Quick and healthy eats: easy as 1-2-3

Quick and healthy eats: easy as 1-2-3!

What’s for dinner? Ah, that age-old question that’s on everyone’s mind somewhere between the end of a long work day and the kids’ afterschool activities. The whole family is pressed for time and starving, so a quick and delish meal is in order! What at first might appear challenging is, in fact, really quite simple . . . as long as your pantry is stocked with the essentials. Whipping up a quick meal, without compromising on nutrition and flavour, can help simplify your busy life. Here’s what every quick-fire chef needs to have in their arsenal in order to serve up supper in a flash.

Effortlessly reinvent dinner!

Express pizza night

You don’t need to be a pizza chef to serve up a pie worthy of a trattoria! The secret? Loading up on store-bought naan bread! Naan bread freezes well and can be unthawed in a flash. Simply top with Stefano Faita Alfredo sauce, garlic, zaatar-spiced spinach and mushrooms, and a generous handful of mozzarella cheese! Discover this mouth-watering recipe.

Vacation-style meals in the middle of the week

Why only treat yourself to succulent seafood when you’re summering on the coast? Wild Argentinean shrimp patties can turn any Wednesday into a flavour festival! Simply top your burger buns with your shrimp patties, spinach, and a dollop Bang Bang mayo . . . and serve with a side of crisp shoestring fries!

If you have any leftover Bang Bang mayonnaise, you can use it as a base for a poke bowl later that same week. Head to our frozen food section and grab a pack of Sushi à la maison Bang shrimp. Then, toss them with some fresh mango cubes, chives, cucumbers, and green onions.

Mediterranean-inspired vegetarian options

Vegetarian dishes have three main advantages: they can be adjusted to please almost everyone, they’re inexpensive, and they’re quick to prepare! Chickpeas are an excellent alternative to meat; in addition to being super versatile, chickpeas are rich in fibre and help lower cholesterol. A great way to benefit from chickpeas’ many virtues is to serve them with orzo rice, spinarch,lemon, and a mixture of zaatar seasoning. Zaatar is a spice blend typically used in Middle Eastern cuisine; add it to your spice cabinet today and take your taste buds on a trip around the world!

A quick trip to India

Your best kitchen allies are, without contest, Ricardo's cooking sauces. The butter chicken sauce is sure to transport you and your family to the best Indian restaurant! Serve your Indian-style chicken thighs with a side of green beans, which pair perfectly with the curry flavour, and some warm naan bread—we’re pretty sure everyone will lick their plate clean!

The key to a quick dinner: have everything you need on hand!

Becoming an express-meal chef starts with a well-stocked pantry. With the right ingredients, your desire for takeout will quickly turn into a delicious home-cooked meal in minutes!

  • Breadcrumbs for quick and easy crusted fish
    Many fish, such as haddock, take very little time to cook, making them the perfect option for busy weeknight dinners. The secret to a delicious fish fillet? Breadcrumbs! If you’re really pressed for time, opt for frozen breaded fish . . . they’re just as delish!
  • Tuna-licious!
    Any chef that’s pressed for time knows to stock their pantry with several cans of tuna! Tuna packed in oil is not as dry and is great in pasta and sautéed veggies. It also makes a great addition to salad. For a hearty lunch, try these white tuna and jalapeno quesadillas . . . even the biggest of appetites will be satisfied!

  • Diced tomatoes
    If you have canned diced tomatoes, pasta, garlic, and olive oil, then you can make a delicious dinner in just 30 minutes. And if you happen to have veal, artichoke hearts, olives, and mushrooms, then you can treat your family to this recipe in under a half hour!
  • Salad staples
    With a crisp lettuce base, you can easily come up with a dozen or so tasty salad variations. Opt for Fresh Attitude products—they’re pre-washed and always fresh.
    When it comes to your dressing, simply whisk together some olive oil, lemon, honey or maple syrup, and vinegar (think apple cider, balsamic, etc.). Cranberries, nuts, and cheese (feta, Parmesan, or goat) all make excellent add-ins. Try combining shrimp, cilantro, mangoes, and siracha sauce for a Californian shrimp salad that’s ready in just 25 minutes. If you’re really running late, grab ready-to-eat salads—they’re hearty and crisp.
  • Pesto
    Not only is pesto delicious in pasta (served with sautéed vegetables, chicken, or shrimp), it also adds a ton of flavour to any sandwich. Mixed with mayonnaise, it pairs perfectly with smoked turkey. And it’s great with mussels or sole fillets; it really is very versatile!

FOR EXPRESS MEALS, THINK TADA!

Discover several recipes from this article, as well as a ton of new, easy-to-make ones in IGA’s app, which you can find by clicking on the new TADA! section. A new meal planner that’s free and offers you loads of great ideas, based on the weekly specials.  

Prepare all your weeknight meals in a flash . . . and save time and money! Each week, discover new and exclusive recipes, as well as a complete list of the ingredients you’ll need to buy to make them. You can even order what you need via the app, and TADA! It’s as simple as that!

Learn more about this brand-new feature here!