Trader Joe’s for Fast and Healthy Dinners

Feed your family the right foods without spending hours in the kitchen.

If there’s one consistent response I get from my clients and small group club members about the challenge of eating healthfully, it’s that it’s too hard to shop and cook for that style of eating.With all due respect, my friend - "Malarky".

Here are three super quick meals – prep time for each is 10 minutes or less -  that will fill yours and your families bellies with healthy goodness:

1.       Chicken Vegetable Shu Mai (dumplings) with Granny Smith apple slices topped with cinnamon. This is a lower carbohydrate dinner that provides plenty of vitamins, minerals, protein and fiber. It also takes only a few minutes to zap in the microwave (I sprinkle a little water on them and then cook under a damp paper towel). You can also go light on the soy based sauce provided if you’re concerned about sodium.

2.       Black Bean Taquitos with Greek yogurt, salsa and mixed veggies. These crunchy delights make a good vegetarian option that comes alive when you top them with the 2% fat plain Greek yogurt (in place of much higher fat, lower protein sour cream) and salsa. Here's a tip to cut the prep time: Microwave the taquitos first for a couple of minutes while heating up the toaster oven to 425 degrees. Then put them in the oven for 2-3 minutes to crisp and lightly brown them. Microwave the mixed veggies to complete the meal.

3.       “Loaded” Creamy Tomato Soup. Boil a package of tortellini while heating up a box of TJ’s organic creamy tomato soup on the stove. Add frozen chopped spinach, frozen peas and a can of black beans. When the pasta is ready, drain and dump into the soup as well. You’ll be amazed at how great it tastes and how filling it is.

Eating healthfully, like any habit, needs to be cultivated over time. Considering what you like and what works with your schedule, add one or more of these meals once a month or more and you’re well on your way to a healthy new you (and your family)!


Tri Valley Trainer is stepping up its community involvement and we would love to see you at one of the upcoming events we’re participating in:

Saturday, Oct 20               Sweat for Schools

Saturday, Oct 27               Make a Difference Festival

Saturday, Oct 28               Rotary Spirit Run

Saturday, Nov 3                Sweat for Schools

Saturday, Nov 17              Pleasanton Farmer’s Market

Come say hello and help us support the great resources we share in beautiful Pleasanton!


Dan is a nationally certified personal fitness trainer and former continuing education faculty member of the National Academy of Sports Medicine and the American Council on Exercise. He is the owner and head trainer at Tri Valley Trainer in Pleasanton, which provides personal and small group fitness training and nutrition guidance. He can be reached at Dan@TriValleyTrainer.com.

Charles Seiter October 18, 2012 at 07:33 PM
I love quick, healthy meal tips - will definitely try these - thanks, Dan!


More »
Got a question? Something on your mind? Talk to your community, directly.
Note Article
Just a short thought to get the word out quickly about anything in your neighborhood.
Share something with your neighbors.What's on your mind?What's on your mind?Make an announcement, speak your mind, or sell somethingPost something
See more »