Flavors from around the world will satisfy any palette while also making sure that you consume all the right nutrients to stay energized and healthy all week long.
Monday: Roasted Cauliflower and Chickpea Salad with Lemon Tahini Dressing
This hearty salad comes packed with nutrients, doesn’t cost a lot to make, and only requires about 15 minutes of prep. Cauliflower and red onion bake in the oven. While that’s cooking, prepare the dressing made with lemon juice, spices, and tahini (or tahina), a paste made from sesame seeds. Follow that by quickly sizzling the chickpeas over the stove with smoked paprika and cayenne. This crowd-pleaser tastes good served hot or cold.
Healthy Fact: A staple in middle eastern cooking, tahini contains omega-3 and omega-6, fatty acids which promote brain health, fight depression, and increase energy.
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Tuesday: Veggie and Tofu Stir-Fry
During a busy week, a quick stir-fry provides a nutritious plate packed with spice and flavor. This veggie and tofu stir-fry includes tofu, cashews, sesame seeds, broccoli, and sweetcorn seasoned by garlic, ginger, and soy sauce. Best of all, you can easily add or substitute the ingredients with any other veggies you have leftover in the kitchen.
Healthy Fact: Asian cooking often uses ginger to spice up dishes. The root vegetable has many health benefits and naturally relieves nausea and pain.
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Wednesday: Greek Chicken Gyros with Tzatziki
Marinating grilled (or pan-roasted) chicken with yogurt and olive oil brings moisture to this Greek-inspired recipe. Adding tzatziki adds another pop of flavor: just make sure to squeeze the cucumber juice to avoid a watery sauce. Serve the gyros with a chopped salad and flatbread (or pita) for a heart-healthy meal in the middle of the week.
Healthy Fact: Nutritionists point out the many health benefits of the Mediterranean diet. Research shows that Mediterranean habits like eating lots of veggies, poultry, fish, and healthy fats (like olive oil) improves heart health and reduces cancer, Parkinson's, and Alzheimer's diseases.
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Thursday: Chicken Fajitas
End the week on a healthy note with spicy chicken fajitas. This sizzling dish satisfies the taste buds but also has lots of healthy ingredients like lime juice, chili powder, cumin, garlic, bell pepper, and onion. Sear ingredients on the grill or in a large skillet over the stove before serving immediately with warm tortilla wraps and cheese.
Healthy Fact: Central America often relies on hot peppers to add dimension to any dish. Studies show that those who consume spicy foods benefit from living longer thanks to the chemical compound, capsaicinoid, which creates that hot flavor. It helps relieve and reduce the risk of stomach ulcers, too!
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Friday: Walnut & Dill Crusted Salmon
This tasty dish looks and sounds complex, but actually only takes minutes to make. Prepare the crust by using a food processor to blend walnuts with lemon rind, lemon juice, olive oil, dill, and breadcrumbs. Then simply brush fillets with dijon mustard before evenly coating the salmon with the walnut crust. Cook time only takes about 20 minutes in the oven. In the meantime, saute spinach or another side vegetable with white beans, olive oil, garlic, salt, and pepper to complete the meal.
Healthy Fact: Salmon is a nutrient-rich fish and an excellent source of protein, a crucial building block for the bones, muscles, cartilage, skin, and blood.
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Saturday: Chicken Tikka Masala
The weekend calls for some comfort food, but that doesn’t have to mean eating something unhealthy. Indian cooking infuses dishes with ayurvedic spices full of nutritional and healing properties. This chicken tikka masala recipe doesn’t require extensive experience with Indian cooking. Chicken cubes get flavored with yogurt and a mix of cumin, cinnamon, cayenne, black pepper, ginger, and salt before simmering in a curry of tomato sauce and cream.
Healthy Fact: Indian food relies on a long list of spices to create bold, layered flavors, each of which has high nutritional value. Cumin, for example, contains iron and copper, elements which promote healthy red blood cells.
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Sunday: Creamy Tomato Basil Soup
Lazy Sundays provide the perfect amount of time to slow cook a big pot of soup loaded with healthy ingredients. This tomato basil soup recipe creates a stock of blended tomato, onion, carrot, celery, garlic, and basil. You can switch out the canned tomatoes for fresh. The cream and grated parmesan add a bit of heartiness to the dish. Investing in an immersion blender will make this a much easier, one pot recipe. Plus, you’ll have lots of leftovers for lunch or dinner for the upcoming week.
Healthy Fact: Most think of oranges when it comes to fighting off a cold, but actually tomatoes, garlic, and onion all have nutrients to stay healthy all year long. Tomatoes provide a great source for vitamins A, C, and K. Garlic has long been considered an ingredient that boosts the immune system. Meanwhile, onions are rich in potassium, a mineral which helps cellular and kidney function as well as nerve transmission.