Whole in One

Complete, Healthy Meals in a Single Pot, Sheet Pan, or Skillet


By Ellie Krieger

Photographs by Randi Baird

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New York Times bestselling author and James Beard Award winner Ellie Krieger gives her signature spin to the one-pot trend for meals that are nutritious, easy, and delicious.

We want the food we love and we want to be healthy, but who has the time or energy to figure it all out? James Beard Award winner and bestselling cookbook author Ellie Krieger shows you how to create a meal in a single pot, sheet pan, baking dish, or skillet — no additional gadgets or tools required. Divided by main ingredients — meat, poultry, seafood, vegetarian, dessert — and further separated into sheet pan, baking dish, skillet, and pot-cooked meals, the 125 nutritionally complete dinner recipes (plus healthy desserts) can each be prepared simply.

Whole in One puts home-cooked meals within reach by minimizing the work load on both ends of the dinner process — cooking and clean-up — with one pot dishes that check every box. Minimal steps? Check. Crowd-pleasing flavors? Check. Easy-to-find ingredients? Check. Nutritionally complete? Check. Breezy cleanup? Check.


Ingredient Notes


Here are a few helpful buying and prepping tips for the dozens of wonderful chicken recipes in this book. For recipes that involve skinless, boneless chicken breast, if it is not cut into small pieces, I typically call for pounding the chicken to a ½-inch thickness. That ensures even cooking (and a juicy, tender final product), remedying the issue of one side of the breast being considerably thicker than the other. To pound the chicken, just put it between two layers of plastic wrap on a cutting board and smash it with a mallet or rolling pin. It just takes a couple of minutes. Alternatively, you can skip the pounding step by purchasing chicken labeled “thin cut” or cutlets. However, I have found that the thickness of the pieces, even those in the same package, vary widely, from ¼ to ¾ inch. It is fine to use and extra-convenient; just remember to adjust the cooking times depending on the thickness of each piece.

No matter what type of chicken you are buying, the size of the pieces can vary widely, even in the same package. I typically call for boneless breast pieces that are 6 ounces each and bone-in breast pieces that are about 12 ounces each, which are on the small side of what is found in a typical grocery store. If the pieces you get are much larger than that, particularly for chicken on the bone where you are not pounding it to a uniform thickness, you will likely need to increase the cooking time somewhat to ensure an internal temperature of 165°F.

Also note that for the bone-in chicken breast recipes here, I cook it with the skin on so the chicken stays moist inside and gets crispy and golden brown outside. It’s up to you whether you want to eat all or part of the skin once the dish is plated (I personally usually eat at least part of the skin), but note that the nutrition analysis is done with the skin removed. For the record, including the skin adds about 60 calories and 2.5 g of saturated fat per portion to the total.


It used to be that dishes best served over rice were a challenge, if not impossible, to turn into a one-pot dinner. Not anymore. Now thanks to the wide availability of packaged, precooked grain options, it’s easy to have brown rice (and other whole grains) ready in minutes in a microwave—no extra pot needed. I have found that frozen grains yield the best results—coming out as fresh tasting and fluffy as just-cooked. And when you buy the plain variety, it has just one ingredient on the label: the cooked grain. I call for frozen brown rice in several recipes in this book, noting in the method the best time in the cooking process to heat it up. If you are halving or doubling the recipe, keep in mind that the microwave time for the grain depends on how much you are heating, from 1½ to 2 minutes per cup. Also it’s worth noting that 1 cup of frozen, cooked rice yields ¾ cup of heated rice (which makes sense if you think about how ice takes up more space than when it melts into water). If you prefer, shelf-stable pouches of cooked grain will also work as an alternative to frozen.


In many of the recipes in the plant-protein chapter, I give you the option of using either chicken or vegetable broth (both low-sodium), since the chapter is not vegetarian per se and I generally prefer the clean, more neutral taste of chicken broth (or stock) over that of most vegetable broths. To make those recipes vegetarian (or in some cases vegan), use whichever vegetable broth you prefer. (The difference between stock and broth is that stock is made with bones and tastes somewhat richer than broth. Otherwise, for the recipes in this book, you can use either broth or stock interchangeably.)

Regarding the seafood stock I call for in some of the fish and shellfish recipes, several boxed brands are available and you can often find seafood or fish stock in the freezer section and in a jar as a bouillon base. Also, many fishmongers sell house-made stock. The salt content of these products vary widely and I have not been able to find a brand labeled “low-sodium.” I typically use the stock my fishmonger makes, which is relatively low in salt, or I buy the boxed version with the lowest sodium level available.


Many of the recipes here are inherently gluten-free, but for those that are not, I provide gluten-free ingredient alternatives where I am confident they will work. If you are cooking for someone who is strictly gluten-free, be sure to check that any condiments you use, such as prepared spice mixtures and mustards, are made without gluten-containing ingredients, and only use grain products specifically labeled “gluten-free” because even grains that do not naturally contain gluten may be contaminated if processed in the same facility as wheat, barley, or rye.

potato swiss chard frittata

Makes 4 servings


PER SERVING: Calories 330; Total Fat 21 g (Sat Fat 4 g, Mono Fat 13 g, Poly Fat 3 g); Protein 13 g; Carb 26 g; Fiber 4 g; Cholesterol 280 mg; Sodium 560 mg; Total Sugar 3 g (Added Sugar 0 g)

EXCELLENT SOURCE OF: iodine, iron, molybdenum, protein, riboflavin, selenium, vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin K

GOOD SOURCE OF: calcium, fiber, folate, magnesium, manganese, pantothenic acid, phosphorous, potassium, vitamin B6, vitamin B12, vitamin D

Potatoes add just the right heft to a frittata to make it a substantial main course. Here, creamy Yukon golds are diced and sautéed in olive oil with onions, then tossed with Swiss chard (you could substitute spinach or kale) and seasoned with fragrant smoked paprika and garlic. Eggs are added to the skillet and the mixture cooks mostly on the stovetop, then finishes in the oven. The recipe takes its flavor cues from the omelet-like Spanish dish called a tortilla, but omits the copious amounts of oil and the potentially stressful technique of flipping it onto a plate used to make that dish. Here, you get all the luscious satisfaction in a lighter, fuss-free way. Serve it with sliced ripe tomatoes, drizzled with extra-virgin olive oil, and sprinkled with sea salt, alongside.

½ bunch Swiss chard (8 ounces)

¼ cup olive oil, divided

1 pound Yukon gold potatoes, unpeeled, diced into ½-inch pieces

1 medium-size onion, chopped

1 garlic clove, minced

½ teaspoon smoked paprika

½ teaspoon salt

¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

6 large eggs, beaten

1. Remove the leaves from the stems of the Swiss chard. Trim any tough edges off the bottom of the stems and chop the remaining tender parts. Chop the chard leaves, keeping them separate from the chopped stems.

2. Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil over medium heat in 10-inch cast-iron or nonstick, ovenproof skillet. Add the Swiss chard stems and cook, stirring occasionally, until they are firm-tender, 3 to 4 minutes, then add the leaves and cook until they are just wilted, 1 minute more. Transfer the chard to a bowl. Lower the heat to medium-low and add the remaining 3 tablespoons of oil to the skillet. Add the potatoes and onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until the potatoes are tender but not browned, about 15 minutes. Stir in the garlic and cook for 1 minute more. Return the Swiss chard to the skillet, add the smoked paprika, salt, and pepper, and stir to combine.

3. Pour the eggs evenly over the potato mixture and cook until the egg mixture has set around the edges and somewhat, but not entirely, set in the middle, 6 to 8 minutes.

4. While the eggs cook, preheat the broiler. Place the skillet under the broiler and cook until the surface is set and golden brown, 1 to 2 minutes. Allow to rest for 5 minutes before cutting into four wedges.

The frittata will keep in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. Serve warm or at room temperature.

warm chipotle red bean dip

Makes 4 servings

SERVING SIZE: ¼ cup dip, 2 tortillas, and 1½ cups vegetables

PER SERVING: Calories 460; Total Fat 10 g (Sat Fat 3.5 g, Mono Fat 4 g, Poly Fat 1 g); Protein 19 g; Carb 73 g; Fiber 17 g; Cholesterol 15 mg; Sodium 470 mg; Total Sugar 6 g (Added Sugar 0 g)

EXCELLENT SOURCE OF: calcium, fiber, folate, iron, magnesium, phosphorous, potassium, vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin K, zinc

GOOD SOURCE OF: iodine, manganese, molybdenum, riboflavin, thiamine, vitamin B6

There’s your average bean dip, and then there’s this one: warm, creamy red beans laced with the smoky zing of chipotle chile, covered in bubbly melted cheese and served right in the skillet. It’s the kind of dish that makes people want to gather round and dig in, and they won’t stop until it has disappeared. You can certainly serve this as a nibble at a party, but this recipe treats it as the centerpiece of a complete dinner, where various vegetables and warm corn tortillas are put out along with it for a communal dipping (or DIY bean taco)–style dinner. It’s a fun and filling meal that will make dinner feel like an extended happy hour.


1 tablespoon olive oil

1 small onion, diced

2 garlic cloves, minced

½ teaspoon ground cumin

¼ teaspoon ground coriander

2 (15-ounce) cans low-sodium pinto or other red beans, drained and rinsed, divided

2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice

1 canned chipotle chile in adobo, seeded, plus 2 teaspoons of the adobo sauce

½ teaspoon salt

3 tablespoons coarsely chopped fresh cilantro leaves, plus more for serving

½ cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese


8 (6-inch) corn tortillas

1 medium-size jicama, cut into wide sticks

16 small hearts of romaine lettuce leaves

4 radishes, cut into wedges

1. Prepare the dip: Preheat the oven to 425°F. Heat the oil in a 10-inch ovenproof skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and cook until it softens, about 3 minutes. Stir in the garlic, cumin, and coriander and cook for 30 seconds more. Remove from the heat and set aside to cool slightly.

2. Put half of the beans, 2 tablespoons of water, the lime juice, chipotle and adobo sauce, salt, and the onion mixture in the small bowl of a food processor and process until smooth.

3. Return the bean puree to the skillet. Stir in the remaining beans and the cilantro. Sprinkle with the cheese and place in the oven. Bake until the cheese is melted, about 15 minutes. Remove from the oven and let rest for 5 minutes.

4. Just before serving, while the dip is resting, wrap the tortillas in foil and place in the oven to warm for 3 to 5 minutes.

5. Serve the dip in the skillet (with a towel around the handle!), garnished with cilantro, with the tortillas, jicama, lettuce, and radishes for scooping. Alternatively, you can serve taco style with the jicama and radishes cut into matchsticks and the lettuce shredded.

spinach and artichoke shakshuka

Makes 4 servings

SERVING SIZE: 1 egg, ¾ cup vegetable mixture, and 1 pita

PER SERVING: Calories 400; Total Fat 17 g (Sat Fat 5 g, Mono Fat 7 g, Poly Fat 2 g); Protein 19 g; Carb 47 g; Fiber 2 g; Cholesterol 205 mg; Sodium 785 mg; Total Sugar 6 g (Added Sugar 0 g)

EXCELLENT SOURCE OF: calcium, folate, magnesium, manganese, phosphorous, protein, riboflavin, selenium, thiamine, vitamin A, vitamin B6, vitamin C, vitamin K

GOOD SOURCE OF: fiber, iodine, iron, molybdenum, niacin, pantothenic acid, potassium, vitamin B12, vitamin D, zinc

Shakshuka has earned a fashionable following these days, appearing on all the trendy restaurant menus and Instagram feeds. It is a traditional Middle Eastern dish of eggs simmered in a skillet of spiced tomato sauce that can be served for pretty much any meal of the day. But while the red-sauce version is most typical, there are many creative variations possible. This version goes all green with a base of spinach and artichokes seasoned with cumin, coriander, garlic, and a hint of peppery heat, then topped with salty, creamy feta and fronds of fresh dill. It is out of the ordinary in the best possible way. Enjoy it scooped up with warm pita bread.

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 large onion, diced (2 cups)

3 garlic cloves, minced

1 small green hot chile pepper, such as serrano or jalapeño, seeded and finely chopped

½ teaspoon ground cumin

½ teaspoon ground coriander

¼ teaspoon salt, plus more to taste

¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, plus more to taste

10 ounces baby spinach (10 cups lightly packed), coarsely chopped

1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice

1½ cups frozen artichoke hearts, thawed and chopped

4 large eggs

½ cup crumbled feta cheese

2 tablespoons fresh dill fronds

4 whole wheat pita breads, lightly toasted

1. Heat the oil in a large, high-sided skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, 4 to 5 minutes. Add the garlic, chile pepper, cumin, coriander, salt, and black pepper and cook for 30 seconds more.

2. Add half of the spinach and then the lemon juice and cook, stirring, adding the rest of the spinach in a couple of batches as it wilts and there is room in the pan for more. Once the spinach is all wilted but still bright green, stir in the artichoke hearts and cook for 1 minute more.

3. Spread out the mixture evenly in the pan. Break one of the eggs into a small ramekin or bowl. Form a well in the mixture and transfer the egg into it. Repeat with the remaining three eggs, creating separate wells for them. Scatter the cheese around the surface. Cover and cook until the egg whites become opaque and the yolks are still slightly runny, about 4 minutes. Serve garnished with dill, seasoned with additional salt and pepper to taste, with the pita alongside.

zucchini pancakes with yogurt-feta sauce

Makes 4 servings

SERVING SIZE: 3 pancakes and ¼ cup sauce

PER SERVING: Calories 330; Total Fat 24 g (Sat Fat 7 g, Mono Fat 13 g, Poly Fat 3 g); Protein 15 g; Carb 15 g; Fiber 2 g; Cholesterol 160 mg; Sodium 550 mg; Total Sugar 7 g (Added Sugar 0 g)

EXCELLENT SOURCE OF: calcium, magnesium, molybdenum, phosphorous, protein, riboflavin, selenium, vitamin B6, vitamin C, vitamin K

GOOD SOURCE OF: folate, iodine, iron, manganese, pantothenic acid, potassium, vitamin A, vitamin B12, zinc

I initially made these savory pancakes as a way to put a dent in an overload of summer zucchini, but I have since found myself making them over and over, year-round. They make a homey and fast dinner, lunch, or weekend breakfast, and are also an elegant brunch entrée and (in mini-size) a cocktail party food. The shredded zucchini is squeezed of its liquid (an essential step for keeping these light and crisp) and is held together with egg and a little whole wheat flour. Simply seasoned with onion and salt, the pancakes are panfried in olive oil until they are soft and tender inside with a supple crispness outside. Served hot with a cool dollop of creamy yogurt-feta sauce perfumed with fresh dill, I’m willing to bet that you too will start plotting to make them again as soon as you have your first taste. A cup-for-cup gluten-free flour may be substituted for the whole wheat pastry flour.

3 medium-size zucchini, trimmed (about 8 ounces each)

¾ teaspoon salt, divided

¾ cup plain low-fat or whole-milk Greek yogurt

½ cup crumbled feta cheese

3 tablespoons chopped fresh dill

2 teaspoons freshly squeezed lemon juice

1 small garlic clove, grated or finely minced

¼ cup plus 1 teaspoon olive oil, divided

3 large eggs

6 tablespoons whole wheat pastry flour, plus more as needed

2 tablespoons grated or finely minced onion

1 teaspoon baking powder

¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1. Shred the zucchini on the large holes of a box grater or in a food processor using the shredding attachment. Transfer it to a strainer or colander, toss with ½ teaspoon of the salt, and let drain for 10 minutes. Then, squeeze it with your hands to press out as much liquid as possible.

2. While the zucchini is draining, make the sauce: Stir together the yogurt, feta, dill, lemon juice, garlic, and 1 teaspoon of the olive oil in a medium-size bowl.

3. Beat the eggs in a large bowl. Add the drained zucchini, flour, onion, baking powder, the remaining ¼ teaspoon of salt, and the pepper and stir to combine. Add more flour by the tablespoon if the batter seems too loose.

4. Heat 2 tablespoons of the oil in a large, nonstick skillet over medium heat until the oil is shimmering. Use a ¼-cup measure to scoop the batter into the pan, using a bit less than the full measure for each dollop, and spreading out the batter with the bottom of the measuring cup after each mound is placed in the pan, so that the pancakes are each about 3½ inches in diameter. You should wind up with about six pancakes in the pan. Cook until they are well browned and crisp on the outside and warmed through, about 3 minutes per side, then transfer to a plate and repeat with the remaining oil and batter. Serve immediately with the sauce alongside.

These are best just-cooked, but you can also make them up to a day ahead, refrigerate them, and then reheat in a 350°F oven.

herbed lentil skillet with spinach, tomatoes, and ricotta

Makes 4 servings



On Sale
Oct 15, 2019
Page Count
256 pages

Ellie Krieger

About the Author

Ellie Krieger is host and executive producer of the public television show Ellie’s Real Good Food, and formerly host of the Food Network’s hit show Healthy Appetite. She has received two James Beard Foundation awards and an International Association of Culinary Professionals (IACP) award, and she is a two-time New York Times bestselling author. In addition, she holds a degree in clinical nutrition from Cornell and a master’s degree in nutrition from Columbia. She lives in New York City with her husband and daughter.

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