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25 delicious (and delightfully healthy) chicken recipes for weight loss

by | Aug 8, 2019 | Last updated Dec 19, 2023 | Blog, Digest

  • Chicken is a low-fat, high-protein food, making it a great option for weight loss.
  • This protein source can be prepared almost any way and take on any flavor profile.
  • There are tons of healthy chicken recipes for weight loss out there waiting for you.

So, you’ve got a weight loss goal and are dreading eating bland chicken with rice over and over again. But it doesn’t have to be that way.

The good news is there are endless options for healthy chicken recipes for weight loss that pack a flavor punch. You can excite your taste buds while still maintaining a calorie deficit

We’ve rounded up 25 low-calorie chicken recipes for weight loss, so you’ve got options whether you’re craving something creamy, crispy, or tangy.

Note: Consult your health care provider before making any dietary changes.

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Noom’s favorite healthy chicken recipes for weight loss

At Noom, we love chicken because it’s a versatile ingredient you can use in a variety of ways to create filling and flavorful meals.

Here are five of our favorite healthy chicken recipes for weight loss that we know you’ll love, too.

1. Chinese chicken salad recipe

Ingredients: 

  • 1 head napa cabbage, cored and sliced into thin strips
  • 1 tablespoon agave nectar, sugar, or honey
  • 2 cups chopped or shredded chicken (freshly grilled or from a store-bought rotisserie chicken) 
  • 1 cup fresh cilantro leaves
  • 1 cup clementine or mandarin oranges
  • 1/4 cup sliced almonds, toasted
  • 1 pinch each of salt and pepper 

Steps: 

  • Toss cabbage strips in a large bowl with the sugar. 
  • If you prefer the chicken to be warmed, heat it in the microwave for 30 seconds with a tablespoon of water or balsamic vinegar. 
  • Toss all ingredients together in a large bowl and season with salt and pepper.

This dish serves four and contains 380 calories per serving. 

2. Chipotle honey mustard chicken fingers

Ingredients: 

  • 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken tenders
  • 1 pinch salt and black pepper to taste
  • 3 egg whites, lightly beaten
  • 2 cups panko gluten-free bread crumbs
  • 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon chipotle spice mix
  • 1 tablespoon honey

Steps: 

  1. Preheat the oven to 450°F. 
  2. Season the chicken with salt and pepper.
  3. Place the egg whites in a shallow bowl. 
  4. Place the crumbs on a plate and season them with salt and pepper. 
  5. Dip the chicken tenders into the egg, then toss in the crumbs, being sure to coat fully.
  6. Place the breaded chicken pieces on a baking sheet coated with nonstick cooking spray and bake for 10 to 12 minutes, until the crumbs have browned and the chicken is firm.
  7. Combine mustard, chipotle spice mix, and honey in a large bowl to make the sauce.
  8. Toss the cooked chicken tenders in the mixture so they are evenly coated with the spicy-sweet sauce.

This dish serves four and contains 250 calories per serving.

3. Chicken fajita burritos

Ingredients: 

  • 1/2 tablespoon canola oil
  • 1 large onion, sliced
  • 1 red bell pepper, sliced
  • 1 poblano or green bell pepper, sliced
  • 1 pinch salt and black pepper
  • 1/2 can black beans, drained
  • 1/4 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 lime, juiced 
  • 2 tablespoons hot sauce
  • 4 flour tortillas (10”)
  • 1 cup Monterey Jack cheese, shredded
  • 2 cups shredded chicken (about half a rotisserie chicken)
  • 1 cup tomato salsa or salsa verde 

Steps: 

  • Heat the oil in a large skillet over high heat. Add the onion and all of the peppers. Cook for about 7 to 8 minutes or until browned. Add salt and pepper.
  • Combine the beans with the cumin in a saucepan. Warm through and keep on low, adding a teaspoon of water here and there to prevent them from drying out. Add the lime juice and a few shakes of hot sauce as well. 
  • Preheat a griddle, cast-iron skillet, or large nonstick pan over medium heat.
  • Preheat each tortilla for a few seconds (to make it more pliable) before building each burrito. 
  • Add beans, onion-pepper mixture, chicken, salsa, and cheese to each tortilla.
  • Roll each into a burrito.
  • Place each completed burrito on the skillet. Cook for a minute on each side to toast. Then serve. 

This dish serves four and contains 375 calories per serving. 

4. Salsa verde chicken tacos

Ingredients:

  • 8 corn tortillas
  • 3 cups de-skinned, shredded rotisserie chicken
  • 2 cups bottled salsa verde
  • 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese or other favorite 
  • 1 medium onion minced
  • 1 cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • 2 limes quartered

Steps

  • Heat tortillas directly on a burner or in a saute pan until pliable. 
  • Combine chicken and salsa in a large mixing bowl and divide among the tortillas. 
  • Top with shredded cheese, minced onion, and cilantro. 
  • Serve with lime wedges.

This dish serves eight and contains 354 calories per serving. 

5. Spicy Thai basil chicken 

Ingredients:

  • 1 tablespoon peanut or canola oil
  • 1 medium red onion, thinly sliced
  • 2 jalapeño peppers, thinly sliced
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 pound boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into small pieces
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • Dash of Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 tablespoon low-sodium soy sauce
  • 2 cups fresh basil leaves (Thai basil if available) 
  • 2 cups rice, cooked

Steps: 

  • Heat the oil in a wok or large skillet.
  • When hot, add the onion, jalapeños, and garlic. Saute for 2 minutes, stirring to keep the ingredients in motion.
  • Add the chicken and cook for 2 to 3 minutes. The meat will begin to brown. 
  • Add the sauces, sugar, and basil. Cook for 1 minute more.
  • Serve over rice.

This dish serves four and contains 220 calories per serving. 

Salad recipes with chicken

You really can’t go wrong with a chicken salad. They’re easy to toss together, and you can customize them with endless flavors (or whatever you’re feeling that day).

And these salads are no exception. Try them for a flavor-packed lunch or dinner that gives you plenty of protein and veggies.

  1. Grilled Caesar chicken salad from Eat This, Not That! (410 calories per serving)
  2. Chopped Cobb salad with chicken from EatingWell (410 calories per serving)
  3. Healthy ranch chicken salad from Healthy Fitness Meals (315 calories per serving)
  4. Greek grilled chicken salad from The Mediterranean Dish (335 calories per serving)

Slow cooker chicken recipes

Sure, chicken recipes in the slow cooker save you time (and stress). The end results are also aromatic, mouth-watering dishes.

Toss these meals into a slow cooker, go about your day, and in a few hours, your delicious chicken feast awaits.

  1. Low-carb creamy lemon chicken from Stylish Cravings (410 calories per serving)
  2. Keto-friendly garlic chicken Alfredo with broccoli from EatWell101 (274 calories per serving)
  3. Butter chicken from Well Plated by Erin (346 calories per serving)

Reflection exercise

Which one or two recipes from this list do you have in mind to try out this week? Which side dishes do you plan to pair with them? 

Don’t be afraid to get creative and take notes about what works (and what doesn’t).

Chicken soup recipes

It’s a win-win when you combine the comfort of soup with healthy, hearty ingredients like chicken, beans, and kale. 

Try these chicken soup recipes that are good for the soul and body.

  1. Chicken gnocchi soup from Pinch of Yum (282 calories per serving)
  2. White chicken chili from The Magical Slow Cooker (278 calories per serving)
  3. Chicken and kale soup from Clean Plate Mama (291 calories per serving)

Rotisserie chicken recipes

Rotisserie chickens are a game changer. Along with being great on their own, rotisserie chickens can also be chopped or shredded to create new, healthy chicken recipes for weight loss.

These easy recipes repurpose rotisserie chicken in interesting ways to hit a variety of flavor profiles—like Italian and Mexican.

  1. Creamy white chicken and spinach lasagna from Ahead of Thyme (381 calories per serving)
  2. Chicken pot pie from Eat This, Not That! (350 calories per serving)
  3. BBQ chicken stuffed sweet potatoes from All The Healthy Things (478 calories per serving)
  4. Chicken enchiladas from Evolving Table (315 calories per serving)

And don’t forget about the trick of using a mixer to make shredding chicken easier. Here at Noom, we’re all about making things simpler.

Air fryer chicken recipes

Some of us might cite the air fryer as the greatest invention of the 21st century. You get the crispiness of deep-fried foods without the grease and less cooking time than in the oven.

Plus, as these recipes show, the air fryer can give you a new take on some classic dishes.

  1. Air fryer chicken and veggies from Gimme Delicious (230 calories per serving)
  2. No-breading chicken tenders from Hungry Hobby (149 calories per serving)
  3. Parmesan-crusted chicken breasts from Real Housemoms (237 calories per serving)

Baked chicken recipes

Tried-and-true baked chicken recipes are good to keep in your back pocket for weeknights when you want something easy to throw together. 

Enjoy these oven recipes for chicken that are low effort but don’t skimp on the flavor.

  1. Honey garlic chicken thighs from Munchkin Time (470 calories per serving)
  2. Classic roasted chicken from All The Healthy Things (354 calories per serving)
  3. Sheet pan balsamic chicken and veggies from The Real Food Dietitians (353 calories per serving)

Ready to make a lasting change?

A healthier you, wherever you are.

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Find your favorite foods for weight loss

Chicken is a great food to help you make delicious, healthy meals. But it’s not the only food that will help you make strides toward your weight loss goals.

Try pairing one of these chicken recipes with brown rice, cauliflower rice, or roasted veggies, like zucchini, broccoli, and asparagus.

And for more flavorful and healthy ingredients to add to your meals, check out this list of the best foods to support your weight loss.