~ Check out our very BEST, quick and easy, HEALTHY recipes of 2019! The most adored recipes from an entire year, as chosen by YOU, our beloved readers. Did your favorite make the list? Make it again … and then pick a new favorite to try this week! ~
It’s that time of year again! As the dust settles on another fun-packed holiday season, it’s time to set our sights on all the adventures a new year holds.
But first, I want to take a moment to send you all one giant (digital) hug. A thank-you for being our loyal readers, bonding together over a shared passion for good food that’s actually good for you, too. A mutual joy in sharing recipes, swapping tips and recipe ideas, and cheering each other on as we all strive to eat a little healthier, live a little better. Thank you.
Without you, our family’s beloved website wouldn’t be what it is today, wouldn’t have grown steadily – by leaps and bounds each year. And it certainly wouldn’t be worth all the time and love and care we pour into it.
As we head into our eighth year together at Two Healthy Kitchens, I want you all to know how glad I am that you’re a part of our treasured community, our devoted and passionate little corner of the internet. I’m so glad you’re here.
Ok, ok … enough of my sappy, sentimental reminiscing! Enough of the group hug!
You’re here for the recipes, aren’t you?!? Alrighty – so let’s get on with it!
Before we all dive headlong into a brand-new, shiny year, I love to look back through the year behind us. Through an entire year of recipes … to find which of our family’s favorites became your family’s favorites, too! The very best recipes of 2019!
Have you tried them all yet? Take a peek at this year’s Top 10 … and grab that grocery list in case you find a few must-tries you somehow missed!
On one hand, I was kind of surprised to see that this was our #2 recipe for the year, since fish and salmon recipes can sometimes be a hard sell compared to "obvious" things like hamburgers or chicken.
But, on the other hand, I guess I really shouldn't be surprised at all – I absolutely adore this recipe for its perfect combination of luxury with simplicity, and of nutrition with fabulous taste. And if I love it so much, why wouldn't all of you love it, too?
Plus, it only takes about 5 minutes to make, and it's a true power breakfast you'll crave again and again! If you haven't tried it yet, you're kind of missing out (no pressure, but it's true!).
So, what's more important to you: how delicious a recipe is, or how healthy it is? Luckily, here at Two Healthy Kitchens, you don't have to choose – and this recipe is a perfect example!
A nourishing, superfoods combo of greens and veggies is perfectly highlighted by sweet-tart dried cranberries and crunchy, salty pistachios ... all topped off with an amazing Maple-Balsamic Dressing to tie everything together!
Pssssst ... and since this is THK and we LOVE shortcuts and quick recipes, you probably won't be surprised that all this goodness can be on your table in about 5 minutes. Total win!
If I had to pick just one food that sort of characterized ... and revolutionized ... my family's whole year, it would probably be Chia Pudding. (HINT: glance down at #7 on this list, too, and you'll start to get the picture.)
I'd seen plenty of Chia Pudding recipes kicking around here and there on the internet, but I'd never quite gotten around to jumping in. No particular reason. Just hadn't gotten there.
And then ... this.
Ty and I basically made Chia Pudding all summer long. My family craved it.
It's super quick and easy: throw 5 simple ingredients together at night, and breakfast is waiting for you the next morning (or make a big batch and you're covered all week long)!
This "basic" recipe is loaded with "insider" tips, tricks and variations we learned in our chia-obsessed year. It's the perfect starting point to finally try Chia Pudding for yourself (or to re-fuel an existing Chia Pudding obsession)!
This is a long-time family favorite recipe, passed to me from my MIL (who got it from a long-ago friend). Of course, I waved my magic health-ification wand around and made a few little nutritious tweaks (because you know I can't resist). But don't worry – no one will ever notice!
Brimming with vibrant veggies and pillowy tortellini, it's rich and hearty and deliciously slurp-able.
And, it's just as wonderful with grocery store winter veggies as it is with your farmers’ market haul or summertime garden bounty – perfect all year 'round!
Not sure why Chia Pudding is so awesome? And why we have two (TWO!) chia pudding recipes in our Top 10 List this year? Pop back up to #5 above, and you'll understand. Then, try this recipe, and you'll be a true devotee!
It's deliciously light but satisfying – an unbeatable power breakfast that’ll keep you full for hours!
So simple with just a couple pantry staples and some salt and pepper. And yet ... so deliciously, addictively perfect.
I've been throwing this together for years and years, and finally wrote down the recipe so I could share it with all of you (you're welcome)!
These potatoes are incredibly versatile, and easily pivot to accompany practically any meal – from casual weeknight suppers to special dinner parties. They'll become your go-to side for everything from grilled burgers to filet!
If you hang around here much, you know we are big, big fans of roasted veggies (ahem ... note #8 above). The caramelization that happens in your oven is truly magical, turning ho-hum vegetables into a healthy side dish that even picky eaters devour.
In this recipe, we're talkin' sweet carrots, nutty parsnips and fluffy red potatoes. Sure, they're fantastic all by their roasty-toasty selves, but they're even MORE addictive with a little Honey-Dijon Drizzle to bring all the flavors together!
How could humble banana bread make the Top 10?!? My friends, this is no ordinary banana bread, that’s for sure!
With this loaded-up bread, you’ve got deep, tempting banana flavor with warm background notes of vanilla and cinnamon. It's all studded with sweet, caramel-y chopped dates, and lots of crunchy pecans dotted through and through ... plus a generous sprinkling of toasty pecans on top.
It's fantastic for breakfasts or snacks and absolutely delicious toasted – and (bonus points here) it even freezes well, too!
This Year's Unsung Heroes
Every year, when we announce our best healthy recipes of the year, we have a fun little tradition that's maybe my favorite part of all. Each member of our family also chooses an "unsung hero" – just one more recipe that we each think TOTALLY should've made the list, but somehow just didn't. Here are this year's also-rans ... drumroll, please ...
Amy's Pick ~ It's pretty tough for a recipe that was just posted in December, at the very end of the year, to gain enough fast momentum to catapult itself into the top 10 recipes of an entire year. Plus, we've already got a wildly popular wreath-shaped Christmas Salad on our site, so this one's got some stiff competition.
But without a moment's hesitation, Amy picked this recipe as her unsung hero, cooing, "This is absolutely adorable, and makes any table into a festive wonderland!" She's definitely right about that! (And, it's crazy-delicious, too!)
Ty's Pick ~ Ty didn't hesitate in making his selection, either. The intro description of this recipe post pretty much says it all, describing these sandwiches as Ty's "ultimate crave-worthy creation" and a "mind-blowing, life-changing, you-have-to-try-this recipe"! What else do you really need to know here, right?
Ty laughingly adds that this recipe is, " ... so good that I wrote about it for college application essays!" (Now let's all please cross our fingers that those essays end up in some scholarship $$$, m'kay?!?)
Scott's Pick ~ Scott was out of town on a business trip as I was finalizing this year's list, but the email he sent me with his top pick says it all:
Ok. Hands down the "turkey salad."
1) It’s not really a turkey salad (there's no actual turkey in it!) – so that’s an unexpected twist just to start.
2) It adds a fun flair to the stuffy old Thanksgiving Dinner table.
3) Everyone loves a caricature of a turkey!
4) Walnuts for feet? That’s hilarious.
5) Snood! That’s just a hoot to say. Snood! Everyone needs to know that word!
(Pssst ... in case you're wondering, a snood is the squiggly red thing next to a turkey's beak. My whole family learned a super-useful new word along with getting a wildly delicious salad out of the deal!)
Shelley's Pick ~ And now it's my turn. Hmmmmm ... this is always like trying to pick my favorite child. If I didn't love the recipes, I wouldn't have posted them, each wonderful in their own special ways and dear to my heart. So, how to choose?
I almost went with those gorgeous Open-Faced Tomato Sandwiches. They're one of the most amazing things I've found to do with perfect summer tomatoes.
But, in the end, I guess I'd have to pick this wonderful Turkey Chili. It's been a beloved classic family recipe in my family ... since before I was even in the family! Handed down to me from my mother-in-law and adapted out of an old, dog-eared, food-stained, mid-twentieth century cookbook, this is an absolute classic.
I usually make a huge triple batch for my twins' family birthday party, and everyone excitedly devours it as if they’ve never tried it before … even though it’s exactly the same as what I served last year … and the year before that. Just always a favorite.
More of Our Very BEST Recipes
In case you missed some, or if you’re just now joining us on our healthy eating journey here at Two Healthy Kitchens, here’s where you can find all of our most popular recipes:
Oh – and one little note on our annual “best recipes” lists: we always include only recipes in our Top 10.
There were lots of other non-recipe posts you loved in 2019 – like Amy’s helpful post on Which Foods to Eat After Wisdom Teeth Surgery. Who knew that after the poor kid spent part of her summer recovering from a miserable, extra-difficult surgery, she’d turn it all into a reference guide so many of our readers would find helpful?! Hey, girl – way to make lemonade out of those lemons!