Meal Plan Menu | Week of 12/11/17

Enjoy this week’s variety of flavorful and fun meals for dinner – from bagel pizzas to gumbo to cheesy casserole!

We’re super excited about this week’s meal plan, because we’re bringing back a childhood favorite (but a homemade version of course) and we also have a new recipe inspired by Hanukkah.

As always, we create our recipes so that they are light and healthy, and this week is no exception. We use brown rice for fiber-y whole grain goodness, and a variety of veggies make an appearance in all the meals. This way, you can still feel good about indulging a bit during all the holiday gatherings!

“With our subscription to Cook Smarts, I don’t have to worry about what we’re having for dinner every night on top of everything else. I get to focus on my work and my family and know that we are going to have something delicious and healthy for dinner. ”

– Anna T. (Member since Jan 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


  • Cooking something once and using it for multiple meals is a total time saver. This week, we’ll be doing that with brown rice (or cauliflower rice for paleo folks), which will be used for the gumbo and the casserole.
  • Mini bagels are used for Monday’s meal, but instead of having leftovers, we save a few for the Deconstructed Bagel & Lox Salad on Wednesday night.


If you have some extra time on your hands on Sunday or Monday evening, make the gumbo ahead of time. It tastes even better after a day in the fridge, and you won’t have to worry about cooking on Tuesday night (especially if you cooked the rice ahead of time).


If you do have leftover mini bagels after the two dinners, they make fun bread alternatives to grilled cheese or French toast!

On the Menu

MONDAY | Mini Bagel Pizzas with Lemony Kale Salad

Remember these childhood frozen favorites? (Or maybe you still have them now and then!) We can’t resist bite-sized bagel pizzas for dinner, so we came up with our own homemade version. This is a fast meal that will be an easy win with the whole family. Our paleo version is a recipe for Pork Tenderloin with Tomato-Herb Pan Sauce, and our vegetarian version skips the pepperoni, although you can top with any of your favorite veggie pizza toppings.

TUESDAY | Sausage & Shrimp Gumbo with Brown Rice

With creole roots, gumbo is a hearty, flavorful stew that combines shrimp, andouille sausage, and a delicious medley of vegetables. Serve over brown rice for even more heartiness. Paleo folks will be subbing brown rice with cauliflower rice instead, and vegetarians replace the sausage and shrimp with vegan sausage.

WEDNESDAY | Potato Latkes with Deconstructed Bagel & Lox Salad

The first day of Hanukkah is on Tuesday 12/12, so we thought it would be fun to make a Hanukkah-inspired meal! Latkes are pan-fried pancakes made primarily from shredded potatoes, and typically topped with sour cream and applesauce for a savory / sweet finish. We love the way they complement our community-favorite Deconstructed Bagel & Lox Salad. If you’re making the paleo version, you’ll be swapping potatoes with sweet potatoes and bagel croutons with hard-boiled eggs. Vegetarians switch out the lox in the salad for hard-boiled eggs as well.

THURSDAY | Cheesy Chicken, Broccoli & Rice Casserole with Herb Roasted Mushrooms

This one-pan casserole can be prepped and baked in an oven-safe skillet and is topped with bubbly melted cheese. Herb roasted mushrooms are a simple, savory side. Our paleo version uses cauliflower rice instead of brown rice, and we suggest adding nutritional yeast for that cheesy flavor. Vegetarians will be enjoying their casserole with mushrooms instead of chicken, and a side of herb roasted baby carrots.

Weekly Meal Plan Menu | Week of 12/11/17 via @cooksmarts

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