When you don’t like working within the kitchen, you don’t have to surrender on diet. Samaria Grandberry, MS, RDN, LDN, provides her finest recommendation on methods to eat wholesome with out cooking.

Hate to cook dinner? You’re in good firm. Even registered dietitians—who dwell and breathe meals and diet all day—don’t at all times love spending hours within the kitchen. 

That stated, the choice to not cooking doesn’t need to be a take-out order or packaged meal (each of which may typically be laden with additional sodium, unhealthy fat, and preservatives).

To show it, we tapped one among HUM Diet’s registered dietitians, Samaria Grandberry, MS, RDN, LDN—who prefers to spend her time outdoors the kitchen for her high wholesome consuming ideas for the cooking averse. Get the news on how she sticks with straightforward, low-commitment recipes and no-cook meals to eat wholesome with out cooking.  

The System For a Balanced Meal

rainbow salad

The primary query Samaria Grandberry, MS, RD, asks herself when placing collectively a meal is: What sounds good? 

“I believe it’s necessary to concentrate to your cravings,” she explains. “Once you ignore them, that’s while you see individuals having ‘cheat days,’ or binging on issues they don’t actually wish to eat as a result of they’ve restricted themselves an excessive amount of.”

From there, that is Grandberry’s foolproof method for a wholesome, satisfying meal:

1. Protein

Grandberry searches her freezer for meals that present loads of protein, which is able to assist maintain you full.. “Since I don’t cook dinner that a lot, I typically purchase contemporary meats in bulk, portion and freeze them,” she says. Grandberry recommends grass-fed, natural meat from an area farmer if that’s accessible to you. When you don’t eat meat, she suggests getting your protein from beans, eggs (in the event you’re not vegan), and complete grains like quinoa and millet.

Excessive-protein meals like meat present helpful vitamins—like B nutritional vitamins—which can be robust to search out somewhere else, Grandberry says. Vitamin B12, for instance, helps make DNA and retains your blood and nerve cells wholesome, in response to the Nationwide Institutes of Well being (NIH). You’ll find this nutrient in fish, meat, eggs, milk, and fortified breakfast cereals. Since solely animal merchandise have vitamin B12 naturally, vegans and vegetarians could not get sufficient of this nutrient from eating regimen alone. Dietary dietary supplements, like HUM Diet’s B12 Turbo, will help fill in some gaps.

2. Fiber

In the meantime, fiber-rich meals like veggies and complete grains are important for intestine and total-body well being. For fiber, Grandberry makes use of frozen greens like broccoli, corn, peas, and inexperienced beans. 

In keeping with the Mayo Clinic, dietary fiber helps guarantee common bowel actions, maintain blood sugar and levels of cholesterol beneath management, decrease blood stress, and should even scale back your threat of dying from coronary heart illness.

However for all the nice fiber does, most People don’t get sufficient. In actual fact, analysis printed within the American Journal of Life-style Drugs reveals that solely 5 % of People get the advisable 19 to 38 grams (g) of fiber per day. By constructing each meal round high-fiber meals, you possibly can improve your odds of reaching your advisable day by day consumption. 

3. Grains

Carbohydrates are our our bodies’ principal supply of vitality, which suggests they’re an important a part of any meal. (Added bonus: Many grains are excessive in dietary fiber too.)

Grandberry tries to incorporate a grain at lunch and dinner by reaching for brown rice, millet, quinoa, and bulgur. She typically incorporates complete grains into her breakfast, utilizing whole-grain bagels, granola, or oatmeal.

By incorporating grains, fiber, and protein, Grandberry is ready to create a plate that’s each satisfying and nutritious. “Principally, I comply with my cravings, after which I attempt to construct essentially the most filling, colourful, quick meal I can utilizing the aforementioned rules,” Grandberry says. Talking of shade, that’s one other precept she follows: Purpose to get at the least 2 to three totally different colours in your plate per meal.  

Suggestions For Hitting The Grocery Retailer 

groceries on counter

Wholesome, straightforward meals typically begin with grocery retailer journeys. Listed below are Grandberry’s must-dos when looking for meals.

  • Top off on frozen produce. Frozen vegetables and fruit last more than their contemporary counterparts however nonetheless provide dietary worth, Grandberry says. Plus, they don’t sometimes require washing or chopping, which pace issues up when making ready meals.
  • Go plain. Decide frozen vegetables and fruit that haven’t been seasoned or combined with sauce. This manner, you’ll get nutritional vitamins and minerals with none added sodium, sugar or energy. She additionally loves veggie mixes—like bell pepper and onion combo—as a result of they make it straightforward so as to add quite a lot of greens to 1 dish. 
  • Spice issues up. Among the best methods to improve your meals with minimal effort is to season your meals. Spices and dried herbs could make a huge impact on the general style of your meals. Plus, there are some severe well being advantages to utilizing spices and herbs whereas cooking. A research discovered that spices and herbs possess antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and anti-carcinogenic properties. Moreover, they will decrease glucose and levels of cholesterol and have properties that may have an effect on cognition and temper. Decide up some widespread seasonings like chili pepper, cinnamon, ginger, black pepper, turmeric, fenugreek, rosemary, and garlic.
  • Get some contemporary stuff. Whereas the majority of Grandberry’s vegetables and fruit come from the freezer part, she nonetheless will get a couple of contemporary objects like a bag of pre-cut salad greens, apples, onions, and any seasonal produce she could be craving. “Seasonal produce tends to be cheaper and at all times tastes higher.” Grandberry says.
  • Go for frozen meat. Frozen meat is simple to retailer and cook dinner, which suggests it often makes its manner into Grandberry’s procuring cart. Nice choices embody seasoned salmon and tilapia filets, shrimp, and floor hen and turkey. You may also decide up plain hen or lean beef from the meat counter and do some prep work from home: Season the meat, lower it into chunks, and retailer it within the freezer.
  • Purchase meals that require minimal prep. Pre-sliced bread and bagels, snack nuts, eggs, yogurt cups and plain popcorn are nice grab-and-go meals.

Suggestions For Consuming Out

friends eating at restaurant

Some days can get so hectic that it’s simply best to swing by means of the drive-thru for breakfast or seize a cellular order out of your favourite lunch spot. However relaxation assured, you possibly can nonetheless rating a nutritious meal when consuming out. Simply maintain the following pointers from Grandberry in thoughts.

  • Search for choices with fiber. Salads, whole-grain sandwich bread, steamed greens and oatmeal are all high-fiber meals that fill you up with fewer energy per serving than low-fiber choices.
  • Go for grilled. When you have got the choice, select meals which were grilled as a substitute of fried. Fried meals are typically larger in energy and saturated fats.
  • Get it in a wrap. Some eating places provide their commonplace sandwiches as a wrap. If that’s the case, take into account swapping out your bread for a whole-grain tortilla. You’ll nonetheless get fiber however lower down on energy. 

What I Eat In a Day: A Cooking-Averse Dietitian

sweet potato bowl

Not everybody has the time (or need) to batch cook dinner, meal prep, or search for the proper recipe. When you don’t notably love spending time within the kitchen, there are nonetheless methods to eat wholesome. Grandberry, for instance, doesn’t wish to spend an excessive amount of time placing collectively dishes however is ready to keep a balanced, nutritious diet. Right here’s what a typical day of consuming appears to be like like for her.


“I sometimes wish to have espresso within the morning with some kind of protein like eggs and a complete grain like toast or a bagel,” Grandberry says. Some days, she prefers a simple breakfast parfait of vanilla Greek yogurt, granola, and sliced strawberries. 


Lunch is often Grandberry’s largest meal of the day. “I often make some kind of dish initially of the week and eat leftovers,” she says. A few her newest lunches embody a salad topped with grilled hen, and white pasta with store-bought pesto sauce, shrimp and veggies. Whereas whole-grain pasta presents extra fiber, Grandberry prefers the style and texture of refined pasta. (And she or he believes it’s higher to eat meals you truly take pleasure in, relatively than forcing your self to eat more healthy variations of the identical meals.) To chop down on prep and cooking time, she makes use of frozen meats and veggies.


Like lunch, Grandberry sometimes whips up a fast dinner recipe to final your complete week. One in every of her go-to dinners is floor turkey, quinoa, frozen kale and roasted candy potatoes. To make the potatoes, she cuts up some contemporary spuds and tosses them in olive oil. Then, she sprinkles them with cinnamon, nutmeg and a contact of brown sugar and pops them within the oven for an hour. “I like issues I can put within the oven or on the range after which go do one thing else for some time,” Grandberry says. Crockpots and air fryers are different useful kitchen instruments for individuals who hate to cook dinner, she provides.


When Grandberry wants a fast chunk, she typically pairs fiber-rich fruit like apples and berries with a fats and protein supply like peanut butter. Almonds, cheese, and popcorn are her different go-to’s.

Backside Line

Maintaining a healthy diet doesn’t imply your life has to revolve round cooking. By holding your kitchen stocked with quick-prep meals and constructing most meals round protein and fiber, you possibly can eat wholesome with minimal kitchen time. 


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