I try to eat healthy even when I have to have frozen dinners at home.
Best Healthy Frozen Dinners
I am a huge frozen dinner fan. Would I prefer to eat them as opposed to normal, freshly-cooked meals? No way. However, they are wonderful if you are in a pinch, and there are some pretty healthy options out there. Frozen dinners have come a long way since their arrival, and this self-admitted picky eater would like to share her favorites with you.
The following dinners are great for when you are in a hurry, and these entrees are fairly healthy, considering everything else that is out there. They are great for aiding in weight loss, if combined with a balanced, healthy diet and exercise. I use frozen dinners to help maintain my weight loss.
5. Sweet Asian Potstickers by Healthy Choice
I had given up on frozen Asian food a long time ago. It was either way too caloric or just plain nasty. Asian food is at its absolute best when it is eaten fresh, no doubt about it. However, coming in last place, is Healthy Choice's Sweet Asian Potstickers meal. It is a fairly new addition to their line-up and it is quite good. I love steamed potstickers and to be able to eat them at home is pretty cool. The entrée is served on a bed of whole-grain rice and has a lot of sauce. The sauce is both sweet and sour and the meal has a great spicy kick to it. It smells wonderful and will make your kitchen (or office) smell like a Chinese restaurant.
- Calories: 380
- Fat: 4.5g
- Trans Far: 0g
- Cholesterol: 5mg
- Sodium: 600mg
- Carbohydrates: 75g
- Dietary Fiber: 6g
- Sugar: 19g
- Protein: 8g
So, not the best contender when it comes to nutritional balance. I always try to have at least 8g of fiber per meal and a minimum of 15 grams of protein. This meal is also high on carbohydrates, although the rice is whole-grain, which is a positive thing. Lastly, the sodium is high (25% of the recommended daily value), but I have seen much worse when it comes to frozen dinners. All in all, not too terribly bad for you and it tastes fantastic. I would recommend having this meal for lunch because of the high carbohydrate content. It'll give you a ton of energy for a mid-day/evening workout.
4. Sundried Tomato Pesto Chicken by Lean Cuisine
It is difficult for me to find frozen pasta dinners that I enjoy. This dinner right here reminds me of a favorite that I usually get at a local restaurant (instead of the chicken, I get calamari). This entrée comes with chicken, a delicious sun-dried tomato pesto sauce, big zucchini chunks, and black olives. This is my kind of dish! As an added bonus, it is a really large portion and is very filling. I love it because I almost always cook a side of zucchini with any red sauce dishes that I eat at home and this already includes my veggie serving!
- Calories: 290
- Fat: 9g
- Trans Fat: 0g
- Cholesterol: 30mg
- Sodium: 570mg
- Carbohydrates: 34g
- Dietary Fiber: 4g
- Sugar: 10g
- Protein: 18g
So again we have another high sodium offender. Unfortunately, it's hard to get away from sodium content for any frozen entrée. What do I like about this one? 18g of protein is perfect, the calories are right on and the carbohydrates aren't too high for a dinner serving. The pasta is not whole grain, which I do not like, but you can't win them all! This dish is wonderful and is reminiscent of a freshly cooked Italian meal. Try it and you won't be disappointed!
3. White Castle Hamburgers
I have always heard rave reviews about White Castle. There are none available to eat in person in New England, so I decided to try out their frozen hamburgers when I saw them at my local grocer. I have tried frozen hamburgers before and after past experiences, I had to be brave to try White Castle Hamburgers. I'm so glad I did! They taste unbelievably fresh. All you do is loosely wrap them in a paper towel and nuke 'em for one minute on high. The result: two steamed and savory mini-burgers.
- Calories: 270
- Fat: 13g
- Cholesterol: 30mg
- Sodium: 370mg
- Carbohydrates: 25g
- Dietary Fiber: 1g
- Sugar: 3g
- Protein: 12g
Each serving consists of two little cute mini-burgers that can fit in the palm of your hand. They would also make a great lunch for children. I eat mine paired with a tossed salad with balsamic vinegar for a very balanced lunch meal that is pretty fun to eat. The sodium in the burgers is low, which is also a plus! I've also tried these in their Cheeseburger version and cannot recommend those. (I'm picky when it comes to cheese on sandwiches). Definitely give their mini-hamburgers a try...they're absolutely wonderful!
2. Turkey Sausage English Muffin Sandwiches by Jimmy Dean
Jimmy Dean's D-Lights turkey sausage, egg white and cheese sandwiches on a whole grain english muffin are pretty darn good. For someone who used to eat a lot of fast-food breakfast sandwiches out of convenience, I am very happy with these breakfast sandwiches.
- Calories: 300
- Fat: 12g
- Cholesterol: 35mg
- Sodium: 910mg
- Carbohydrates: 31g
- Dietary Fiber: 4g
- Sugar: 4g
- Protein: 17g
The sodium is brutal...I make sure to drink an extra bottle of water to help counteract the effects. The fiber in each sandwich is also pretty low, especially for a breakfast food, so definitely pair it with a serving or two of fresh fruit. All in all, a very yummy sandwich that is easy to prepare and is a MUCH healthier alternative to fast-food breakfast sandwiches.
1. Mayan Harvest Bake by Kashi
Drum roll, please! My #1 favorite frozen meal is Kashi's Mayan Harvest Bake. It is so incredibly good. I hesitated to try it at first because it sounds like a really weird combination of food:
"Plantains, Black Beans, Sweet Potato Bake. Kashi Whole Grain Pilaf, Amaranth & Polenta. Spicy Ancho Sauce."
It is sweet, spicy, crunchy, super filling and absolutely the best frozen dinner in the history of them all (in my opinion!) I eat one of these at least once a week. I typically bake them in the oven if I have time so the plantains get a little crispy on top.
- Calories: 340
- Fat: 9g
- Trans Fat: 0g
- Cholesterol: 0mg
- Sodium: 380mg
- Carbohydrates: 58g
- Dietary Fiber: 8g
- Sugar: 19g
- Protein: 9g
The nutritional information for this entrée is good for a frozen dinner. No cholesterol is an added plus! The sodium is also fairly low. The dinner is made with whole-grain pilaf and the carbohydrates are complex. You'll feel really energized and full after eating this dinner.
What Are Your Favorites?
So there you have it, my Top 5 Favorite Healthy Frozen Dinners. Again, I'm not suggesting anyone eat these for every meal (mainly due to their high sodium content), but they are wonderful replacements for meals when you are absolutely unable to prepare something fresh and healthy.
I hope you enjoy trying these dinners!
© 2009 girly_girl09
Comments - What Are Your Favorite Healthy Frozen Dinners? (Please share!)
Fin from Barstow on November 26, 2017:
well i never thought about pot stickers....they sound good. I will have to try them.
Re: white castle....not bad (the cheeseburgers) but I wouldn't rave about them myself.
nice reviews and I like the layout
kristine on April 25, 2011:
I love the steamers. They have great flavor!
LB on February 26, 2011:
Even though it's not a "diet" food, both the Marie Calendars and Healthy Choice Turkey dinners are a great deal for the calories.
Healthy Choice Potstickers are GREAT too!
Lori on August 24, 2010:
To me the Mayan Harvest Bake tasted a bit like puke. I am not trying to put your choice down, but it was horrible to me. I was so excited to try it as I am a lover of pretty much all of the ingredients. I don't know what happened but it didn't work for me. I love the Healthy Choice Pot Stickers though, but just tonight I opened a box of potstickers and was baffled by there being 4 instead of 3 and the cooking instructions had changed...Well, one bite made me realize I had bought the wrong brand. Apparently Lean Cuisine is not making their own version and I just didn't like it as much. Granted I was expecting it to taste totally different when I put it in mouth, but it wasn't horrible just different. Actually it was close to a Chinese potsticker IMHO.
Christene from Massachusetts on July 13, 2010:
I like your #4. It's one I buy often. Lean Cuisine & Marie Calendar are the two brands I buy. I used to love Stouffer's, but I switched over to Lean Cuisine for less calories and fat.
sandy on June 10, 2010:
does anyone know anything about the Michilin frozen food products. My spelling could be wrong. Thank you.
Priya on May 20, 2010:
I eat frozen food frequently and I have to say that out of all of them, I'm in love with the Healthy Choice Gourmet Steamers. I tried 3 different dishes a couple of nights ago and couldn't believe how fresh and tasty they were!
In order to be "healthy", a dish has to have less than 600 gm of sodium and they fit the bill. Jimmy Dean (#2) on the other hand surpasses that mark by a long shot!
Leenie Pooh on February 24, 2010:
I absolutely love Amy's Organics frozen dinners. I wait for them to go on sale and buy gobs of them.
girly_girl09 (author) from United States on January 25, 2010:
I haven't tried the Healthy Choice Gourmet Steamers yet...will have to check those out. The sodium in the Jimmy Dean Breakfast Sandwiches is a lot, but I was offering it as a "better" alternative to a fast food breakfast. Thanks for stopping by!
Wow on January 25, 2010:
This is great! My only comment is #2 has wayyyy too much sodium to be in a top 5 healthy frozen meals... I like Healthy Choice Gourmet Steamers. I had the Chicken Marinara today and it has
Trans Fat: 0g
Dietary Fiber: 6g
prasetio30 from malang-indonesia on June 08, 2009:
to keep well the food is frozen, I do that to keep my meat almost for 3 days.thanks for information
girly_girl09 (author) from United States on April 28, 2009:
I honestly have never tried any "diet" alfredo before because I've always assumed that it'd taste pretty flavorless. I will definitely give that a try next time I am at the grocery store! thanks :)
christine almaraz from colorado springs on April 28, 2009:
I eat the shrimp and pasta (alfredo), my fav.
girly_girl09 (author) from United States on April 27, 2009:
What are your favorite Lean Cuisines? I used to eat them all the time a few years ago but now really only buy the Sundried Tomato Chicken entrée. lol I love it a lot.
christine almaraz from colorado springs on April 27, 2009:
I eat a lot of the lean cuisine and they taste pretty good. I'll have to give the others a try.