The best healthy recipes for a dinner menu are tasty, nourishing, and can be pulled off – without breaking a sweat! Assembling meals for your family may feel overwhelming during this unique time. And besides work and kids, you may also be struggling with emotional eating.

4 bowls of healthy dinner recipes displayed in a grid: two salads, one chickpeas dish and one black eyed peas dish

  

Healthy Dinner Recipes For Your Family

If you’re looking to get “back-to-routine,” you’ll love this collection. They’re fantastic as those “regular everyday kind” recipes, but their deliciousness also lends itself beautifully to more grand occasions. This dinner menu is a good mix of one-pot/sheet pan meals that freeze and reheat well, easy to make, and feature some of our favourite family-friendly desi dishes – brimming with ethnic South Asian flavours. 

Isn’t dinner time the best? Honestly, I’ve been trying hard to gather the herd around the table because I think it’s the perfect vehicle to connect. Given a choice, I know my cheeky monkeys would be happy to be left on their own accord. Although not always possible, they do enjoy joining in on my healthy cooking adventures. 

Health Seekers, it’s time to skip those “on-repeat” boring meals and serve up these healthy dinner recipes for your family. Whether you’re looking for colourful salads, foolproof fish or plant-powered 30-minute creations (bonus: I’ve also added some easy healthy recipes done and dusted in 20 minutes), you’ll find plenty of colourful ideas. We’re talking, gluten free pilau, healthy chicken dishes, quick and easy curries using heart-healthy cooking oils, like olive oil, and easy dinner ideas using pantry staples, such as black beans and chickpeas.

Bear in mind, though, these are recipes I regard part of an everyday healthy eating pattern, but what’s healthful for one “body” is not fundamentally healthy for another. If you have specific health issues, restrictions, dietary concerns or cultural preferences, talk to a suitable registered dietitian. You can also find dietitian-approved Desi~licious meal plans at the link.

Your Dinner Menu

Bowl of vegetable quinoa with garlic shrimp recipe flat-lay close up

Vegetable Quinoa and Garlic Shrimp Recipe

Make this easy and healthy vegetable quinoa with garlic shrimp. It's gluten-free, and one of my favourite ways to get dinner on the table – fast! Plus, all the cooking action happens in your skillet. We're upping the nutritional value of the dish with a beautiful mixture of kidney beans, zucchini, peppers, tomatoes, and quinoa. Infused with heaps of flavour from the smoked paprika, cumin, coriander and lemon juice, it's a great way to keep your salt intake in check – without compromising on taste.
Check out this recipe
vegan black eyed peas recipe stuffed in a sweet potato with colourful vegetables in a bowl

Slow Cooker Vegan Black Eyed Peas Recipe

This budget-friendly Slow Cooker Vegan Black Eyed Peas Recipe is a game-changer if you're looking for a hassle-free easy and healthy recipe. Super simple to pull off, family-friendly and brimming with Desi~licious flavours. It's the perfect pick to feed a crowd using humble pantry ingredients. Vegan, gluten-free and only 15 minutes of prep time required.
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vegan Shepherd's pie in a white baking dish topped with fresh parsley with a portion served in a plate

Vegan Shepherd’s Pie

A family-friendly and satisfying Vegan Shepherd's Pie recipe gets an Indian twist. Loaded with flavour-packed green lentils simmered in a tomato sauce infused with traditional South Asian spices, and topped with velvety mashed potatoes. Heads up, it's so Desi~licious that you'll want more than one helping!
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peeking through plant leaves overlooking a tray of yellow-coloured rice topped with fish fillets and garnished with mint.

Haddock Fish Biryani – Easy To Follow!

A mouthwatering fish biryani (traditionally known as machi biryani) to complement any celebration! It's a layered Basmati rice dish made with spicy haddock fish fillets and uses the "dum" method to create a truly unique and flavourful meal. This recipe is protein-rich and packed with fibre, using less oil and lots of tomatoes and pepper to create a nutritious recipe.
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Persian rice in a round tray surrounded by fresh parsley, grilled eggplant and a traditional fabric

Jewelled Persian Rice

Persian rice infused with the luxurious scent of saffron and cardamom – jewelled with crunchy carrot matchsticks, tart dried cranberries and protein-rich chickpeas to create a desilicous show-stopping rice dish for your holiday menu. Yes, it's as good as it looks.
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a bowl of egg curry with turnips with a side of broccoli, baby tomatoes and roti presented on a tray.

Egg Curry Recipe With Turnips

A mouthwatering egg curry recipe with some major Fall vibes. Turnips cooked in a thick tomato-yogurt base, infused with fresh herbs and curry powder. Thanks to the eggs and vegetables, this Indian curry is rich in protein and a source of important vitamins and minerals.
Check out this recipe
Two Desi Pumpkin Bean Burgers on a bed of alfalfa microgreens topped with guacamole in burger buns on a black tray

Desi Pumpkin Bean Burger

Just in time for Fall, these easy and healthy Desi Pumpkin Bean Burgers are an excellent alternative to store bought vegan burgers. Kidney beans, pumpkin and oats infused with curry powder and cumin, to create a healthy ethnic recipe – that'll knock your socks off! Served on a bed of alfalfa microgreens and topped with creamy guacamole. Just tuck in! 
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overhead image of a bowl of mashed eggplant topped with olives, chillies and a lemon slice.

Oven-Roasted Baingan Bharta (Indian Eggplant Recipe)

This oven-roasted recipe for Baingan Bharta (Indian eggplant) is a nourishing dish of mashed eggplant, simmered stovetop in a thick tomato-pepper sauce. If you're on the hunt for a healthy Indian recipe — with less oil, spices, and salt — this is it! Enjoy with roti, quinoa, or lettuce cups. 
Check out this recipe
A perspective image of a serving bowl of brown lentil soup topped with kidney beans on a gold tray with red flowers in the background.

Stovetop Dhal Makhani (Vegan Coconut Lentil Curry)

Are you looking to embrace meatless meals and looking for healthy dinner options? Look no further than this delicious Indian dhal makhani recipe. Packed with flavour and nutrition, this coconut lentil curry will become a new family favourite. Plus, it's easy to make on the stovetop. This lentil recipe is vegan, high protein and gluten free.
Check out this recipe
An oven tray with two cooked spaghetti squash halves filled with chickpea and greens curry topped with a lemon slice and red chillies.

Chickpea-Curry Stuffed Spaghetti Squash (Vegan)

This recipe for oven-bakedstuffed spaghetti squashis filled to the brim with aflavourful vegan chickpea-kale curry. Recipe uses canned chickpeas for easeand convenience. A nourishing plant-based dinner, ready in 60 minutes!
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2 bowls of superfood vegetarian chili on a traditional Pakistani straw basket with herbs and tomatoes

The Best Healthy Chili Recipe You’ll Ever Eat

Learn how to make this Desi~licious healthy chili recipe that's chock full of vegetables. It's our favourite vegan chili recipe – that's also freezer-friendly.
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grilled tandoori chicken served with grilled vegetables and lime slices.

Grilled Tandoori Chicken

Probably the easiest Indian recipe you’ll ever make; this fast and mouthwatering grilled tandoori chicken recipe is spicy, tangy and smoked to perfection – just like the one at your favourite Indian restaurant! Ideal for when you’re strapped for time and looking for a healthy, low carb and satisfying option for the family. Gluten Free.
Check out this recipe
pot of chicken dhansak curry with rice and cilantro around next to it

Chicken Dhansak

Looking for an easy and healthy weeknight curry? Skip the take out, and make this Chicken Dhansak with lentils. Packed full of flavour this restaurant-style curry brings the creaminess of lentils together with traditional South Asian spices to create a hearty and nourishing meal for the entire family. Sprinkle with fresh cilantro and grated ginger for that perfect garnish.
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30-minute Healthy Recipes

perspective shot of a wok filled with cooked chickpeas and asparagus in an orange/red sauce with a side of folded chapati topped with lime segments.

Lazy Vegan Tikka Masala (Wholesome & Hearty!)

In this vegan tikka masala, asparagus and chickpeas are simmered in a thick tomato-coconut masala sauce infused with cumin, turmeric and fresh cilantro. The result is a nutritious meal perfect for any night of the week. Plus, it comes together in just 30 minutes, making it the ideal quick and healthy dinner option. So go ahead and give this Indian curry recipe a try – you won't be disappointed! This recipe is vegan, gluten free, and diabetes diet friendly.
Check out this recipe
three stacked roti rolls with a desi (south asian) omelette in each

Wholesome Veggie Omelette (Desi-Style!)

How to make an omelette at last! While egg omelette recipes are not in short supply – inspiration might be. Try this easy Desi (South Asian) omelette, sizzling with irresistible spiciness and chock-full of veggies to create a wholesome and satisfying family-friendly meal. Indeed, it's perfect for any time of the day. Pair this omelette with roti (flatbread), potatoes, bread, or even roll in lettuce leaves to create a tasty omelette dish. Here's how to make it!
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three bowls of tomato soup topped with pomegranate kernels and seeds

Easy Tomato Soup With Fennel

A quick and simple go-to weeknight meal, this easy tomato soup recipe is jam-packed with healthy ingredients and bursting with flavour. Juicy plump tomatoes and aromatic fennel cooked with onion, cumin and black pepper to create a desilicious and vibrant dish that takes only 25 minutes to make.
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two pita breads stuffed with vegan kebab, purple cabbage and cilantro leaves

Vegan Kebab Recipe

Perfect for times when your pantry is low in ingredients, and you just need something quick and simple. This kebab recipe creates succulent and soft kebabs (Shammi kebab-style) that are packed with protein and rich in flavour!
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bowl of pigeon peas coconut curry (bharazi) with red roasted pappers and lemon segments on a tray with mandazi (coconut bread)

Bharazi (Vegan Coconut Curry)

A classic from Nairobi, East Africa, this easy Vegan Coconut Curry, aka Bharazi, will make your taste buds dance. Perfect as a one-pot dinner, this mouthwatering creamy sauce is infused with the flavors of coconut, onions, garlic, ginger, turmeric and cilantro – to create a flavor-packed plant powered dish. Meatless Monday….check!
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plate of colorful salad with egg bhurji

Egg Bhurji (Indian Scrambled Eggs)

Weekend brunch doesn’t get any better than this. Enjoy a delicious plate of hot Egg Bhurji (Indian Scrambled Eggs). Pairs perfectly with toast, roti, bread, paratha or potatoes. Easy to pull off and packed with flavour, this is a show-stopping egg recipe.
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bowl of green grain salad topped with charred tofu cubes.

Mediterranean Style Crispy Tofu Recipe

Switch up your meatless meal routine and learn how to make this healthy crispy tofu recipe – Mediterranean style. These tofu bites are bathed in a zesty and delicious marinade, and the intense flavour of oregano and thyme elevates the tofu to new heights! This recipe is vegan, diabetes friendly and a heart smart choice.
Check out this recipe
Tray with three corn cauliflower tacos with purple cabbage and avocado cubes

Tandoori Cauliflower Tacos

These Tandoori Cauliflower Tacos are delicious, quick to prepare, and the cashew marinade is out of this world! What's even better? You can customize them with your favourite taco extras for an easy weekday dinner. Learn how to make the best vegan cauliflower tacos.
Check out this recipe
Flat lay image of a pile of crispy fillets with lettuce, red sauce and lemon slices on a tray.

20-Minute Pan Fried Basa Fish Fillets

Done in 20 minutes, this recipe for spicy pan-fried basa fish fillets is a terrific, healthy weeknight fish dinner! It is flavoured with warm spices and finished with a generous squeeze of fresh lemon juice. Spicy on the outside and fork-tender on the inside, this basa fish fillet melts in your mouth!
Check out this recipe
pizza made with portobello mushroom as a base with grilled tomatoes on a vine

Portobello Mushroom Leek Pizza

Bring back the pizza nights with this zero dough veggie-packed portobello mushroom pizza. Unconventional and absolutely delicious. Cooked in 30 minutes, and gone in seconds!
Check out this recipe
Ginger lime chicken with broccoli on a white plate

Ginger Lime Chicken with Broccoli

Forget the Chinese takeaway this week and try this speedy meal. Lean, light and luscious, these chicken strips are coated in ginger, lime and soy sauce – without any additional salt. Done and dusted in under 30 minutes, you won’t be able to resist this succulent ginger-lime chicken with broccoli.
Check out this recipe
a plate of kale and quinoa salad with tomatoes, red onion and mung beans

Kale and Quinoa Salad

This Kale and Quinoa Salad recipe calls for beautifully colourful ingredients to brighten your day. It's a stellar recipe — especially if you're on the hunt for salad ideas for lunch. Best for summer days, healthy meal prep for the week, or a nourishing side salad for cookouts and BBQs. Vegan and gluten-free.
Check out this recipe

Dinner Recipe Ideas Done in 20 minutes or less

In the recipe below, I show you how to use this tomato sauce to create THREE simple heart healthy recipes to enjoy at dinner.

flat lay of a bowl of pasta topped with the best tomato sauce and chickpeas and a herbs decorated on the side

20-Minute Tomato Sauce

Want to learn how to make a delicious basic tomato sauce at home? This recipe is a luscious blend of sweet grape tomatoes, simmered in garlic, oregano, and black pepper to create the perfect tomato sauce. It's a quick and easy one-pan recipe that transforms into the best pizza base sauce, pasta sauce, and curry in a hurry! All three serving ideas are easy healthy dinner ideas that are also heart healthy and pack a nutritional punch!
Check out this recipe
bowl of easy salad recipe with colourful vegetables and topped with pomegranate and seeds surrounded by vegetables

15-Minute Easy Salad Recipe

This could be your go-to easy salad recipe. Packed with a medley of fresh and crunchy ingredients like broccoli, kale, carrots, pomegranate and pumpkin seeds – super nourishing and YUMMY! Tossed in a tangy dressing, that's the perfect match.
Check out this recipe
three bowls of coconut shrimp curry on a bed of basmati rice garnished with fresh cilantro leaves

15-Minute Coconut Shrimp Curry

Are you looking for a flavour-packed healthy dinner option and don't have much time? This coconut shrimp curry can be on your table in literally 15 minutes. It's elegantly spiced and insanely desi-licious. What can be faster, easier and tastier than seafood?! 
Check out this recipe

A tray of

Easy Lemon Pepper Salmon

In just 20 minutes, you can have this succulent lemon pepper salmon on your dinner table. The zesty flavour of lemon pairs perfectly with the pungent bite of pepper, creating a delightful dish sure to please your taste buds. And best of all, this recipe pairs wonderfully with a variety of sides to create balanced nutritious meals. High protein, diabetes diet friendly, and heart healthy.
Check out this recipe

Asparagus Frittata topped with colorful tomatoes in a red pan on a table cloth

Tomato Asparagus Frittata

Eggs mixed with a variety of colourful vegetables, cooked to perfection and topped with fresh cilantro. This Tomato Asparagus Frittata is infused with cumin, fenugreek and chilli flakes, to create an easy Desi-licious low carb breakfast or lunch! Dairy-free.
Check out this recipe
pkra (bhindi) in a bowl with roti and lemon slices

Okra Recipe (Bhindi)

Ready to make meal planning a breeze? Try this simple and mouthwatering 20-minute okra recipe (Bhindi). An all-time favourite Indian and Pakistani dish, this recipe is bursting with nutrition and flavor. If you’re tired of eating the same ‘ol veggies, this has your name written all over it!
Check out this recipe

FIX MEAL PLANNING OVERWHELM

  • Done-for-you meal plans that will end your cooking wars!
  • A selection of mouthwatering eco-friendly and plant-focused whole food recipes, complete with grocery lists.
  • Food shopping and meal prep tips to make the most of your time in the kitchen and take the guesswork out of what to eat and how to prepare it!

What healthy recipes are your go-to for your dinner menu? Have you tried any of my dinner dishes before? Share in the comment section below!

If you try these recipes, would love to hear from you! Leave a comment, rate them, or share a photo and hashtag with #desiliciousrd on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter! Can’t wait to see your photos.

Desi~liciously Yours, Shahzadi

perspective shot of a wok filled with cooked chickpeas and asparagus in an orange/red sauce with a side of folded chapati topped with lime segments.
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Healthy Recipes For Dinner: Vegan Tikka Masala

Prep Time: 15 mins
Cook Time: 15 mins
Total Time: 30 mins
Yield: 4 people
The best healthy recipes for a dinner menu are tasty, nourishing, and can be pulled off – without breaking a sweat. Assembling meals for your family doesn't have to feel overwhelming.

Ingredients
 

  • 17 asparagus, 300 grams, washed, trimmed, and cut into medium pieces
  • ¼ cup creamed coconut, pure
  • ¼ cup water, hot, to mix with coconut cream
  • 2 cups chickpeas, cooked, drained, unsalted
  • tsp olive oil, extra virgin
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 bay leaf, large
  • ¼ tsp asafoetida
  • 1 cup tomato passata, thick couli style, no added sugar
  • ¼ tsp turmeric
  • ½ tsp salt, sea salt
  • 3 green chillies, large, washed, finely chopped
  • cup cilantro, fresh, washed, finely chopped, including the stems
  • ½ lime, freshly squeezed juice

Instructions
 

  • Prepare the coconut sauce by mixing together the coconut cream and water. Set it aside.
  • Make the tikka masala sauce by heating olive oil on medium heat
  • Add cumin, bay leaf and asafoetida. Once the cumin seeds release their flavour, add the tomato sauce. Due to spluttering, you will need to reduce the heat at this point
  • Stir in the coconut sauce along with turmeric.
  • Add the asparagus and chillies and mix thoroughly to coat the pieces with the tikka masala sauce. Cover and cook for about 5-6 minutes. You want the asparagus pieces to be slightly crunchy and not mushy
  • Finally, add chickpeas along with fresh cilantro and salt, cover and cook for an additional 2-3 minutes and finish with lime juice

Video

Notes

  • For the tikka masala sauce, use pure creamed coconut. This results in a luscious dry-style consistency.
  • Use hot water to make the coconut sauce. It helps to dissolve the creamed coconut quickly and easily.
  • Simmer and cook the tikka masala on low heat, giving the flavours time to come together to create a flavour-packed dish.
  • Make sure to drain chickpeas well before adding them to the vegan tikka masala. Excess water will make the sauce watery.
  • If you want a bit more of a saucy curry, add 1/2 cup of water when cooking the asparagus.

Nutrition Information:

Calories: 300kcal (15%)Carbohydrates: 35g (12%)Protein: 11g (22%)Fat: 14g (22%)Saturated Fat: 10g (50%)Polyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 2gSodium: 470mg (20%)Potassium: 812mg (23%)Fiber: 10g (40%)Sugar: 10g (11%)Vitamin A: 954IU (19%)Vitamin C: 13mg (16%)Calcium: 84mg (8%)Iron: 5mg (28%)

Keep in mind that the nutritional values provided are approximations and suggestions. This nutrition facts table cannot account for your individual needs. Your body — including your hunger and satiety cues — change daily. It’s perfectly fine to eat more or less on different days. Instead of letting food guilt take over, consider mindful eating.

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

Cuisine: Desi, Indian
Course: Main
Did you make this recipe?Mention @desiliciousrd on Instagram or tag #desiliciousrd.

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