Meal Plan Menu | Week of 5/14/18

This week, our meal plan service gives you the advantage of shortcuts and efficiencies to make cooking dinner extra quick and easy!

In modern society, time always seems to be in short supply. Not only do we have jobs and responsibilities taking ever more time out of our weeks, we also have exciting events and opportunities we wish we could take advantage of . . . if we only had more time.

Well, it’s your lucky week because we are going to give you a bit of time back. Every meal on this week’s menu is easy, healthy, and takes between 20 to 45 minutes to cook. But, by following our efficiency and prep guidelines, you can put together a delicious dinner in even less time so you can go to that Meet Up event, get your knitting needles back out, or see that local play with outstanding reviews.

With so many fast recipes, you wouldn’t expect to tour world cuisines at the same time. Yet, we make sure to keep things interesting and healthy while still saving you time. Join us this week to enjoy the rich flavors of Mexico, Italy, Vietnam, and America!


“Do the prep work and dinner will be quicker than driving to your takeout place.”

– Stephanie and Josh M. (Members since Feb 2016)


All meals come with gluten-free, paleo, and vegetarian options, as well as a grocery list and optional weekend prep steps.


Meal Planning Tips

Efficiencies:

  • Save time during the week by making double batches! Cook extra rice to be used on both Monday and Wednesday, and Tuesday’s salad dressing is used on Thursday as a dip for vegetable sticks.
  • Instead of shredding your rotisserie chicken on 2 separate days, do it all in one go and enjoy a few extra minutes to relax on Thursday evening.
  • You can buy one bunch of cilantro at the grocery store and know none will go to waste since it adds flavor to 3 of our 4 dinners this week.

Make-Ahead:

  • If you make the sofritas for Monday and meatballs for Wednesday during the weekend, you can get a jump start on your week. These two components may seem like you should make them right before dinner, but both will reheat well when it’s time to serve them.

Leftovers:

  • Leftover rotisserie chicken is one of the easiest ingredients to use. Enjoy what you have leftover in tacos, enchiladas, or sandwiches.
  • For quick lunches or weekend dinners, simply slice leftover meatballs in half and use them for Vietnamese banh mi sandwiches or to toss with vegetables in a stir-fry. The smaller pieces will soak up your sauce and provide great flavor with substantial protein.

On the Menu

MONDAY | Sofritas Burrito with Guacamole

Sofrito is an aromatic sauce base from Spain, Italy, and Latin America. Chipotle ran with it to make their sofritas a trendy vegetarian burrito filling. And we admit, it’s very tasty. So, we made a copycat version that will be every bit as flavorful, but costs a fraction of the price. This dinner combines tofu sofritas with other burrito filling favorites like our cilantro-lime guacamole that can be spiced with a few drizzles of hot sauce.

If you prefer a meat-based filling for your burritos, ground pork or finely chopped chicken work well as a substitute for tofu. If you are a gluten-free diner, a simple GF tortilla works splendidly. Paleo members can enjoy a fajita-inspired pork saute with a fresh avocado, citrus, and spinach salad on the side.

TUESDAY | Rotisserie Chicken Cobb Salad with Ranch Dressing

A classic Cobb Salad is crisp, colorful, healthy, and easy. This 20-minute recipe uses a store-bought rotisserie chicken that will save time – you don’t even have to turn the oven on for your protein! Our light ranch-inspired dressing mixes creamy, sour, and aromatic ingredients to perfectly top a bed of veggies, eggs, chicken, and cheese.

Our Paleo version substitutes walnuts for the cheese and uses a herb vinaigrette dressing. The vegetarian version includes walnuts in addition to eggs and cheese to ensure that diners get 19 grams of protein per serving.

WEDNESDAY | Vietnamese Meatball Lettuce Cups + Mango Pear Smoothie

To get over Hump Day, we have arranged an exciting dinner of Vietnamese-inspired meatballs in cups of crisp lettuce leaves. Filling the cups with shredded carrots, vinegar, rice, and roasted peanuts is a light and spring-friendly way to enjoy classic Vietnamese flavors. And don’t forget a refreshing mango and pear smoothie on the side! (But, then again, how could you?)

Our gluten-free members can make minor substitutions with Tamari and GF panko while our Paleo eaters use coconut aminos, almond meal, and cashew alternatives. Our vegetarian members get to save 10 minutes of cooking by filling their lettuce cups with Vietnamese mushrooms and edamame.

THURSDAY | Lemon Chicken Orzo Soup + Vegetable Sticks with Ranch Dressing

Once Thursday night rolls around, we know what you are really looking forward to is the weekend. So, we created a quick 30-minute meal that uses Tuesday’s rotisserie chicken in the soup and leftover ranch dressing as a delicious dip for cucumbers and carrots. Yet, quick doesn’t mean uninspired. You’ll notice that lemon juice stirred in at the end of cooking gives your simple soup an unexpectedly bright and fresh flavor.

This week our gluten-free and vegetarian eaters only have to use one alternative each: GF orzo / pasta or zucchini instead of chicken. In place of orzo, anyone on the Paleo diet can add hearty substance to their soup with zucchini and mushrooms.

Weekly Meal Plan Menu | Week of 5/14/18 via Cook Smarts

We do more than create meal plans. We create memories around the dinner table.


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