Chia Compote: In a glass bowl, combine 1 cup raspberries, 2 tablespoons chia seeds and a squeeze of lemon juice, then microwave on high for about 45 seconds. Allow to sit 10 minutes. In a separate bowl, toss about 2 tablespoons pumpkin seeds with ¼ teaspoon cinnamon and a drizzle of olive oil. Layer ¾ cup full-fat plain Greek yogurt with seeds and chia “compote” to make a parfait.
— Monica Auslander Moreno, MS, RDN
Ingredient Improv: Swap fresh blackberries, blueberries or strawberries or thaw frozen berries for other compote options. Use a squeeze of lime for a still-tart but different flavor. No pumpkin seeds in the pantry? Make a nut or seed medley with whatever you have on hand and consider adding some nutmeg or allspice. Any type of yogurt works well, too.
Dates Dessert: For an easy three-ingredient dessert, start by slitting open 10 to 12 dates and removing pits. Melt 10 ounces dark chocolate chips. Stuff each date with 1 teaspoon peanut butter, then dip into melted dark chocolate. Chill in the refrigerator until ready to eat.
— Sarika Shah, MS, RD
Ingredient Improv: Instead of peanut butter, make date “truffles” with other seed or nut butters. Top them with your favorite garnishes such as shredded coconut, sea salt, chopped nuts or seeds before chilling in the fridge.
Banana Pancakes: My favorite quick breakfast is banana “pancakes”! Mash 1 banana and mix with 2 eggs. For a few silver dollar pancakes, pour small amounts of batter onto a well-oiled pan and cook until light golden brown, about 1 minute on each side. Top with nut butter and whatever fruit you have on hand.
— Tayler Silfverduk, DTR
Ingredient Improv: Jazz up your hot cakes with chopped walnuts or mini chocolate chips. Whip up chilled coconut cream and a drizzle of maple syrup for a dollop of sweetness on top.
Veggie Zoodles: Sauté 2 spiralized zucchinis, 1 diced yellow pepper, 5 diced mushrooms, lots of minced garlic and 1 cup shelled edamame. Add 6 tablespoons nutritional yeast and stir until creamy. Finish with a dash of salt and pepper.
— Laura Bollinger, MS, RD
Ingredient Improv: The great thing about this non-recipe meal is you can use whatever vegetables you have in the fridge. Julienne, slice or grate them for a variety of shapes and textures. For a budget-friendly ingredient, use drained and rinsed canned beans in place of edamame. For extra crunch, add almonds or cashews.
Sheet-pan meal: Drizzle olive oil and lemon juice on salmon, asparagus and halved yellow potatoes. Chop fresh dill and place on everything. Add pepper to taste. Bake at 425°F for about 15 minutes (or until internal temperature of fish is 145°F). Remove fish and keep hot. Cook 10 minutes more until potatoes are done and asparagus is crispy.
— Maryrose Agel, RDN
Ingredient Improv: Opt for other filets of fish, from barramundi and bass to tilapia and trout. Broccoli or okra could be subbed in for asparagus; if you want a vegetable that cooks at the same rate as potatoes, pair with 1-inch pieces of butternut squash, rutabaga or carrots.
15-minute pasta: Boil 2 cups water, then add 1 cup uncooked pasta. While pasta cooks, sauté about ½ cup frozen broccoli and cauliflower in a pan with a little olive oil, some salt and pepper for about 5 minutes. Add 3 ounces frozen, precooked shrimp to the pan. Drain pasta, toss in cooked vegetables and shrimp and stir in a spoonful of pesto sauce. Top with Parmesan cheese.
— Jen Haugen, RDN, LD
Ingredient Improv: Use any kind of pasta or make a fun mixture of penne, rotini and bowtie to use up the last of a box or bag. Sauté fresh vegetables and instead of shrimp, use chopped tempeh or slices of precooked chicken sausage.