Next Week's Meal Plan

A Week of 5-Ingredient Dinners from Trader Joe’s

updated Dec 14, 2022
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Five different photos of dinners in a graphic labeled by the days of the week.
Credit: Joe Lingeman

These days I’ll take the fastest, easiest path possible to get a satisfying dinner on the table. And that means leaning hard on some smart grocery-store shortcuts. These five dinners come together with no more than five of our favorite ingredients from TJ’s. In fact, most of these weeknight wonders call for just three or four ingredients.

Credit: Joe Lingeman

Monday: Trader Joe’s Crispy Sweet Potato Gnocchi

On Mondays I crave convenient comfort food, and it doesn’t get much more comforting than gnocchi. There’s plenty of fanfare around cauliflower gnocchi (which also works here), but I think the sweet potato version is way better. This three-ingredient sheet pan dinner comes together in just 15 minutes.

Get the recipe: Trader Joe’s Crispy Sweet Potato Gnocchi

Credit: Joe Lingeman

Tuesday: Trader Joe’s Shawarma Chicken Hummus Bowls

Hummus bowls are a favorite in my meal plan roster. They taste every bit as satisfying (and are nearly as convenient) as takeout, but at a fraction of the price. I typically top our bowls with a generous handful of pita chips.

Get the recipe: Trader Joe’s Shawarma Chicken Hummus Bowls

Credit: Photo: Joe Lingeman/Kitchn; Food Stylist: Pearl Jones/Kitchn

Wednesday: Warm Sesame Brussels Sprouts and Lentil Salad

Start with a bag of pre-shredded sprouts and cooked lentils: It seriously slashes prep time. For even more protein, I’ll top our bowls with a fried egg.

Get the recipe: Warm Sesame Brussels Sprouts and Lentil Salad

Credit: Joe Lingeman

Thursday: Trader Joe’s Orange Chicken Fried Rice

This is my hands-down favorite way to turn a bag of Mandarin Chicken into dinner. I love how this recipe starts with smart shortcuts like using pre-cooked brown rice and frozen stir-fry veggies, so the bulk of the work is already done. All that’s left to do is toss it all together in a fiery-hot skillet and dig in.

Get the recipe: Trader Joe’s Orange Chicken Fried Rice

Credit: Joe Lingeman

Friday: Trader Joe’s Flatbread Pizza

Anytime I feel like pizza Friday needs a reboot, I swap my regular pizza dough for a pack of flatbreads. This week I’m also using TJ’s Artichoke Antipasto spread in place of red sauce to give our personal pizzas a fun twist.

Get the recipe: Trader Joe’s Flatbread Pizza

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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!