Prep-Ahead Meals | Meal Plan Menu (6/7/21)

Prep-Ahead Meals | Meal Plan Menu (6/7/21)

These prep-ahead meals will come together quickly this week! Meals include a Reuben sandwich with a delicious homemade Thousand Island dressing, grilled pork tenderloin, salmon cakes, Asian chicken tacos, and our favorite Asian chimichurri sauce.

  • By Leila Kalmbach
  • June 4, 2021

MONDAY

Reuben Sandwich with Sweet Potato Fries and Snap Peas

Tangy sauerkraut and sweet and zesty homemade Thousand Island dressing add balance and depth to this classic sandwich of corned beef and Swiss cheese on rye. You’ll grill the sandwich to crisp, golden perfection while sweet potato fries bake in the oven. The sandwich is served with the fries as well as raw or lightly steamed snap peas on the side, which can be dipped into extra Thousand Island dressing. This meal takes just 35 minutes to make, and is as good as anything you’ll find at a corner deli!

Meal Planning Smarts:

  • Save time by making a double batch of the homemade Thousand Island dressing to use for Wednesday’s Salmon Cakes.
  • You’ll use rye bread for these sandwiches as well as for croutons later in the week. Any leftover bread can be frozen for future meals.

Diet Variation:

  • Use gluten-free bread for the gluten-free version of this meal. 
  • Paleo cooks will make Black Pepper Steak with sweet potato fries and roasted broccoli. 
  • Vegetarians will make a Portobello Mushroom Reuben Sandwich.

TUESDAY

Grilled Pork Tenderloin with Asian Chimichurri Sauce

Chimichurri is a raw, herb-heavy sauce that originated in Argentina. This version, however, has distinctly Asian flavors, including toasted sesame oil, fish sauce, and rice vinegar. In this meal, the Asian chimichurri sauce adds flavor to both richly marinated pork tenderloin and Chinese or Japanese eggplant cooked in garlic and olive oil, which you can cook on the grill or in the oven. It’s all served over rice with the Asian chimichurri sauce on top. Though making the chimichurri will take you a little extra time, it can be made in advance, helping this meal come together more quickly.

Meal Planning Smarts:

  • Make double the Asian chimichurri sauce to drizzle on Thursday’s Asian Chicken Tacos.
  • Leftover grilled pork tenderloin can be chopped for use in a stir-fry or add leftover rice to turn into a pork fried rice.

Diet Variation:

  • A simple swap of tamari for soy sauce is all you need to change in the gluten-free version of this meal. 
  • Make cauliflower rice instead of rice and use coconut aminos in place of soy sauce if you’re making the paleo version of this meal. You’ll also up the pork amount to be sure you get enough food!
  • You’ll make Grilled Marinated Tempeh if you’re cooking the vegetarian version of this meal — and be sure to swap the fish sauce out for soy sauce.

“The only downside [to Cook Smarts] is that I really only ever want a home cooked dinner. My family, too. They are all kind of bummed if we get takeout.”

—Emily H. (Member since April 2018)


WEDNESDAY

Salmon Cakes over Spring Salad

Butter lettuce forms the base for this salad of crisp, fresh flavors. It’s topped with homemade rye bread croutons, radishes, cucumbers, and peas, with seared salmon cakes on top of it all. The salads are dressed with homemade Thousand Island dressing, which you’ll have ready to go if you made Monday’s meal. This light, summery meal takes 40 minutes to make if you’re starting the prep from scratch, and contains 33 grams of protein.

Meal Planning Smarts:

Diet Variation:

  • Use gluten-free bread and breadcrumbs if you’re making the gluten-free version of this meal. 
  • The paleo version of the meal uses almond meal instead of breadcrumbs, and you’ll make a tangy vinaigrette in place of the homemade Thousand Island dressing.
  • The vegetarian version of the meal replaces the salmon cakes with White Bean and Zucchini Fritters

THURSDAY

Asian Chicken Tacos with Chimichurri Crema

This food mashup meal takes the best parts of Mexican and Asian cuisines and brings them together for a unique, delicious dinner! Corn or flour tortillas are piled with seasoned seared chicken breast strips, spinach, avocado, and tomatoes, then finished with Asian chimichurri crema, and served with a side of corn on the cob brushed with butter. Perfect for a quick weeknight meal, these tacos will take you just 30 minutes to prepare, and they contain 37 grams of protein and 10 grams of fiber.

Meal Planning Smarts:

Diet Variation:

  • Be sure to get gluten-free tortillas if you’re making the gluten-free version of this meal. 
  • The paleo meal is Asian Chicken Red Cabbage Cups with chimichurri aioli and cauliflower rice.
  • Vegetarians will make Asian Tofu Tacos with chimichurri crema and corn.

All meals come with gluten-free, paleo, and vegetarian options, as well as a grocery list and optional weekend prep steps. Join our weekly meal plan service to get the grocery list, dinner steps, and more cooking tips for these 4 simple dinners.

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