Classic, Cuban-style picadillo (Photo/Betty Cortina)

How to make…30-minute Latin dinners!

You’ve already heard the reports that say home-cooked, fresh meals are the key to a healthier diet. But at the end of the long work-day, its easy to succumb to the temptations of a drive-thru—and therein lies the problem. Fast foods are, in many ways, killing us, driving obesity, heart disease and diabetes rates. Today we bring you five recipes that can help. They’re fast and easy to make, allowing you to get dinner on the table in about 30 minutes or less. No super special ingredients needed.

Shrimp taco (Photo/Betty Cortina)

Shrimp taco (Photo/Betty Cortina)

These classic Baja-style shrimp tacos are garlicky and delicious, healthy and made in just a few minutes. Topped with a fresh pico de gallo and crunchy shredded cabbage, they’re a great vehicle for veggies too. Click here for the recipe.

Garbanzo & kale stew (Photo/Betty Cortina)

Garbanzo & kale stew (Photo/Betty Cortina)

It’s fine if you don’t have time to go old-school by soaking beans overnight. This garbanzo and kale stew can be made with canned chickpeas. Just make sure to buy the low-sodium variety and rinse the beans before tossing them in the pot. Click her for the recipe.

Classic, Cuban-style picadillo (Photo/Betty Cortina)

Classic, Cuban-style picadillo (Photo/Betty Cortina)

A good picadillo—the ground beef hash whose infinite variations are popular throughout Latin America—is an easy go-to recipe that comes together with just about anything you have in the refrigerator. Make it with beef, turkey or chicken; add your favorite seasonings. Want to save more time? Use a mini-food processor to chop all the veggies. Click here for a beef picadillo recipe, and here for one made with turkey.

Mexican molletes (Photo/Maura Wall Hernandez)

Mexican molletes (Photo/Maura Wall Hernandez)

mollete is the Mexican primo to Italian bruschetta, except it’s heartier and makes for a great meal on its own. Another bonus: Kids can help assemble them. Click here for the recipe.

Tortilla española (Photo/Betty Cortina)

Tortilla española (Photo/Betty Cortina)

Who said eggs are only for morning? An omelet  is a great vehicle for any random, left over ingredients you have laying around. This classic Spanish tortilla uses potatoes and onions, but feel free to toss in anything else. Click here for the recipe.

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