Quick and Easy Meals for Athletes

Being an athlete can require a lot of time running from practice to work to trainings–not leaving much time for meal planning, shopping or cooking. However, by keeping healthy and fresh ingredients on hand, you can have nutritious meals and snacks ready quickly and easily. Try these recipes to see for yourself!

BBQ Chicken Sandwich

  • 6 oz. grilled chicken breast
  • 1 slice cheese
  • Lettuce
  • 2 tablespoons BBQ sauce
  • 2 slices whole-wheat bread

Power-Packed Smoothie

  • 1 banana
  • 1 cup spinach leaves
  • 1/2 cup low-fat vanilla yogurt
  • 1 cup low-fat milk, and ice
  • 2 tablespoons of your favorite nut butter

Blend until smooth.

Turkey-Avo Wrap

  • 4 slices turkey lunch meat
  • 1/2 avocado (option to mash it up with lemon juice and salt)
  • Lettuce
  • Whole- grain tortilla

Super Simple Nachos

  • 25 baked tortilla chips
  • 1/2 cup refried black beans
  • Salsa and/or green chilies
  • 1/3 cup shredded cheese

Quick Chicken Parmesan

  • 6 oz. pre-cooked grilled chicken breast
  • 1/4 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 2 cups cooked noodles
  • 1/2 cup marinara sauce
  • Side salad

Sprinkle cheese over chicken and broil until cheese melts. Serve chicken over noodles and sauce.


  • 1/2 cup of cooked brown rice
  • 4 ounces of cooked chicken, steak, or tofu
  • 2 cups of mixed vegetables (fresh or frozen)
  • 3 tablespoons of teriyaki sauce
  • Side salad with an Asian dressing

After the chicken, steak or tofu has been cooked, add the fresh or frozen vegetables to your pan and sauté for a few minutes until tender or thawed. Add sauce to meat and veggie mixture. Serve on rice.

The Perfect Pizza

  • 1 personal size whole-wheat crust
  • 1/4-1/2 cup pizza sauce
  • 1/2 cup shredded cheese
  • Vegetables (such as diced bell peppers, onions, mushrooms, broccoli, artichokes)
  • 6 pieces pepperoni
  • Fruit salad on the side

Turkey Burgers

  • 1 whole wheat bun
  • 1/4 lb ground turkey mixed with seasonings of choice and 1 tablespoon of sour cream
  • Toppings of choice
  • 1 sweet potato, cut and seasoned with salt and pepper

Grill or broil patty to an internal temperature of 165 degrees. Top with a slice of cheese and toppings of choice. Bake the sweet potato fries on a greased baking sheet as a side!

Easy Ways to Add Calories to Your Day

  • Reach for whole grains for added fiber and nutrients.
  • Choose full fat dairy, dressings and snacks.
  • Add nut butters to protein shakes and smoothies.
  • Toss some grains into your salads. Quinoa, couscous, and barley are some tasty additions!
  • Include more nuts and seeds in your diet. They can be added to trail mix, mixed into baked goods, or used as a topping for pasta dishes and salads.
  • Snack intentionally throughout the day on foods that you may not be getting enough of at meals—like vegetables or dairy foods.