ThePrep: High-Protein Dinners Ready in 20 Minutes or Less
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!
The holiday season is in full swing and things are busy, busy, busy—especially this week leading up to Thanksgiving. And as excited as I am for the big feast, I still need to have a plan for dinners on the other weeknights. This week's dinners are ready in 20 minutes or less (minus Thursday's feast, of course) and provide at least 15 grams of protein per serving to keep me satisfied for longer. As for the big feast, I'll be cooking delicious traditional dishes with some friends who know how to make these by heart, since (having grown up in Mexico) I'm still new to this lovely holiday.
Your Meal Plan
Sunday's Salmon Tacos with Pineapple Salsa are a tasty and easy recipe for a weekend dinner. The pineapple salsa, cilantro and lime juice add a delicious finishing touch. I usually buy my salmon already thawed, so I try to use it earlier in the week, though frozen salmon is always a great option to keep on hand. This dinner provides you with over 25 grams of protein in two tacos—coming from both the salmon and the corn tortillas. Yes, corn tortillas have protein too!
Next up: Creamy sauce! Tuesday's Chicken Cutlets with Creamy Spinach & Roasted Red Pepper Sauce recipe is so comforting that it feels like a hug, and it provides 28 grams of protein. In addition to the creamy sauce, this dinner is packed with veggies, including baby spinach, red onion, red peppers and sun-dried tomatoes, so you'll feel satisfied. I'll serve the chicken cutlets over some orzo to round out the meal. While the main dish simmers in the skillet, I'll do some multitasking and cook the orzo in boiling water for about 7 to 9 minutes to keep my total cooking time to 20 minutes.
Thursday's Thanksgiving dinner has all the classics—turkey (my favorite!), mashed potatoes, green bean casserole and more. And on Friday, the Cream of Turkey & Wild Rice Soup is an easy dinner that's perfect to make with leftovers. For this recipe, I'll pick up a pre-chopped mirepoix mixture from the store to speed up the total time and keep things easy after all the cooking from the day before. This soup is comforting and easy, and the best part is that it provides more than 36 grams of protein to keep you satisfied, even if you want to eat lighter after the big feast.
Tuesday: Chicken Cutlets with Creamy Spinach & Roasted Red Pepper Sauce over cooked orzo
Wednesday: One-Pot Chicken & Cabbage Soup
Sunday through Wednesday: Get the Printable Shopping List.
Friday: Cream of Turkey & Wild Rice Soup
Thursday and Friday: Get the Printable Shopping List.
With Thanksgiving around the corner, a sweet but easy-to-make snack recipe is just what I need. In just 15 minutes and with no food processor required, you can make these delicious Caramel Delight Energy Balls. These energy balls taste like cookies, but thanks to the high-fiber oats and healthy fats from the almond butter, your blood sugar levels—and energy—will stay more stable. Not only are these energy balls a crowd-pleaser but the recipe makes enough for the week, so you can have a healthy snack on hand amid all the busyness.
Get the Recipe: Caramel Delight Energy Balls
What's Inspiring Me This Week
November is Native American Heritage Month, so I'm taking some time to learn more about these cultures and delicious cuisines. EatingWell recently published a feature package about revitalizing Indigenous cuisines to promote better health. I was fascinated to learn that many traditional Native American foods are the ones I grew up eating in Mexico, like tomatoes, chiles, beans, cactus and corn. I can't wait to try the amazing recipes that Native chefs shared with us, like the Grilled Cactus Pad Salad with Oranges & Raspberry Vinaigrette and Corn Pudding & Apple-Berry Parfaits.
I wish you all a great week, and if you have any questions or requests for future newsletters, please let me know by emailing ThePrep@eatingwell.com! Don't forget to add a recipe review if you try one.