Our weekly meal plans feature realistic meals made for you true life. That means no crazy, hard-to-find ingredients or super trendy on-trend dishes, but real food for real families.
If you are looking simplify your life and will more organized, our menus are for you. You don’t have to scroll through endless recipes looking for something that looks good; The weekly menu and shopping list are ready to use.
Maybe you are looking new ideas and recipes to refresh your weekly menu. We hope our meal plans add a little excitement and novelty to dinner.
Each meal plan has 5 recipes for main dishesas well as a bonus recipe. Feel free to choose the meals you want to try and skip the ones you don’t like. Meals can also be prepared in any order, so if you want to prepare Monday lunch on Friday, that’s fine. The recipes serve 4 unless otherwise stated.
The bonus recipe can be made early in the week and enjoyed throughout the week. It can be a breakfast recipe, a healthy snack, or sometimes a dessert.
want more? Check out all of our meal plans.
Why Meal Plan?
- Meal planning simplifies your life and saves time. It takes the guesswork out of busy nights. It’s one less thing to think about every night. You have a plan and all you have to do is execute it. Hang the menu on the fridge so everyone knows what to expect. It’s a good way to get the family involved.
- Meal planning saves money. If you have a plan and only buy what you need from the grocery store, you’re much less likely to buy items you don’t need that could potentially go to waste. You’re also less likely to eat out, which can save you a lot of money.
- Meal planning is healthier. Planning meals ahead of time gives you time to think about including healthy vegetables, fruits, legumes, and grains. Also, it is always healthier to prepare your own food at home than to eat out.
What makes Rachel Cooks meal plans different?
I know there are many meal plans. Some are free (ours are free!) and others cost money. So why choose ours?
- We plan them with a busy schedule in mind. Our main goal is to create these meal plans reasonable And realistic. That means we don’t just grab 5 random recipes and send them off to the store with a ridiculously long shopping list. We consider what goes well together and how you can save time. For example: sometimes you cook a large batch of food in one day (but with the same amount of effort), and the excess food (don’t call it leftovers!) is reused for another meal the next day. Two meals in one!
- Balance: As you probably already know, most of the recipes on Rachel Cooks are easy to make. However, some recipes naturally have longer ingredient lists than others. We keep that in mind and balance out the more complicated recipes with simpler recipes with shorter ingredient lists. Speaking of balance: Mondays often have a meatless recipe.
- Happy Fridays! We make it easy for you every Friday (TGIF!) with a fun, easy-to-prep meal. Think tacos, pizza, or other kid-friendly recipes that you can combine with a few store-bought shortcuts.
- Categorized shopping list: Not only is the grocery list categorized to make shopping easier, but it also shows which day the ingredient is needed. That means if you’re not eating at home on Friday, you can easily go through the list and check off the Friday items. You might think Monday’s recipe sounds… gross. We disagree, of course, but you can eliminate these ingredients without having to comb through every recipe to figure out what you do and don’t need.
- Meal Prep/Make Ahead: Many of our recipes contain ideas to give you a head start on recipes. This is of course optional, but sometimes a small meal ahead of time (perhaps on a Saturday or Sunday) on weekdays can make a world of difference!
What to expect
We’ll be posting a meal plan each week (Thursdays – so you have time to plan, prep, and shop), and we’ll be adding seasonally focused meal plans, as well as some special meal plans (gluten-free, vegan, vegetarian, etc.) down the road.
Each meal plan will continue to be available after the week it was released. So if you find a favorite, you can always come back to it!
How to use the meal plans
Here’s what you will do!
- Print out the menu along with the shopping list.
- Go to each recipe and print out the recipe. You can just use the jump to recipe button at the top of the post if you wish, or you can read the post for more information about the recipe. Many of our posts include information on how to make the recipe your own. If you want to make changes, just remember to write down what you need on the shopping list.
- Look at the grocery list and cross off any ingredients you already have or that go into recipes you don’t want to make.
- Go to the grocery store to buy your groceries. You’ll find that grocery shopping is less stressful and faster when you have a good list.
- Cook and enjoy! Don’t forget to share it on social media if you make any of my recipes. Love seeing this and re-sharing your posts often! I also really love and appreciate comments and reviews on the recipes. You are always welcome to ask questions. We will answer them to the best of our knowledge and belief.
Meal plan #4
This is what you eat this week! Click here to download the Free Printable Menu Plan and Grocery List!
Monday: Instant Pot Minestrone Recipe – This hearty and filling soup makes a perfect meatless Monday meal! It makes a little extra so you have leftovers for lunch or to freeze. If you don’t have an Instant Pot, you can easily make this recipe on your stovetop.
Tuesday: Beef Skillet with Vegetables – We love how customizable this one is! We’ve put all the veggies you need on the shopping list, but feel free to swap them out for other veggies. You can use chicken or tofu instead of beef if you like! Try it with Instant Pot White Rice or Instant Pot Brown Rice.
Wednesday: Stuffed Pepper Casserole – This recipe is a great no-fuss recipe. It needs to spend quite a bit of time in the oven, but that’s all hands-off time.
Thursday: Slow Cooker Italian Pot Roast and Instant Pot Polenta – This pot roast will do double duty and make your Friday night dinner super easy. The pot roast and polenta is a combo that screams home cooking. If you don’t have an Instant Pot, try making polenta or mashed potatoes on the stovetop.
Friday: Air Fryer Zucchini Chip Pot Roast Sandwiches – They turn leftover pot roast into delicious sandwiches. Cover them with the extra cheese you got from the stuffed pepper casserole!
bonus: Chia Seed Pudding – Chia seed pudding is a healthy dessert, snack or breakfast that keeps really well in the fridge. Try to make it on Sunday to get a head start into the week. Top with fresh fruit or homemade muesli as you like.