Meal Plan Menu | Week of 1/6/20

Meal Plan Menu | Week of 1/6/20

Get ready to crush your 2020 goals with a week of fast, healthy meals for the family. All of our dinner recipes below are easily customizable to accommodate everyone’s New Year’s resolutions.

  • By Chelsea Paxton
  • January 3, 2020

So many New Year’s resolutions focus on health – and for good reason! Our health is an invaluable asset, something that can drastically improve and lengthen our lives. It’s something that all of us can relate to. 

A subscription to our meal planning service gives you all the tools you need to live a healthier life in the kitchen. Each week we send you 4 dinner recipes that can be customized to accommodate a gluten-free, Paleo, or vegetarian diet. We include grocery lists, weekend prep steps, and videos to help you learn new kitchen skills. So not only will you prepare healthy meals, you also gain kitchen confidence and organization that will save you time and money! 

So get ready to say goodbye to heavy, expensive take-out food and bland microwave dinners, and hello to a new year full of flavor!

This week our meals are simple to prepare and easy to clean-up! Most finish on a sheet pan so you can get the kitchen cleaned up while the oven does the work. You’ll love Monday’s crispy panko-breaded fish tacos with an Asian twist, chicken shawarma grain bowls on Tuesday, sheet pan pork tenderloin with a savory homemade pan sauce that’s perfect for a Wednesday night, and Thursday’s winter minestrone soup with root vegetables. 

All meals are easy to customize to everyone’s tastes and dietary needs – a thoughtful way to help everyone in your household reach their 2020 health goals.

“These recipes and grocery lists and prep sheets are making me SO HAPPY right now that one of my daughters said to me, ‘Mom . . . I really like it when you have it all planned out. Can we keep doing this?!’ Everyone in my family is happy, their bellies are full and it makes me feel like a rock star in the kitchen!! Thank you Cook Smarts . . . it is changing my life!”

– Kara W. (Member since Sept. 2018)

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

On the Menu

MONDAY | Asian Fish Tacos with Asian Slaw & Sriracha Mayo

Tacos are endlessly versatile with an abundance of flavor combinations, toppings, and proteins to wrap in a delicious tortilla. These tacos have an Asian flare from a spicy homemade Sriracha mayo and tangy Asian-style coleslaw, both which pair perfectly with crunchy, oven-baked, panko-crusted tilapia. Ready in just 35 minutes, you can enjoy these fresh homemade tacos in no time!

A few simple substitutions make it easy to accommodate this delicious dinner for a variety of dietary needs. Use gluten-free panko breadcrumbs and Tamari in place of soy sauce to enjoy a gluten-free meal. Vegetarians will use tofu in place of fish in these Asian Tofu Tacos. Make a colorful Paleo Asian Fish Salad by adding bell peppers, carrots, avocados, cashews, and an Asian vinaigrette to oven-baked fish served over mixed greens.   

TUESDAY | Chicken Shawarma Barley Bowl with Za’atar Cauliflower & Garlic Yogurt Sauce

Grain bowls are a fantastic way to incorporate everything you need to make a complete meal – all in one bowl! Tonight’s bowl is inspired by traditional shawarma, but made easily in your oven instead of a rotisserie / spit. Za’atar cauliflower and marinated chicken breast are baked together on a sheet pan until tender and golden. Add to a bowl of nutty barley, sweet beets, and then top with tangy garlic yogurt sauce and green onions. Or set out all the components and let everyone build their own bowl!

For a meatless option, try Chickpea “Shawarma” Barley Bowls with oven-roasted Za’atar cauliflower, pistachios, and the same delicious garlic yogurt sauce. Try our Paleo Chicken Shawarma Cabbage Bowl recipe, which calls for sauteed cabbage in place of barley and garlic tahini sauce. For a gluten-free grain bowl, use brown rice in place of barley. 

WEDNESDAY | Sheet Pan Pork Tenderloin & Vegetables with Herb Pan Sauce

This sheet pan dinner is simultaneously elegant on the plate and simple to prepare. With roasted sweet potatoes, brussels sprouts, pork tenderloin rubbed with a zesty herb seasoning, and a dreamy pan sauce, this meal is not only easy to eat-up, it’s also easy to clean-up! This hearty meal is wonderful to eat on its own and easy to customize with different vegetables or by adding a salad or grain on the side.

Use your favorite GF flour in the pan sauce to make this tasty meal gluten-free. Enjoy a Paleo-friendly meal by substituting ghee in place of the butter for the pan sauce. Vegetarians will savor all the flavors in our hearty recipe for Portobello Mushrooms with Lemon-Herb Lentils.

THURSDAY | Winter Barley Minestrone with White Beans, Carrots & Turnips

A big bowl of this vegetable-packed minestrone soup is the epitome of a cozy meal. For a seasonal twist, we use barley leftover from Tuesday’s dinner and hardy root vegetables. You might be surprised to find out our secret ingredient in this soup – miso paste! While this Japanese ingredient is commonly used in Asian recipes, it’s a great “secret ingredient” that gives anything a boost of umami flavor.

This vegetarian soup is easily made gluten-free by using leftover brown rice instead of barley. For a delicious twist on minestrone soup, try our Paleo Winter Sausage and Mushroom Soup and be sure to top the soup with a drizzle of warm oil infused with green onions.

Smart meal planning ideas come with every weekly menu. The smarts listed below are only a portion of the meal prep tips we include to help you make the most of your ingredients and your time. Join our community to get the full benefits of our meal plan service every day!

Meal Planning Tips

Make Aheads:

  • Make Thursday’s minestrone ahead of time and reheat when ready to serve. Just be sure to add the pre-cooked barley right before serving, otherwise the barley may absorb too much liquid and lose its texture.
  • Prepare all the components of Tuesday’s barley grain bowl ahead of time and then reheat and assemble for an easy dinner that’s customizable for everyone in your household. *Healthy tip: Make extra servings and portion into individual containers for easy lunches to-go this week.

ingredient notes:

  • Miso paste is usually a pantry staple found in Japanese cooking that adds depth and that elusive “umami” flavor in Asian dishes. This week we stir it into Thursday’s winter soup to develop layers of flavor. Give it a try!
  • Tuesday’s barley bowls have chopped beets added for color and texture. Pre-cooked beets are widely available in the produce section of the grocery store or you can find them with canned vegetables. If your grocery store has a self-serve salad bar, check to see if there are plain pre-cooked beets. You can purchase just the right amount you need. Buying them pre-cooked saves a lot of time, but feel free to roast your own. 


  • Jazz up your lunchtime salad by topping mixed greens with leftover chicken shawarma, beets, cauliflower, brussels sprouts, and sweet potato. Drizzle with leftover garlic yogurt sauce or a homemade vinaigrette of your choice.
  • Make a delicious fish sandwich with leftover panko-crusted fish, garlic yogurt sauce, and crisp greens on a toasted sandwich roll.
  • Chop leftover pork tenderloin and make Italian-inspired hoagies with melted provolone cheese.

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Weekly Meal Planner | Menu for Week of 1/6/20 via Cook Smarts

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