7-Day Meal Plan: The Superfoods of Fall
Vibrant, colorful produce dominates in this week's superfood meal plan. We chose recipes that use fresh fall superfoods that you can easily find at your local grocery store for an affordable price, like Brussels sprouts, collard greens, butternut squash and spinach. These nutrient-rich vegetables make delicious dinners and pack a powerful punch of vitamins, minerals and fiber that work in the body to decrease inflammation, protect against certain cancers and fuel healthy gut bacteria, boosting immunity and keeping digestion regular. You can feel good about feeding your family these truly super dinners this week.
Hoppin' John with Orange Bell Peppers: In this healthy Hoppin' John recipe, colorful veggies like orange bell pepper, collard greens and tomatoes add a mix of beneficial vitamins and minerals. Smoked paprika and cayenne pepper bring on the flavor. And, surprisingly, ounce-for-ounce, these two spices contain roughly 2 1/2 times the beta carotene of boiled sweet potatoes. Serve this dish as a main-dish stew or with a side of fiber-rich brown rice.
Moroccan Chickpea-Stuffed Acorn Squash: This tasty vegetarian dish capitalizes on the abundance of delicious winter squash available this time of year-here we use roasted acorn squash as the bowl and add in even more squash to the filling. Kabocha, sweet dumpling and carnival squash all make good alternatives as a squash "bowl." This dish provides about two-thirds of our daily vitamin A and vitamin C, which are potent antioxidants that work to keep our cells healthy. You can pair this dish with a big leafy green salad, or go ahead and help yourself to two halves each for a hearty main-dish dinner.
Day 3: Sweet Potato Pad Thai
Sweet Potato Pad Thai: Sweet potato "noodles" take center stage in this healthy high-fiber dinner. This meal provides 15 grams of protein, though thinly sliced beef or chicken would work well here if you want to add meat. Sweet potatoes are high in vitamin A, which works as a powerful antioxidant and has a role in keeping our bones and eyes healthy. For an added vitamin A boost, pair this dish with our Spinach Salad with Japanese Ginger Dressing.
Bacon & Spinach Quiche with Hash Brown Crust: Do breakfast-for-dinner tonight with this hearty bacon and spinach quiche! Shredded potatoes make an easy hash-brown crust (giving you an extra serving of veggies), while spinach, eggs and bacon make up the flavorful filling. While spinach is the obvious superfood here, the other ingredients deserve credit too-potatoes are naturally high in vitamin C (a potent anti-inflammatory), and the bacon and eggs deliver 16 grams of protein (critical for just about every process in the body).
Garlic Roasted Salmon & Brussels Sprouts: Roasting heart-healthy salmon on top of Brussels sprouts and garlic, flavored with wine and fresh oregano, makes a meal that is simple enough for a weeknight yet sophisticated enough to serve to company. Serve this dish with a hearty whole grain, such as brown rice, quinoa or whole-wheat couscous.
Day 6: Vegan Cream of Mushroom Soup
Vegan Cream of Mushroom Soup: This decadent-tasting soup uses walnuts to thicken the broth to provide a wonderful nutty flavor so good that you won't even miss the cream. Walnuts are high in omega-3 fatty acids, which can help improve heart health and reduce inflammation. Pair with Kale Salad with Beets & Wild Rice to round out this healthy fall dinner.
Spaghetti Squash with Tomato Basil Sauce: Using spaghetti squash in place of noodles is a great way to capitalize on seasonal produce while increasing a meal's fiber content. Homemade tomato sauce provides lycopene, an antioxidant that helps with heart health and may reduce the risk of some cancers. Increase the protein to make this a filling main dish by adding our Italian Turkey Meatballs.