8 Healthy Dinners with 5 Ingredients or Less

Feb 22 2017
https://d2gtpjxvvd720b.cloudfront.net/assets/emails/question@2x-a02b76db47a4ac32799e8b19315b3cbf.png Hi,

I'm new to Hungry Girl and not much of a cook. I want to make healthy meals for my family, but I get overwhelmed by massive ingredient lists. Can you suggest some recipes with only a handful of ingredients?

Minimalist Mama
https://d2gtpjxvvd720b.cloudfront.net/assets/emails/answer@2x-5ee5d524b01e4c5483f379894f2fa825.png Hi Minimalist Mama,

Welcome to Hungry Girl! Confession: I'm not much of a cook either. (I'm more of a mad scientist in the kitchen!) Most HG recipes are very easy to make and don't call for lots of ingredients. In fact, here are eight dinners with no more than five ingredients each! (FYI: Salt, pepper, and basic dried seasonings don't count toward the ingredient tally.)

Mama Shelly's Slow-Cooker Chicken

1/4th of recipe (about 1 3/4 cups): 270 calories, 4g total fat (0.5g sat. fat), 663mg sodium, 21.5g carbs, 5g fiber, 12g sugars, 35.5g protein

SmartPoints® value 3*

Slow-cooker recipes are ideal for busy folks, and this one is especially easy. Mixing stewed tomatoes with balsamic vinegar was a stroke of genius. So much flavor! Hearty chicken, green beans, spinach... Throw it all in the pot, and check dinner off your to-do list.

Spaghetti Squash Pie

1/4th of pan: 300 calories, 8g total fat (4g sat. fat), 645mg sodium, 22.5g carbs, 5g fiber, 9.5g sugars, 34g protein

SmartPoints® value 4*

This comfort-food bake is so delicious I'm getting hungry just writing about it! It has all the flavor of decadent Italian food without the super-high calorie count. The beef makes it extra filling, and the portion size is HUGE. BTW, if you want to save some time or effort, cook the spaghetti squash in a microwave or slow cooker. Here's how...

Orange Teriyaki Chicken

1/4th of recipe (about 3/4 cup): 202 calories, 3g total fat (0.5g sat. fat), 745mg sodium, 15g carbs, 1.5g fiber, 7g sugars, 26.5g protein

SmartPoints® value 4*

Chinese, please! Give your family what they want without ordering greasy takeout. This sweet 'n savory chicken is insanely delicious and so simple to make. I love the crunch the water chestnuts bring, too. Add a side of steamed veggies, and dinner is served.

Z'paghetti Girlfredo

1/2 of recipe (about 2 cups): 247 calories, 8g total fat (4g sat. fat), 789mg sodium, 30g carbs, 9.5g fiber, 18.5g sugars, 20.5g protein

SmartPoints® value 4*

If you haven't cooked with zucchini noodles yet, this take on pasta Alfredo is a great place to start! You'll save hundreds and hundreds of calories. You don't even need a veggie spiralizer... You can make this with a standard veggie peeler. It's a great meatless meal -- check out all that protein! Although, sometimes I toss in precooked shrimp or chicken... So good!

BBQ Chicken Foil Pack

Entire recipe: 270 calories, 4g total fat (1g sat. fat), 581mg sodium, 23g carbs, 2.5g fiber, 14.5g sugars, 34g protein

SmartPoints® value 5*

In addition to a sparse ingredient list, this chicken recipe has another exciting perk: hardly any cleanup! Baking food in a packet of foil is seriously one of the world's best cooking hacks. Just multiply this recipe as needed to feed the whole family. Bonus: You can easily swap out the sauce and veggies for your family's favorites. (Marinara and broccoli rock.)

Philly Cheesesteak Stuffed Peppers

1/4th of recipe (1 stuffed pepper): 250 calories, 8g total fat (4g sat. fat), 674mg sodium, 14.5g carbs, 3.5g fiber, 7g sugars, 30g protein

SmartPoints® value 5*

Tossing a cheesesteak-inspired filling inside bell peppers instead of carby hoagie rolls makes for a decadent yet healthy meal! Some people think ground beef is off-limits due to its fatty nature, but the trick is to get the extra-lean kind (4% fat or less). The stats are even more impressive than lean ground turkey! Pair this with salad for a full meal, or enjoy it as a super satisfying snack.

Onion Goodness Burger

1/5th of recipe (1 patty): 180 calories, 8g total fat (3g sat. fat), 550mg sodium, 3g carbs, 0g fiber, 1g sugars, 22.5g protein

SmartPoints® value 4*

I'll raise your five ingredients and give you just two! These simple burger patties are shockingly delicious. The onion soup/dip mix is loaded with flavor. Throw your patties onto lettuce buns or 100-calorie flat sandwich rolls. And what's a burger without fries? Add a pile of these baked carrot fries, and your entire meal still has less than five ingredients!

Shrimp 'n Slaw Marinara

Entire recipe: 289 calories, 3g total fat (<0.5g sat. fat), 770mg sodium, 31g carbs, 14g fiber, 15g sugars, 36.5g protein

SmartPoints® value 4*

Dinner does not get any easier than this seafood-topped pasta swap. Broccoli cole slaw gets all noodle-y and delicious when cooked until soft. Grab some marinara from the pantry and some shrimp from the freezer, and dinner is a go! This recipe serves one, but it's easy to adjust for a group. It's great with chicken too!
Hungry for more? Here are eight more meals made with five ingredients or less. And if that's not enough for you, check out Hungry Girl Clean & Hungry for over 40 more!

Chew on this:

It's National Cook a Sweet Potato Day, February 22nd. Toasty Marshmallow Sweet Potato Skins, anyone?

Everyone needs recipes with big flavor and small ingredient lists... Click "Send to a Friend" now!

Have a Question for Hungry Girl?

Send it in! She answers new Qs each week (but cannot respond to emails personally).


We may receive affiliate compensation from some of these links. Prices and availability are subject to change.

We may have received free samples of food, which in no way influences whether these products are reviewed favorably, unfavorably, mentioned with indifference, or mentioned at all. Click for more about our editorial and advertising policies.

*The WW Points® values for these products and/or recipes were calculated by Hungry Girl and are not an endorsement or approval of the product, recipe or its manufacturer or developer by WW International, Inc., the owner of the Points® trademark.

Questions on the WW Points® values listed? Click here.

Hungry Girl provides general information about food and lifestyle. This information and any linked materials are not intended and should not be construed as medical advice, nor is the information a substitute for professional medical expertise or treatment. Click here for more information.