10 delicious dishes that bust the dieting-equals-deprivation myth
Best Frozen Breakfast
1 of 10All photos
You know eating breakfast is key for weight loss—among many other studies, the National Weight Loss Registry (a study that follows people who have lost 30 pounds or more and kept it off for at least a year) says more than 90 percent of successful losers never miss the morning meal. But what you eat is even more important than when you eat it. With 22 grams of protein, Amy's Tofu Scramble with Hashbrowns and Veggies will give you the fuel you need to jump-star your day and stay satisfied until lunch.
Best Frozen Mexican Meal
2 of 10All photos
Mexican food, while muy delicioso, doesn't always translate to muy healthy. But for 240 calories, Red's All-Natural Steak Quesadillas make a great appetizer or game-night snack. So you can still hang out with your crew and not feel deprived when everyone else hits the triple-cheese nachos. Bonus: Research shows that eating a high-protein meal or snack can help keep you from OD'ing on dessert later on.
Best Frozen Vegetarian Meal
3 of 10All photos
With 11 grams of protein and 8 grams of belly-filling fiber, Amy's Brown Rice, Black-Eyed Peas, and Vegetable Bowl packs a nutritional punch for just 290 calories. The veggies are full of cancer-fighting antioxidants, the brown rice delivers energy-boosting B vitamins, and the black-eyed peas might help you burn belly fat, according to research from Harvard Medical School.
Best Frozen Pizza
4 of 10All photos
A crazy busy schedule, stress, unexpected dinner guests—they all make great excuses to dial up the pizza-delivery guy. But that dinner he brings contains upwards of 360 calories per slice, along with plenty of saturated fat and sodium. A smarter solution: Make your own pizza at home in less than five minutes. This Lean Cuisine Roasted Garlic Chicken personal pie clocks in at 330 calories. Plus, the chicken packs 23 grams of protein so you won't feel the need for late-night snacking.
Best Frozen Italian Meal
5 of 10All photos
You can eat Italian food and still lose weight. How? Choose meals that focus on protein instead of pasta, like this Lean Cuisine Chicken Parmesan. With 21 grams of protein, it will fill you up and you still get to have your spaghetti on the side.
Best Frozen Holiday Meal
6 of 10All photos
Nothing can replace a real Thanksgiving dinner—and why would you want to?—but if you want to relive the indulgent holiday feast for way fewer calories, try this Lean Cuisine Roasted Turkey and Vegetables. It's high in protein (17g) and it's a fairly low-carb option (18g) so you won't feel the need to take a post-meal nap!
Best Low-Carb Frozen Meal
7 of 10All photos
If you're trying to avoid carbs—especially the simple, processed variety—the frozen dinner aisle can feel like a gauntlet not worth running. But with Gorton's All Natural Grilled Fish Fillets, you can have your dinner (if not your cake) and eat it too. Seventeen grams of protein and just one carb make these great for people trying to pack more protein into their diet. The seven different flavors mean you'll never get bored, and the creative seasonings—everything from blackened cajun to lemon pepper—can help curb your appetite.
Best Frozen Asian Meal
8 of 10All photos
Next time you want to order Chinese takeout, try this Lean Cuisine Chicken in Peanut Sauce instead. When it comes to Asian condiments, peanut sauce is usually one of your safest bets, as it's usually lower in sugar and empty carbs than, say, sweet and sour or orange sauce. So you'll save calories and cash! (Tipping the delivery guy can really add up.)
Best Gluten-Free Frozen Meal
9 of 10All photos
If you're avoiding gluten, you've probably deemed macaroni and cheese dead to you. But with Amy's Rice Mac and Cheese, you can still enjoy this childhood classic without worrying about the gluten found in normal wheat pastas.
Best Frozen Comfort Food
10 of 10All photos
Comfort food can still be comforting without making your pants uncomfortable. Healthy Choice Cafe Steamers Cajun Style Chicken and Shrimp will satisfy your craving for southern spice without guilt. The veggies add another level of comfort: According to Dartmouth researchers, people who eat their produce "are notably happier than those who skip veggies, and personal feelings of well-being and life satisfaction increase with each serving of produce consumed per day."