You know those nights when you’re craving mac and cheese, but you really, really don’t want to sabotage a whole day of eating healthy? We’ve got you covered. Here are 32 low-calorie comfort food recipes that taste just like the real thing—despite all of them containing less than 500 calories per serving.
1. Mini Cauliflower Pizzas (99 calories each)
No diet could ever keep us away from pepperoni.
Taco Tuesday just got even better.
3. Restorative Miso Noodle Soup (213 calories)
Helloooo, probiotics. This take on miso soup is just as soothing as the original, with the addition of hearty soba noodles, umami-rich mushrooms and spinach.
The only thing better than this recipe (which uses tons of pantry staples)? The nugs only take 35 minutes to make.
Just as comforting as the original, minus the carbs.
Meatless Mondays will never be the same.
Serve these with an extra squeeze of lemon, if you’re keeping things light. Or go all in on tzatziki (because it’s too good to pass up).
Go ahead, have a pot of melted “cheese” and crudités for dinner.
Your favorite Chinese takeout spot will miss you.
This calls for a fiesta.
Beef, marinara sauce and *three* types of cheese? Even your kids won’t mind that it’s served in a vegetable.
If the steak-cut fries aren’t enough to convince you to try it, maybe the fact that it all comes together in one pan will.
They only stay crisp for a little while, so be sure to devour as soon as they’re ready. (We’re sure that won’t be a problem.)
14. Charred Sweet Potatoes with Pistachio-Chili Pesto (302 calories)
Sure, it’s technically a side dish. But the fancy, citrusy pesto on top puts these spuds in entrée territory in our book.
That number doesn’t include a massive scoop of vanilla ice cream…but we’ll be helping ourselves anyway.
Proof that veggie burgers can be way, way more than plant-based hockey pucks.
Load up this fried rice with your favorite stir-fry veggies, like bell peppers and onions.
Top the gluten-free masterpiece as you please.
Complete with thick-cut bacon, grated cheddar and a dollop of sour cream.
Guys. It exists.
Bring it to work and you’ll be the envy of the break room.
Between the gooey provolone and tender chunks of top sirloin, you won’t even miss the bread.
All the ground pork, cabbage and ginger of traditional filling, minus the greasy egg roll wrapper.
Shred your own boneless, skinless chicken breasts or save time with a store-bought rotisserie chicken.
All the taste of takeout with none of the guilt.
Two types of breadcrumbs and a stint in the oven make the chicken just as crispy as the O.G.—no messy frying required.
Make the broth a day ahead to deepen its flavor, then assemble your bowl when you’re ready to eat.
Mmm, creamy peanut sauce.
29. Baked Chicken and Ricotta Meatballs (454 calories)
Because no one has time to brown meatballs for days on the stove.
It’s the football Sunday and Thanksgiving meal mashup we never knew we needed.
We love zoodles just as much as the next girl. But sometimes when you have a hankering for pasta, nothing but the real thing will do.
Kofta is a Middle Eastern meat dish that’s typically skewered and grilled, but this one-hour rendition bakes it instead. Oh, and you’ll want to make a double batch of the lemon-garlic aioli.