Every Sunday, we publish a week of Cooking Light dinner plans filled with our favorite recipes—both from current issues and classics. Each meal is designed to be ready and on the table in about an hour so that you have more time to enjoy the food you’ve prepared and the company of those you’ve prepared it for.
If you like having a healthy meal plan but want something customized to your dietary or caloric needs, check out The Cooking Light Diet. It’s a calorie-driven weekly meal plan—breakfast, lunch, snacks, and dinner—based on your dieting goals and food preferences.
The Plan Monday: Charred Squash Salad, Fresh Creamed Corn, and Tomato, Sweet Onion, and Parsley Salad Tuesday: Salmon, Asparagus, and Fresh Lemon Kebabs and Farro Tabbouleh Salad Wednesday: Family-Style Chicken Spaghetti and Spinach Salad with Berries and Goat Cheese Thursday: Steak and Tomato Panzanella and Grilled Eggplant Planks with Creamy Lemon-Garlic Dressing Friday: Buffalo Chicken Sliders and Quick Classic Baked Beans Dessert Bonus: Cheesecake Sandwiches
Monday: This time of year is the BEST time of year for Meatless Mondays because you can make the most delicious vegetable plates from all your great farmers market finds. Here, summer squash gains big smoky flavor in Charred Squash Salad, while Fresh Creamed Corn offers comforting creaminess and Tomato, Sweet Onion, and Parsley Salad gives you a bright pop of juicy-sweet-crunchy goodness.
Tuesday: Fire up the grill (or heat up the stovetop grill pan) for these awesome skewers. Salmon, Asparagus, and Fresh Lemon Kebabs are delicious and full of flavor, and the salmon cooks to silky-tender perfection in just 6 minutes; if cooking on a grill pan, you'll need to go about 10 minutes. And be sure to go for fatter asparagus spears for easier skewering. Serve on a bed of veggie-packed Farro Tabbouleh Salad, and dinner is done!
Wednesday: Be your family's weeknight hero by serving exactly what they want—a plate of pleasing, comforting pasta. Our Family-Style Chicken Spaghetti updates the traditional version by loading in fresh tomatoes instead of relying just on jarred sauce. A side of Spinach Salad with Berries and Goat Cheese makes a family-friendly side.
Thursday: Relax, you've almost made it to the weekend. How about a nice 20-minute Steak and Tomato Panzanella for dinner tonight? It's utterly simple, allowing a few well-chosen ingredients to truly shine. Oh, and it's also utterly yummy. Grilled Eggplant Planks with Creamy Lemon-Garlic Dressing is an equally tasty 12-minute side.
Friday: Kick off the weekend with a bang. Buffalo Chicken Sliders are juicy, meaty, and spicy-good. (You can easily swap in ground turkey if you'd rather use that in place of chicken.) Quick Classic Baked Beans are a mild, slightly sweet, creamy side that offset the heat of the sliders.
Dessert Bonus: You'll love how easy these Cheesecake Sandwiches are to make, and how they satisfy all kinds of sweet tooth cravings: They're chocolaty, fruity, and creamy all at once.
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