26 recipes under 500 calories -- like lasagna and red velvet cupcakes

If one of your New Year's resolutions is to eat better, you may be relieved to know that you don't necessarily have to jump into a no-carb, all-salad diet — or cut out dessert.

We have 26 satisfying meals and desserts, each dish with fewer than 500 calories. And some of them might surprise you. Among these are recipes for pumpkin lasagna, hearty stews, Caesar salad sandwiches and even red velvet cupcakes. Yes, cupcakes.


Happy New Year, everyone! And please keep up the good eats.

We'll start you off with a recipe for warm Caesar salad sandwiches with chicken, and you can view all 26 recipes here.


Nonstick cooking spray

1 small clove garlic, pressed

1/4 cup light mayonnaise

1/2 tablespoon anchovy paste

1/2 teaspoon lemon juice

4 boneless skinless chicken breasts, about 1 pound


8 slices French bread

2 cups sliced romaine leaves

1 tablespoon grated Parmesan cheese

4 round slices red onion


1. Heat a grill or stovetop grill pan sprayed with nonstick cooking spray.

2. Combine the pressed garlic, mayonnaise, anchovy paste and lemon juice. Set aside.

3. Lightly season the chicken breasts with salt. Cut 1 garlic clove in half; rub the chicken breasts with both halves. Spray the chicken with nonstick cooking spray, then grill it about 10 minutes. Turn the chicken and grill until the chicken breasts are browned and no longer pink in the center, about 10 minutes. Place the chicken on a platter and keep it warm.

4. Cut the remaining garlic clove in half and rub it on the bread slices. Lightly spray one side of the slices with nonstick cooking spray and place the bread sprayed-side down on the grill until lightly browned, about 2 minutes. Turn, spray the other sides with cooking spray, and grill until lightly browned.

5. Toss together the romaine and Parmesan, then set aside.

6. Spread the grilled bread with the mayonnaise mixture. Slice the chicken breasts into 1/2-inch thick slices and arrange one sliced chicken breast on each of 4 slices of bread.

7. Divide the romaine among the sandwiches, placing it on top of the chicken. Top each piece of chicken with an onion round, separating it into pieces, then top with the second slice bread. Cut the sandwiches in half and serve.

Each serving: 398 calories; 709 mg. sodium; 92 mg. cholesterol; 11 grams fat; 2 grams saturated fat; 35 grams carbohydrates; 38 grams protein; 2.74 grams fiber.

There's always room for cupcakes. Follow me on Twitter @Jenn_Harris_