Sunday Strategist: A Week of Healthy Menus — May 19-23
Every Sunday, we publish a week of Cooking Light dinner plans—new recipes from current issues matched with previously published favorites. Each meal is designed to be ready and on the table in 45 minutes or less.
The PlanMonday: Linguine with Sweet Pepper Sauce and Arugula Salad with Honey-Balsamic DressingTuesday: Tilapia with Pineapple Salsa and Tomato-Avocado SaladWednesday: Grilled Chicken and Tomato Salad and Grilled Zucchini with Sea SaltThursday: Roasted Pork Tenderloin Tacos and Shredded Cabbage SlawFriday: Flank Steak with Tomato Bruschetta and Pan-Charred Green BeansDessert Bonus: Fresh Strawberry Shortcakes
Monday: Visit your local farmers' market this weekend, and stock up. Start the week off with this simple Linguine with Sweet Pepper Sauce. We roast red and yellow peppers to draw out more of the naturally sweet, earthy flavors, and then purée half into a rich sauce. Fresh basil and a touch of creamy burrata cheese add a bright, finishing touch. If you can’t find burrata at your local market, sub part-skim ricotta. Serve with this bright and tasty Arugula Salad with Honey-Balsamic Dressing.
Tuesday: May I suggest the tilapia? You’ll fall in love with the ease and simplicity of this Tilapia with Pineapple Salsa and Tomato-Avocado Salad – but you'll love it even more for its depth and complexity. Spicy chipotle- and cumin-rubbed tilapia meets a refreshing, fruity salsa, made tart-sweet with fresh pineapple and crunchy and bright with seeded jalapeño, basil, and red onion. A mild tomato and avocado salad adds the perfect cooling effect to the warm, spicy fish and salsa.
Wednesday: Brush off the midweek blues, and put some spark in that step by firing up the grill. This 20-minute Grilled Chicken and Tomato Salad can be done inside on a grill pan, or outside on the real deal. You’ll love how quickly it comes together, and if you have a few extra minutes, make use of that fire! Throw some extra veggies on the grill while it’s hot. Try these tasty Grilled Zucchini with Sea Salt, which have just 4 ingredients! Scroll down the recipe, and you’ll see 3 variations, in case good ol' olive oil, salt, and pepper don’t add enough zing to your week.
Thursday: It’s taco time. Steer a little off the beaten chicken or fish taco path, and try these Roasted Pork Tenderloin Tacos. They’re ready in just 25 minutes–a simply seasoned roasted pork tenderloin gets a little bath in some mojo marinade. Quickly-pickled red onions and jalapeño pepper add a bit of crunch and heat (seed the jalapeño to take the spice level down a notch, or use bell pepper for a kid-friendly option), while creamy avocado and Mexican crema offer a refreshing cooling topper. Serve them up with this crunchy Shredded Cabbage Slaw.
Friday: Finish off the week with this simple, smoky Flank Steak. It’s clean and simple–and an elegant yet relaxing end to a long week. Tomatoes take their turn on the grill, too, and are transformed into a lovely bruschetta topper for crusty whole grain bread, a tasty, toasty accompaniment to the flank steak. Serve with Pan-Charred Green Beans. We love the flavor of tarragon, but feel free to use any herb you have on hand—parsley, chives, or thyme will be great, too.
Dessert Bonus: Celebrate spring’s bounty of berries, and whip up these Fresh Strawberry Shortcakes in just 25 minutes.