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Healthy Meals at Home (COVID-19)

Build a Healthy Plate

image of plate filled with 1/2 vegetables, 1/4 starchy foods, and 1/4 protein foods

Do the best you can with what you’ve got! Build healthy meals with what is already in your pantry, fridge, and freezer with the plate method. Visually break up your plate into three sections. Fill half your plate with non-starchy vegetables (canned, fresh, or frozen). Fill one quarter with protein, and the remaining one quarter with whole grains or starchy vegetables. Incorporate a serving of healthy fat by cooking your food in heart-healthy olive oil or adding a little cheese or nuts/seeds to your plate.

5 Simple “Non-Recipe” Recipes

Breakfast for Dinner


VEGGIE: Bag of frozen peppers and onion blend

GRAIN/STARCH: Whole grain bread

OTHER: Butter


  1. Cook eggs to preference (scrambled, fried, poached, etc.).
  2. Sauté a bag of frozen pepper/onion mix until heated through, season to taste.
  3. Toast bread and spread with a little bit of butter.
  4. Serve eggs with toast and sautéed veggies on the side.

Chili ‘Taters’

PROTEIN: Canned chili

VEGGIE: Frozen broccoli or other veggie of choice

GRAIN/STARCH: Whole potatoes

OTHER: Shredded cheese


  1. Bake potatoes until soft (or microwave on potato setting).
  2. Heat chili and broccoli according to package directions.
  3. Serve potatoes with chili, shredded cheese, and broccoli.

Curry in a Hurry

PROTEIN: Leftover protein of choice (chicken, pork, beef, or tofu)

VEGGIE: Bag of frozen veggies (Normandy, California, or stir fry blends)

GRAIN/STARCH: Rice or quinoa

OTHER: Curry paste and canned coconut milk


  1. Sauté frozen vegetables until heated through. Cook rice or quinoa according to package directions.
  2. Mix canned coconut milk with curry paste (read directions on curry, add to taste).
  3. Combine cooked vegetables, leftover protein choice, and coconut/curry mixture over medium heat until warm.
  4. Serve over cooked rice or quinoa.

Lentil Spaghetti

PROTEIN: Dried lentils

VEGGIE: Tomato sauce and green beans (canned or frozen)

GRAIN/STARCH: Spaghetti or other pasta shape

OTHER: Parmesan cheese


  1. Cook pasta and lentils separately according to package directions.
  2. Add cooked lentils to jarred spaghetti sauce, heat, and season to taste.
  3. Serve lentil sauce over cooked pasta with green beans on the side. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese (optional).

Tuna Melt Quesadilla

PROTEIN: Canned tuna

VEGGIE: Baby carrots or other veggie of choice


OTHER: Mayonnaise, mustard, favorite tuna salad fixings, and cheese


  1. Mix tuna with mayonnaise, mustard, and other favorite tuna salad fixings (pickles, chopped celery, dill, salt, pepper, etc.).
  2. Spread tuna salad mix on a tortilla, top with cheese, heat in skillet until tortilla is toasted and cheese is melty.
  3. Serve with baby carrots (or other veggie of choice) on the side.

Easy and Inexpensive Meal Ideas

Idaho Preferred Recipes

Tips for Making Ends “Meat” from Idaho Beef Council

Healthy Meal Component Examples



  • Beans
  • Chicken, canned
  • Lentils
  • Tuna fish


  • Chicken
  • Cottage cheese
  • Eggs
  • Greek yogurt
  • Ground beef
  • Ground turkey
  • Tofu
Non-Starchy Veggie Examples

Canned, fresh, or frozen

  • Asparagus
  • Bell peppers
  • Broccoli
  • Carrots
  • Cauliflower
  • Green beans
  • Mushrooms
  • Onions
  • Spinach
  • Tomatoes (crushed, sauce, puree, etc.)
Grains & Starchy Examples


  • Barley
  • Beets, canned
  • Bread
  • Corn, canned
  • Oatmeal
  • Pasta
  • Peas, canned
  • Potatoes
  • Quinoa
  • Rice
  • Tortillas


  • Beets
  • Corn
  • Peas
  • Potatoes
Healthy Fats & Flavor Examples


  • Avocado oil
  • Nuts/seeds
  • Olive oil
  • Peanut butter


  • Avocado
  • Cheese
  • Olives

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