17 Healthy Dinner Ideas for Two

These Nutritious Meals Are Anything but Boring

Thai-Flavored, Pan-Fried Salmon

The Spruce 

It can be a challenge cooking meals for two without filling your fridge with containers and containers of leftovers. Luckily, there are scaled-down recipes that are healthy and flavorful and won't leave you in a leftovers rut. Choose from lean chicken breasts, vegetarian main dishes, hearty salads, and fresh seafood for a romantic dinner or a quick weeknight meal.

  • 01 of 17

    Steamed Mussels in Thai Basil-Coconut Sauce

    Steamed Mussels in Thai Basil-Coconut Sauce

    PK6289 / Getty Images

    For a romantic dinner that only takes minutes to prepare, serve steamed mussels in a fragrant basil-coconut sauce. Pair with a simple salad and crusty bread to soak up all of the delicious broth.

  • 02 of 17

    Mushroom Risotto

    Mushroom Risotto

    The Spruce 

    Risotto is a dish worthy of a special occasion, but simple enough to serve on any old night. All it takes is some patience and a bit of arm strength for stirring. It's also easy to scale up and down depending on how many people you're feeding. Reduce this vegetarian mushroom risotto recipe by half to feed two.

  • 03 of 17

    Shrimp Boil Foil Packs

    Shrimp Boil Foil Packs

    The Spruce / Milena Perrine

    Shrimp boils—complete with corn, sausage, potatoes, and Old Bay-seasoned shrimp—are a fun-to-eat, complete meal. Halve this recipe and make hefty two packets for dinner. Omit the sausage or replace it with chicken sausage for a healthier option.

  • 04 of 17

    Vegan Black Bean Veggie Burgers

    Vegan Black Bean Veggie Burgers

    The Spruce

    Homemade black bean burgers are a fun meal for two, especially when served with oven fries. Split the recipe in two to make two large patties and leave off the bun and serve the burgers on a bed of lettuce for a lighter version.

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  • 05 of 17

    Easy Vegan Ratatouille

    Easy Vegan Ratatouille

    The Spruce

    Ratatouille is a classic French dish of gently cooked summer vegetables in a sauce of tomato, red wine, and herbs. This version is quick and easy, but still flavorful. Serve with rice, polenta, or bread and more red wine.

  • 06 of 17

    Grilled Salmon

    Grilled Salmon

    The Spruce / Leah Maroney

    Healthy grilled salmon is a delicious centerpiece for a meal for two. Adorn simply with lemon and salt and pepper or top with teriyaki or a lemon-caper sauce. Cook some veggies while the grill is hot for a complete meal.

  • 07 of 17

    Chicken Breasts in Parchment Paper

    Chicken Breasts in Parchment Paper

    The Spruce

    Chicken breasts come out moist and tender when cooked in a parchment packet with lemon and herbs. They also look pretty served in their packet alongside some veggies and a grain.

  • 08 of 17

    Spaghetti Squash Alfredo

    Spaghetti Squash Alfredo

    The Spruce / Jennifer Perillo

    Spaghetti squash is a low-carb, tasty stand-in for pasta. Decrease this recipe, using half of the cooked squash for alfredo and saving half for another. Try using the leftovers for spaghetti squash with tomato and Parmesan for a quick weeknight meal.

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  • 09 of 17

    Easy Low-Calorie Shrimp Scampi

    Easy Low-Calorie Shrimp Scampi

    The Spruce 

    Super quick and easy to make, shrimp scampi is still worthy of a date night. For extra nutrition, add wilted spinach to the dish or replace some or all of the angel hair pasta with spiralized zucchini noodles. Serve with a glass of white wine.

  • 10 of 17

    Grilled Caesar Salad

    Grilled Caesar Salad

    The Spruce / Anita Schecter 

    Put a spin on the classic Caesar salad by grilling lettuce hearts before sprinkling them with croutons and drizzling with dressing. If you're serving this as a first course or side dish, halve the recipe. Make the whole recipe to serve two as a main dish. Grill shrimp or a chicken breast and serve alongside the salad if desired.

  • 11 of 17

    Curried Sweet Potato and Freekeh Salad

    Curried Sweet Potato and Freekeh Salad

    The Spruce/ Anastasiia Tretiak

    Fragrant with curry spices and garlic, this Moroccan-influenced curried sweet potato and freekeh salad is a delicious and healthy vegetarian meal. Dried cranberries and apricots add texture and a mild sweetness while almonds add crunch.

  • 12 of 17

    Thai-Flavored Pan-Fried Salmon

    Thai-Flavored, Pan-Fried Salmon

    The Spruce

    A flavorful marinade of lemongrass, soy sauce, garlic, chili, and honey gives Thai-flavored pan-seared salmon tons of flavor. Serve with steamed snap peas or snow peas and brown rice.

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  • 13 of 17

    Baked Chicken With Spinach

    Baked Chicken With Spinach

    The Spruce 

    This healthy baked chicken couldn't be simpler to make. Fresh spinach is added to a casserole dish and topped with pounded-thin chicken breasts, tomato, onion, and spices. Cheese can be added to the top afterward, but it's not required. Halve the recipe, using two medium-sized chicken breasts, or save some for leftovers.

  • 14 of 17

    Vegetarian Pad Thai

    Vegetarian Pad Thai

    The Spruce 

    Pad Thai is such a flavorful noodle dish that there's no meat necessary. This recipe includes nutritious bok choy and egg, but you can use your favorite veggie and swap the egg for tofu.

  • 15 of 17

    Antipasto Salad

    Antipasto Salad

    The Spruce / Leah Maroney

    Combine the appetizer, salad, and main course into one with an impressive antipasto salad. Use high-quality greens, meat, cheese, and olives for the best possible experience. Split the recipe in half to feed two as a main course and reduce the cheese and meat to make it lighter.

  • 16 of 17

    Thai Basil Chicken Lettuce Wraps

    Thai Basil Chicken Lettuce Wraps

    The Spruce / Darlene Schmidt 

    Thai basil chicken lettuce cups are a low-carb combination of ground chicken, veggies, and a savory stir-fry sauce. Served in lettuce cups, they're a complete meal and perfect for sharing.

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  • 17 of 17

    Sweet Potato Lasagna

    Sweet Potato Lasagna

    The Spruce / Pete Scherer 

    Most lasagnas are huge, heavy dishes loaded with pasta and made to serve a crowd. This lasagna recipe swaps the noodles for thinly-sliced white sweet potato and comfortably serves four. It's perfect for a special meal for two with just enough leftovers.