Quick Meals for New Moms

Have a meal on the table in less than 30 minutes.

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Now You're Cookin'

As most new moms know, keeping up with a hungry newborn can be exhausting, especially when the rest of your family is looking for something healthy and tasty at mealtime too.

Here are some lunch and dinner options you can make without any heavy lifting, difficult prepping or long cook times—you'll have them on the table and devoured before takeout even has the chance to make it to your door.

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Chicken Salad with Apple and Pomegranate

This easy chicken salad works for lunch or dinner and can be served with whole grain bread as a sandwich or over a simple salad of lettuce, tomato and cucumbers.

Two cups of chopped cooked chicken from the freezer or, if you're really pressed for time, pre-cooked chicken breast makes four hearty sandwiches. Adding in apple, pomegranate seeds and low fat plain yogurt instead of mayo keep this recipe light and crunchy with a bit of sweetness.

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Chickpea Salad

Depending on how much olive oil you add, have this chickpea salad as a side on its own or over a bed of baby spinach for a heartier meal.

Ten minutes of prep time plus a few hours of marinating makes this an easy option for preparing in the morning before your day gets too hectic, putting in the fridge for a few hours and eating as soon as you're ready for it. Use whatever fresh herbs you have at hand for a bit of extra seasoning and leave the onion out if it upsets baby's tummy during feedings.

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Butternut Squash Bruschetta

Make the most of seasonal winter ingredients with butternut squash bruschetta and a mixed green garnish.

Mix a few tablespoons of ricotta, fresh lemon juice, parmesan cheese and minced scallion into the squash and spread over whole grain toast for a hearty snack or lunch that takes 15 minutes from start to finish.

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Nutty Asian Noodles

These Asian-style noodles will feed a crowd or give you a week's worth of leftovers in minutes and begs to be topped with a variety of your favorite ingredients including cucumber sticks, beansprouts and cilantro or, for a heartier meal, cooked chicken or pork.

While your spaghetti or ramen-style noodles cook, puree light soy sauce, sesame oil, rice vinegar and almond or peanut butter for a nutty, sweet sauce to mix into the cooked noodles.

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Speedy Marinara Sauce

Make an extra-large batch of this sauce to have on hand for pizzas, meatball subs, or baked pasta at any time.

Blend canned plum tomatoes, olive oil, garlic, salt and your favorite blend of Italian seasonings and simmer over the stove until it begins to thicken. Serve over whole wheat ravioli immediately or let it cool and freeze in a large plastic container future dinners in a cinch.

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Mexican Rice

Turn this dish into a heartier meal by serving over chicken or pork, or keep it vegetarian and serve as a side or easy lunch.

Fry long-grain white rice with olive oil in a large pot and add onion, carrot and garlic over higher heat until the onion softens. Stir in chicken stock, tomato sauce and green beans, peas or corn and simmer until the rice is tender and the veggies are warm.

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Ground Turkey Stir-Fry with Black Bean–Garlic Sauce

It's easy to assume stir fry is a 30 minute-plus meal to make, but this dinner takes under 15 minutes from start to finish—perfect for busy nights.

Cook red onion, red pepper, green beans and ground turkey for 8 minutes and add in the black bean garlic sauce. Keep it simple and serve over rice or kick it up a notch and mix fried chilies into the final product.

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