand-by ready
While convenience meals aren't for everyone, they are a great stand-by for when you're feeling exhausted or are too busy to cook. A frozen meal that you pop in the microwave for seven minutes can give you some time to put your feet up and it can really make a difference to the washing up! Try Lean Cuisine, Healthy Choice or Lite 'n Easy.
Search the CalorieKing.com.au recipe library
Did you know that if you use the advanced search feature of the CalorieKing.com.au recipe library, you can find meals that have a combined preparation and cooking time of less than 15 or 30 minutes?
Get the most out of your microwave
Your microwave can cut the time of cooking many meals by more than half. Try the CalorieKing.com.au recipe library for meals that are fast and easy to zap!
Having an outdoor barbecue can make healthy summer eating quick and easy, particularly if this is one area where the man of the house rules the roost! Hand over the tongs, throw together a salad and your work here is done. For recipe ideas and barbecuing tips, see the CalorieKing.com.au article, Get set to barbecue (You'll find a link at the end of this article). Do keep an eye on the calories, too – check out the BBQ Create-A-Meal (you'll find a link at the end of this article) for an idea of just how many calories are in some of those barbecued treats.
If your kids are demanding pizza, why not make your own? There are all sorts of healthy toppings that can be added to pre-packaged pizza bases or pita breads, making a fast, fun, healthy meal that your kids will love.
Check out Healthy Food Fast
The Healthy Food Fast cookbook from the Health Department of WA has got heaps of great recipes that are ready in under 30 minutes and that are low in fat and calories. You can check out some of the book's recipes in CalorieKing's recipe library, including Apricot Strudel, Banana Toastie, Chicken Burgers, Greek Salad, Curried Carrot Soup, Thai Noodle Salad, and Red Beef Curry.
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Last updated: March 31st, 2006