6 Healthy Comfort Food Recipes

Turn tradition on its head with these 6 healthy meals that will warm your stomach and feed your muscles without adding to your waistline!

There's nothing better than a comfort-food recipe that has been hacked to be a healthier, more powerful version of its former self. Each of these dishes cuts back on the butter, cream, and fat, and replaces them with good-for-you alternatives.

The results: cold-weather favorites that will help fuel your muscle growth and trim your waistline. These recipes are proof that you can have your favorite dishes and eat them, too. So get ready to whip up these classics and dig in!

1

Budget Sweet-Potato Lasagna

Replacing pasta sheets composed of refined white flour with thin slices of sweet potato is what makes this dish a standout. Instead of delving into the nutritional zero, you'll be filling yourself with complex carbs to help power through your workout. Not only are these iron-containing tubers rich in vitamins D, C, and B6, but they're also budget-friendly. It's a win for your wallet and your waistline.

Budget Sweet Potato Lasagna Meal Prep
Watch the video: 01:01


Ingredients

lean ground turkey 1-1/2 lb.


sweet potato (1/2 cup per lasagna, thinly sliced) 2 cups (400 g)


egg white 1


low-fat cottage cheese 1/2 cup


reduced-fat mozzarella 1/2 cup


tomatoes 2 vine


organic tomato sauce (no salt) 15 oz


mushrooms 1/3 cup


red onions 1/3 cup


garlic paste 1 tbsp


Chopped cilantro (use as desired) 1/2 cup


Italian seasoning, sea salt, pepper 1 tbsp


Directions
  1. Set oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Slice sweet potato using a mandolin or a sharp knife. Separately chop up tomatoes, onions, and mushrooms.
  3. Mix cottage cheese with egg white. Set aside.
  4. Sauté red onions with garlic paste. Then add meat, tomatoes, cilantro, mushrooms, tomato sauce, and Italian seasoning.
  5. Build lasagna. Add sweet potato slices, meat sauce, and cottage cheese. Repeat. Top with mozzarella.
  6. Cover with aluminum foil and bake for 45 minutes.


Nutrition Facts
Serving Size: 1 serving
Recipe yields 4
Amount per serving
Calories 404
Total Fat 7g
Total Carbs 34g (5g fiber)
Protein 53g


2

Chicken And Broccoli Casserole

Ditch the cream of chicken soup, butter, and mayonnaise, and try this heart-healthy take on a family classic! It's good for your muscles and easy on your taste buds.

Chicken & Broccoli Casserole in Jars for Meal Prep
Watch the video: 01:01


Ingredients

chicken breast 15 oz cooked


2% Greek yogurt 1-1/2 cup


chicken broth 1 cup (Add more if you find it too dry, but be careful not to make it "soupy")


reduced-fat mozzarella 1 cup


quinoa & brown rice mix 2 cups cooked


raw broccoli, chopped 2 cups


red onion 1/4 cup


Amaranth flakes, wheat breadcrumbs, or panko crumbs 1/2 cup crushed


Italian seasoning 1 tbsp


Sea salt & pepper to taste


Directions
  1. Set oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Cook chicken breasts in a nonstick skillet with no seasoning, or boil the chicken breasts in water. Tear the chicken into pieces and set aside.
  3. In a bowl, mix chicken, broccoli, brown rice, red onions, Greek yogurt, chicken broth, mozzarella, and Italian seasoning.
  4. Evenly divide among the jars or place it all in a large casserole dish.
  5. Top with wheat breadcrumbs or amaranth flakes.
  6. Bake for 25 minutes.


Nutrition Facts
Serving Size: 1 serving
Recipe yields: 4
Amount per serving
Calories 466
Total Fat 12g
Total Carbs 35g
Protein 56g


3

Spicy Vegan Freekeh Chili

This is one cold-weather dish that proves meatless chili isn't just for vegans. With a hearty dose of protein, this bowl of veggie goodness shows that you can build muscle and lose weight on a vegan diet. It's all about consuming the right portions and macronutrient ratios to support your fitness goals.

Amazing Vegan Freekeh Chili (Stuffed Bell Peppers)
Watch the video: 06:07


Ingredients

cooked freekeh or quinoa 2 cups


tomato sauce (no salt added) 1 can (15oz)


tomatoes 2 vine


low-sodium vegetable broth, divided 2 cups


dark red kidney beans 1 can (15oz)


black beans 1 can (15oz)


corn 1-3/4 cup frozen


red onion, chopped 1 cup


garlic cloves 2


Cilantro Chopped 1 cup


coconut oil 1 tbsp


paprika 1 tbsp


coriander 1 tsp


chipotle chili pepper 1 tsp


Cumin 1 tsp


Directions
  1. Cook freekeh according to the directions, but use half low-sodium vegetable broth (1 cup) and half water (1 cup) to add extra flavor.
  2. Chop up your vegetables (cilantro, red onion, tomatoes, bell pepper, garlic) and set aside.
  3. Set a nonstick skillet on medium-high heat and spray with coconut oil. Toss in red onions and garlic. Sauté until the red onions become brown and translucent.
  4. Add tomato sauce, cooked freekeh, 1 cup vegetable broth, bell pepper, tomatoes, and the seasonings (paprika, coriander, chipotle chili pepper, gumbo file). Stir well with a spatula.
  5. Add beans, corn, cilantro, and 1 cup vegetable broth. Reduce the heat and cook on medium heat for 8-10 minutes.


Nutrition Facts
Serving Size: 1 serving
Recipe yields: 8
Amount per serving
Calories 215
Total Fat 3g
Total Carbs 41g (10g fiber)
Protein 11g


4

Chipotle Chili Turkey Cheese Fries

Move over, disco fries! Who needs all that grease, gravy, and artery-clogging cheese when you can have this version of a healthy cheat? Dig into this pile of guilt-free spuds that are topped with all the fixings.



Ingredients

red potatoes 2 (approximately 1-3/4 cups or 340 g)


extra-lean turkey 5 oz (measured raw)


reduced-fat mozzarella cheese 1/4 cup


garlic paste 1 tbsp


Green Onion


Chipotle Chili Seasoning


Sea Salt


Coconut Oil Spray


Directions
  1. Set oven to 405 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Slice red potatoes into wedges, or use a mandolin slicer to make fries.
  3. Dry the fries on a paper towel, then place them in a large bowl. Spray the fries with coconut oil and season with sea salt and chipotle chili seasoning.
  4. Spread the fries on a baking sheet with parchment paper or on a baking rack. Bake for 13 minutes.
  5. Remove from the oven and flip the pieces over. If you're impatient like me, you can just shake the pan to cause them to flip. Season with a bit more chipotle chili seasoning and a pinch of sea salt. Bake for another 10-13 minutes. Be careful not to let them burn.
  6. Remove the fries from the oven and allow them to cool on a baking rack so they do not become soft or soggy.
  7. In a nonstick skillet, cook ground turkey with garlic paste.
  8. Place the fries in a cast iron skillet or oven-safe dish. Sprinkle with cooked turkey and shredded mozzarella. Bake in the oven for about 3 minutes. Remove the fries from the oven and sprinkle with chopped green onions.
  9. Eat with a fork and enjoy!


Nutrition Facts
Serving Size: 1 serving
Recipe yields: 1
Amount per serving
Calories 460
Total Fat 7g
Total Carbs 55g (6g fiber)
Protein 47g


5

Crispy Parmesan Fish Sticks

Bypass the heavily processed, freezer-frosted childhood favorite for this healthy, cheese-dusted alternative. You can have your omega-3s and enjoy them, too. Pair with a yogurt-based dipping sauce and a wedge of lemon for a classic touch.

Healthy Comfort Food Crispy Fish Sticks
Watch the video: 01:01


Ingredients For Fish Sticks

halibut (or firm white fish like cod or tilapia) 2 large


gluten-free panko breadcrumbs 1/2 cup


coconut flour 2 tbsp


Amaranth flakes (or whole-grain flakes, no sugar) 1/2 cup


parmesan (reduced-fat) 1/4 cup grated/shredded


Italian Seasoning 1 tbsp


Cayenne pepper 1 tsp


egg 1


egg white 1


Ingredients

2% Greek yogurt 1/2 cup


red onion chopped (or 1 tbsp onion powder) 1/4 cup


coriander 1/2 tsp


Lemon juice from 1/2 half


Sea salt & pepper to taste+- 2 large


Directions
  1. Set oven to 405 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Cut fish into long pieces so they resemble slender fillets. You can remove the skin of the fish as well. If you have a thinner piece of white fish, it may be harder for it to stay together without the skin. If you use a fish like catfish, I highly recommend removing the skin before baking.
  3. Mix panko, amaranth flakes, parmesan, Italian seasoning, and cayenne together in a bowl.
  4. Beat eggs in another bowl.
  5. Dip fish in the egg mixture, then dip into the breadcrumbs. Place the pieces on a baking sheet or rack.
  6. Bake for 15 minutes.
  7. Mix all of the ingredients together for the dipping sauce and season with sea salt and pepper to taste.


Nutrition Facts
Serving Size: 1 fish stick (without dipping sauce)
Recipe yields: 10
Amount per serving
Calories 133
Total Fat 3g
Total Carbs 9g (1g fiber)
Protein 17g


6

White Turkey Mac and Cheese

Take your love of mac and cheese to the next level with this variation that can be incorporated into even the cleanest of meal plans. A dose of Greek yogurt helps bring the calorie count down and protein levels up, while favorite additions like goat cheese, mozzarella, and turkey help give the dish a hearty feel. Yum!

Hi-Protein Mac & Cheese Comfort Food Recipe
Watch the video: 01:01


Ingredients

turkey bacon (nitrate-free, uncured, natural) 4 slices


Ancient Harvest gluten-free quinoa macaroni (or use whole-wheat macaroni) 4-1/2 oz


2% Greek yogurt, divided 1-3/4 cup


goat cheese 2 oz


reduced fat mozzarella 1/2 cup


garlic paste 1 tbsp


chives Fresh


Sea Salt & Pepper to taste


Directions
  1. Boil quinoa pasta and set aside.
  2. Slice bacon into pieces and cook in a nonstick skillet with garlic paste on medium-high heat.
  3. Reduce heat to medium and add one cup of Greek yogurt along with the goat cheese, chives, and mozzarella.
  4. Cook until the sauce is an even consistency.
  5. Let the sauce thicken, then remove from heat.
  6. Add macaroni and the rest of the Greek yogurt. Mix.


Nutrition Facts
Serving Size: 1 serving
Recipe yields: 5
Amount per serving
Calories 253
Total Fat 8g
Total Carbs 27g
Protein 20g