21 Light and Delicious Recipes

Welcome to the Weekly Meal Planner! Whether you work all day and are out of steam when the dinner hour hits, or are fresh out of ideas and in a cooking rut, we are here to make your life easier. 

This week, in honor of the unofficial start to summer, we are featuring lighter meals pairing lots of fresh veggies with healthy proteins, all easy enough for weeknight preparation but special enough for entertaining.

Steak over salad, chicken and veggies in a sack, and turkey burgers with a fresh, peach BBQ ketchup are all on the menu this week. Plus, take a stab at making your own pickles with our easy recipe below – it couldn’t be simpler.

Don’t know what to cook? Need help with a recipe? Feel free to ask us in the comments, on Facebook, or on Twitter.

Meatless Monday

Lunch: Celebrate summer with Quick Veggie Soup with Spring Lettuce. This super healthy soup is so easy – and it comes together in 15 minutes!

Dinner: Treat your family to Pasta with Hazelnut-Spinach Pesto. It’s a fantastic Meatless Monday (or any night!) meal.  Bonus: Leftovers, if there are any, are delicious cold for lunch the next day!

Snack: Meat-Free Buffalo Wings with Ranch Dipper are a guilt-free treat, thanks to healthy cauliflower in place of traditional wings.


Lunch: Make a pot of this affordable Sausage, Zucchini and Potato Stoup over the weekend for a healthy and satisfying weekday lunch. Note: Pork or poultry Italian sausage both work well in this recipe. 

Dinner: Chicken in a Paper Pocket will be your next go-to weeknight dinner. Juicy chicken, perfectly-cooked veggies, and virtually no clean up! Customize It: Swap in your family’s favorite veggies if you’d like. 

Dessert: Crumb Cake is a crowd-pleasing dessert that’s easy enough for a beginning baker.


Lunch: Spinach and Artichoke Tuna Melts are super-sandwiches packed with nutrition and flavor.

Dinner: Sicilian-Style Saffron Cod with Burst Tomatoes is a light and beautiful meal that comes together in one pan. Customize It: Use the firm, white fish of your choice.

Snack: Mini Muffin Potato Tots with Horseradish Sauce are a fun after-school snack!


Lunch: Sweet and Bitter Greens Salad with Gorgonzola Blue Cheese Dressing is an anything-but-boring green salad. Sliced pear and walnuts make it a stand out.

Dinner: Kids will love these juicy and  flavorful Baked Swordfish Meatballs.

Snack: Skip the store-bought variety and make your own Sweet ‘N Spicy Pickle Spears. They are ready in 24 hours and keep for a few weeks in the fridge so you can crunch to your heart’s content.


Lunch: The Absolute Best Roast Beef Sandwich lives up to its name. Roast beef is topped with homemade horseradish sauce, watercress, chili pepper and red onion – yummo!

Dinner: Fire up the grill to celebrate the weekend with these healthy and tasty Bacon Bit Turkey Burgers with Peach Barbecue Ketchup. The homemade ketchup comes together in a flash and makes these burgers something special.

Snack: Bourbon Dogs are a fun and easy party – or any day – snack.

Entertaining Saturday

Brunch: Skip the prepared baking mix and whip up your own so you’re ready anytime. Make Your Own Pancake Mix produces the fluffiest pancakes you’ll ever have, and it cuts back on your grocery bill at the same time!

Dinner: Treat your guests to a special-occasion worthy main course salad: Steak and Spinach Salad with Bacon Bits and Blue Cheese. A perfect dish to enjoy while dining al fresco!

Cocktail: Use your favorite bottle of rosé to make a batch of Blackberry Sangria  – it simply screams “summer!”

Family Sunday

Brunch: This simple BLT Soufflé Frittata is the perfect anytime meal. Plus, it’s delish warm, room temperature, or even cold.

Dinner: Remember to start the brining process a day ahead for this fabulous all-in-one Sunday supper: Roast Half Spring Chicken with Potatoes, Olives and Lemon.

Dessert: If you think churros are too complicated to make at home, puff pastry makes it easy! These 3-Minute Churros are a sweet ending to the weekend. Cook’s Note: The spicy chocolate dipping sauce puts this dessert off the charts!

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Rachael Ray