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A Week of Easy 5-Ingredient Dinners

One-Pan Pancetta Kale

It’s hard to deny that cooking from scratch has a lot going for it. For one, it’s less expensive to cook at home than to constantly eat out. Second, because you can choose your ingredients and portion sizes, cooking also tends to be healthier. And finally, instead of having to pick from a fixed menu, you can cook to satisfy your cravings down to the very cherry on top. Yet sometimes the thought of prepping a week’s worth of recipes can be daunting, especially when you already have a full plate of responsibilities. To help, we’ve rounded up easy, tasty and nourishing dinners with only five ingredients, plus salt and pepper. It’s proof that cooking can be easy (and fun) after all!

MONDAY: Wild Rice with Shiitakes and Toasted Almonds

The Ingredients: Wild rice, sliced almonds, shiitake mushrooms, scallions and vegetable broth.

Why It Rocks: This one-bowl wonder helps get your week off to a clean start. Put on your favorite TED talk and get cooking — this dish only takes 20 minutes to prep and just about an hour to complete. It’s hearty and warming and makes for a tasty Meatless Monday dish. One serving delivers 4 grams of fiber and 7 grams of plant protein, and since it’s just 158 calories you can enjoy two servings or add a lean protein like a pan-fried egg or grilled tofu. It can even double up as your lunch the next day!

Wild Rice with Shiitake

Photo Credit: EatingWell

TUESDAY: Tuna & Bok Choi Packets

The Ingredients: Tuna or wild salmon, baby bok choy, parsley, horseradish mustard and extra-virgin olive oil.

Why It Rocks: Seafood lovers, you’re in for a treat! Baking proteins in foil is a one-step hack to soak in amazing flavor without excess oil or unnecessary prep. All you need are a few fresh ingredients and 15 minutes — before you know it, all of your friends will be saying “Yes, Chef!” To boot, this dish is super nutritious, full of healthy omega-3 fats, and high in protein and vitamins A and C. Serve with a side of brown rice for a complete meal.

Tuna & bok choy packets

Photo Credit: EatingWell

WEDNESDAY: Goat Cheese and Olive-Stuffed Chicken Breasts

The Ingredients: Chicken breast, goat cheese, black olives, egg white and breadcrumbs.

Why It Rocks: This gourmet-looking masterpiece is the perfect hump-day pick-me-up.  A few simple ingredients, 25 minutes and bam — you have yourself a protein-packed Mediterranean masterpiece.  Serve with a side of greens or roasted veggies and you have yourself a full-fledged dinner worthy of sharing.

Goat Cheese Stuffed Chicken Breasts

Photo Credit: EatingWell

THURSDAY: Minted Peas & Rice with Feta

The Ingredients: Brown rice, frozen peas, scallions and fresh mint, feta cheese, low-sodium chicken broth.

Why It Rocks: This refreshing, plant-powered dinner is a light, balanced option for a busy work week.  Frozen peas and brown rice combine for complete vegetarian protein and filling fiber, while a dash of feta cheese and mint will delight your tastebuds with refreshing tang. You can also pair this dish with an easy lean protein like tofu, or rotisserie chicken for omnivores.

Minted Peas

Photo Credit: EatingWell

FRIDAY: Black Bean Quesadillas

The Ingredients: Black beans, Monterey Jack cheese, fresh salsa, whole wheat tortillas, avocado

Why It Rocks: TGIF! This easy, five-ingredient comfort food dinner is the perfect treat for the end of a long work week. You can’t go wrong with quesadillas, especially when they’re fresh, take 15 minutes to prep and have 40% of your daily fiber needs per serving.

Black Bean Quesadillas

Photo Credit: EatingWell

SATURDAY: Garlic-Stuffed Standing Rib Roast

The Ingredients: Prime rib, garlic, breadcrumbs, canola oil

Why It Rocks: Cheers to the weekend! This means you might have a little more time to trim and roast a beautiful, juicy cut of prime rib than you would during the week. But don’t fret — there are only four ingredients in total! This elegant recipe is a showstopper, and all you need to do is set it and forget it. High in protein and moderate in saturated fats, the finished ribs are great paired with a side of greens and grains.  

Standing Rib Roast

Photo Credit: EatingWell

SUNDAY: One-Pan Pancetta Kale Pasta

The Ingredients: Linguini, kale, pancetta, garlic and olive oil.

Why It Rocks: Simple, beautiful, comforting — the perfect Sunday night dinner to finish the weekend off with a bang. Dark green kale gives the pasta a hearty and filling quality, as well as a hefty dose of vitamin A and fiber, and a bit of pancetta adds a savory, special touch. All this in just 20 minutes and five ingredients!

One-Pan Pancetta Kale

Photo Credit: The Brooklyn Cook via Yummly

For even more super-simple meal ideas that are tailored to your dietary preferences, check out Zipongo’s 7 or Fewer Ingredients recipe category!

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