Meal Planning 101

Learn how to become a meal-planning pro with our best tips and ideas from the food and nutrition experts at EatingWell.

Meal Planning 101
ThePrep: Light & Easy Recipes to Help Me Jump-Start a Healthy Week
ThePrep: Light & Easy Recipes to Help Me Jump-Start a Healthy Week

Healthy Make-Ahead Dinner Recipes

Slow-Cooker Chicken & Rice Bowls
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A bowl of tender shredded chicken, hot cooked rice and slightly spicy black beans served with fresh toppings is a meal that will satisfy anytime. Make this slow-cooker chicken dish on the weekend and reheat throughout the week for easy at-work lunches or dinner at the end of a long day. For a variation, swap the brown rice for a grain medley.
Slow-Cooker Lemongrass-Coconut Marinated Chicken
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In this slow-cooker chicken recipe, minimal effort produces big flavor, making it the perfect starter recipe for anyone learning to cook their own Thai food. If you can't find wide rice noodles, any rice noodle can be substituted. For quickest day-of meal prep, make the chicken and coconut broth a day in advance and refrigerate. When ready to eat, simply reheat them, cook the noodles and serve.
Cardamom-Cured Salmon Gravlax
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While this type of cured salmon, called gravlax, is usually made with skin-on salmon, this recipe removes the skin and rubs the curing mixture on both sides for better flavor penetration. Ask your fishmonger for a center-cut piece of salmon that's consistently 1 1/2 inches thick for the best results. Green peppercorns are often sold in a brine, but you'll want to seek out dried ones for this recipe.
Baked Turkey Meatballs with Roasted Red Peppers & Polenta
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These healthy turkey meatballs take a little more time, but the recipe yields enough extra meatballs and polenta for three other meals (see Associated Recipes).
Persian-Style Butternut Squash Soup
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Swap out your basic butternut squash soup for this fragrant version that includes sweet potato and a medley of spices like cinnamon, cumin, coriander and saffron. A drizzle of maple syrup and a few drops of orange water brighten the flavors, while a sprinkle of sumac adds a pop of color and a tangy edge. This healthy butternut squash soup would be a wonderful starter for your Thanksgiving meal.
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