Follow this meal plan for a week of healthy and easy recipes that work well for both beginners and seasoned cooks looking to simplify their routine.

Emily Lachtrupp, M.S., RD
December 27, 2020
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Although the term "clean eating" can sometimes feel negative or perhaps imply that other foods are "dirty," that's not the case. To us, "clean eating" means filling your plate with healthy whole foods like whole grains, fruits and vegetables, lean proteins, healthy fats and legumes—all of which deliver important nutrients, like fiber—while keeping things like added sugars and hydrogenated fats to a minimum. The goal is to help you feel your best, and sometimes you need a kick to get started. If you're new to cooking or just feeling swamped right now, this easy-to-follow meal plan is for you. We focus on simple recipes with short ingredient lists, incorporate plenty of pantry staples, and repeat meals throughout the week to streamline your time in the kitchen.

If you're following this clean-eating meal plan for weight loss, we set the calorie level at 1,500 per day, which is a level where most people lose weight, plus included modifications for 1,200 and 2,000 calories a day, depending on your calorie needs.

What Is a Clean-Eating Meal Plan?

A clean-eating meal plan includes tons of fresh fruits and veggies, high-fiber whole grains and legumes, healthy fats and lean proteins, like fish and chicken. It skips added sugars and keeps fats that can damage our heart when we eat too much to a minimum (think trans and saturated fats). While we are certainly not against dessert, according to the American Heart Association the average American eats 28 teaspoons of added sugars per day—way more than the recommended amount of no more than 6 teaspoons a day for women and 9 for men. Plus, this plan will leave you feeling satisfied because it includes plenty of nutrients that keep us full, like fiber (from fruits, vegetables and legumes), lean proteins (from Greek yogurt, fish and chicken) and healthy fats (from nuts and avocado). Regular meals and snacks from nutritious sources, plus plenty of water and exercise if you can, means more lasting energy throughout the day.

What to Eat on a Clean-Eating Diet:

  • Vegetables: The more the better, especially when it comes to leafy greens. Frozen vegetables are a great option too.
  • Fruit: Opt for fresh or frozen fruit. If looking at canned fruit, opt for options canned in their own fruit juice instead of sugar-laden syrup.
  • Whole Grains: Oats, whole-wheat, barley and quinoa are great options.
  • Nuts and Seeds: Choose plain, raw, roasted or salted nuts but skip most other flavors (like honey) as they contained added sugars. When choosing peanut butter, choose options with just two ingredients: peanuts and salt.
  • Healthy Fats: Fatty fish, like salmon, as well as olive oil and avocado are great healthy fat options.
  • Legumes: Beans and lentils are high in fiber and protein, plus the canned options are great pantry staples that aren't heavily processed.
  • Lean Proteins: When choosing proteins, opt for more chicken, turkey, fish, Greek yogurt and legumes.

How to Meal-Prep Your Week of Meals:

A little prep at the beginning of the week goes a long way to make rest of the week easy.

  1. Make Vegan Superfood Buddha Bowls to have for lunch on Days 2 through 5.
  2. Prepare Citrus Vinaigrette to have with dinner throughout the week.

Day 1

Greek Roasted Fish

Breakfast (325 calories)

  • 1 cup low-fat plain Greek yogurt
  • 1/4 cup raspberries
  • 3 Tbsp. chopped walnuts

A.M. Snack (62 calories)

  • 1 medium orange

Lunch (360 calories)

P.M. Snack (326 calories)

  • 1 large apple
  • 2 Tbsp. natural peanut butter

Dinner (422 calories)

Meal-Prep Tip: Gather ingredients for tomorrow's dinner, Slow-Cooker Vegetable Minestrone Soup, so it's ready to start cooking on Low tomorrow morning for 6 to 8 hours.

Daily Totals: 1,495 calories, 78 g protein, 129 g carbohydrates, 33 g fiber, 79 g fat, 819 mg sodium

To Make It 1,200 Calories: Reduce to 1 Tbsp. walnuts at breakfast and omit the peanut butter at the P.M. snack.

To Make It 2,000 Calories: Increase to 1 1/2 cups yogurt and 4 Tbsp. chopped walnuts at breakfast, add 1/3 cup unsalted dry-roasted almonds to A.M. snack, and increase to 3 Tbsp. natural peanut butter at P.M. snack.

Day 2

Breakfast (324 calories)

A.M. Snack (206 calories)

  • 1/4 cup unsalted dry-roasted almonds

Lunch (381 calories)

P.M. Snack (37 calories)

  • 1 medium bell pepper, sliced

Dinner (532 calories)

Meal-Prep Tip: Reserve leftover Slow-Cooker Vegetable Minestrone Soup to have for dinner tomorrow night.

Daily Totals: 1,479 calories, 56 g protein, 160 g carbohydrates, 47 g fiber, 79 g fat, 1,136 mg sodium

To Make It 1,200 Calories: Change the A.M. snack to 1/3 cup sliced cucumber and reduce to 1/4 avocado at dinner.

To Make It 2,000 Calories: Add 1 slice whole-wheat toast with 1 Tbsp. natural peanut butter to breakfast, increase to 1/3 cup almonds at A.M. snack, add 1/4 cup hummus to P.M. snack and increase to 1 whole avocado at dinner.

Day 3

Vegan Superfood Buddha Bowls

Breakfast (325 calories)

  • 1 cup low-fat plain Greek yogurt
  • 1/4 cup raspberries
  • 3 Tbsp. chopped walnuts

A.M. Snack (206 calories)

  • 1/4 cup unsalted dry-roasted almonds

Lunch (381 calories)

P.M. Snack (62 calories)

  • 1 medium orange

Dinner (532 calories)

Daily Totals: 1,505 calories, 66 g protein, 140 g carbohydrates, 46 g fiber, 87 g fat, 989 mg sodium

To Make It 1,200 Calories: Change the A.M. snack to 1/3 cup sliced cucumber and reduce to 1/4 avocado at dinner.

To Make It 2,000 Calories: Increase to 4 Tbsp. chopped walnuts at breakfast and 1/3 cup almonds at A.M. snack, add 1/3 cup dried walnut halves to P.M. snack and increase to 1 whole avocado at dinner.

Day 4

Breakfast (324 calories)

A.M. Snack (141 calories)

  • 1 medium bell pepper, sliced
  • 1/4 cup hummus

Lunch (381 calories)

P.M. Snack (206 calories)

  • 1/4 cup unsalted dry-roasted almonds

Dinner (436 calories)

Daily Totals: 1,488 calories, 91 g protein, 127 g carbohydrates, 35 g fiber, 76 g fat, 1,326 mg sodium

To Make It 1,200 Calories: Omit the hummus at the A.M. snack and change the P.M. snack to 1 clementine.

To Make It 2,000 Calories: Add 1 slice whole-wheat toast with 1 Tbsp. natural peanut butter to breakfast, increase to 1/3 cup almonds and add 1 clementine to P.M. snack, and add 1 serving Guacamole Chopped Salad to dinner.

Day 5

chicken kale soup

Breakfast (325 calories)

  • 1 cup low-fat plain Greek yogurt
  • 1/4 cup raspberries
  • 3 Tbsp. chopped walnuts

A.M. Snack (305 calories)

  • 1 medium apple
  • 2 Tbsp. natural peanut butter

Lunch (381 calories)

P.M. Snack (62 calories)

  • 1 medium orange

Dinner (420 calories)

Meal-Prep Tip: Reserve two servings Chicken & Kale Soup to have for lunch on Days 6 and 7.

Daily Totals: 1,492 calories, 79 g protein, 140 g carbohydrates, 36 g fiber, 73 g fat, 1,094 mg sodium

To Make It 1,200 Calories: Reduce the walnuts to 1 Tbsp. at breakfast and omit the peanut butter at the A.M. snack.

To Make It 2,000 Calories: Add 1/4 cup unsalted dry-roasted almonds to P.M. snack and 1 avocado to dinner.

Day 6

Spinach, Peanut Butter Banana Smoothie
Credit: Ted & Chelsea Cavanaugh

Breakfast (324 calories)

A.M. Snack (305 calories)

  • 1 medium apple
  • 2 Tbsp. natural peanut butter

Lunch (376 calories)

P.M. Snack (109 calories)

  • 1/3 cup cucumber, sliced
  • 1/4 cup hummus

Dinner (399 calories)

Daily Totals: 1,513 calories, 68 g protein, 177 g carbohydrates, 34 g fiber, 63 g fat, 1,527 mg sodium

To Make It 1,200 Calories: Omit the peanut butter at the A.M. snack and omit the hummus at the P.M. snack.

To Make It 2,000 Calories: Add 1 slice whole-wheat toast with 1 Tbsp. natural peanut butter to breakfast, add 1 orange to P.M. snack, and add 1 serving Guacamole Chopped Salad to dinner.

Day 7

Greek Salad with Edamame

Breakfast (324 calories)

A.M. Snack (206 calories)

  • 1/4 cup unsalted dry-roasted almonds

Lunch (376 calories)

P.M. Snack (141 calories)

  • 1 medium bell pepper
  • 1/4 cup hummus

Dinner (438 calories)

Daily Totals: 1,485 calories, 74 g protein, 170 g carbohydrates, 38 g fiber, 65 g fat, 1,482 mg sodium

To Make It 1,200 Calories: Change the A.M. snack to 1 clementine and omit the hummus at the P.M. snack.

To Make It 2,000 Calories: Add 2 slices whole-wheat toast with 2 Tbsp. natural peanut butter to breakfast, increase to 1/3 cup almonds at A.M. snack, and add 1 serving Everything Bagel Avocado Toast to dinner.