50 Healthy meal plans (and recipes)

To eat healthily is wise, but to do so and also enjoy it is an art!

I have been helping people to lose weight for more than 15 years, and I have concluded that the primary key to the success of my weight loss programs is the natural and tasty recipes I give my clients. Over the years, I have collected over 300 healthy, easy, and delicious recipes, that I use to create healthy meal plans for my clients. In this post, I am going to share many of them.

I design my eating plans based on a simple rule that I call the “sandwich technique.” In a nutshell, I designed each meal as if it was a sandwich: two slices of bread and a “filling” between them. A large bowl of salad represents the first slice, and it should always be the Salad you eat at each meal. The main dish is the “filling” of this metaphorical sandwich. Finally, a piece of fruit as a dessert represents the second slice of bread.

By following this rule, you will squeeze the most caloric part of each meal (the main dish) between two low-calorie (but fiber-rich, therefore satiating) dishes: a salad and a piece of fruit. To make your salad even more satiating, you can add some crunchy vegetables, seeds, and some nuts to it. The latter ingredients will make you chew more when you eat your salad, and the result will be you will start feeling less hungry. Have a small portion and of the main dish, and then fill the last small hole in your stomach with an apple.

I can guarantee that, if you skip both the salad and the piece of fruit, you will end up eating double the portion of the main dish. Although to lose weight you need to reduce the number of calories you eat compared to the number of calories you burn, the mere calorie count is not a winning strategy to lose weight. Instead, you need a plan to increase satiety, which will make you automatically reduce the number of calories you eat. Provided you stop eating when you are full. Be careful: most people don’t even pay attention to whether they feel full or not.

Healthy meal plans: How to deal with threats and cheat meals

Sooner or later, you’ll want to have a small treat or enjoy a meal that is richer than usual. Again, what you need is a simple rule. I enjoy a sweet treat 2-3 times a week, and I enjoy a cheat meal 4-5 times a month. The occasion to eat something sweet, or to have a meal that is more caloric than usual, will present itself sooner or later. Therefore, there is no need to plan when you will eat your dessert. Just keep in mind when you had your last treat and, if the end of the week arrives and you haven’t had your second dessert yet, you can enjoy a portion of your favorite treat without feeling guilty.

Healthy meal plans: 50 ideas

The following healthy meal plans are created based on the Sandwich rule described above. My recipes are designed for being straightforward and for not combining too many high-calorie ingredients. I follow a typical Italian habit of separating different types of food, instead of combining them (e.g., rice and chicken). Therefore, in the list below, you will find 50 healthy meal plans with recipes that use grains, meat, eggs, etc. as main ingredients, plus vegetables.

Healthy meal plans based on grains (and pseudo-grains)

Whole grains should be preferred since they are rich in both fiber and antioxidant substances. Eating more fiber will help you feel full earlier, and your bowel will absorb starch more slowly, enabling a slower glycemic response after your meal. This phenomenon thus allows slowing down the return of hunger. Whole grains also retain the germ, which is rich in many bioactive compounds such as folate, magnesium, potassium, selenium, vitamin E, and several flavonoids. Unfortunately, the germ is lost during grain processing; even wholegrain products are often made of refined flours added with some bran, while the germ is lost during the refinement process.

Before using any type of grains, you should rinse them under current water to eliminate dust and impurities. You can also roast them quickly in a skillet with a bit of oil before boiling them in water, an operation that allows the beans to remain well separated from each other, be more digestible and acquire more strength. Couscous, millet, and buckwheat will all benefit (and taste better) if you roast them a minute or two before you boil them.

Cooking times vary depending on which grains you choose, and you can boil them in either water or stock. The right amount of liquid is two cups every cup of grains. If you use a crockpot, you can switch the stove halfway through the cooking process, and the pot will remain hot for some time, enabling the cooking process to progress slowly.

Sometimes it can be useful (or necessary, as with rye) to soak your grains before cooking them. Soaked grains cook more homogeneously and faster.

Finally, cereal flakes can be used for the preparation of soups, porridges, and creams, as well as mixed with yogurt, perhaps accompanied with fresh or dried fruit. With this out of the way, here are 50 healthy meal plans with many delicious recipes!

Healthy menu plan #1

healthy meal plans

Entrée salad: carrots, baby spinach, cherry tomatoes, chopped walnuts.

Main dish: Pasta with aubergines

Ingredients for each person: 100 g of pasta, 200 g aubergines, 1 tablespoon of extra-virgin olive oil, onion, salt.

Directions: Heat the olive oil in a pan and pan-fry some chopped onion. Add the aubergines cut into cubes, stir, reduce the heat, and let cook for about half an hour. Add a scoop or two of water from time to time so that it won’t dry up. Meanwhile, bring some water to a boil, add pasta, and 2-3 pinches of salt. Cook for as long as it is indicated on the box and then drain. Mix with the aubergines and serve.

Fruit: One apple.

Healthy menu plan #2

quinoa salad

Entrée salad: fennel, baby spinach, cherry tomatoes, chopped almonds.

Main dish: Quinoa salad

Ingredients for each person: 30 g quinoa, 30 g avocado, red onion, half tomato, chopped parsley, one tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil, lemon juice, red wine vinegar, salt, and pepper.

Directions: Bring the water to a boil, add the quinoa, stir, and return to a boil. Cook over medium heat for 12 minutes. Strain and rinse thoroughly with cold water. Transfer the quinoa to a large bowl. Add all the ingredients and toss well. Serve.

Fruit: One pear.

Healthy menu plan #3

healthy meal plans

Entrée salad: carrots, baby spinach, grated raw beetroots, pine nuts.

Main dish: Buckwheat salad, with artichokes and tomatoes.

Ingredients for each person: 100 g buckwheat, 200 g cherry tomatoes, 100 g artichoke hearts, 2 tablespoons of sliced olives, 2 tablespoons of lemon juice, marjoram, 1-2 cloves of garlic, 1 teaspoon of extra virgin olive oil, salt.

Directions: In a non-stick pan, toast the buckwheat grains for 3 or 4 minutes while stirring, then boil it in plenty of salted water for 10 minutes and then drain it. Meanwhile, wash and cut the cherry tomatoes in halves and put them into a small colander to drain their water. Pan-fry the garlic in oil for 1-2 minutes, then add the artichokes and stir for another 2-3 minutes. Lower the heat and cook until they are a little softer. Sprinkle with some fresh marjoram and add the buckwheat. Add the olives, some lemon juice, and the tomatoes. Mix and let it sit into the fridge for at least a couple of hours before serving.

Dessert: One cup of orange squash.

Healthy menu plan #4

rice

Entrée salad: raw peppers, baby spinach, cherry tomatoes, chopped almonds.

Main dish: Rice and spinach soup.

Ingredients for each person: 70 g of rice, 100 g of spinach, a few chopped basil leaves, garlic, three teaspoons of grated pecorino cheese, three teaspoons of extra virgin olive oil, salt.

Directions: Cut the spinach cut into pieces and boil them in salted water together with the rice for about 10 minutes. Before serving, add some basil leaves, salt, garlic, grated pecorino cheese, and olive oil.

Dessert: One cup of grapes.

Healthy menu plan #5

nfd

Entrée salad: fennel, lettuce, cucumbers, chopped hazelnuts.

Main dish: Venere rice with shrimps and cherry tomatoes

Ingredients for each person: 100 g Venere rice (black rice), 60 g shrimps, 3 tablespoons of lemon juice, 100 g cherry tomatoes, salt, black pepper, 1 tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil, parsley, fresh grass onion, balsamic vinegar.

Directions: Cook the rice in plenty of salted water for about 20-25 minutes; drain it and pour it into a bowl. Meanwhile, boil the shrimps in water with some lemon juice for a few minutes, drain them, and add them to the rice, leaving some to be added as a decoration. Add the chopped cherry tomatoes, salt, pepper, freshly chopped parsley, and some thinly-sliced fresh spring onion. Drizzle with extra-virgin olive oil and some balsamic vinegar. Mix and garnish with the prawns you put aside before serving.

Dessert: One couple of kiwis.

Healthy menu plan #6

healthy meal plans

Entrée salad: radish, baby spinach, grated raw beetroots, chopped walnuts.

Main dish: Farro (spelt) with tofu and cherry tomatoes

Ingredients for each person: 100 g of spelt, 200 g of cherry tomatoes, 100 g of natural tofu, 1 tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil, salt, and pepper.

Directions: Boil the spelt in salted water for about 25 minutes. Meanwhile, sauté the tomatoes with the diced tofu in a pan with the oil. Drain the spelt and sauté it with the other ingredients (including salt and pepper). Serve immediately or refrigerate for a couple of hours, in case you want to eat it cold.

Dessert: One cup of papaya.

Healthy menu plan #7

millet

Entrée salad: raw peppers, lettuce, grated raw beetroots, chopped hazelnuts.

Main dish: Millet and mushrooms

Ingredients for each person: 50 g of millet, 70 grams of mushrooms, a clove of garlic, parsley to taste, a few tablespoons of white wine, a teaspoon of extra virgin olive oil, vegetable stock, salt.

Directions: Wash the mushrooms under running water, drain them and dry them and finally slice them. Sauté over high heat with oil and garlic and let simmer on fire covering the pot with a lid. If desired, add the white wine and let it evaporate. If necessary, add some vegetable broth spoons to avoid burning the mushrooms. Season with salt and add some chopped parsley right before removing from the heat. Meanwhile, boil the millet for 20 minutes after washing it under running water. Stir the mushrooms with millet, put the pot back on the heat for 1-2 minutes, and serve.

Dessert: One handful of (unsweetened) dried fruit.

Healthy menu plan #8

healthy meal plans

Entrée salad: radish, baby spinach, cherry tomatoes, chopped almonds.

Main dish: Oat and orange porridge

Ingredients for each person: 50 g of oat flakes (rolled oats), 3 teaspoons of raisins, 2 oranges, 4 tablespoons of natural yogurt.

Directions: Put the raisins in a bowl together with the oat flakes. Squeeze the oranges and pour the juice into the bowl. Add the yogurt, mix, and leave to rest for a few hours or overnight in the refrigerator.

Dessert: One cup of strawberries.

Healthy menu plan #9

Entrée salad: carrots, baby spinach, cherry tomatoes, chopped almonds.

Main dish: Barley and bean soup

Ingredients for each person: 50 g of pearl barley, 50 g of potatoes, 50 g of fresh or frozen beans, 1 cabbage leaf, celery, 3 tablespoons of tomato sauce, 1 tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil, salt, and pepper.

Directions: Peel the potato and cut it into cubes, put it in a saucepan with the beans, the tomato sauce, and the chopped cabbage. Cover with water and bring to a boil. Boil slowly for 10 minutes, add the barley and cook for another 30 minutes, until the beans are cooked. Season with oil, salt, and pepper, mix and serve.

Dessert: One cup of a smoothie made with berries and a couple of tablespoons skimmed and unsweetened yogurt.

Healthy menu plan #10

ravioli

Entrée salad: fennel, baby spinach, cucumbers, chopped walnuts.

Main dish: Ravioli with sage

Ingredients for each person: 150 g ravioli, 1 tablespoon butter, 2-3 leaves of sage, 1 tablespoon grated Parmesan, salt, and pepper.

Directions: Boil the ravioli in salted water for a few minutes, following the instructions on the package. Meanwhile, put the butter in a saucepan together with the sage and fry them until the ravioli are ready. Drain the latter and mix them with butter and sage. Sprinkle with grated Parmesan and serve.

Dessert: ¼ of a pineapple.

Healthy meal plans based on fish & shellfish

If you want to make sure you are buying high-quality fish, the first thing you need to do is to read the label, which should include the following information:

  • species name;
  • provenance;
  • if the fish was bred or fished;
  • the method of breeding or fishing;
  • whether the fish is fresh or thawed.

The above information helps trace the fish origin and its seasonality. However, this information does not inform you about whether the fish you want to buy is fresh. In the European Union, for instance, it is not yet mandatory to indicate the fishing date.

Here are some further hints that will help you understand whether the fish is fresh or not:

  • Its smell, first of all. Fresh fish has a slight odor of sea and algae. A smell of ammonia indicates that the latter has been used to slow down the process of putrefaction, a common trick to extend the shelf life of shellfish.
  • Fresh fish has a bright and vivid color, and it is slightly moist. To the touch, it must give the sensation of touching tense muscles and not be soft. When held by its tail, fresh fish remains straight and does not bend.
  • Its eyes must be clear, vivid, and bright, and they must protrude slightly from the eyeball. Beware of opaque, gray, and somewhat hollow pupils.
  • The gills must have a light red or pink color and must be moist. Do not buy any fish that has mottled and sticky gills.
  • The scales must stick to the body. The skin must be viscous and shiny on the surface and leave traces of a transparent liquid on the hands. This liquid is mucus that the skin naturally produced when the fish was still alive. An old fish has a dry surface: the longer it stays out of the water, the more dehydrated it will be.
  • When you eviscerate it, the color of the internal abdomen must be bright. If traces of blood are present, they must be bright red.
  • The spine must adhere well to the meat.

By keeping in mind these rules when you buy some fish, you will be able to understand whether it’s fresh or not. Below you will find some ideas for healthy meal plans based on fish.

Healthy menu plan #11

healthy meal plans
Entrée salad: radish, baby spinach, cucumbers, almonds.

Main dish: Salmon with potatoes and fennel.

Ingredients for each person: 200 g of salmon fillet, 200 g of fennel, 150 g of potatoes, lemon juice, 3 teaspoons of extra virgin olive oil, salt, pepper.

Directions: Slice both the potatoes and the fennel. Cook the salmon in a steamer, together with the potatoes and the fennel. Alternatively, you can cook these three ingredients in a metal colander placed on top of a pot containing boiling water. Prepare a sauce by mixing olive oil, lemon juice, salt, and pepper and use it to season the other ingredients once cooked.

Dessert: A couple of apricots.

Healthy menu plan #12

mussels with wine

Entrée salad: raw peppers, baby spinach, grated raw beetroots, chopped walnuts.

Main dish: Mussels with wine

Ingredients for each person: 200 g of mussels, 3 teaspoons of extra virgin olive oil, flour, shallots, parsley, white wine, lemon juice, thyme, salt, and pepper.

Directions: Open and wash the mussels thoroughly, discard the shell without the mollusk, sauté with some shallot in olive oil for a few minutes. Pour a splash of wine and let it evaporate. Stir and add salt and pepper. Sprinkle with lemon and chopped parsley before serving.

Dessert: Half a papaya.

Healthy menu plan #13

Entrée salad: carrots, lettuce, cherry tomatoes, chopped almonds.

Main dish: Sole with olives

Ingredients for one person: a plaice fillet of 200 g, 3 teaspoons of sliced olives, 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, white wine, cornflour, salt, and pepper.

Directions: Put some cornflour on a plate and put the sole on top of it. Press gently and repeat on the other side. Heat the oil in a pan and add the fish fillet. Add a splash of wine and let it dry up. Turn the fish fillet to the other side and cook it for one minute. Add the olives, salt, and pepper and serve.

Dessert: One handful of dried dates.

Healthy menu plans #14

healthy meal plans
Entrée salad: fennel, baby spinach, cucumbers, chopped hazelnuts.

Main dish: Shrimps and mango salad.

Directions for one person: Mix 70 g of salad of your choice, half a small mango, 50 g of shrimps, 1 sliced red onion, some coriander leaves.

Dessert: One slice of watermelon.

Healthy menu plan #15

plaice with saffron

Entrée salad: radish, lettuce, cherry tomatoes, pine nuts.

Main dish: Plaice with saffron

Ingredients for each person: 200 g of fillet of plaice (or sole), one orange (squeezed), 1 onion, 3 teaspoons of extra virgin olive oil, saffron, salt, and pepper.

Directions: Slice the onion and pan fry it in oil for 1-2 minutes. Add the fish, brown it quickly on both sides and then add a pinch of saffron and half of the orange juice. As soon as the latter has evaporated, add the remaining juice, together with salt and pepper, and finish cooking. Serve the fish topped with grated orange peel.

Dessert: ¼ of a melon.

Healthy menu plan #16

healthy meal plans

Entrée salad: raw peppers, lettuce, cucumbers, pine nuts.

Main dish: Baby octopuses and tomatoes.

Ingredients for each person: 200 g of baby octopus, 200 g of peeled tomatoes, 1 tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil, lemon juice, parsley, garlic, salt, and pepper.

Directions: Peel the octopuses and wash them. Remove the eyes, mouth, and blister. Put them in a saucepan together with: peeled tomatoes, oil, garlic, salt, and pepper. Cook over moderate heat for 2 hours. Add some water if the sauce dries up. Sprinkle with freshly chopped parsley and lemon juice before serving.

Dessert: One banana.

Healthy menu plan #17

grilled sea bass

Entrée salad: carrots, baby spinach, grated raw beetroots, chopped almonds.

Main dish: Sea bream and orange

Ingredients for each person: 200 g sea bream fillet, ½ orange, 100 g fresh mushrooms, dry white wine, 2 tablespoons bread crumbs, 3 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil, salt, and pepper.

Directions: Set the oven at 180°C. Wash and slice the mushrooms; slice the orange as well. Put the sea bream in a baking tray on baking paper and sprinkle with oil and wine. Position the orange slices around the fish, sprinkle with bread crumbs and the chopped mushrooms. Add salt and pepper and bake for 180°C for 20-30 minutes.

Dessert: One handful of dried or fresh coconut.

Healthy menu plan #18

healthy meal plans

Entrée salad: fennel, baby spinach, cherry tomatoes, chopped walnuts.

Main dish: Fish fillet with pistachio nuts

Ingredients for each person: 200 g of fish fillets of your choice, 200 g of leeks, 2 tablespoons of chopped pistachios, 3 teaspoons of extra virgin olive oil, sage, salt, and pepper.

Directions: Wash the leek, chop it into round slices, and sauté it in a pan with oil and sage. Continue for about 5 minutes, add the chopped pistachios, stir and remove from heat. Steam the fish for 7-8 minutes (simply place a metal colander on a pan with boiling water and cover with a lid). Season the fish with leeks and serve.

Dessert: One cup of a smoothie made with banana, lemon juice, and pineapple.

Healthy menu plan #19

anchovies

Entrée salad: radish, baby spinach, cucumbers, chopped walnuts.

Main dish: Anchovy salad with olives.

Recipe for each person: 100 g of cucumber julienne, a red or yellow pepper, cut into cubes, 50 g of anchovies or sardines in oil, 2 or 3 sliced ​​black olives, one tablespoon of pine nuts, chopped parsley to taste.

Dessert: One cup of cherries.

Healthy meal plans based on legumes

Legumes (pulses) are a source of many nutrients; 100 g of chickpeas provide an amount of folate almost equal to the recommended daily dose for an average adult. Also, legumes contain many other B vitamins and minerals, including vegetable iron. The latter is less soluble compared to meat iron. Eating pulses together with a source of vitamin C (such as lemon juice, raw cabbage, peppers, or tomatoes), increases the solubility of the iron contained in legumes, facilitating its absorption.

Pulses also provide both fiber and phytoestrogens, which are useful for reducing blood cholesterol levels. Legumes also contain oligosaccharides which “feed” the gut microflora. However, our metabolism does produce the enzymes that are necessary to digest these oligosaccharides, which tend to ferment, causing unpleasant problems such as swelling and flatulence. However, if you regularly eat pulses, these unpleasant phenomena will reduce in time.

Despite their many nutritional properties, the average legume consumption is, unfortunately, often meager. Here are some healthy meal plans with legumes:

Healthy meal plan #20

healthy meal plans

Entrée salad: raw peppers, lettuce, cherry tomatoes, pine nuts.

Main dish: Bean and fennel soup

Ingredients for each person: 250 g of fennel cut into chunks, 200 g of fresh or frozen cranberry beans, 1 tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil, 1 tablespoon of miso, 1 pinch of cardamom powder, 1 tablespoon of fennel seeds, sage, rosemary, salt, and pepper.

Directions: Boil the beans in water. Meanwhile, separately boil the fennel as well and blend it with a few splashes of its cooking water to obtain a soft cream. Put the latter on medium heat, add the beans (half of which either blended or mashed with a fork). Add salt, pepper, some cardamom, and some fennel seeds. Boil for 1-2 minutes, add both the miso and the olive oil, stir and serve.

Dessert: One apple.

Healthy meal plan #21

chickpeas

Entrée salad: carrots, lettuce, grated raw beetroots, chopped almonds.

Main dish: Chickpea and vegetable casserole

Ingredients for each person: a teaspoon of olive oil, 50 g of dried chickpeas, 100 g of vegetables: spinach, fennel, yellow and red peppers, a teaspoon of flour, onion, garlic, vegetable broth, white wine, and a bay leaf.

Directions: Soak the dried chickpeas for 24 hours. Heat the oil in a pan and sauté onion and garlic. Add the spinach and cook for four minutes until they wither. Add the fennel and pepper and cook for two minutes, stirring. Add flour and cook for a minute. Add broth, wine, chickpeas, a bay leaf, cover, and simmer 30 minutes. Season with salt, garnish with fennel tops and serve.

Dessert: One pear.

Healthy meal plan #22

healthy meal plans

Entrée salad: fennel, lettuce, cherry tomatoes, chopped almonds.

Main dish: Cabbage and lentil soup

Ingredients for each person: 50 g of cabbage, 50 g cauliflower, 20 grams of lentils, 1 piece of kombu seaweed (optional), garlic, sage, a teaspoon of olive oil, two or three tablespoons of oat milk, chopped parsley, hot vegetable stock, salt, pepper.

Directions: Soak the lentils in cold water overnight. Cook them for 30 minutes in a liter of water with the kombu seaweed and garlic. Once cooked, cover and let them cool. Season with a little oil, salt, and pepper and keep aside. Wash the cabbage and cut it into thin strips.

Clean the cauliflower and divide it into small florets. Cut the sage leaves into small pieces. In a saucepan, heat two tablespoons of olive oil with the sage, and add the cauliflower and the cabbage. Season with salt, stir, add some stock and cook with the lid on for ten minutes. Uncover and finish cooking for another five minutes. Reduce in cream with a hand blender. Put on the heat, add the oat milk, cook another few minutes, and season with salt and pepper. Serve the soup piping it hot in individual bowls and place the lentils in the center. Sprinkle with chopped parsley and a little olive oil.

Dessert: One banana.

Healthy meal plan #23

Entrée salad: radish, lettuce, grated raw beetroots, chopped hazelnuts.

Main dish: Crostini with fava bean cream

Ingredients for each person: 50-80 g of bread, 100 g of fava beans (broad), 3 tablespoons of grated pecorino cheese, 1 tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil, salt, pepper.

Directions: Soak the fava beans overnight if you buy them dried, discard the soaking water, rinse them, and then cook them in hot water for about 10-15 minutes. Drain them and mix them into a blender with salt, pepper, pecorino cheese, and extra virgin olive oil until you get a smooth cream. Use the latter as a spread on toasted bread.

Dessert: One cup of fruit salad.

Healthy meal plan #24

Entrée salad: raw peppers, baby spinach, cucumbers, pine nuts.

Main dish: Tempeh with peppers

Ingredients per person: 200 g of tempeh, 200 of yellow and red peppers, onion, a tablespoon of miso, a teaspoon of ginger juice, three teaspoons of extra virgin olive oil, salt.

Directions: Slice the tempeh and the peppers into thin strips, chop the onion. In a pan, fry the chopped onion in 2 tablespoons of oil, add the peppers and sauté for a couple of minutes. Season with salt, mix and add the tempeh to the vegetables, sauté for another two minutes. Add the miso dissolved in some warm water and stir well. Continue to cook for about 20 minutes. Serve with ginger juice.

Dessert: One cup of a smoothie made with berries, 2 tablespoons of skimmed and unsweetened yogurt, and pomegranate.

Healthy meal plans based on eggs

Before you buy eggs, check their freshness first. You can simply check their freshness by putting them into a bowl filled with salted water. If the egg is fresh, it will sink to the bottom of the container. If the egg is not fresh, it will emerge a few millimeters or float.

You can cook eggs in many ways: hard-boiled, scrambled, soft-boiled, and so on. It is also possible to cook them in boiling water without their shells. However, if you prepare your eggs this way, add a couple of tablespoons vinegar to the water to prevent the egg white from flaking. Soft-boiled cooking involves boiling an egg for 3-4 minutes. Put your soft-boiled egg in an egg cup with the pointed part upwards and add a pinch of salt after removing the upper part of the shell. I call this cooking method, “á la coque.”

If you prefer to fry your eggs, choose oils that resist high heat like peanut or extra virgin olive oil. Beaten eggs work well for an omelet or a frittata. If you prefer not to fry the latter, you can bake it in the oven as well. As you can see, eggs are a very versatile food that can be easily included in many healthy meal plans.

Eggs should never be stored with a dirty shell because the latter is very porous, and impurities will pass inside.

Healthy meal plan #25

healthy meal plans

Entrée salad: carrots, lettuce, cucumbers, pine nuts.

Main dish: Baked eggs with avocado

Ingredients for each person: 1 avocado, 2 eggs, chili flakes, salt and pepper, fresh basil.

Directions: Set the oven at 225°C. Cut the avocado into two halves and remove the seed. Scoop out the avocado and place the two halves in a baking tray. Crack an egg in each half. Season with salt, pepper, chili flakes, and chopped basil. Bake in the oven for about 15 minutes.

Dessert: One couple of kiwis.

Healthy meal plan #26

Baked eggs with peppers
nfd

Entrée salad: fennel, rucola, cherry tomatoes, chopped walnuts.

Main dish: Baked eggs with peppers

Ingredients for each person: 4 eggs, 200 g of peppers of various colors, garlic, oregano, 3 teaspoons of extra virgin olive oil, salt, and pepper.

Directions: Wash and dry the peppers, toast them, turning them on all sides until their surface is darker and crumpled (but not burnt). Peel them, remove the seed, and the peduncles inside. Slice them into thin strips and sauté them in a pan with the oil and minced garlic. Sprinkle them with oregano. Finally, place them in an ovenproof dish. Place two shelled eggs at the center of an ovenproof plate, sprinkle with salt and pepper, and bake at 180°C until the yolks start to veil.

Dessert: One couple of prunes or plums.

Healthy meal plan #27

Entrée salad: radish, lettuce, cucumbers, chopped hazelnuts.

Main dish: Baked eggs with mustard

Ingredients for one person: 4 eggs, 3 tablespoons of grated Parmesan cheese, 3 tablespoons of cream, 1 teaspoon of mustard, 3 teaspoons of extra virgin olive oil, salt, and pepper.

Directions: Grease a baking dish with some olive oil, sprinkle with Parmesan, and break over the eggs. Separately mix the mustard, cream, salt, and pepper. Pour the mix over the eggs and bake them at 180°C for 15 minutes.

Dessert: One mango.

Healthy meal plan #28

vegetable frittata

Entrée salad: raw peppers, baby spinach, cherry tomatoes, pine nuts.

Main dish: Vegetable frittata

Ingredients for one person: 4 eggs, 200 g of mixed vegetables (carrots, peas, green beans, courgette/zucchini), 2 small onions, 3 tablespoons of tomato sauce, 1 tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil, salt.

Directions: Turn on the oven and set the temperature at 180°C. Boil or steam the vegetables and chop them. Heat a tablespoon of oil in a pan and pan-fry the chopped onion. Add the tomato sauce and the vegetables and mix the ingredients. Turn off the heat.

Meanwhile, beat the eggs with a pinch of salt and mix them with the vegetables. Pour the mix into a baking dish lined with some parchment paper and bake for about 12/15 minutes. The pie is ready when its surface becomes slightly golden.

Dessert: One slice of watermelon.

Healthy meal plan #29

Entrée salad: carrots, rucola, cucumbers, chopped hazelnuts.

Main dish: Frittata with ricotta

Ingredients for one person: 4 eggs, 4 tablespoons of ricotta cheese, 4 teaspoons of extra virgin olive oil, minced basil leaves, salt.

Directions: Beat the eggs together with a pinch of salt. Add the minced basil leaves and the ricotta cheese and mix. Heat the oil in a non-stick pan, pour the eggs and ricotta mix, and turn it over two or three times until it is cooked on both sides and then serve.

Dessert: One peach.

Healthy meal plans based on white meat

White meat (such as chicken or turkey), unlike red meat, should only be consumed well-done. After you have prepared it, its color inside must not be pink. White meat has a high risk of contamination, for instance, by Salmonella, and it is not advisable to eat it raw.

Therefore, you should always cook white meat until it reaches an internal temperature of at least 74°C. If you use frozen meat, calculate an extra cooking time for thawing.

Finally, when you freeze white meat at home, slice it before you store it into the freezer. Here are some healthy meal plans with white meat.

Healthy meal plan #30

chicken with vegetables

Entrée salad: fennel, lettuce, grated raw beetroots, pine nuts.

Main dish: Chicken with vegetables

Ingredients for one person: 150 g of chicken, 100 g of tomatoes, 50 g of carrots, 50 g of peas, white wine, chopped onion, garlic, herbs (sage, laurel, rosemary), parsley, vegetable broth, a tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil, salt.

Directions: Place the chicken in a pan greased with oil and put over shallow heat. Add the wine, let it evaporate, then add the onion and garlic, the herb bouquet, the tomatoes, the carrots cut into cubes, salt and a cup of broth, and then simmer. Towards the end of cooking, add the peas, thicken the sauce, add some chopped parsley and discard the herbs.

Dessert: One cup of grapes.

Healthy meal plan #31

healthy meal plans

Entrée salad: radish, rucola, cucumbers, chopped almonds.

Main dish: Chicken and Asiago cheese salad

Recipe for one person: 100 g of cabbage leaves cut into strips, 50 g of grilled zucchini, 50 g of grilled chicken breast, 50 g of Asiago cheese cut into cubes (or Cheddar/Gouda).

Dessert: One cup of a smoothie made with frozen raspberries, lemon juice, and apple.

Healthy meal plan #32

Chicken with beer

Entrée salad: raw peppers, rucola, cucumbers, chopped hazelnuts.

Main dish: Chicken with beer

Ingredients for one person: 2 chicken thighs or 200 g chicken breast, beer, 1-2 garlic cloves, 3 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil, rosemary, vegetable stock, salt, pepper.

Directions: Pan-fry the garlic for 1-2 minutes and then add the meat. Fry on all sides for about 5 minutes. Add a splash of beer and let it evaporate. Add the stock, salt, and rosemary and cook until the meat is tender. Add some more stock if needed. Sprinkle with pepper and serve.

Dessert: ¼ of a melon.

Healthy meal plan #33

healthy meal plans

Entrée salad: carrots, rucola, cherry tomatoes, chopped almonds.

Main dish: Turkey and chestnut rolls

Ingredients for one person: 200 g of turkey breast, 70 g of peeled, boiled chestnuts mashed with a fork, chopped rosemary, 2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil, wine, mustard, salt, and pepper.

Directions: Spread the turkey slices with a little mustard. Mix the mashed chestnuts with rosemary, salt, and pepper and make a layer on the meat. Wrap as a roll, tie with string, and put in a pan with hot oil. Sauté, sprinkle with some wine and cook until the meat is ready.

Dessert: ¼ of a pineapple.

Healthy meal plan #34

rabbit skewers

Entrée salad: fennel, rucola, cucumbers, pine nuts.

Main dish: Rabbit skewers

Ingredients for one person: 200 g of rabbit meat (or chicken breast), 3 teaspoons of olive oil, 100 g of onions, 100 g of bell peppers (or vegetables of your choice), cognac, spices, salt and pepper to taste.

Directions: Marinate the meat in a mixture of cognac, olive oil, salt, pepper, and herbs. After about an hour, put them on the skewers, alternating with peppers and onions, and grill them.

Dessert: One orange.

Healthy meal plans based on red meat

You should limit your consumption of red meat and try to avoid processed meat. However, if you eat it no more than once a week and avoid processed meat, you can consider meat as a food that is suitable healthy meal plans. You should eliminate the visible before you eat some meat. However, it’s better to remove it after cooking, because fat protects the meat from excessive dehydration during cooking, preventing it from becoming stringy. Prefer naturally lean cuts.

Meat should not be salted before cooking because it will lose its juices and become harder. All cooking techniques that burn meat (such as barbecuing or prolonged grilling) produce toxic and carcinogenic substances. It’s better to cook meat in the oven, stewed (with vegetables), or boiled.

For roasting, it is advisable to take your meat out of the fridge an hour before cooking it so that it will not become hard and leathery. Slow cooking will improve the final result, and using herbs will enhance the taste. It’s advisable to avoid cooking veal for a long time; otherwise, it will harden. On the contrary, pork works best when it’s well-done, and no blood is visible.

Healthy meal plan #35

beef

Entrée salad: radish, rucola, cherry tomatoes, chopped almonds.

Main dish: Oregano beef

Ingredients for each person: 200 g of sliced beef, 1-2 garlic cloves, freshly chopped (or dried) oregano, 100 g cherry tomatoes, 3 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil, salt, and pepper.

Directions: Pan fry the garlic cloves in oil, remove it, and add the chopped cherry tomatoes. Cook for a few minutes on high heat, add salt and pepper. Add the beef and fry it on both sides. Sprinkle with oregano and serve.

Dessert: One handful of dried or fresh coconut.

Healthy meal plan #36

healthy meal plans

Entrée salad: raw peppers, baby spinach, grated raw beetroots, chopped hazelnuts.

Main dish: Lemon escalope

Ingredients for each person: a slice of veal of about 150 g, flour, 3 teaspoons of extra virgin olive oil, lemon juice, chopped parsley, salt, pepper.

Directions: Beat the veal, sprinkle with flour and cook in a skillet with the oil. Once cooked, add salt, pepper, pour on some lemon juice and sprinkle with parsley. Cook a few more minutes, put it on a serving dish and cover with the sauce that has formed.

Dessert: One cup of a smoothie made with carrot and orange.

Healthy meal plan #37

ham

Entrée salad: carrots, lettuce, cherry tomatoes, chopped walnuts.

Main dish: ham, smoked cheese, and pistachio salad

Recipe for each person: mix 60 g of salad of your choice (e.g., baby spinach, lettuce, iceberg salad), 100 g of cherry tomatoes cut in halves, 50 g of rolled raw ham slices, 50 g of Scamorza cheese (or another smoked cheese of your choice), a spoonful of pistachios.

Dessert: ¼ of papaya.

Healthy meal plan #38

healthy meal plans

Entrée salad: fennel, baby spinach, grated raw beetroots, chopped hazelnuts.

Main dish: Veal carpaccio

Recipe for each person: sprinkle 150 g of veal (also minced) with three teaspoons of extra virgin olive oil and Parmesan flakes. Finally, add some rucola leaves and serve.

Dessert: One handful of dried dates.

Healthy meal plan #39

Entrée salad: radish, baby spinach, grated raw beetroots, chopped hazelnuts.

Main dish: Roast beef, beetroot, orange, and pomegranate salad

Recipe for one person: mix 100 g of roast beef, 50 g of baby spinach, half a sliced beetroot, a tablespoon of pomegranate seeds, 1 tablespoon of matchstick orange peel, a tablespoon of walnut kernels, thyme to taste.

Dessert: One cup of mixed berries.

Healthy meal plans based on tofu and tempeh

The production of tofu is very similar to that of dairy cheese. Tofu is obtained by squeezing and then curdling soybeans and finally pressing them into shapes. Some of the rennets used to make curd out of soybeans are calcium chloride, magnesium chloride, and delta-lactone gluconate.

Since tofu has a neutral and delicate flavor, it is always a good idea to combine it with sauces or serve it with vegetables or soups. By grilling some diced tofu, seasoned with spices and aromatic herbs, it is possible to prepare a tasty dish in just 10 minutes which perfectly fits with many healthy meal plans. By marinating it in olive oil, salt, and apple vinegar or tamari sauce for about half an hour before using it, tofu will taste much better. You can also bake tofu with vegetables, such as zucchini, carrots, tomatoes, peppers, mushrooms, onion, and aromatic herbs. Do not forget to add a generous dose of extra virgin olive oil.

Cut into thin cubes, tofu is the perfect ingredient for both soups and cold salads. Tofu is also suitable as an ingredient for preparing vegetable meatballs or savory pies. Finally, silk tofu is a perfect ingredient for the preparation of desserts, especially creams.

Tempeh is made of fermented yellow soybeans (or lupins). It is a food product widely used in Asian cuisine and, thanks to its high protein content, it is also known as “soy meat.”

Cook tempeh before using it, so that it loses its characteristic bitter aftertaste. You can either boil it or steam it for 10/15 minutes. In both cases, you will need to let it cool before using it and pat it with a kitchen towel or paper, to eliminate the excess water absorbed during cooking. Your tempeh will also more easily absorb condiments and flavors during the preparation of any meals where you will use it as an ingredient.

Cut your tempeh in cubes for a stew, thinly sliced ​​for a cruelty-free version of the Chinese almond chicken, or crumbled to prepare a meat sauce. Always marinate your tempeh before cooking it – perhaps in a sauce based on extra virgin olive oil, lemon, and salt – at least for half an hour: it will taste even better. Now that you know more about both tofu and tempeh, let’s have a look at some healthy meal plans including these foods!

Healthy meal plan #40

healthy meal plans

Entrée salad: raw peppers, rucola, cherry tomatoes, chopped hazelnuts.

Main dish: Tofu skewers

Ingredients for each person: 200 g of tofu, 1 courgette, a few pickled mushrooms, 3-4 black pitted olives, 1-2 tomatoes, garlic, a tablespoon extra virgin olive oil, powder chilly pepper, 1 tablespoon chopped herbs (rosemary, thyme, sage, oregano), salt.

Dice the tofu, the courgette, and the tomato and marinate them for 3-4 hours together with all the other ingredients. Prepare some skewers with the diced ingredients and grill them.

Dessert: A couple of mandarins.

Healthy meal plan #41

tofu salad

Entrée salad: carrots, baby spinach, cucumbers, chopped hazelnuts.

Main dish: Sweet and sour tofu salad

Ingredients for each person: 100 g of mixed salad, 50 g of carrots, 50 g of grilled tofu, 10 g of nuts (hazelnuts, almonds, etc.), 10 g of goji berries, 20 g sesame seeds, 1 tablespoon of apple cider vinegar, 1 teaspoon mustard, 1 teaspoon of extra virgin olive oil, salt, pepper.

Wash and clean the salad and, once dry, coarsely break it with your hands. Pour it into a bowl. Cut the tofu into cubes, grate the carrots and add them to the salad. Add the goji berries and the sesame seeds. Prepare the vinaigrette by emulsifying the oil, the apple cider vinegar, as well as a bit of salt, pepper, and mustard. Pour the vinaigrette over the salad and serve.

Dessert: One banana.

Healthy meal plan #42

Entrée salad: fennel, rucola, cherry tomatoes, chopped almonds.

Main dish: Tempeh with peppers

Ingredients for each person: 200 g of tempeh, 200 of yellow and red peppers, onion, a tablespoon of miso, a teaspoon of ginger juice, three teaspoons of extra virgin olive oil, salt.

Slice the tempeh and the peppers into thin strips, chop the onion. In a pan, fry the chopped onion in 2 tablespoons of oil, add the peppers and sauté for a couple of minutes. Season with salt, mix and add the tempeh to the vegetables, sauté for another two minutes. Add the miso dissolved in some warm water and stir well. Continue to cook for about 20 minutes. Serve with ginger juice.

Dessert: A couple of kiwis.

Healthy meal plan #43

healthy meal plans

Entrée salad: radish, lettuce, grated raw beetroots, chopped almonds.

Main dish: Tacos with tempeh

Ingredients for each person: 70 g of tempeh, 50 g of black beans, 2 corn tacos, 50 g of avocado, 100 g of cherry tomatoes, garlic, chopped parsley, 1 tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil, lime or lemon juice, salt, and pepper.

Boil the beans after soaking them overnight, cut the tomatoes in halves, slice the garlic and dice the avocado. Sauté the cherry tomatoes and beans in a pan together with garlic, parsley, and oil for a couple of minutes. Season with salt and pepper and add the diced tempeh and avocado. Put this mix into the tacos. Sprinkle with lime juice and serve.

Dessert: One cup of a smoothie made with kiwi, mango, and pineapple.

Healthy meal plan #44

tofu

Entrée salad: raw peppers, rucola, grated raw beetroots, pine nuts.

Main dish: Grilled tofu with broccoli

Ingredients for one person: 200 g of tofu, 200 g of broccoli florets, a few flakes of ginger, 2 tablespoons of soy sauce, 2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil, pepper.

Steam the broccoli, for example, by placing them in a metal colander over a pot of boiling water. Slice tofu about 1 cm thick and let the slices to marinate for at least one hour together with ginger, soy sauce, and water. Sauté the tofu in hot oil, sprinkle with pepper, and serve topped with broccoli.

Dessert: One handful of (unsweetened) dried fruit.

Healthy meal plans based on cheese

Dairy products represent a source of noble proteins, especially cheese. Unfortunately, the latter has often been demonized, despite being not only tasty but also very healthy. Many studies show that its consumption is not related to a higher risk of heart disease, as many people think, despite its high content in saturated fats. That is why cheese can be included in many healthy meal plans.

This apparent paradox is because cheese contains many bioactive compounds, such as vitamin K-2, probiotics, and bioactive peptides, especially aged cheese. To eat cheese 2-3 times a week gives you a generous dose of high-quality protein as well as calcium, which is an essential constituent of bones and teeth.

Unfortunately, official dietary guidelines still recommend low-fat cheese, which is usually industrial cheese. In my opinion, traditional cheese is, instead, the best choice for your health.

Healthy menu plan #45

healthy meal plans

Entrée salad: carrots, baby spinach, cucumbers, chopped walnuts.

Main dish: Mushrooms with mozzarella

Ingredients for each person: 200 g mushrooms, one mozzarella (125 g), 3 teaspoons of extra virgin olive oil, lemon juice, chopped parsley, chopped bay leaves, thyme, salt, and pepper.

Wash the mushrooms and slice them finely. Place them in a plate and cover with crushed garlic cloves, oil, lemon juice, parsley, chopped bay leaves, thyme, salt, and pepper. Let the mushrooms marinate for a few hours. Before serving, slice the mozzarella, place it in a serving dish and cover it with the mushrooms and their sauce.

Dessert: A couple of apricots.

Healthy menu plan #46

cheese salad

Entrée salad: fennel, lettuce, cucumbers, chopped almonds.

Main dish: Cheese salad

Recipe for each person: Mix 30 g of Emmenthal cheese with 30 g of Cheddar cheese, 100 g of lettuce, 1 hard-boiled egg, 1 teaspoon mustard, salt, pepper, vinegar or lemon juice.

Dessert: One peach.

Healthy meal plan #47

healthy meal plans

Entrée salad: radish, lettuce, cucumbers, chopped almonds.

Main dish: Greek salad

Recipe for each person: Mix the following ingredients after cutting them: 100 g of feta cheese, 30 g of black olives, 150 g of cherry tomatoes, 50 g of white onions, 150 g of cucumbers. Season with salt, pepper, 1 teaspoon of extra virgin olive oil, vinegar or lemon juice.

Dessert: One cup of strawberries.

Healthy meal plan #48

Entrée salad: raw peppers, rucola, grated raw beetroots, chopped hazelnuts

Main dish: Bean, cheese, corn, and dried tomato salad

Ingredients for each person: 50 grams of leafy salads mixed, 100 g of cooked beans (cooked weight), a spoonful of canned corn, 1 tablespoon of chopped dried tomatoes, 50 g of hard cheese such as Asiago, Gouda or Cheddar (diced), a few leaves of coriander.

Dessert: One mango.

Healthy meal plan #49

Entrée salad: radish, grated zucchini, cucumbers, chopped walnuts

Main dish: Three color salad

Recipe for each person: Mix 100 g of salad tomatoes, one mozzarella, a spoonful of chopped basil, 1-2 anchovy fillets, 20 g of black olives, a teaspoon of extra virgin olive oil, salt, pepper, vinegar or lemon juice.

Dessert: One cup of mixed berries.

Healthy meal plan #50

Roquefort

Entrée salad: chicory, radish, cherry tomatoes, cashew nuts.

Main dish: Roquefort salad

Recipe for each person: Mix the following ingredients 1 apple cut into small pieces, 100 g of raw cauliflower florets, 50 g of diced Roquefort cheese, 1 tablespoon of walnut kernels, chives.

Dessert: One orange.

Do you need personalized healthy meal plans?

The above healthy meal plans include just a portion of my extensive database of more than 300 healthy recipes. I have been working with private clients of all ages for 15 years and helped hundreds of people lose weight or solve their health problems with a proper diet. Get in touch with me so that we can discuss how I can help you with your diet.

Picture of Gianluca Tognon

Gianluca Tognon

Gianluca Tognon è un biologo specializzato in scienza dell’alimentazione. Ha lavorato per diversi anni come ricercatore presso l’Università di Göteborg in Svezia ed è docente presso l'università di Skövde in Svezia. In Italia ha pubblicato cinque libri su diversi temi legati all’alimentazione e alla nutrizione ed è co-autore di numerose pubblicazioni scientifiche su riviste internazionali.

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