7 Wholesome Intestine Recipes for No-Cook dinner Meals

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Eating a plant-based diet is a foolproof way to improve your gut health.

Credit: KarpenkovDenis / iStock / GettyImages

Sometimes you may not feel like turning on the oven or taking the time to cook, but still want to have a healthy meal that is good for your gut.

Quick refreshment: Your gut health is affected by the balance of your microbiome, or the accumulation of microbes that live in your gut, according to the Mayo Clinic. Not only does this affect your digestive health, it also affects your overall health, which is why it is such a big deal.

There are a variety of foods that can have a positive impact on your gut health, such as:

  • Prebiotic fiber: artichokes, asparagus, fennel and leek
  • Fermented foods that are high in probiotics: kefir, yogurt, and kimchi
  • High fiber foods: whole grains, fruits, and vegetables
  • Resistant starches: uncooked oats, legumes and unripe bananas

To make it easier for you to have a healthy intestinal diet, we’ve put together seven healthy and delicious cook-free meals that are good for your bowels and require absolutely no heat.

1. Strawberries and oatmeal overnight

Glasses of overnight oats with strawberries on wooden surface

Overnight oats are a great breakfast option for on the go.

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Overnight oats are a great time-saving no-cook alternative to traditionally cooked oats. Instead of cooking oatmeal on a stove or in the microwave, overnight oats will thicken in the refrigerator overnight.

Similar to cooked oats, overnight oats provide fiber and prebiotics. When it comes to resistant starch, however, overnight oats are actually a better source than cooked oats, according to a February 2020 study by the Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. Because resistant starches can be destroyed when cooked, the oats are left uncooked to get a higher dose.

2. PB Banana Breakfast Chia Pudding

Chia pudding in a glass on an orange cloth napkin

Chia pudding “cooks” in the refrigerator for several hours.

Credit: Lauren Harris-Pincus, MS, RDN

This breakfast recipe uses chia seeds as the main ingredient. Chia seeds are intestinal-healthy seeds that are popular for their gel-like properties and numerous nutritional benefits. When water is added to the chia seeds, they “gel” and expand, almost resembling tapioca. A 1-ounce serving of chia seeds contains 10 grams of fiber, according to the USDA.

This recipe is also low-FODMAP, meaning it’s free of short-chain carbohydrates, which are difficult for people to digest if they have certain digestive problems like irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). According to the Mayo Clinic, a low-FODMAP diet is recommended for people with IBS.

Banana chai smoothie in a glass surrounded by oats and banana on a white surface

This tasty breakfast smoothie contains ingredients that are healthy for the gut such as bananas, oats and kefir.

Credit: Cara Harbstreet, MS, RD, LD

This simple breakfast smoothie recipe is packed with prebiotics and probiotics. Oats, banana, and honey serve as prebiotic sources in this recipe, while kefir contains beneficial probiotics. In addition, the smoothie provides you with plenty of fiber from oats and bananas.

4. Kimchi power salad with edamame and quinoa

two kimchi salads in blue bowls on wooden base

This healthy, plant-based salad is packed with flavor and nutritious benefits.

Credit: Jenna Butler / LIVESTRONG.com

Prepared in just 15 minutes, this plant-based salad is as filling and tasty as it is nutritious. Cruciferous vegetables like kale and cabbage in this recipe are good sources of fiber, according to the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. A standout ingredient in this salad, kimchi is a fermented food that provides healthy bacteria for your intestines.

5. Salad of shaved vegetables with sardines

grated vegetable salad with sardines on a white serving plate with cutlery

Shaved vegetables are mind-blowing in this salad recipe.

Credit: Colin Clark / LIVESTRONG.com

If you’re looking for a non-boiling salad that will blow your mind, this recipe is for you. The complementary textures and colors of this salad would spice up any lunch or dinner. The variety of fruits and vegetables in this recipe provides you with plenty of gut-friendly fiber. Bonus: The fennel also contains beneficial prebiotics.

6. Smashed chickpea club sandwich

Smashed chickpea sandwich on a light brown placemat

This high-fiber chickpea sandwich on whole grain bread is a delicious no-cook meal for lunch or dinner.

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If you’re in the mood for something heartier than a salad and still don’t want to turn the oven on, this sandwich is for you. Loaded with high fiber whole grains and chickpeas, it’s no surprise that this healthy gut recipe has an impressive 17 grams of fiber per serving.

7. Lentil, raisin and spinach salad

Spinach and lentil salad with tomatoes on a white plate

This hearty spinach and lentil salad provides you with plenty of intestinal-friendly prebiotic fiber.

Credit: LIVESTRONG.com

Here’s another cook-free, gut-friendly salad for you – this time with lentils. Lentils are a source of prebiotic fiber that nourishes the good bacteria in your intestines. Lentils are also one of the few legumes that are actually low in FODMAP, which makes them safe for those on a low-FODMAP diet. You can buy the legumes pre-cooked or prepare a large amount earlier in the week for stress-free meals.