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Healthy Living Blog

Information and inspiration to help you make a habit out of living healthy.


Hearty, Healthy Meals for Two

Tuesday, February 06, 2018

By , YMCA Registered Dietitian Nutritionist

When we're shivering on the outside, it's time for warm, hearty meals that help fuel us from the inside and chase away those winter blues. And with Valentine’s Day right around the corner, love is in the air!

Show someone you care by cooking up one of these healthy and delicious recipes for two, which will be sure to leave them twitterpated.

Even better? Each of these meals is full of lean protein, colorful vegetables, and complex carbohydrates that cut the fat but maintain the flavor thanks to heart-healthy ingredients.

SLIDESHOW: 5 Hearty, Healthy Recipes

  • 1. Beef Barley Soup from Taste of Home

    This soup can be prepared in as little as 30 minutes and is both filling and healthy. With savory roast beef, buttery vegetables, and barley (a fiber powerhouse!), it’s sure to please anyone on your sweet list.

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  • 2. Mini Chicken Pot Pies from Better Homes and Gardens

    Chicken pot pie is a quintessential comfort food. Loaded with fresh vegetables, this recipe uses whole-grain flour for the crust and Greek yogurt for the filling to cut down on calories and fat. But, it still maintains the traditional pot pie flavor. Split the recipe into two ramekins, small casserole dishes, or even oven-safe coffee mugs to make this the perfect date night meal!

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  • 3. Slow Cooker Sweet Potato Chili from Primavera Kitchen

    Nothing says cold weather eating like chili. Lean ground turkey keeps fat low, and the sweet potato combined with the vegetables makes this a balanced and complete meal. The best part? Letting your slow cooker do all of the work! Throw all these delicious ingredients into the crock pot before heading to work, and have dinner ready when you get home. Added bonus: this recipe makes plenty of leftovers to be enjoyed (and shared) again.

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  • 4. Stuffed Peppers for Two from Dessert for Two

    Spice up your night with this Southwestern stuffed pepper recipe! Protein-packed quinoa and lean ground turkey give this recipe an extra punch so you aren’t left feeling hungry, and the beans, spicy seasonings, and a sprinkle of cheese are all beautifully served in a bell pepper bowl.

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  • 5. Tuscan Kale, Sun-dried Tomato, and Chicken Sausage Gnocchi from With Salt and Wit

    Win that special someone over with this delicious one pot dish. Kale and sun-dried tomatoes are full of antioxidants to help boost immunity, and healthy, whole-grain carbohydrates improve serotonin levels (a chemical in the body that affects mood and can drop during winter due to less sunlight).

    Wondering what gnocchi is? Gnocchi (noh-kee) is an Italian dumpling typically made out of potatoes or semolina flour. This type of flour is made of coarsely ground high-protein durum wheat, giving it a nutty flavor. It has a pale, yellow color that you'll see in some breads and pastas.

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Hungry for more?

View more delicious, nutritious recipes on our healthy living blog. You can also learn about nutrition counseling classes offered by our experienced team of RDs at a Y near you. Let us help you reach your wellness goals!

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