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7 Healthy One Pan Dinner Recipes for Easy Clean-Up

July 6, 2023
Image credit: Skinnytaste

Nothing makes cooking more fun than knowing clean-up will be a breeze, but there are only so many Instant Pot recipes a person can enjoy — especially in warmer weather. Most one pan meal recipes err on the wintery side, like heavy casseroles, rich stews, and hearty soups. Because of that, finding single equipment dinner recipes for spring to fall can be a bit of a challenge.

So if you want to know how to make dinner during the warmer months with just a single piece of equipment, we’ve got numerous answers, from a healthy paella to a zoodle take on baked feta pasta — and they all require only one pot or pan. If you love eating dinner but don’t love doing dishes, these are the recipes that will inspire you to get cooking — no matter how warm it is.

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1. One Pan Spring Tuscan Quinoa Bake

One Pan Spring Tuscan Quinoa Bake

Image credit: Half-Baked Harvest

Make use of leftover cooked quinoa with a Tuscan quinoa bake that requires only a single baking dish in the oven. Strong flavors like pickled pepperoncinis, sun dried tomato pesto, dried pepper flakes, and kalamata olives will mellow as they cook, lending tang and spice to the quinoa and bell peppers. This recipe calls for a whole lot of cheese, so feel free to reduce by half — it’ll still have plenty of flavor. This would also work well with a vegan variation instead.

Try the recipe from Half Baked Harvest.

2. Healthy Chicken and Shrimp Paella

Healthy Chicken and Shrimp Paella

Image credit: A Sassy Spoon

Full of whole grain brown rice and fresh citrus, this healthy chicken and shrimp paella is a beautifully lighter take on the classic Spanish dish and makes excellent use of leftover brown rice you might have on hand. It takes less than a half hour to make, and requires just one large pan. We love the usage of antioxidant-laden turmeric, which is an affordable substitute for traditional saffron. Chicken breasts and shrimp offer plenty of protein while red onions, garlic, and coconut oil amp up their flavors.

Try the recipe from A Sassy Spoon.

3. Brown Rice Risotto with Peas

Brown Rice Risotto With Peas

Image credit: Healthy Seasonal Recipes

If you’ve ever made a risotto, you know that it requires multiple pots and a ton of stirring. Not so with this remarkable one pan meal version, which instead allows you to walk away for a full forty minutes as it cooks on the stove in a pot. If fresh peas are available, we recommend opting for those instead of frozen — just add them to the brown rice risotto with peas when you would the frozen ones, as they cook quickly and are great if left al dente. You could also scale up the fresh herbs from one tablespoon to two, to make this a more refreshing dish fit for the warmer months.

Try the recipe from Healthy Seasonal Recipes.

4. Summer Vegetables with Sausage and Potatoes Skillet

Summer Vegetables With Sausage and Potatoes Skillet

Image credit: Skinnytaste

Zucchini and bell peppers are summer vegetable stars, and they shine brightly in this summer vegetables with sausage and potatoes skillet. Healthful chicken sausage is employed instead of the fattier pork version, and baby red potatoes let you enjoy a starch alongside your protein and vegetables with no separate cooking vessel needed for a perfect one pan meal. We appreciate the usage of yellow, orange, and red peppers, as well as the copious quantity of fresh garlic.

Try the recipe from Skinnytaste.

5. Baked Feta Zoodles

Baked Feta Zoodles

Image credit: Clean Food Crush

One-pan pasta with feta cheese was a big hit on the internet this year, but it wasn’t exactly the healthiest of food trends. These baked feta zoodles are a much more nutritious dish thanks to the swap of zucchini for pasta. It has the same tomatoes, fresh basil, and garlic of the original, so you’ll get all the delightful flavors you expect from the dish, and it bakes similarly in a single baking dish. By adding the zucchini noodles at the end, you prevent them from overcooking, and they’ll have a more prominent texture than they would if added earlier.

Try the recipe from Clean Food Crush.

6. Sheet Pan Salmon with Asparagus

Sheet Pan Salmon With Asparagus

Image credit: The Art of Food and Wine

This is one of our favorite one pan meal recipes because it’s so simple and tasty. Fiber-rich broccoli and asparagus accompany this sheet pan salmon, which has a glaze guaranteed to give it plenty of kick. The glaze is made with rice vinegar, chili paste, fresh ginger, and low sodium soy sauce — and unlike most recipes for glaze components, it doesn’t need to be made separately on the stove. You’ll pour the marinade mixture directly over the salmon on the baking pan, then bake it right alongside the broccoli and asparagus.

Try the recipe from The Art of Food and Wine.

7. Sheet Pan Chicken with Rainbow Vegetables

Sheet Pan Chicken With Rainbow Vegetables

Image credit: Well Plated

It’s easy to get your fill of colorful produce with this sheet pan chicken with rainbow vegetables recipe. The vegetables include yellow squash, broccoli, sweet potatoes, bell pepper, and zucchini, which cook alongside boneless, skinless chicken breasts on a sheet pan. Seasoned simply with lemon juice, garlic, onion, and Italian herbs, this is a perfect meal for warm evenings when you want something filling but light. To avoid dairy, use nutritional yeast or a vegan parm instead of smattering parmesan on top.

Try the recipe from Well Plated.

Read next: 10 Easy Weeknight Meals to Make After a Really Long Day

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