ThePrep: 400-Calorie Dinners for an Easy Week

This week of simple 400-calorie dinners will help you feel your best all week long.

Shrimp Cobb Salad with Dijon Dressing

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Last week was a busy one and with it came a bit of chaos and lots of thrown-together meals. Sound familiar? I know I'll be feeling the need to recenter myself, especially after this holiday weekend. That means planning out and actually shopping for a week of healthy meals. Enter this week of simple dinners. These dinners come in around 400 calories each and feature plenty of veggies, healthy fats and lean protein sources to help me feel my best all week long.

Your Meal Plan

Zucchini Noodles with Pesto & Chicken

Sunday's Zucchini Noodles with Pesto & Chicken is an easy and delicious summer dinner. I like picking up spiralized zucchini noodles from the grocery store to shave off prep time. For Memorial Day on Monday, I'll be making a big platter of Shrimp Cobb Salad with Dijon Dressing. We're seeing family and friends on Saturday, so I'll get my burger and hot dog fix then.

I'll be back to work on Tuesday, so I'm keeping dinner simple with this recipe for Easy Salmon Cakes with Arugula Salad. It's an herby, light dinner and the salmon cakes come together quickly, thanks to the food processor. You'll see salmon again in Thursday's Salmon with Sun-Dried Tomato Cream Sauce. My mouth is watering just thinking about the creamy tomato and white-wine sauce that coats the salmon. It's supposed to be rainy here in Vermont on Thursday, so this dinner will be just the thing to keep me cozy and carry me to the weekend.

Sunday: Zucchini Noodles with Pesto & Chicken (430 calories)

Monday: Shrimp Cobb Salad with Dijon Dressing (378 calories)

Tuesday: Easy Salmon Cakes with Arugula Salad (424 calories)

Wednesday: Chicken Sausage & Spinach Skillet Pasta with Lemon & Parmesan (435 calories)

Thursday: Salmon with Sun-Dried Tomato Cream Sauce (440 calories)

Friday: Cauliflower Gnocchi with Asparagus & Pesto (404 calories)

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Meal-Prep Breakfast

3-ingredient tropical greens smoothie
Carolyn Hodges

I'm in a phase right now where I'm really into smoothies and this 3-Ingredient Tropical Greens Smoothie is my current favorite. It combines frozen mixed tropical fruit, which delivers some natural sweetness, with gut-friendly kefir and spinach to make for a healthy and delicious breakfast or mid-day snack. And the best part is, you can prep the ingredients into smoothie packs ahead of time, so all that's left to do is dump and blend.

Get the Recipe: 3-Ingredient Tropical Greens Smoothie Packs

Treat Yourself

Gin & Blackberry Spritz
Jamie Vespa, M.S., RD

This colorful cocktail gets its color from muddled blackberries, but you could really use any type of berry here. A little gin and soda water tops it off, and, if I have fresh thyme or rosemary on hand, I like adding a sprig. It's the easiest 3-ingredient drink you'll ever make! We intentionally kept this drink free of added sugar, but if you need a little sweetness, stir in some honey or simple syrup.

Get the Recipe: Gin & Blackberry Spritz

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