How to Stock Your Fridge & Freezer with 2 Weeks of Meal-Prepped Dinners

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Sacrifice a bit of time now and reap huge time-saving rewards later. These 13 meal-prep dinner recipes, plus one quick supermarket find, can be made ahead, stored in the fridge or freezer and eaten for the next 14 days. The well-planned combination of these recipes leaves you with little food waste, and keeps delicious, healthy meals on hand so you can avoid the inevitable temptation of takeout after a crazy day at the office.

This 14-day meal plan includes recipes that contain some of the same ingredients in an effort to cut down on your grocery list and time spent in the kitchen. For these dinners, prep the recurring ingredients in bulk to avoid wasting food and time. And although these recipes share some of the same ingredients, each recipe is unique, which will keep mealtime fun and interesting for two full weeks.

Related: Meal-Prep Sunday Dinner Plan

Step 1: Batch-Cook Shared Ingredients

Best Poached Chicken

Best Poached Chicken

COMBINE:

6 cups low-sodium chicken broth
2 cup dry white wine
2 large shallot, halved
6 sprigs fresh thyme
2 bay leaves
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon whole black peppercorns
4 bone-in, skin-on chicken breast halves (about 1 pound each)

COOK:

Combine ingredients in a large pot and bring to a simmer over high heat. Reduce heat and cook at a bare simmer until the thickest part of the chicken registers 165°F, 25 to 30 minutes. Shred the chicken when cool enough to handle.

Meal-Prep Curried Chicken & Chili-Lime Chicken

Meal-Prep Curried Chicken

COMBINE:

For Curried Chicken

3/4 cup low-fat plain yogurt
1/3 cup grated onion
2 tablespoons mild curry powder
1 1/2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper (optional)
1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breast, cut into 1-inch pieces

For Chili-Lime Chicken

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon chili powder
1 teaspoon lime zest
1 1/2 tablespoons lime juice
2 cloves garlic, grated
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breast, cut into 1-inch pieces.

COOK:

Combine chicken with other ingredients, and toss to coat. Marinate in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours or overnight. Cover a baking sheet with foil and use the foil to make a divider down the center of the sheet. Place each chicken combo in a single layer on either side of the sheet pan. Roast at 400°F for 15 to 18 minutes.

Easy Brown Rice

Easy Brown Rice

COMBINE:

10 cups water or broth
4 cups brown rice

COOK:

Bring water (or broth) and rice to a boil in a large saucepan. Reduce heat to low, cover and simmer until the rice is tender and most of the liquid is absorbed, 40 to 50 minutes. Remove from heat and let stand for 5 minutes. Fluff with a fork.

Basic Quinoa

Basic Quinoa

COMBINE:

2 cups water or broth
1 cup quinoa

COOK:

Bring water (or broth) and quinoa to a boil in a medium saucepan. Reduce heat to low, cover and simmer until the quinoa is tender and most of the liquid is absorbed, 15 to 20 minutes. Remove from heat and let stand for 5 minutes. Fluff with a fork.

Related: The Best Base Recipes for Meal Prep

Step 2: Meal-Prep 1 Week of Fridge Dinners

Most meal-prep recipes can be made and stored in the fridge for up to a week. So for the first week of this two-week dinner plan, rely on your fridge for meal prep. These recipes can be made and stashed in the fridge for easy reheat-and-eat dinners or, even better, some of them can be eaten straight from the fridge (making them great for on-the-go dinners too!).

Related: Healthy Meal-Prep Recipes

Sunday's Dinner: Honey-Mustard Chicken Salad

Honey-Mustard Chicken Salad

COMBINE & REFRIGERATE:

1/4 cup plain 2% yogurt
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
1 teaspoon honey
1/2 teaspoon grated lemon zest
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground pepper
2 cups shredded cooked chicken (see Batch-Cook, above)

SERVE:

Top 2 cups of torn Bibb lettuce with 1/2 cup chicken mixture and 1 tablespoon toasted sliced almonds per serving.

Monday's Dinner: Meal-Prep Roasted Vegetable Bowls with Pesto

Meal-Prep Roasted Vegetable Bowls with Pesto

COMBINE & COOK:

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground pepper
4 cups broccoli florets
2 medium red bell peppers, quartered
1 cup sliced red onion

Combine oil and seasonings; toss with broccoli, peppers and onion to coat thoroughly. Roast at 450°F for 20 minutes. Chop when cool enough to handle.

PREP & REFRIGERATE:

1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
3 cups cooked brown rice (see Batch-Cook, above)
1 15-ounce can chickpeas, rinsed

Combine oil and brown rice, and divide into four 2-cup microwave-safe, lidded containers. Divide chickpeas and roasted vegetables evenly among the containers. Refrigerate.

REHEAT & SERVE:

Microwave on High until heated through, 1 to 2 minutes. Top with 1 tablespoon prepared pesto per dish.

Tuesday's Dinner: Shrimp Poke

Shrimp Poke

COMBINE & REFRIGERATE:

3/4 cup thinly sliced scallion greens
1/4 cup reduced-sodium tamari
1 1/2 tablespoons mirin
1 1/2 tablespoons toasted (dark) sesame oil
1 tablespoon white sesame seeds
2 teaspoons grated fresh ginger
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper (optional)
12 ounces cooked shrimp, cut into 1/2-inch pieces

Combine all ingredients except shrimp; reserve 2 tablespoons of sauce (refrigerate separately). Add shrimp to the remaining sauce; toss gently to coat.

2 cups cooked brown rice (see Batch-Cook, above)
2 tablespoons rice vinegar
2 cups sliced cherry tomatoes
2 cups diced avocado
1/4 cup chopped cilantro
1/4 cup toasted black sesame seeds

Combine rice and vinegar. Divide the rice among 4 bowls and top with the shrimp mixture. Refrigerate.

SERVE:

Top the shrimp and rice with tomatoes, avocado, cilantro and sesame seeds. Drizzle with the reserved sauce.

Wednesday's Dinner: Taco Lettuce Wraps

Taco Lettuce Wraps

COMBINE:

1 tablespoon canola oil
1 pound lean ground beef
1/4 teaspoon salt

Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add beef and salt and cook, stirring, until beef is cooked through, 4 to 6 minutes.

COMBINE & REFRIGERATE:

5 tablespoons prepared salsa
1 tablespoon rice vinegar
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin

Combine salsa, vinegar and cumin in a small bowl. Add the salsa mixture to the cooked beef; stir to combine. Refrigerate.

REHEAT & SERVE:

8 small iceberg or romaine lettuce leaves

1 cup diced avocado
1 cup julienned jicama
1/4 cup finely diced red onion

Reheat the beef mixture. Serve in lettuce wraps topped with avocado, jicama and onion.

Thursday's Dinner: Pressure-Cooker Chicken Tikka Masala

pressure cooker chicken tikka masala

*Prepare an extra batch of this dish and freeze (in 1 container) for Tikka Masala Stuffed Peppers next week.*

COOK:

1 1/2 teaspoons garam masala
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon paprika
1 teaspoon cumin
1/4 teaspoon ground turmeric
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
2 8-ounce boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut crosswise into thirds
2 tablespoons avocado oil or ghee, divided
1 medium carrot, finely chopped
1 small onion, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger
1 15-ounce can crushed tomatoes (2 cups)

1/4 cup heavy cream

2 cups cooked brown rice (see Batch-Cook, above)

Combine all spices, and rub chicken with half of the spice mixture. Heat 1 tablespoon oil (or ghee) in a multicooker on sauté mode. Add the chicken and cook until browned, about 2 minutes per side. Remove the chicken to a plate. Add the remaining oil (or ghee), carrot, onion, garlic and ginger; cook, stirring, until fragrant and beginning to soften, 2 to 3 minutes. Stir in tomatoes and the remaining spice mixture. Turn off the heat. Place the chicken on top of the tomato mixture. Close and lock the lid and cook at high pressure for 10 minutes.

Release the multicooker's lid. Remove the chicken. Stir cream into the sauce. Tear or chop chicken into small pieces; stir back into the sauce.

COMBINE & REFRIGERATE:

Divide rice among 4 microwave-safe containers. Top with tikka masala. Refrigerate.

REHEAT & SERVE:

1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro

Microwave each portion on High until warmed through, 1 to 2 minutes. Top each with 1 tablespoon cilantro and serve.

Related: How to Meal-Prep Instant-Pot Freezer Packs for Easy Weeknight Meals

Friday's Dinner: Meal-Prep Chili-Lime Chicken Bowls

chili-lime chicken bowls

COMBINE & REFRIGERATE:

1 cup cooked quinoa (see Batch-Cook, above)
1 cup cooked brown rice (see Batch-Cook, above)
1 pound cooked Chili-Lime Chicken (see Batch-Cook, above)
1 cup julienned jicama
1 cup frozen corn, thawed
1 cup prepared pico de gallo
1 avocado, diced
1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro

Combine quinoa and rice; divide among 4 single-serving containers with lids. Top with chicken, jicama, corn, pico de gallo, avocado and cilantro, dividing evenly. Seal the containers and refrigerate for up to 4 days.

SERVE:

Lime wedges
Hot sauce, such as Cholula

Serve with lime wedges and hot sauce.

Saturday's Dinner: EatingWell Cherry Port Pork

eatingwell cherry port pork

No prep required! Just stash a few frozen entrees, like EatingWell Cherry Port Pork, in your freezer and you'll have ready-when-you-are dinners for busy nights any week!

Step 3: Meal-Prep 1 Week of Freezer Dinners

For the second week of this two-week meal-prep plan, you will rely on your freezer for the freshest meals. Prep these easy recipes on your prep day and stash them away in the freezer for easy-to-make meals throughout the week. Most of the recipes for Week 2 are assembly-only, and then you cook them from frozen in your oven, slow cooker or multicooker (like the Instant Pot) when you're ready for dinner. Others, like the burritos, are almost all the way ready and just need a quick zap in the microwave to be table-ready.

Related: Make-Ahead Freezer Meals

Sunday's Dinner: Chicken Freezer Burritos

chicken freezer burritos

COOK:

2 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil or avocado oil
1/2 cup chopped red onion
1 teaspoon minced garlic
1 15-ounce can low-sodium black beans, rinsed
1/2 cup water
1 tablespoon minced chipotle pepper in adobo sauce
2 cups shredded cooked chicken (see Batch-Cook, above)
2 cups chopped kale
1 cup reduced-fat sharp Cheddar cheese
2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
1/2 teaspoon grated lime zest (optional)
1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
1/4 teaspoon salt

Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add onion and garlic and cook, stirring often, until the onion starts to soften, about 2 minutes. Add beans, water and chipotle and bring to a simmer, mashing slightly with the back of a spatula. Stir in chicken and kale and cook until thickened, 1 to 2 minutes. Remove from heat. Stir in Cheddar, cilantro, lime zest (if using), lime juice and salt.

WRAP & FREEZE:

4 8-inch whole-wheat tortillas

Spread 3/4 cup filling on the bottom third of each tortilla. Tightly roll the burrito and wrap in foil. Freeze in a sealable plastic bag.

REHEAT & SERVE:

Unwrap burritos and transfer each to a microwave-safe plate. Cover with a paper towel and microwave each burrito on High until heated through, 2 to 3 minutes.

Monday's Dinner: Four-Cheese Macaroni & Cheese

four-cheese macaroni and cheese

COOK:

Nonstick cooking spray
1 pound butternut squash, halved and seeded
8 ounces dried whole-grain elbow macaroni
4 teaspoons butter
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon ground white pepper
1 cup nonfat milk
2 tablespoons semisoft cheese with garlic and herbs

Coat the cut sides of the squash with cooking spray; place the squash halves, cut-sides down, on a large rimmed baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Roast at 375°F until very tender and cooked through, 40 to 45 minutes. Scoop out the flesh and mash.

Meanwhile, cook pasta according to package directions. Drain well.

Melt butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Whisk in flour, salt and pepper until combined. Add milk, whisking until smooth. Cook and stir until thickened and bubbly. Add cheese; whisk until the cheese is melted. Stir in the mashed squash. Add the cooked pasta; stir until coated.

COMBINE & FREEZE:

3/4 cup shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese (3 ounces)
3/4 cup shredded reduced-fat sharp Cheddar cheese (3 ounces)
2 ounces Muenster cheese, very thinly sliced

Place half of the pasta mixture in a 2-quart square baking dish coated with cooking spray. Evenly sprinkle half the mozzarella and half the Cheddar over the pasta. Arrange half the Muenster over all. Repeat layers. Tightly wrap the dish with plastic wrap and foil; freeze.

THAW, COOK & SERVE:

Thaw in the refrigerator overnight, then bake at 375°F until the cheese is golden brown, about 25 minutes. Finish with fresh basil.

Tuesday's Dinner: Turkey & Ricotta Stuffed Shells

turkey and ricotta stuffed shells

COMBINE & FREEZE:

18 cooked jumbo pasta shells
1 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil
2 cups diced zucchini (about 1 zucchini)
1 cup chopped onion
2 teaspoons minced garlic
8 ounces lean ground turkey
1 cup part-skim ricotta cheese
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese, divided
1 large egg, lightly beaten
2 teaspoons Italian seasoning
1 teaspoon fennel seed
1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg or 1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground pepper
2 cups no-sugar-added marinara sauce, divided

Cook shells in a pot of boiling water according to package directions until al dente. Drain shells and transfer to a plate.

Meanwhile, heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add zucchini, onion and garlic and cook, stirring often, until the vegetables are softened, about 5 minutes. Add turkey and cook, breaking it up with a wooden spoon, until cooked through, 3 to 4 minutes.

Whisk together ricotta, ¼ cup Parmesan, egg, Italian seasoning, fennel seed, nutmeg, crushed red pepper, salt and ground pepper in a large bowl. Add the turkey mixture and mix well.

Spread 1 cup marinara in the bottom of a 9-by-13-inch baking dish. Spoon 2 heaping tablespoons ricotta mixture into each shell and arrange in the baking dish, seam-side up. Top the filled shells with the remaining 1 cup sauce and sprinkle with the remaining ¼ cup Parmesan.

Wrap the dish tightly with plastic wrap, then foil, and freeze for up to 1 month.

COOK & SERVE:

Bake frozen shells at 375°F, covered, until the sauce is bubbly, 45 to 50 minutes. Uncover and bake for 10 minutes more. Top with 2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil.

Related: How to Freeze Casseroles So They Taste As Fresh As the Day You Made Them

Wednesday's Dinner: Slow-Cooker Creamy Lentil Soup

Slow-Cooker Creamy Lentil Soup Freezer Pack

COMBINE & FREEZE:

1 cup green or brown lentils, picked over and rinsed
1 cup chopped onion
1 cup diced carrot
2 tablespoons finely chopped garlic
2 teaspoons ground coriander
2 bay leaves
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon ground pepper
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper

Combine lentils, onion, carrot, garlic, coriander, bay leaves, cumin, oregano, pepper and cayenne in in a sealable plastic bag. Seal the bag, transfer to the freezer and freeze for up to 6 months.

COOK:

Pour contents of bag into a 6-quart slow-cooker. Add 4 cups low-sodium chicken or vegetable broth. Cover and cook on High for 4 hours or Low for 8 hours.

SERVE:

2 cups coarsely chopped spinach
1 15-ounce can diced tomatoes
2/3 cup light coconut milk
1/4 chopped fresh parsley
1 tablespoon white-wine vinegar
1/2 teaspoon salt

Discard bay leaves. Transfer half of the soup to a standard blender and puree. (Use caution when blending hot liquids.) Return the pureed soup to the slow cooker and stir in spinach, tomatoes, coconut milk, parsley, vinegar and salt; heat through.

Related: These Slow-Cooker Freezer Meals Are Going to Save Your Weeknights

Thursday's Dinner: Meal-Prep Curried Chicken Bowls

Meal-Prep Curried Chicken Bowls

COMBINE & FREEZE:

1 cup cooked brown rice (see Batch-Cook, above)
1 cup cooked quinoa (see Batch-Cook, above)
1 pound cooked Curried Chicken (see Batch-Cook, above)

REHEAT & SERVE:

1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
1/4 cup thinly sliced scallions

Microwave frozen rice, quinoa and chicken mixture to reheat. Finish with cilantro and scallions.

Friday's Dinner: Tikka Masala Stuffed Peppers

Tikka Masala Stuffed Peppers

THAW, COOK & SERVE:

4 large bell peppers (orange, yellow or red), ½ inch trimmed off tops, cores and seeds discarded
1 recipe Pressure-Cooker Chicken Tikka Masala (see Thursday's Dinner in Week 1, above), thawed overnight in the fridge

1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro

Preheat oven to 350°F. Line a baking sheet with foil.

Arrange peppers, cut-side down, on the prepared baking sheet; reserve pepper tops. Roast the peppers until just starting to soften, about 20 minutes.

Meanwhile, mix together the rice and chicken mixture from the thawed Chicken Tikka Masala for the filling. Divide the filling among the peppers, slightly mounding on top. Place the stuffed peppers on the same baking sheet. Arrange the reserved tops, cut-side down, on the baking sheet. Bake until the filling is heated through and the peppers are tender, about 20 minutes.

Sprinkle the peppers with cilantro. Place the pepper tops on the filled peppers and serve.

Saturday's Dinner: Honey-Mustard Turkey Burgers

turkey burger

COMBINE & FREEZE:

1/4 cup coarse-grained mustard
2 tablespoons honey

1 pound ground turkey breast
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

Whisk mustard and honey in a small bowl until smooth. Combine turkey, 3 tablespoons of the mustard mixture, salt and pepper. Mix well. Form into 4 patties on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and freeze until solid, then transfer to a container or resealable bag and store in freezer. Refrigerate the remaining mustard mixture for up to 1 week, or freeze for up to 1 month.

COOK & SERVE:

2 teaspoons canola oil

4 whole-wheat hamburger rolls, split and toasted

Lettuce, tomato slices and red onion slices, for garnish

Lightly brush the frozen burgers on both sides with oil. Grill until no pink remains, about 6 to 8 minutes per side. (You may need to add a few more minutes to grilling time.) Top with the reserved honey mustard (thawed if necessary) and serve on rolls with lettuce, tomato and onion slices.

cherry port porkFind this EatingWell Frozen Entrée and more in the freezer aisle of your local grocery store. Find Store Locations.

 

 

 

 

Watch: How to Make Freezer Bean & Cheese Burritos

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