20 30-Minute Mediterranean Diet Dinners for Spring

With seasonal produce like asparagus, beets and mushrooms, enjoy the flavors of spring in just 30 minutes or less. Plus, they all align with the Mediterranean diet of the healthiest eating patterns around. Unlike many popular diets, this way of eating focuses on what foods you can add instead of what to avoid. And the best part is that it is flexible enough to embrace all flavors and types of cuisines. Simply focus on incorporating healthier fats, legumes, spices, vegetables and whole grains into your daily meals to reap the benefits. From quick salads like our Chopped Superfood Salad with Salmon and Creamy Garlic Dressing to creamy stir-fries like our Marry Me Chickpeas, these tasty spring dinners are sure to become a staple in your weekly rotation.

Salmon pan with orzo and green pea pesto

Photographer: Rachel Marek, Food Stylist: Holly Dreesman, Accessories Stylist: Gabriel Greco

This delicious one-pan dinner combines salmon fillets with green pea pesto and orzo pasta. Green pea pesto adds a unique twist to traditional pesto, bringing a touch of sweetness, body and vibrant green color to your dish. If you like a more traditional pesto flavor, swap out the dill for chopped fresh basil or use store-bought basil pesto or sun-dried tomato pesto instead.

Marry me chickpeas

Photographer: Morgan Hunt Glaze, Props Stylist: Josh Hoggle, Food Stylist: Renu Dhar

We put a vegetarian spin on Marry Me Chicken, a dish that normally consists of chicken coated in a sun-dried tomato cream sauce, swapping fiber-filled chickpeas as the main ingredient. From creamy chickpeas to umami-laden sun-dried tomatoes, you’ll want to soak up every last bit of sauce. To try this recipe, you can swap out the chickpeas for white beans, like cannellini or navy beans.

Sandwich of pickled beetroot, arugula and goat cheese with herbs

Jacob Fox

This Beet, Arugula and Pickled Goat Cheese Sandwich is peppery with creamy notes from the goat cheese and sweet and sour undertones from the pickled beets. Chopped walnuts add nuttiness and crunch to this easy sandwich.

Chopped superfood salad with salmon and creamy garlic dressing

Kale forms the base of this salad, but you can use Swiss chard or spinach. For vegetables, add plenty of chopped greens, such as broccoli, cabbage, and carrots. Finish with rich salmon for protein and a drizzle of creamy yogurt sauce to bring it all together.

Chicken cutlets with asparagus and cheese

Photographer: Greg Dupree, Accessories Stylist: Shell Royster, Food Stylist: Emily Hall

A creamy, chopped cheese dip blankets tender asparagus and crispy chicken ribs in this weeknight dinner inspired by early spring. Asparagus can be swapped out for other tender, nimble steamed vegetables, such as peas or green beans. Serve with fingerlings or new potatoes for a starchy side to complement the sauce.

Tajn shrimp tacos with coleslaw

Greg DuPree

Tajn, a Mexican chili-lime seasoning, adds a spicy, sour punch to the sweet and mild shrimp. Opt for a low-sodium chile-lime relish, or improvise by combining chile powder, a little lime zest, and healthy lime juice. Look for pineapple that has already been peeled and peeled for faster preparation.

Creamy prawns in pesto with gnocchi and peas

Photographer: Greg DuPree, Accessories Stylist: Shell Royster, Food Stylist: Emily Hall

This quick dinner recipe combines shrimp with gnocchi, pesto, and peas in a creamy sauce. Feel free to replace the peas with other vegetables such as broccoli or asparagus. For a little heat, sprinkle on some crushed red pepper or garnish with grated Parmesan cheese to enhance the savory flavor.

Mushroom-miso paste

Photographer: Jacob Fox, Food Stylist: Holly Dreesman, Accessories Stylist: Joseph Wanek

This miso paste includes mushrooms, another umami ingredient that takes this quick vegetarian recipe to the next level. We use white miso, which is light and slightly sweet. Whisking the miso into the reserved cooking water makes it easier to incorporate into the pasta.

Chicken and broccoli stir-fry

Photographer: Jen Causey, Food Stylist: Julian Hensarling, Accessories Stylist: Josh Hoggle

This juicy chicken and broccoli stir-fry features tender, crunchy broccoli coated in a velvety sauce flavored with a flavorful hoisin sauce made with fermented soybean paste that strikes the perfect balance of sweet and spicy. Try this easy stir-fry with chicken tenders, skinless boneless chicken thighs, or even pork tenderloin for a different twist.

One Pot Broccoli and Lemon Pasta with Parmesan

This hearty pasta dish with a fresh, bright flavor is ideal for busy nights. The parmesan adds a welcome saltiness and notes of umami, and texture comes from the light crunch of the broccoli and wholegrain noodles. Add some shredded roast chicken, grilled shrimp, or crunchy chickpeas for a protein boost.

Chicken Teriyaki Pan with Broccoli

Photographer: Brie Goldman, Food Stylist: Lauren McAnelly, Accessories Stylist: Gabriel Greco

Make this quick and easy one-skillet teriyaki chicken casserole, the perfect recipe for busy weeknights that’s sure to please a crowd. It’s ideal for making use of leftover chicken and rice you have on hand. If you’re short on leftovers, a roast chicken paired with a packet of microwave-safe brown rice is a good substitute.

Mozzarella, basil and courgette frittata

This veggie frittata recipe is one of the quickest meals you can make. Make it for breakfast, or serve it for lunch or dinner with a salad and a slice of crusty baguette drizzled with olive oil.

Roast chicken with lemon and herbs

Greg DuPree

Add this super bright, citrusy Lemongrass Roasted Chicken to your nightly routine and you won’t be disappointed. The lemon wedges at the bottom of the pan release their juice, forming the base for the buttery, tangy sauce on top. The slight anise flavor of tarragon pairs well with chicken, but feel free to swap it out for another fresh herb like chives or parsley.

Chicken thighs with sweet potatoes and broccoli

Photographer: Fred Hardy, Food Stylist: Jennifer Wendorf, Accessories Stylist: Lydia Pursell

Chicken thighs and sweet potato are crisped in the oven while broccoli is roasted on the side in aluminum foil for even cooking and easy cleanup. Pro tip: Place the chicken thighs in the corners of the baking sheet, where there is more air circulation, for crispy skin.

Chicken Nachos

Jennifer Causey

These chicken nachos have crispy fries topped with spicy and spicy shredded chicken, beans, and melted cheese topped with refreshing chunks of avocado, red onion, and cilantro. If you like it hot, add jalapeño slices at the end. These quick nachos work well with shredded chicken breast or roast chicken if you have leftovers.

Lemon Coconut Poached Salmon by Chef Michelle Bernstein

Photographer: Rachel Marek, Accessories Stylist: Holly Dreesman, Food Stylist: Gabriel Greco

Chef Michelle Bernstein suffers from psoriatic arthritis, an autoimmune disease that often presents as joint pain. She created this Lemon Coconut Poached Salmon recipe exclusively for EatingWell. Contains a trifecta of inflammation-fighting ingredients: turmeric, ginger and salmon. For a heartier meal, serve with a whole grain like brown rice or over rice noodles.

Quinoa salad with feta, olives and tomatoes

Greg DuPree

This quinoa salad, which is inspired by a Greek salad, is tasty and filling. Boiling the olives together with the other vegetables softens their flavor and adds a smoky background note. A garnish of basil brightens the dish.

Salmon and asparagus with lemon and garlic butter sauce

Looking for a recipe to help you eat more heart-healthy fish and vegetables? Add this salmon and asparagus dinner to your rotation. Not only is it healthy and delicious, this pan dinner is also easy to make and easy to clean up.

Creamy chicken pasta with Brussels sprouts and artichokes

Photographer: Jennifer Causey, Food Stylist: Julian Hensarling, Accessories Stylist: Christina Daley

Creamy white wine garlic sauce helps mix artichokes and shaved Brussels sprouts together with whole-wheat pasta in this quick dinner. Use a mandolin or a very sharp knife to shave the Brussels sprouts. If you opt for prepackaged shaved sprouts, keep in mind that they can be on the thicker side, requiring a few extra minutes of cooking time. You can swap them out for canned artichokes, but they tend to be higher in sodium than frozen, so give them a good rinse before adding them.

Beef and cauliflower casserole with cheese

Photographer: Brie Goldman, Food Stylist: Holly Dreesman, Accessories Stylist: Gabriel Greco

Ground beef and cauliflower combine to create a hearty weeknight casserole that kids and adults alike will love. Serve with tortilla chips and sour cream.

EatingWell.com, April 2024

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