Pasta Substitute - Zoodles
In case you've been living under a rock, zucchini noodles (zoodles) are the best way to enjoy the thrill of pasta, without the carbs. Simply purchase a vegetable spiraliser and spiralise those zucchini (two whole zucchinis should make enough zoodles to feed a family of four). Once you've drained the water from them, simply pop them into the frying pan cook for a minute or so while stirring. You can top zoodles with anything you would normally put on pasta, the possibilities are endless.
Rice Substitute - Cauliflower Rice
Cauliflower rice is the rice you've always dreamed off: not only is it free of those pesky carbs but it's ridiculously easy to make. You simply wash a whole head of cauliflower, removed the greens and then grate it using a cheese grater until it's a similar consistency to fine rice. Then, after removing any excess moisture, chuck it in a pan over a medium heat and briefly sauté in a tablespoon of oil. Cover it up and let it steam for 5-8 minutes and voilà, you should have the equivalent of 4 cups of rice.
Protein Option 1 - Steamed Salmon
As well as being a protein, salmon is packed with omega-3 fatty acids. The healthiest way to cook salmon is by steaming. Simply combine bay leaf, leek, thyme, and peppercorns (or other herbs and spices) in the bottom of a steamer. Season your salmon fillets with salt and pepper and pop in a steamer basket and cover. Bring the liquid to a boil and then cook for 4-6 minutes.
Protein Option 2 - Baked Chicken
Chicken is a versatile and delicious protein. One the quickest and healthiest ways to cook chicken is baking. Simply preheat your oven to 230 degrees celsius and then brush both sides of each chicken breast with olive oil and sprinkle on your desired herbs and spices. Bake for 20 minutes for a delectably juicy baked chicken breast every time.
Protein Option 3 - Fried Halloumi
Halloumi is a protein-packed cheese and a great vegetarian protein solution. Simply slice a block of halloumi into 1/4 - 1/2-inch thick slices and preheat a pan over a medium-high heat. The beauty of halloumi is that it contains moisture, so you don't need to add any oil to the pan before cooking. Grill each side of the halloumi for about 3 minutes, until the cheese is lightly browned and serve immediately. All of these meals are perfect for the Kick Start phase or Balancing Phase of our Becoming Healthy Program. To maintain a healthy and balanced diet you should eat one healthy balanced meal, including a portion of protein and a generous serving of vegetables while substituting the remaining meals with our Becoming Healthy Meal Replacement shakes. For other weight loss tips, check out the rest of our blog. In the meantime, what other quick and healthy dinner ideas can you recommend?