ThePrep: 5-Ingredient Dinners for Summer

These easy dinners prove you don't need much to make a delicious and healthy meal.

3-ingredient tortellini
Photo: Sara Haas

Our column, ThePrep, has everything you'll need to make meal planning and meal prep as easy as can be. Sign up here to get a meal plan delivered to your inbox every Saturday!

I have a vacation coming up next week, which—if I'm being totally honest—I am not prepared for! I have lots of packing to do and I want to leave my house in somewhat-decent shape, so I don't walk back into a big mess after a relaxing week away. These easy five-ingredient (or fewer!) dinners mean I can get a quick and healthy dinner on the table every night of the week and still have plenty of time to get organized.

Your Meal Plan

lemon sopressata chicken

Flavorful, ready-to-use ingredients really help to add deliciousness to these dinners while keeping the ingredient count low. Take Tuesday's Lemon-Sopressata Chicken for instance—The Italian cured sausage sopressata (or salami, if you can't find sopressata) adds a nice amount of spice and lots of flavor to this savory chicken dish. And the same goes for Thursday's 3-Ingredient Refried Bean & Pico de Gallo Tostadas. Both the refried beans and fresh pico de gallo go a long way to make this three-ingredient meal taste impressive.

Wednesday's 3-Ingredient Cheese Tortellini with Tomatoes & Basil doesn't use any fancy ingredients but achieves maximum flavor by roasting the cherry tomatoes in the oven, which coaxes out their natural sweetness and bright flavor. Combine that with fresh basil and cheesy tortellini and you have yourself one tasty meal! And the Grilled Salmon with Tomatoes & Basil on Monday also deserves a shout-out—it's my favorite way to make salmon in the summer. So simple but seriously delicious!

Sunday: Cauliflower Gnocchi Caprese

Monday: Grilled Salmon with Tomatoes & Basil with corn on the cob

Tuesday: Lemon-Sopressata Chicken with steamed broccoli

Wednesday: 3-Ingredient Cheese Tortellini with Tomatoes & Basil

Thursday: Strawberry Poppy Seed Salad with Chicken

Friday: 3-Ingredient Refried Bean & Pico de Gallo Tostadas

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Meal-Prep Breakfast

Baked Blueberry & Banana-Nut Oatmeal Cups
Jamie Vespa

I love when I can knock out breakfast and snacks for the week in one go, and making a batch of these Baked Blueberry & Banana-Nut Oatmeal Cups does just that! These muffins have a bit of extra fiber, thanks to the addition of oats and blueberries, and are lower in added sugar than most muffins—we used naturally sweet bananas plus a little brown sugar to get the right balance of sweetness. Keep them in your fridge or freezer and reheat in the microwave for a warm breakfast or snack.

Get the Recipe: Baked Blueberry & Banana-Nut Oatmeal Cups

Treat Yourself

Fresh Strawberry Margarita
Caitlin Bensel

I've been on a margarita kick this summer and while I love a classic marg, I'm having fun experimenting with different flavors. And this Fresh Strawberry Margarita is a winner. I love the addition of basil—it makes this cocktail feel fancy, yet it's super easy to make!

Get the Recipe: Fresh Strawberry Margarita

I hope you all have a safe and happy week, and if you have any questions or requests for future newsletters, please let me know by emailing!

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