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1,500-Calorie Meal Plan

author image Ashley Ritzo, R.D.
Ashley Ritzo is a registered/licensed dietitian with a B.S. in dietetics from the University of Missouri. She also holds a certificate of training in adult weight management from the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. Ritzo has worked in inpatient and outpatient hospital settings, with community organizations and as a health and wellness coach.
1,500-Calorie Meal Plan
Shopping list with pen.

You know the drill – eat more fruits and vegetables, whole grains, lean proteins, low-fat dairy. But putting it all together into a day’s worth of meals and snacks is time-consuming. Calorie needs vary from person to person, so it is important to learn the right amount for you by consulting with your doctor or other trusted health professional. A 1,500-calorie-per-day meal plan is safe for most people, but you may need more or less depending on your height, weight, age, sex and activity level.

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Toasted English muffin.
Toasted English muffin.

For breakfast -- the most important meal of the day -- have a toasted whole grain English muffin with 1/2 teaspoon of honey on each half, 1/2 cup of 1-percent fat cottage cheese and one medium pear for 318 calories. For your beverage, have black coffee or unsweetened tea, which both provide zero calories.


Chili potato.
Chili potato.

Escape from your responsibilities midday by indulging in a chili cheese potato consisting of one medium baked potato, topped with 1 cup of homemade chili and 2 tablespoons of 2-percent reduced-fat shredded cheese. For your sides, have 1 cup of seedless grapes and 2/3 cup of raw sugar snap peas. This lunch provides 439 calories. Drink a large glass of water to wash everything down.


Chicken fajitas close up.
Chicken fajitas close up.

For dinner, prepare chicken fajitas with 4 ounces of seasoned, boneless, skinless chicken breast, and about 1/4 cup each of sliced yellow onion and sliced bell pepper, cooked in 2 teaspoons of olive oil. Divide the onions, peppers and chicken on top of two small corn tortillas and top with 1 tablespoon of 2-percent reduced fat shredded cheddar cheese each. Serve with 1 ounce of whole grain tortilla chips, 1/2 cup of pico de gallo and water for a 521-calorie evening meal.


Scoop of almonds pouring onto table.
Scoop of almonds pouring onto table.

To keep your metabolism running at its best, avoid going long periods of time without eating. Make a plan to eat something every three to four hours throughout the day. For snacks, munch on one medium banana; 1/2 ounce of almonds, which is about 11; and a large tomato, and sprinkled with a pinch of sea salt. All three snacks together equal 220 calories, for a day’s total of 1,498 calories.

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