Now that the spring season is in full swing, we can enjoy some of the freshest produce during this time of year. This week, try mixing up your meals with spinach, a springtime veggie that contains about twice as much fiber as other greens.
While this green superfood may get overlooked for being too bland and boring, it's actually very versatile and can be enjoyed either raw or cooked. In addition to fiber, its abundance of vitamins, minerals, and beta carotene are added reasons to cook with this veggie.
Meals with spinach don't have to be dull. We've selected some creative recipes that blend this superfood in pizza, lasagna, chicken, and more, all for less than 450 calories:
Monday: Chicken stuffed with spinach, feta, and pine nuts
This chicken dish blends a multitude of Mediterranean flavors with the spinach, feta and nuts. Seasoned with lemon juice, garlic, and chicken broth, this protein-packed meal is less than 300 calories!
Per serving: 297 calories, 11.6g fat, 3.4g carbohydrates, 43.3g protein, 1.2g fiber
Tuesday: Fennel and spinach salad with shrimp and balsamic vinaigrette
This light spring salad can be ready in less than 20 minutes. Grape tomatoes, jumbo shrimp, shallots, fennel, and of course, spinach, bulk up this low-carb meal.
Per serving: 274 calories, 13.5g fat, 11.2g carbohydrates, 27.5g protein, 3.5 g fiber
Wednesday: Spinach and sun-dried tomato stuffed pizza
Skip the take out, and make your own stuffed pizza! This version calls for whole-wheat pizza dough, tofu, part-skim mozzarella cheese, spinach, and various spices. This low-fat pizza will fill you up for less than 300 calories!
Per serving: 291 calories, 7g fat, 36g carbohydrates, 18g protein, 4g fiber
Thursday: Sausage, mushroom, and spinach lasagna
This guilt-free lasagna is full of healthy substitutes such as whole-wheat noodles and turkey sausage. One serving of this lightened-up version has about one-third of the fat and about half the calories of a traditional lasagna.
Per serving: 333 calories, 14g fat, 28g carbohydrates, 26g protein, 7g fiber
Friday: Chickpeas with spinach
This vegetarian dish is served over basmati rice and is seasoned with some Mediterranean spices. You'll get plenty of fiber from both the chickpeas and spinach in this low-fat, filling meal.
Per serving: 403 calories, 5g fat, 77.4g carbohydrates, 14.2g protein, 11.8g fiber