I’m definitely the kind of person that hears meal prep and thinks “um, no thanks.” No matter how easy they make weeknight dinners, we can likely all agree that most meal prep plans are boring and repetitive. So to solve all of our healthy-but-lazy food desires, I invented a time-saving cooking hack designed to keep it zesty. Because, we too, are designed to keep it zesty. I’m super excited to introduce my first-ever series of 4 Meals 1 Prep: Vegan Sheet Pan Edition, where you get four completely different vegan, gluten-free, and dairy-free meals in under five minutes. Consider this your new form of self-care.
From my addictively creamy Brussel Sprout and Thyme Risott-ish to my perfectly umami Red Pepper and Kale Quesadilla to my Easiest Hash Ever to my herby Butternut Squash and Rosemary Soup, all four, vegan recipes make it super easy to eat healthy and feel GREAT all week long. All it takes is a bit of time prepping one day, and then you have 5-minute meals for the next four days. The best part? These make ahead meals use ALL of the produce and perishables up so no ingredients are wasted. Do we dig this concept? Do you have a favorite recipe? Tell me your feels in the comments below!
Never eat the same thing twice
The whole goal of 4 Meals 1 Prep is that each meal will taste completely, deliciously different from the previous recipe. And as someone who deeply understands the aversion to the “prep” part of meal prep, I made sure to keep this step light and easy. Turns out, it definitely doesn’t suck to trade an hour or so in the kitchen for a handful of healthy, 5-minute meals that have me drooling for days. May I recommend listening to my latest Healthier Together podcast episode while you’re cooking?
Ingredients in 4 Meals 1 Prep: vegan edition
(Serves 1 for 4 meals)
- 4 cups roasted butternut squash
- 4 cups roasted brussels sprouts
- 1.5 cups uncooked wild or brown rice
- 1 sprig fresh thyme
- 1 sprig fresh rosemary
- 1 13.5 ounce can lite coconut milk
- 1 bunch curly kale
- 1 large yellow onion, sliced
- 3 pitted medjool or deglet dates
- 2 tortillas of choice
- Cheddar or jack cheese (use plant-based cheese if vegan)
- 1 egg (omit if vegan)
- 2 red peppers, seeded and sliced
- Olive oil or avocado oil
- Smoked paprika
- Fine grain sea salt or mineral salt
All you need is a sheet pan
- Chop all your veggies and keep them separate from each other as much as possible.
- On one sheet pan, toss the butternut squash and brussels sprouts with oil and salt. Bake at 400F for 30-45 min or until brown at edges, tossing halfway through. 3. On another sheet pan, place the kale, onion, and red pepper so that the kale is sitting on top of itself. Toss all three with oil and salt, massaging the kale to reduce it. Bake at 400F for 20-30 min or until brown.
- Boil a large pot of water and add a palmful of salt. Add the rice and cook until done, then drain and rinse it like pasta.
- Once everything’s cooked, store everything separately in the fridge.
Delicious ways to customize!
- Veggie swap. Using sweet potatoes in place of butternut squash would also be delicious if you don’t have any on hand!
- Make it gluten-free: Use gluten-free or grain-free tortillas for the quesadilla recipe and you’ll have a completely gluten-free meal prep.
- Add spice. These recipes are delicious as is, but you could add sriracha to amp up the hash and ready-made spicy guacamole to the quesadillas.
- Add more herbs. I always like to top these recipes with extra fresh thyme or rosemary.
Recipe #1: Brussels Sprouts and Thyme Rissot-ish
I’m not saying risott-ish will fix your bad hair day, make him call you, or convince your boss to make unlimited PTO a permanent thing. But it will change your life by giving you the creamy, grainy deliciousness of risotto in under five minutes. We replicate risotto’s rich texture by mixing coconut milk and tahini, then pairing it with delightful, roasted veggies, fresh thyme, and chopped dates for bursts of sweetness. Here’s how it comes together:
- 2 cups cooked wild or brown rice
- 3/4 cup roasted brussels sprouts
- a big handful of roasted kale
- 1 tablespoon tahini and more to drizzle
- 1/2 cup of canned lite coconut milk
- 1 tablespoon roughly chopped fresh thyme leaves, woody bits removed
- 3 dates, pitted and chopped
- Place all ingredients either in a large stove-pot or a microwave-safe dish. Stir to combine.
- Heat it either on the stove top or by microwaving at 30-second intervals until warmed through.
- Once warm, stir in the pitted dates and add salt to taste.
- Garnish with a drizzle of tahini and more fresh thyme leaves.
Recipe #2: Red Pepper and Kale Quesadilla
Friends, behold: the veggie quesadilla to rule them all. Everything tastes better in a tortilla, which is why it’s the perfect vehicle for ALL the veggies we cooked up earlier. And truth be told, these don’t even need cheese because the butternut squash holds everything together so nicely. This is one of the best meals to get anyone, even skeptics, excited about eating their vegetables.
- 1/2 cup roasted butternut squash
- 1/2 cup roasted kale
- 3-5 slices roasted red bell pepper
- 1/4 cup shredded cheddar or jack cheese (use plant-based if vegan)
- Smoked paprika
- Fine grain sea salt
- Place one tortilla on a plate and top it with roasted butternut squash. Use a fork to smoosh the squash until it covers the tortilla’s surface.
- Add the kale and red pepper. Sprinkle cheese on top with a generous sprinkle of smoked paprika and salt. Place the second tortilla on top, like a sandwich.
- Put a skillet over medium-high heat and drizzle it with oil. Cook the quesadilla until brown, flipping it half way through so it’s crispy on both sides.
- Use a pizza cutter to slice into four triangles, and enjoy!
Recipe #3: The Easiest Hash Ever
- 2 cups roasted butternut squash
- All remaining roasted brussel sprouts
- All remaining roasted kale
- 1/2 the remaining roasted onion
- Big shake of smoked paprika
- 1.5 cups cooked rice
- Fine grain sea salt
- 1 egg, fried (optional)
- In a skillet or a microwave-safe dish, combine butternut squash, brussel sprouts, kale, onion, smoked paprika, and rice.
- Heat it up on the stove or in the microwave until warmed.
- Add salt to taste, and add a fried egg on top or more smoked paprika. Enjoy!
Recipe #4: Butternut Squash and Rosemary Soup
Call me predictable or call me genius – I saved the best meal for last in this 4 Meals 1 Prep series. This ready-made soup looks super decadent and impressive, but will be the easiest soup you’ve ever made from scratch. It’s exactly the kind of dish I’d tell you to bring to a dinner party where you want to do exactly ~zero~ cooking but look like you put in maximum effort. This is also where we’ll use up all of our leftover ingredients and feel super accomplished about actually completing a healthy meal plan. Look at you now!
- Remaining roasted red pepper
- Remaining roasted butternut squash
- Remaining roasted onion
- 1 teaspoon fresh rosemary, chopped
- Remaining lite coconut milk
- Remaining rice
- Add the red pepper, butternut squash, onion, fresh rosemary, and coconut milk to a blender and blend until smooth.
- Pour it into a microwave-safe bowl and season wth salt to taste. Warm it up in the microwave until heated through.
- In a pot or a separate microwave safe dish, warm the remaining rice. Spoon some on top of the soup and enjoy!
More healthy meal prep recipes
- Curry-Spiced Cauliflower Chickpea Freezer Burritos
- Sweet Potato and Black Bean Burritos
- Sheet Pan Salad with Clementine Rosemary Vinaigrette
- The Tastiest Falafel-Spiced Vegan Freezer Burritos
- Healthy Pizza Freezer Burritos
I hope you enjoyed 4 Meals 1 Prep: Vegan Sheet Pan Edition!
If you’re a recent meal prep convert like me, tag me on Instagram (@lizmoody) when you post your food pics – I can’t wait to see! For more meal prep plans like this one, check out my 4 Meals 1 Prep Rotisserie Chicken edition and New Years Jump Start edition.