It’s time to set yourself up for success in the New Year! Whether you are just trying to plan better, your resolution was to stop ordering so much takeout, or you’re getting back to a work schedule...meal prep is your friend, and it doesn’t have to be the same exact meal all week that you’ll get sick of immediately.
This meal prep plan is the opposite of most resolution-season cooking. Boiled chicken and the same ol’ sad salad are NOT on the menu. Everything here has lots of different flavors and textures to kick off your New Year with craveable dishes, like a chicken Caesar wrap (made with Chrissy’s fave, rotochick, aka rotisserie chicken), comforting soup, and a twist on that TikTok salmon rice bowl that you may have missed out on last year. Just one day of prep gets you five days of super satisfying meals that work for lunch or dinner—so you can mix, match, and stack your recipe rotation with a hot new set of easy-and-delicious favorites. And although this plan was created for one person (with extra leftovers to freeze), it can definitely be shared with a couple or scaled up for a family.
MEAT & DAIRY
- 1 pound center-cut skinless salmon
- Rotisserie chicken
- Cream cheese
- Kewpie mayonnaise
- ½ pound green vegetables, like green beans or asparagus
- ½ pound starchy vegetable, like squash or potato
- 1 jalapeño pepper
- 1 head garlic
- 3 shallots
- 1 bunch scallions
- 1 bunch cilantro
- 1 carrot
- 1 (1-inch or so) knob of ginger
- 2 limes
- 1 head Boston, Bibb, or Butter lettuce
- Caesar salad kit
- Short grain white rice
- Box of pasta
- 2 (32-ounce) boxes chicken stock
- Jar of pasta sauce
- Burrito-sized flour tortillas
- Fish sauce
- Rice paper wrappers
- Unseasoned rice wine vinegar
- Soy sauce
- Sesame oil
- Olive oil
- Vegetable or canola oil
- Kosher salt and black pepper
- Garlic powder and spice blends from your pantry
- Furikake (Japanese rice seasoning; optional)
EASY MEAL PREP SCHEDULE
After you hit the grocery store, you only need to do one day of prep to make a week’s worth of lunches and dinners to mix-and-match.
SHOP & PREP: Roast salmon and veggies (see full recipe below), take rotisserie chicken off the bones, make a pot of rice, mix together Everything Sauce. Store ingredients in separate containers in the fridge. You can also wash and dry lettuce and store in damp paper towels in a plastic bag or container and boil a box of pasta if you want to make the rest of the week even easier!
DINNER (CHILI-GARLIC SALMON CRISPY RICE PAPER DUMPLINGS)
LUNCH (CREAMY, SPICY SALMON RICE LETTUCE WRAPS)
DINNER (THAI-ISH ROTISSERIE CHICKEN & RICE SOUP)
LUNCH | Easy Salmon Scramble: Scramble eggs and mix in flaked leftover salmon, a tablespoon or two of cream cheese, and one thinly sliced scallion
DINNER | Chicken & Roasted Veggie Pasta: Mix together shredded rotisserie chicken breast, some roasted vegetables, and your favorite marinara or pasta sauce. Top with Parmesan cheese, if you have it!
LUNCH | Chicken Caesar Salad Wrap: Use a Caesar salad kit (only mix up one portion with dressing so it doesn’t get soggy) and some shredded rotisserie chicken breast. Wrap in a burrito-sized tortilla and sear in a skillet so the outside gets nice and toasty.
DINNER | Chicken & Roasted Veggie Rice Bowl: Heat up shredded rotisserie chicken breast, roasted vegetables, and rice. Drizzle with lots of Everything Sauce and top with chopped scallions.
LUNCH | Chicken Salad Wrap: Combine shredded rotisserie chicken breast, Kewpie mayonnaise, and scallions. Wrap into a tortilla and sear the outside in a skillet like you did with the Chicken Caesar Salad Wrap! Can also pair this with some Thai-ish Rotisserie Chicken & Rice Soup.
DINNER | Dealer’s Choice: Chicken & Roasted Veggie Pasta or Rice Bowl
LUNCH | Chicken Caesar Salad
You made it through—order takeout!
MEAL PREP RECIPES
Sheet Pan Roasted Salmon & Veggies
Prep Time: 10 minutes | Total Time: 40 minutes
1 pound center-cut salmon, skinless or skin removed (cut into 3 fillets, about 5–6 ounces each)
8 ounces (½ pound) green vegetables, such as green beans or asparagus, trimmed
8 ounces (½ pound) starchy vegetables, such as butternut squash, potato, or sweet potato, cut into 1” cubes
½ teaspoon Cravings’ seasoning blends (or seasoning blend of your choice), such as Chili-Garlic or Cracked Black Pepper & Citrus
+ Olive oil
+ Kosher salt and freshly cracked pepper
Preheat the oven to 400°F. Line a sheet pan with parchment paper. Arrange two salmon fillets on one side of the sheet pan. Reserve the third fillet for the Chili-Garlic Salmon Crispy Rice Paper Dumplings. Season one with olive oil, ½ teaspoon kosher salt, and cracked black pepper on both sides. Season the other with ½ teaspoon seasoning blend of your choice, such as Cravings’ Cracked Black Pepper & Citrus.
In a bowl, toss starchy vegetables with olive oil, ½ teaspoon kosher salt, and cracked black pepper. Add to the sheet pan, surrounding the simply seasoned salmon. In the same bowl, add green vegetables with olive oil and ½ teaspoon Cracked Black Pepper & Citrus seasoning of seasoning blend of your choice. Remove from the bowl and surround the other piece of salmon with these seasoned vegetables. Make sure everything is spread into one single layer so it cooks evenly!
Roast for 15 minutes and then remove the salmon ONLY from the pan. It should flake easily and be mostly opaque. Spread out the vegetables across the entire pan, give them a good stir, then return to the oven for 15–20 minutes, until tender-crisp with slight browning.
A Perfect Pot of Rice
Makes 6 cups cooked rice | Prep Time: 5 minutes | Total Time: 25 minutes
2 cups short grain/sushi rice
2 cups water
First, rinse the rice to remove excess starch, which keeps the rice from getting gummy when cooking. Add the rice into a pot or large bowl. Add enough water to cover, then swish the rice around in the water; the water should be very cloudy. Drain into a fine-mesh strainer or colander and repeat this process two more times until the water is almost completely clear.
Combine the rinsed rice and 2 cups of water in a medium saucepan. Bring it to a boil and then reduce the heat to low; cover and cook for 20 minutes. Cool to room temperature (it goes faster if you spread out on a sheet pan!) and store in airtight containers in the fridge for up to a week.
Makes ⅓ cup
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1 tablespoon fish sauce
1 teaspoon sugar
3 tablespoons unseasoned rice vinegar
1 tablespoon sesame oil
1 teaspoon sriracha, or more if you like it spicier
½ teaspoon garlic powder
Mix all the ingredients together in a small bowl. Put into an airtight container in the fridge for up to 2 weeks. Use it as a dipping sauce for Chili-Garlic Salmon Crispy Rice Paper Dumplings, a drizzle on rice bowls, and an ingredient in Creamy, Spicy Salmon Rice Lettuce Wraps!