The Healthy-ish Meals That Are Getting Shape Editors Through Quarantine

When you can't eat one more peanut butter and jelly, these simple and healthy quarantine meals will make your tastebuds feel alive again.

Woman making a healthy quarantine meal
Photo: Luxy Images/Getty

At the start of the coronavirus quarantine a lifetime (aka 10+ weeks) ago, you had high hopes for all the delicious, labor-intensive meals you'd make with your new free time. You'd bake your own loaf of sourdough bread for luxurious French toast brunches, finally learn how to make crème brûlée in your tiny kitchen, and even figure out how to use that pizza oven that's been sitting in the back of the closet for three years.

But as the days progressed and you got more and more sick of cooking, hearty dinners turned into bowls of cereal, and filling, homemade snacks became sleeves of Oreos.

To help you get out of your food rut, the Shape editors are sharing the healthy quarantine meals they've been eating non-stop for the past three months. They aren't Michelin-star dishes, but they sure will get you excited about cooking, eating, and repeating once again.

Homemade Granola Bowl with Berries, Banana, and Peanut Butter

Healthy quarantine meal - homemade granola
Lauren Mazzo

"Normally, I make a giant green smoothie in the morning, drag it with me to work, and sip it while scrolling through emails. Now that I’m working within arms-length of my kitchen (and don’t need to make something commute-friendly), I’ve upgraded to a breakfast that honestly feels luxurious to me: homemade granola (oats, chopped nuts, raisins, and shredded coconut tossed in agave, coconut oil, and cinnamon, baked for ~25 mins at 300 degrees F) topped with skim milk, raspberries, blueberries, half a banana (sliced), and a hefty dollop of peanut butter.

I’d never made my own granola before, but now that I can stick it in the oven while I’m WFH, it’s become my new obsession—and I love starting my day with it every morning."—Lauren Mazzo, web editor

Roasted Cauliflower Burrito Bowl

Healthy quarantine meal - Cauliflower burrito bowl
Allie Strickler

"My go-to lunch lately is this roasted cauliflower burrito bowl. It’s really easy to meal-prep on weekends, and it’s SUPER filling and satisfying without being so heavy that it makes me pass out by 3 p.m. It calls for rice (brown or white), corn (I use canned, but bonus points if you have corn fresh off the cob), and pico de gallo (TBH, you can buy premade pico if you don’t feel like prepping it—but it’s just chopped tomatoes, onion, cilantro, and a little lime juice). But the real star of the show is the spiced cauliflower you roast in the oven (the recipe only calls for seasoning the florets with taco seasoning, but I add cumin and cayenne pepper because, IMO, cauliflower can be a little bland if you DON’T kinda overdo it with spices).

"While that’s in the oven, on the stove you simmer black beans, water, and more taco seasoning (and, if you’re like me, more cayenne pepper and cumin), mashing the beans with a spoon until you get that thick, creamy, refried-beans texture. When everything’s ready, build your burrito bowl and top with guac, hot sauce, sour cream, or eat as is! (When I have chips lying around, I sometimes like to use the burrito bowl as a pseudo-dip. 😉)"—Allie Strickler, news editor

Souped-up Pasta with Protein + Veggies

Healthy quarantine meal - pasta with shrimp and veggies
Marietta Alessi

"Think of the pasta almost as a side to all the veggies and protein in this meal. I’ve had so much fun experimenting with different ingredients and I can tell you the 'pasta-abilities' are truly endless. Here’s my secret formula: 1/2 cup pasta (I’ve been rotating between Rao’s pasta, Banza for extra plant-based protein, or Trader Joe’s cauliflower gnocchi for more plants), veggies (spinach and mushrooms sautéed in garlic is my fave), protein (House Foods firm tofu or cannellini beans have been my go-to), and a little bit of sauce (pesto or Rao's Marinara are my usual go-tos).

"This week, I went for cauliflower gnocchi, peeled and cooked frozen shrimp, frozen spinach that's been sautéed in garlic, and Rao's marinara sauce, topped off with a sprinkle of red pepper flakes. Rao’s Marinara is by far my favorite because it’s lower in sugar, has natural ingredients, and just tastes great. BTW if you really want to load up on veggies, try this hack I got from celeb trainer and nutritionist Harley Pasternak: steam some broccoli, blend it, then add equal parts to the sauce to really soup up your pasta."—Marietta Alessi, senior social media manager

Anything Goes Oatmeal

Healthy quarantine meal - oatmeal
Renee Cherry

"I've been doing the most when it comes to cooking. When I need to reset with a quick/easy recipe, my go-to is always an oatmeal bowl with whatever toppings I have on hand. I like the combo of one fruit, one runny element (peanut butter, tahini, etc.), and something crunchy. Today, that was sweet plantains roasted with coconut oil, vanilla Greek yogurt whipped with honey (I just used a fork), and pepitas. I added some cinnamon after taking this photo, which was exactly what it was missing."—Renee Cherry, staff writer

Classic Hummus

Healthy quarantine meal - hummus

"I’ve been making a really delicious and easy hummus recipe that I’m obsessed with! I'm definitely snacking more now that I’m only a few feet away from my fridge, so I’m trying my best to make my snacks a little healthier and less processed. Hummus is so easy to make—thanks to the handy food processor—and I’m excited to add things to this recipe to switch it up each time (roasted red peppers, everything bagel seasoning, etc.). I’ve been using carrots, peppers, and pita chips to dip with, and it’s also great to layer on wraps!"—Rachel Crocetti, SEO content strategist

The Toast with the Most

Healthy quarantine meals - savory toast
Megan Falk

"Unpopular opinion: I hate avocados. The fruit's earthy flavor and mushy mouthfeel—even in guac—causes me to make the same face as a toddler who just tried a lemon. Not cute. So in order to take part in the toast trend, I either go for an almond butter toast topped with chia seeds and banana slices, or this messy beauty.

It's a toasted slice of whatever bread I have at the moment, stacked high with sautéed spinach, pan-roasted tomatoes, two over-easy eggs, feta crumbles, and Trader Joe's Everything But the Bagel Seasoning. The savory concoction can be made in less than ten minutes, and it's filling enough for breakfast, lunch, or dinner on nights when I'm not too hungry. Plus, you can swap the spinach for kale or arugula, use poached or sunny-side-up eggs, or replace the tomatoes with mushrooms or bacon for an umami flavor."—Megan Falk, editorial assistant

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