Healthy meal ideas

Make healthier, lower energy (kilojoule) meals and snacks with these ideas.

Combine these ideas with the nutrition action plan, designed for people recovering from a heart attack, to help you eat healthily.

Breakfast

  • Make wholegrain or wholemeal toast, and add toppings. Try a small serve of baked beans, tomatoes, creamed corn, mushrooms or cottage cheese. Or spread thinly with jam, honey or peanut butter. Instead of butter, use margarine spreads made from canola, sunflower or olive oil.
  • Have some high-fibre wholegrain cereal such as rolled oats, wheat biscuits or bran cereals. Choose untoasted types and use reduced fat milk, yoghurt or ‘added calcium’ soy drinks. Add some fruit – fresh, stewed or canned. Choose fruit canned in natural or unsweetened juice, or drain the liquid from the fruit. 
  • Poach, boil or scramble eggs (use reduced fat milk). Serve with tomatoes, spinach, mushrooms and salmon or lean, reduced salt ham. Serve on wholegrain or wholemeal bread.

Get more heart-healthy breakfast ideas.

Lunch

  • Have a sandwich with wholemeal or wholegrain bread. Use spreads made from canola, sunflower or olive oil. Fill with lots of salad vegetables and a small serving of lean meat, skinless chicken, canned fish, hommus or a reduced fat cheese (e.g. cottage cheese). 
  • Make an interesting salad with plenty of different vegetables. Include lean meats, skinless poultry, fish or legumes (like four bean mix). Try adding fresh fruit or plain, unsalted nuts. You could add wholemeal pasta, brown rice, couscous or noodles. Use dressings based on olive or canola oil, instead of creamy or salty ones.
  • Try a vegetable- or legume-based soup. Serve with crusty wholemeal bread. For a ‘creamy soup’ use evaporated skim milk instead of cream or full fat milk. Check labels on tinned or instant soups: they may contain a lot of salt.

Find recipe ideas for lunch. 

Dinner

  • Make a stir-fry with lots of vegetables and some lean meat, skinless chicken or fish. Use canola, sunflower, soybean, olive, sesame or peanut oil. Flavour with garlic, onion, chilli or ginger and add some legumes or plain, unsalted nuts. Serve with brown rice.
  • Grill or roast a lean cut of meat, skinless poultry or fish, and flavour with herbs, spices or garlic. Serve with vegetables or salad and a grain-based food, such as wholemeal pasta, brown rice, couscous or polenta.
  • Make burritos, tacos or tortilla wraps using lean meat, skinless chicken or red kidney beans. Add plenty of vegetables to the mixture and use reduced fat natural yoghurt instead of sour cream.
  • Try a vegetable frittata or quiche. Use reduced fat milk and spreads made from canola, sunflower or olive oil instead of butter in the quiche. Serve with a garden salad.

Discover delicious dinner recipes.  

Dessert

  • Serve fresh fruit salad, or stewed, poached or canned fruit with reduced fat yoghurt. Choose fruit canned in natural or unsweetened juice, or drain the liquid from the fruit.
  • Have some low fat ice-cream or diet jelly with fruit.
  • Make a fruit pie or strudel with filo pastry. Serve with reduced fat yoghurt.

Find healthy dessert recipes.

Snacks

  • Snack on fruit – fresh, stewed or canned. Choose fruit canned in natural or unsweetened juice, or drain the liquid from the fruit.
  • Choose reduced fat yoghurt (plain or flavoured).
  • Crunch on a small handful of plain, unsalted nuts.
  • Snack on wholegrain or wholemeal crisp bread with sliced tomato and pepper.

Get snack recipe ideas.

Drinks

Plain water is the best drink for you, because it has no energy (kilojoules). It’s also cheap and quenches your thirst.

Other suitable choices to include in moderation are:

  • plain mineral water
  • soda water
  • reduced fat milk
  • herbal tea
  • tea
  • coffee.

If you have milk in tea or coffee, use reduced fat varieties or ‘added calcium’ alternatives

Learn more about healthy drinks and how much alcohol you should drink. 

Share this

We need you! DOWNLOAD & review '7 steps to evaluate a workplace health program.' ➡️ bit.ly/2u6eHWW pic.twitter.com/0mrIyVqu95