Let's face it - as much as we would want to create all our meals from scratch, there are just days when we can't really pull it off. A long day at work, not enough ingredients, not enough time and energy to run to the grocer to buy produce.
More often than not, busy parents feel guilty over opening canned goods for dinner. But there's nothing wrong with doing so, especially if you pair canned goods with healthy grains and vegetables.
This National Canned Food Month, learn how to make easy but healthy meals using canned goods. Yes, canned food can be turned into a healthy meal!
Canned tuna is a favorite go-to for busy parents. It's loaded with protein, Omega-3 fatty acids, Niacin and Vitamin B12. Most varieties like those in brine instead of oil offer low calories.
Though it's easy to open a can of tuna and mix it up with onions and mayonnaise, and spread it between pieces of bread, there are a ton of other yummy dinner recipes that you can do with it.
Tuna Pasta Salad with Balsamic Vinaigrette (Renee's Kitchen Adventures)
This is a great recipe for families who love pasta salads. With basil, tomatoes, zucchini and spinach, this dish is packed with vitamins and nutrients. The Greek dressing for this salad is to die for!
"This recipe is delicious. I added some zucchini, red onion and black olives to the original recipe, swapped the mozzarella cheese for feta and opted to use white balsamic vinegar to keep the color of the dressing pleasing."
- One 12 oz. box Tri-Color Rotini pasta, cooked to al dente, rinsed in cold water, and drained
- One 4 oz. or 5 oz. can water packed tuna, drained and flaked
- 1 cup grape tomatoes, halved
- 2 cups fresh, organic baby spinach leaves
- 1/2 cup fresh basil leaves, torn
- 1/4 cup sliced black olives
- 1/2 cup diced fresh zucchini
- 3 TBS. chopped sun-dried tomatoes (dry packed)
- 1/4 cup chopped red onion
- 1/4 cup crumbled feta cheese
- 1 TBS. Greek Seasoning (or more to taste) - Make it yourself with this recipe!
For the dressing:
- 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1/4 cup white balsamic dressing
- 1 TBS Dijon mustard
- 1 clove garlic, minced
Mediterranean Chopped Tuna Salad (Aggie's Kitchen)
Aggie's Kitchen offers us a healthy and quick recipe for an easy salad bulked up with healthy vegetables like celery, bell pepper, lettuce and cucumber. The dressing used for this salad is also low in calories (red wine vinegar and olive oil).
"One, it’s incredibly filling and full of flavor. Two, it’s low in calories, carbs and is helping me lose weight!"
- 1 can Italian tuna in olive oil, drained well (or whatever light tuna you prefer)
- iceberg or romaine lettuce, chopped
- 1 celery stalk, sliced or chopped
- 1/2 green bell pepper, sliced or chopped
- 1/2 cucumber, sliced or chopped
- 1/4 onion, sliced or chopped
- 1/4 cup crumbled feta
- pepperoncini, optional
- a couple of splashes of red wine vinegar and a drizzle of olive oil
- dried oregano flakes
- salt and pepper to taste
Orzo With Tuna (Hip Foodie Mom)
If you're looking for a warm, hearty meal at the end of a long day but you don't want to slave in the kitchen for hours, this recipe will do you wonders! All you have to do is pretty much throw everything in a skillet with the cooked orzo, and let the flavors and textures mingle.
"I loved the tuna so much, I mixed the tuna with some orzo and vegetables and loved it! ...You can really use any rice or pasta for this dish in place of the orzo."
- 1 quart chicken stock or broth
- 8 oz. orzo
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1-2 garlic cloves, minced
- ½ medium onion, chopped
- 2 carrots, peeled and diced
- ½ red bell pepper, diced
- 2 celery stalks, diced
- salt and pepper
- ¾ cup green olives, diced
- 3 pouches (2.6 oz.) StarKist® Albacore Tuna, Low Sodium
- 2 tablespoons fresh parsley, chopped