Calorie counting can be such a drag. However, if you want to monitor your waistline or lose some weight, it's almost inevitable. Good thing there are blog posts like this one that you can turn to whenever you want a good recipe without the need of counting the energy value. Apparently, healthy 500 calories meals are not so hard to fix.

If you follow a nutritious breakfast smoothie with a 500 calorie lunch and dinner, it would seem you are on a good eating plan. If you look for under 500 calories recipes for your smoothie too, you'd still have some room for healthy snacks in between your meals.

Dinners Under 500 Calories:

1. Eggplant and Chickpea Curry (~480 cal.)

Eggplant and Chickpea Curry

Ingredients:

  • 1 eggplant (large)
  • 1 onion (medium, chopped)
  • ½ red bell pepper (seeded and diced)
  • 1 ¼ teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 1 ¼ teaspoon ground coriander
  • ½ teaspoon turmeric
  • 1 clove garlic (pressed)
  • 1 14-ounce can diced tomatoes (fire-roasted preferred)
  • 2 teaspoons ginger paste or powder
  • 1 ½ cups cooked chickpeas (rinsed and drained)
  • ½ cup water
  • ¼ cup fresh parsley or cilantro (minced)
  • 2 Tbsp of full-fat coconut cream
  • hot red pepper (to taste)
  • garam masala (to taste)
  • ½ cup of cooked brown rice

Instructions:

  • Prick the eggplant with a fork in several places and place it on a parchment paper in the oven preheated to 400 °F. Bake for around 40 minutes or until fully sunken and soft. Cool it off, peal the skin, and chop the flesh.
  • In a preheated non-stick skillet cook the onion until golden. Then add the bell peppers.
  • Make some room in the middle of the skillet, heat up the cumin seeds there, and roast them for a minute until fragrant. Mix it all up, adding coriander, turmeric, garlic, tomatoes, ginger, and red pepper.
  • Add eggplant and cook over medium heat for about 10 minutes. Turn the heat to low and add chickpeas with some water or chickpea liquid to keep it all moist. Add the coconut cream, cover with a lid and leave for 10-15 minutes (or until thickened) stirring every few minutes.
  • Turn the heat off and add garam masala, salt, and other spices if needed.
  • Serve hot with fresh herbs and cooked brown rice on a side.

2. Cauliflower Crust Pizza with Kale Topping (~420 calories)

Cauliflower Crust Pizza with Kale Topping

Ingredients:

Crust:

  • 1 small cauliflower head, cut
  • ½ cup buckwheat flour
  • 1 Tbsp ground flax seeds
  • ¼ tsp sea salt
  • 1 tsp coconut oil

Topping:

  • 1 cup kale, chopped
  • 1 tsp extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 red onion, cut in thin rings
  • ½ cup mozzarella cheese or vegan equivalent
  • 4 tbsp tomato sauce
  • ¼ tsp sea salt
  • 2 Tbsp ground flax seeds
  • freshly ground black pepper

Sauce:

  • 1 medium garlic, roasted
  • 1 tsp tahini
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice

Instructions:

  • Heat the oven to 390°F.
  • Place the chopped cauliflower in a food processor and pulse until you get a non-stick rice-like texture.
  • Pour the cauliflower into a large bowl, add buckwheat flour, salt, flaxmeal and mix until you get a wet doughy ball.
  • Place the dough onto a pizza stone or an oven tin, press, spread, and shape it to make ½ inch thick pizza crust.
  • Brush the top with melted coconut oil and bake for 15 minutes or until golden. Flip over and bake for another 15 minutes or until ready.
  • Meanwhile, heat the olive oil in a non-stick skillet, add kale, add salt and cook for a few minutes over low heat, stirring frequently. Remove from the heat and set aside.
  • When the crust is ready, spread it with tomato sauce, add mozzarella or a vegan equivalent, cooked kale, and onion rings and bake for five more minutes, until the cheese melts.
  • Place the sauce ingredients in a blender and pulse until creamy.
  • Serve with freshly ground pepper and garlic sauce.

3. Black Bean Salad (~320 calories)

Black_Bean_salad

Ingredients:

  • ½ cup red onion, sliced
  • 1 medium avocado, chopped
  • ¼ cup fresh cilantro
  • ¼ cup lime juice
  • 2 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 8 cups salad greens of choice
  • 2 cups frozen and thawed or canned corn
  • 1 cup grape tomatoes,
  • 1 can (15 ounce) black beans, rinsed

Instructions:

  • Soak the sliced onion in ice cold water for 10-15 min to mellow down its strong taste.
  • While soaking, place avocado, cilantro, lime juice, oil, garlic, and salt in a food processor or a blender. Process, blend, or pulse until you get a creamy texture.

Wash and mix salad greens, corn, tomatoes, and rinsed beans together in a bowl. Drain the onion and pour them in too. Add the avocado dressing and enjoy

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Written by Audra Bajori
Audra is a writer, an ethical vegan, a compulsive self-experimenter and health-hacker, who plans on living for at least 100 years. She's also a cinephile,...
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