Next Week's Meal Plan

A Week of High-Protein Plant-Based Dinners

published May 15, 2021
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Credit: From Left to Right, Top to Bottom: Lauren Volo, Kimberley Hasselbrink, Joe Lingeman, Ghazalle Badiozamani

One of my top goals when putting together my meal plan (well, other than easy weeknight dinners!) is including dinner options my family and I are excited to dig into night after night. This week I’m taking advantage of the protein-rich, plant-based ingredients in my pantry, like lentils, beans, whole grains, and nuts to get totally crave-worthy meatless meals like one-pot green curry, sloppy Joes, and stuffed peppers on the table. Whether you follow a plant-based diet or simply want to get a week of meatless meals on the table, here are five weeknight-friendly dinners to add to the rotation.

Credit: Lauren Volo

Monday: Tofu and Broccoli Green Curry

Tofu, coconut milk, and a pile of brown rice come together to keep tonight’s dinner plenty filling. Plus, the recipe also uses a bag of frozen broccoli, which cuts down on both prep and cook time.

Get the recipe: Tofu and Broccoli Green Curry

Tuesday: Joe Yonan’s Sloppy Vegan Joe

No matter the foundation of the filling, it’s impossible to deny the homey comfort of sloppy Joes for dinner. I especially love this version, that mixes in yellow squash and tomatoes. The recipe call for chorizo-spiced seitan (which is packed with so much warm flavor), though nearly any vegan meat substitute works well. I plan to round out dinner with a tangy slaw on the side.

Get the recipe: Joe Yonan’s Sloppy Vegan Joe

Wednesday: Tomato-Braised Lentils with Broccoli Rabe

This humble, yet rich pot of lentils has been a regular in my dinner rotation for years. I’ll cook up the lentils during weekend meal prep, then reheat before dinner. In place of broccolini, I plan to use up a bunch of kale from the crisper that’s on its last leg. I’ll sauté it with olive oil, plenty of chopped garlic, and a pinch of red pepper flakes. I’ll also round out our bowls with a chunk of crusty bread. If you’re not including dairy in your diet, replace the butter with olive oil and swap the cream for unsweetened non-dairy milk or omit altogether.

Get the recipe: Tomato-Braised Lentils with Broccoli Rabe

Credit: Photo: Joe Lingeman | Food Stylist: Cyd McDowell

Thursday: Slow Cooker Stuffed Peppers in Marinara Sauce

I love slotting stuffed peppers into my meal plan when I have little bits of veggies that need to get used up. In addition to black beans, quinoa, and zucchini, I’ll mix the last of some chopped spinach, shredded carrot, peas, and parsley.

Get the recipe: Slow Cooker Stuffed Peppers in Marinara Sauce

Credit: Ghazalle Badiozamani; Food Styling: Jesse Szewczyk

Friday: Crispy Sesame-Lime Tempeh with Coconut Curry

I’m capping off the week with bright, sunny rice bowls. Marinated and baked tempeh keeps dinner hearty. If you don’t care for tempeh, though, tofu makes an easy swap – marinate and cook according to the instructions, but skip the step for steaming.

Get the recipe: Crispy Sesame-Lime Tempeh with Coconut Curry

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Meal planning isn’t always easy — especially if you’re just getting started. But we’re firm believers that it’s the secret to stress-free weeknight dinners. We want to help you find inspiration and ease some of the pain points that come with getting dinner on the table night after night, whether you’re cooking one or a family of four or five. Every week we share a new meal plan solution specifically customized for you from reader requests or from a guest contributor, for Next Week’s Meal Plan!