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1 short shopping list gets you 5 weeknight meals
Meal prep no longer means filling your freezer with boring casseroles, dipping into the same pot of beans every day for a week, or spending all day Sunday cooking. Instead, use these smart meal plans to customize fast, fresh dinners that fit your ever-changing schedule. We’ve done the work of building 25 weekly plans that minimize shopping and kitchen time and guide you through prep-ahead options, make-ahead options, and ingredient substitutions. So now you can reap the benefits to make your life easier, your grocery bill lower, and your dinners better.
ATK’s meal plan strategies are easy to put into practice:
* Prep your vegetables and grains for the week in a weekend “power hour.”
* Prep bulk pantry ingredients ahead in a “pantry power hour” so they’re ready to go in a flash.
* Cross-utilize fresh ingredients creatively to prevent food waste and dinner boredom.
* Make, store, and reheat full meals with no loss of flavor.
* Double meals or meal components to freeze half for later.
Let’s-get-real features streamline your cooking:
* Weekly grocery lists max out at a dozen items.
* Active cooking time for recipes maxes out at 45 minutes.
* Loads of pantry substitution suggestions let you adapt recipes according to what you have on hand.
* To make planning even more flexible, we’ve added a chapter with 30 pantry meals that don’t add anything to your weekly shopping list, making them perfect to prepare any night.
With a grocery list of just 11 items and some on-hand pantry staples, you can enjoy a week of Crispy Chicken with Carrot, Orange, and Chickpea Salad; Meatballs and Lemon Orzo with Mint and Dill; Teriyaki Stir-Fried Beef with Green Beans; Herb-Poached Salmon with Cucumber-Dill Salad; and Sun-Dried Tomato and White Bean Soup with Parmesan Crisps.
A thorough introduction explains how to build a strong, diverse pantry (and make the most of it), how to store prepped ingredients to keep them fresh, how to store cooked food safely, the smartest ways to reheat food, essential meal-prep equipment, and more.
From the Publisher
The Ultimate Meal-Prep Cookbook
Turn meal prep inspirations into reality
EGGS in PURGATORY
The Test Kitchen’s top tips for meal preppers
A few of our tips include:
Make a weekly shopping list
Put a date on it
Bulk it up
Develop labeling savvy
Bring TV dinners into the 21st century
25 Weekly Kitchen Meal Plans
Our 25 weekly kitchen meal plans strike just the right balance between guidance and flexibility so that you can customize them to fit your preferences and ever-changing schedule. Maximizing prep-ahead options, make-ahead options, and ingredient substitutions while minimizing shopping, food waste, and time spent in the kitchen lets you strategize appealing, practical meal plans that truly make your life easier and your meals more enjoyable.
Ingredient Prep School
Prep and Freeze
Substitute with Confidence
The Test Kitchen’s Top Tips for Meal Preppers
Make the Most of Your Microwave
Essential Equipment for Meal Prep
How to Prep a Meal
Winning Strategies for Meal-Prep Success
“What’s for dinner?” Whether a family member is asking you or you’re just silently asking yourself, if that question gives you a sinking feeling then you need this book. With the constant schedule juggling that we all do, meal planning and meal prep are invaluable skills to master if you want to avoid eating takeout every night.
Efficient meal preppers take advantage of multiple strategies. Depending on your preferences and your available time in any given week, there are many different ways to customize meal prep.
Plan intensive ingredient prep-ahead sessions
Possibly the most valuable meal-prep habit to adopt is a “Sunday power hour,” during which time you can get well ahead of the weeknight scramble by completing as much advance kitchen work as possible.
Avoid food waste by cross-utilizing fresh ingredients
We designed these meal plans to use a limited number of ingredients in creative ways throughout the week. If you decide to experiment with creating your own plans, try to map out ways to efficiently use up what you buy at the grocery store while still keeping meals varied.
Store assembled meal components together
If prepped ingredients get cooked together, you can store them together. Our foil packet recipes, where the assembled ingredients become an entire meal, take this concept a step further.
Double recipes for “freezer insurance” or intentional leftovers
We tell you when a recipe doubles well for freezing. This doubling principle also applies to meal components, even if you can’t freeze them.
Meal Plan Sneak Peak: Each Plan contains 5 Meals, including a suggested pantry recipe as the fifth meal
Meal 1: Bibb Lettuce and Chicken Salad with Peanut Dressing
Prep Ahead: Wash lettuce leaves, cut cucumber, slice hot cherry peppers, wash and pick mint
Make Ahead: Refrigerate seared chicken and peanut dressing for up to 2 days
Substitutions: Almond butter for peanut butter, any soft lettuce for Bibb lettuce, basil for mint
Meal 2: Rib-Eye Steaks with Roasted Vegetables and Sage Butter
Prep Ahead: Wash and pick sage, grate lemon zest, peel and halve carrots, halve potatoes and shallots
Make Ahead: Refrigerate sage butter for up to 2 days
Substitutions: red onion for shallots, vegetable oil or extra-virgin olive oil for butter, strip steaks for rib-eyes
Meal 3: Seared Scallops with Squash Puree and Sage Butter
Prep Ahead: peel, seed and cut butternut squash, mince shallot, wash and pick sage, juice lemon
Make Ahead: Refrigerate squash puree for up to 3 days
Substitutions: extra-large shrimp for scallops
Meal 4: Spinach-Stuffed Portobello Caps
Prep Ahead: Remove mushroom gills, grate lemon zest, wash and pick mint
Make Ahead: Refrigerate baked stuffed Portobello caps for up to 3 days
Substitutions: frozen spinach for baby spinach, goat cheese for feta, scallions for mint