Around 9 months ago, I detailed The Perfect Breakfast which consisted of a Blueberry, Steel-cut Oatmeal accompanied by a Dark Cherry, Banana smoothie. I still eat that same oatmeal every day with a smoothie that I mix up depending on what fruits are in season and I love it. I followed that post up with The Perfect Lunch a few months after that where I outlined the wombo combo of a salad, soup, and side of fruit. Specifically, I detailed recipes for a Mango Greens Salad, Mushroom Leek Soup, and an apple for a terrific mid-day meal. While I vary my salads, soups, and fruits every month or so, I still find myself returning to those same recipes. And today, I’m going to detail the final meal of the day dinner. Since we’ve eaten so many healthy foods at breakfast and lunch already, this is going to provide us with a ton of flexibility and options for optimal dinner choices. But I’m going to detail the recipe I’ve found to be the most healthy, diverse, and enjoyable meal that I eat for dinner more than anything else. Mango Lentil Dal. Let’s get into it!
Dinner Ideas and Considerations
Usually, I switch up my dinner each night that I cook depending on what food I have available in my fridge and pantry. I’ll usually cook enough so that I have leftovers for the next day saving me cooking time in the future. And a lot of time I’ll make a pasta using something like chickpea pasta or bean pasta with sauteed vegetables and homemade sauce. It’s a quick and easy dinner packed with nutrients. But the main thing I focus on when making dinner is hitting all the major food groups. I don’t worry about carbs, proteins, fats, or anything crazy like that. It’s diversity of plants. I like to get a serving of dark leafy greens, vegetables, fruits, nuts/seeds, beans, and grains. If I can hit most of or all those foods groups, then I know I’ve made a healthy choice for dinner. And with the Mango Lentil Dal, I’m going to detail a meal that does just that and hits all 6 major food groups.
But if you’re still hungry outside of the main dish you make for dinner, then I’d recommend some raw vegetables and hummus as a good appetizer beforehand and if you’re hungry for dessert, a nice fruit based nice cream is a wonderful way to finish off the meal. That way your dinner is structured with raw veggies as the appetizer, cooked plants as the main meal, and frozen fruit as the dinner. That sounds delicious just thinking about it. And as a final note before I get into the recipe, I’ve found it best to consume dinner at least 3 hours before bedtime allowing food to fully digest before you sleep. This will improve your quality of sleep by preventing sleep disruptions from indigestion or acid reflux or anything crazy like that. So yea, let’s get into today’s main dish, Mango Lentil Dal!
Mango Lentil Dal
This dish takes me about 35 minutes to make including prep and cleanup time. It makes about four large, delicious servings. While this meal doesn’t have any added salt, oil, or sugar, I think it will be appealing to a large audience who’s used to consuming more processed foods too. I’ve had family members taste test this and they love it as well. So, here’s my recipe for the perfect dinner:
- Bring quinoa, lentils, broth, water, and turmeric to a boil in a medium saucepan. Reduce heat to low, place a lid on top, and let cook for 15 minutes. Then remove from heat and let sit for 10 minutes while covered.
- Heat a large soup pot on medium-high heat. Once hot, dump in the onions, peppers, and garlic. Let cook, stirring occasionally, for 8 minutes. Then stir in cumin, coriander, pepper, and kale.
- Cook until kale is wilted, then stir in the mango and lentil quinoa mix.
- Serve on a dish, top with sunflower or pumpkin seeds, and enjoy!
After starting the day with a delicious oatmeal and smoothie for breakfast, and then following that up with a salad, soup, and side of fruit for lunch, we’ve had a tremendous day of eating so far. And that just leaves dinner as the final meal of the day. I’ve found it best to focus on making a dinner that hits all of the major food groups: dark leafy greens, vegetables, fruits, beans, grains, and nuts/seeds. And if you’re still hungry after that main dish, consider eating some raw vegetables and hummus as an appetizer, or fruit based nice cream as a dessert. This will have you nutrient filled in no time. And if you’re looking for a main dish that accomplishes all these goals, try this Mango Lentil Dal recipe! It’s super well rounded and delicious. And don’t forget to leave yourself 3 hours after dinner to finish most of your digestion before heading to bed for optimal sleep quality. This to me, sounds like a life that’s both healthier and happier.
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Hey, I am Brandon Zerbe
Welcome to myHealthSciences! My goal has always been to increase quality-of-life with healthy habits that are sustainable, efficient, and effective. I do this by covering topics like Fitness, Nutrition, Sleep, Cognition, Finance and Minimalism. You can read more about me here.
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