Just Grill It (And Other Minimal Cooking Recipes)

Because You Don’t Have To Get Hot and Sweaty In Your Kitchen!

Written by Sara Haas RDN for Plan to Eat 

How it works: Make the “Main Event” dish and then serve it with the recommended “Side #1.” Feel like an over-achiever? Then add side #2 to the meal.

Don’t feel like it?: We’ve included meals for 5 out of 7 days of the week. Make as many as you like. Or even consider doubling recipes to have leftovers for another meal later in the week. Make this challenge fun and not stressful. You certainly don’t have to light up the grill every night to succeed!

Don’t forget those recipe notes, they’ll help you out, providing tips and tricks to help you keep your cool.

Week 1:

Monday:

  • Main Event: Grilled Thai Coconut Lime Skirt Steak
  • Side #1: DIY shredded veggie salad – Mix shredded lettuce or cabbage with shredded carrot and thinly sliced bell peppers in a large bowl. Toss with a splash of fresh lime juice, sesame oil and then garnish with chopped cashews or peanuts.
  • Side #2: Chopped fresh honeydew melon
  • Recipe Notes: Refrigerate steak while it marinates.

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Tuesday:

  • Main Event: Strawberry Teriyaki Salmon Kebabs
  • Side #1: Quinoa – Cook quinoa and toss with cilantro and fresh lime juice.
  • Side #2: Toss some seeded and quartered bell peppers in olive oil, salt and pepper and place them on the grill. Cook them while you cook the salmon. Chop and serve alongside the kebabs.
  • Recipe Notes: Use skinless salmon for this recipe and if you’re buying it from the fish counter at your grocery store, you can save yourself time by asking them to cut it into cubes for you.

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Wednesday:

  • Main Event: Green Goddess Chicken Sandwiches
  • Side #1: Slice some zucchini and summer squash lengthwise into planks, toss with olive oil, salt and pepper then add to the grill and cook while chicken is cooking. Drizzle with balsamic vinegar and toss with freshly chopped basil just before serving.
  • Side #2: Peaches
  • Recipe Notes: Use whole wheat buns for a more nutritious option.

Screen Shot 2018-05-25 at 5.40.25 AM

Thursday:

  • Main Event: Chickpea Hummus Wrap
  • Side #1: Bowl of seasonal fruit
  • Side #2: Popcorn – Air pop your own or look for bagged versions that have just popcorn kernels, oil and salt listed as ingredients. Skip the buttered or flavored versions.
  • Recipe Notes: Add a few ounces of drained, water-packed light tuna to the wrap for additional protein.

Screen Shot 2018-05-25 at 5.40.43 AM

Friday:

  • Main Event: Slow Cooker Asian Pulled Pork
  • Side #1: Serve as lettuce wraps and top with shredded carrot, sriracha and chopped peanuts
  • Side #2: Watermelon slices
  • Recipe Notes: To make the wraps, try using sturdy and larger leaves of bibb lettuce, red leaf lettuce or romaine lettuce

Screen Shot 2018-05-25 at 5.40.59 AM

Week 2:

Monday:

  • Main Event: Soy and Lime Spicy Grilled Shrimp
  • Side #1: 8 ounces Rice noodles (cook according to package directions) tossed with lime juice, honey, sesame oil, lite soy sauce, sliced scallions, cilantro and chopped peanuts.
  • Side #2: Add whole shiitake or portobello mushrooms to the grill while you’re cooking the shrimp
  • Recipe Notes: Prepare the rice noodles while your shrimp is cooking.

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Tuesday:

  • Main Event: Grilled Chicken Shawarma with Tahini Sauce
  • Side #1: Cucumber Salad – Slice one cucumber and toss with fresh dill, plain Greek yogurt and a splash of lemon juice. Season with salt and freshly cracked black pepper.
  • Side #2: Grilled whole wheat naan or pita bread
  • Recipe Notes: Grill the naan or pita while you’re grilling the chicken. Make the cucumber salad in advance to help meal time come together quickly.

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Wednesday:

  • Main Event: Vegetarian Hummus Tacos
  • Side #1: Bowl of fresh berries
  • Side #2: Guacamole – serve with corn tortilla chips and thinly sliced radishes and carrots for dipping.
  • Recipe Notes: Use 6-inch whole wheat or sprouted whole grain tortillas. For a gluten-free option, use corn tortillas.

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Thursday:

  • Main Event: Steak and Vegetable Skewers
  • Side #1: Quinoa – Cook quinoa and toss with some of the chimichurri sauce.
  • Side #2: Watermelon slices
  • Recipe Notes: If you’re using wooden skewers, be sure to soak them in water first to prevent them from burning.

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Friday:

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Week 3:

Monday:

  • Main Event: Southwest Avocado Chicken Salad Lettuce Wraps
  • Side #1: Fresh melon wedges
  • Side #2: Vegetable sticks, such as carrots, celery and bell peppers.
  • Recipe Notes: Buy the chicken already cooked to save time. Or substitute with poached chicken, if desired.

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Tuesday:

  • Main Event: Spinach Salad with Grilled Shrimp
  • Side #1: Grapes
  • Side #2: 8 ounces Rice noodles (cook according to package directions) tossed with sesame oil, lite soy sauce, sriracha and sliced scallions.
  • Recipe Notes: Noodles can be made in advance. Rinse cooked noodles in cold water, then toss with remaining ingredients and refrigerate until ready to eat.

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Wednesday:

  • Main Event: Chicken Pesto Kabobs
  • Side #1: Arugula Salad
  • Side #2: Whole wheat baguette
  • Recipe Notes: For the salad, keep it easy. If you don’t have champagne vinegar, you can use white wine vinegar or plain white vinegar. Swap the dried apricots for golden raisins or cranberries. Skip the pistachios if there aren’t any in your pantry.

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Thursday:

  • Main Event: Grilled Veggie Platter With Simple Honey Mustard Vinaigrette
  • Side #1: Drain and rinse a can of chickpeas. Chop 1 cup of fresh parsley and add to a bowl along with the chickpeas and 1/4 cup of the Honey Mustard Vinaigrette. Toss, season with salt and pepper.
  • Side #2: Fresh melon wedges
  • Recipe Notes: Save extra vinaigrette for a salad tomorrow!

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Friday:

  • Main Event: Grilled Fresh Salmon Burgers
  • Side #1: Toss your favorite lettuces and veggies together and top with salad dressing of your choice. (Note – 1 tablespoon salad dressing is a good serving size.)
  • Side #2: Grapes
  • Recipe Notes: Serve on whole wheat buns topped with a thin layer of olive oil mayo mixed with sriracha hot sauce

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Week 4:

Monday:

  • Main Event: Chicken Tikka Wrap
  • Side #1: Cucumber Salad – Slice one cucumber and toss with fresh dill, plain Greek yogurt and a splash of lemon juice. Season with salt and freshly cracked black pepper.
  • Side #2: Bowl of seasonal fruit.
  • Recipe Notes: Use whole wheat 6-inch tortillas. You can skip the tortilla and enjoy the chicken dressed with the sauce and served alongside the cucumber salad.

Screen Shot 2018-05-25 at 5.49.14 AM.png

Tuesday:

  • Main Event: Grilled Flank Steak with Corn and Peach Salsa
  • Side #1: Southwest salad – Pour a bag of pre-washed lettuce in a bowl. Top with a handful of crushed tortilla chips, 1 avocado, sliced and 1/2 cup chopped cilantro. Serve with a southwest-style dressing or lime vinaigrette of your choice.
  • Side #2: Peaches 🙂
  • Recipe Notes: Don’t feel like making or buying a salad dressing? Use the extra salsa from the Main Event to dress your salad.

Screen Shot 2018-05-25 at 5.49.34 AM.png

Wednesday:

  • Main Event: Thai Chickpea Burgers
  • Side #1: Simple Green Salad – toss pre-washed lettuce in a bowl, add any other veggies and toss with your favorite salad dressing.
  • Side #2: Bowl of seasonal fruit.
  • Recipe Notes: These can easily be made on the grill. Preheat to medium heat and coat grates liberally with oil. Once hot, add burgers, cook about 5 minutes, flip and cook another 5 minutes. Resist the urge to move them as this may cause them to fall apart.

Screen Shot 2018-05-25 at 5.50.14 AM.png

Thursday:

  • Main Event: Grilled Honey Lime Chicken
  • Side #1: DIY shredded veggie salad – Mix shredded lettuce or cabbage with shredded carrot and thinly sliced bell peppers in a large bowl. Toss with a splash of fresh lime juice, a dash of honey and some olive oil and then garnish with pumpkin seeds.
  • Side #2: Bulgur with Cilantro – Cook bulgur according to recipe in link. Omit other ingredients. Toss cooked bulgur with 1/2 cup cilantro, chopped and lime juice.
  • Recipe Notes: These are bone-in chicken thighs. Chicken is done when internal temp reaches 165’F.

Screen Shot 2018-05-25 at 5.50.29 AM.png

Friday:

  • Main Event: Tomato-Basil Grilled Fish
  • Side #1: Kale salad with Parmesan cheese. Toss pre-washed baby kale with carrots and bell peppers and your favorite vinaigrette. Garnish with freshly grated Parmesan cheese.
  • Side #2: Crusty whole grain bread
  • Recipe Notes: If you’re using frozen fish, be sure to thaw according to package directions and pat dry with paper towels to prevent fish from becoming mushy.

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