Cooking for One

A Week of Easy Dinners for One

updated Nov 17, 2022
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Credit: Credit: From Left to Right Dan de Jesus, Joe Lingeman, Lauren Volo, Joe Lingeman

Because most recipes are designed to serve four people (if not more), it can be tricky to find recipes suited for solo cooks. So it’s no surprise that a week of dinners for one was the most requested meal plan from readers. This plan walks you through a variety of recipes (because no one wants to eat leftovers all week long!) that are easy to scale down for solo cooks. It also reuses ingredients across multiple meals and includes some smart freezer-friendly tips!

Credit: Dan de Jesus

Monday: Whole30 Chicken

This popular chicken recipe is easy to adapt for one (although if you want leftovers for lunch, this chicken is great reheated or eaten chilled in a salad or layered on a sandwich). Buy a smaller pack of chicken thighs and plan to cook just what you’ll eat, freezing the remainder for another night. Toss a variety of vegetables (broccoli, cauliflower, red onion, bell peppers, mushrooms, or asparagus) onto the sheet pan for both tonight and Wednesday night’s dinner.

Get the recipe: Whole30 Chicken

Credit: Joe Lingeman

Tuesday: Australian Folded Eggs

Australian eggs fall somewhere between scrambled eggs and an omelet, and make a great option when you’re in the mood for breakfast for dinner, or are feeling too lazy to cook but still want something satisfying. Round out dinner by serving the eggs atop avocado toast, alongside a baked sweet potato, or with a simple green salad.

Get the recipe: Australian Folded Eggs

Credit: Lauren Volo

Wednesday: Smoky Roasted Vegetable Hummus Bowl

Hummus bowls are easy to adapt to one person, and any vegetables are fair game. If you already roasted vegetables on Monday, all that’s left to do is reheat them in the oven to crisp the edges. Finish with a squeeze of lime juice, then assemble your bowl with hummus and pita chips.

Get the recipe: Smoky Roasted Vegetable Hummus Bowl

Credit: Joe Lingeman

Thursday: 3-Ingredient Pesto Zoodle Bowl

Grab a package of pre-cut zucchini noodles (or make your own), a jar of pesto, and your choice of protein to round out dinner. This recipe suggests a fried egg, although the leftover thighs from Monday night would be a nice addition, as would a fillet of fresh or frozen salmon, or frozen shrimp.

Get the recipe: 3-Ingredient Pesto Zoodle Bowl

Credit: Joe Lingeman

Friday: Easy 5-Ingredient Black Bean Veggie Burgers

Make these ultra-hearty burgers ahead of time during your weekend meal prep, then stash them in the freezer. The upfront work rewards you with four nights of dinner, whenever you choose. Not only do these burgers freeze (and reheat!) like a dream, but you can also cook them on the stovetop straight from the freezer.

Get the recipe: Easy 5-Ingredient Black Bean Veggie Burgers

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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!