This meal plan kicks off with the convenience of shredded rotisserie chicken breast, and my absolute favorite is the one from Costco.

It’s not just juicy and delicious; it’s a steal at just 5 bucks! Plus, it’s a whopping 4 lbs on average – talk about getting your money’s worth!

The beauty of this meal plan? You can scale it up or down, and you don’t have to worry too much with exact measurements. The recipe is pretty forgivable on how much meat or veggies you want to add to your portion.

Each recipe serves 4, but check out my tips in the individual meals below to see how I prep and plan the ingredients to stretch them over multiple days. When stored properly, the ingredients can last up to 5 days.

One last thing – hold on to the chicken carcass for chicken stock! Store it ia freezer-friendly Ziploc bag, being careful to press out as much air as you can before sealing it. It will last in the freezer almost indefinitely. Keep adding to it until you’re ready to whip up a massive batch of stock.

Stay tuned for the recipe coming soon!

First time here?

Check out my Getting Started guide to learn how to use this meal plan.

Meal Plan Menu

Prep Summary

  • 4 large eggs hard-boiled
  • 2.5 cup rotisserie chicken, shredded
  • 5 stalk cilantro roughly chopped
  • 1 head romaine lettuce chopped into bite-sized pieces
  • 12 large shrimp peeled and deveined (use the head and shells of shrimp to make shrimp stock)
  • 3 clove garlic minced
  • 1 Tbsp lemon juice, freshly squeezed
    • (store in airtight container until ready to use or prepare Caesar dressing right away)
  • 1/3 cup parmesan cheese finely shredded plus extra for topping
  • prepare Caesar dressing
  • 1 large avocado sliced (optional)
  • 1.5 cup rotisserie chicken, shredded
  • 1 head romaine lettuce chopped into bite-sized pieces
  • 3 clove garlic minced
  • 0.33 cup parmesan cheese finely shredded plus extra for topping
  • 1 Tbsp lemon juice, freshly squeezed
  • prepare Caesar dressing
  • 4 large eggs hard-boiled
  • 1 cup rotisserie chicken, shredded
  • 5 stalk cilantro roughly chopped
  • 12 large shrimp peeled and deveined (use the head and shells of shrimp to make shrimp stock)
  • 400 g dried thin rice noodles soaked in cool water for 30 minutes

Blanching vegetables serves 2 purposes: (1) It prevents loss of flavor, color, and texture—extending the “life” of the vegetable throughout the week, and (2) it gives us a head start in the cooking process for stir-fries. Stir-frying generally only takes 5 minutes. If you start from raw, some pieces won’t cook as evenly as others (especially hardy vegetables like broccoli). Blanching pre-cooks each piece of veggie so you will have a consistent tasting stir-fry every time. This is a well-known technique used in many Chinese restaurants!

Here’s how:

  1. Bring a large pot of water to a rolling boil (about 6 cups) and add 1 Tbsp kosher salt. Prepare an ice bath in a large bowl on the side.
  2. Blanch vegetables for the time indicated on the recipe/prep summary. The countdown starts when the water comes back to a boil, so don’t overcrowd! Once done, immediately transfer the vegetables with a sieve to the ice bath for a few minutes to stop the cooking process.
  3. When vegetables have cooled, drain well and transfer to a storage container or Ziploc bag. Use a salad spinner to remove excess water for leafy greens or use clean hands to squeeze out remaining water.
  4. You can repeat this process with all the vegetables using the same pot of water. Bring water back to a rolling boil before starting a new batch. Replenish ice to ice bath as needed to keep water cold.

Chopped Aromatics

Store in an air-tight container in the fridge to keep maximum freshness. Use them within 7-10 days. If you suspect it has gone bad – the color has changed (e.g. turns brown), there is visible mold, the texture is mushy – toss them. Always err on the side of caution to avoid food poisoning.

Chopped Veggies

Store in meal prep containers or in the bags they come with in the crisper drawer. If a vegetable has a high-water content and tends to go limp quick, wrap it with a paper towel before storing it in the fridge. The paper towel absorbs excess liquid that will prevent it from wilting or turning mushy.

Meat and Seafood

As a general guideline, vacuum seal seafood if you won’t be using it within 2 days of purchase. For this reason, I always place recipes with seafood earlier in the Meal Plan Menu. For meat, vacuum seal if you won’t be using them within 4-5 days of purchase or the product’s “best by” date. Vacuum seal ASAP to keep maximum freshness. Vacuum sealed meat and seafood keep for over a week without any issues. However, if you know you won’t be able to use it within the week, date them and pop them in the freezer for later use. They are good for up to 6 months before their flavor and texture start to lessen.

If you do not have a vacuum sealer, wrap fish and meat tightly with saran wrap, then wrap tightly with aluminum foil. Store in a Ziploc bag, squeezing as much air out as possible. Date them and pop them in the freezer for later use.

Use different cutting boards for your proteins and veggies. Always wash and disinfect knives when switching from meat to veggies to prevent cross-contamination. It goes without saying that you should clean your produce before consumption and preparation.

During prep, always start with food cooked at the lowest temperature first, working your way up. For example, chopped scallions are often used as garnish and will be consumed raw, so chop them before potatoes (which you will cook so the risk is lower). Likewise, you would prepare salad greens first.  

The same principle applies when keeping them in the fridge. Don’t stack raw chicken above fish – any juices from the chicken that trickle into the fish would pose a risk. Should the chicken be contaminated with salmonella, the time and temperature at which you would cook fish to perfection is not enough to kill the bacteria.  

Meal 1

A plate of Caesar salad topped with avocado and shredded parmesan on a marble countertop

Tips on prepping and storing this salad

  • Wash, dry, and chop lettuce a day ahead. Loosely wrap with a damp paper towel and store in a glass airtight container of Ziploc bag. Letting it sit in the fridge after washing really helps crisp it up.
  • Prepare dressing ahead and store in an airtight container.
  • (Optional) Chop and salt the tomatoes slightly to draw out water. Store in an airtight container until ready to use. Discard any excess water that might gather while in the fridge. If you don’t mind eating whole grape or cherry tomatoes in your salad, you can skip this step.

How to turn this recipe into individual salad kits

As you’re preparing your first serving, take some time to portion out all the ingredients into individual containers for future meals. Store the croutons and dressing separately. I like using Ziploc bags and small airtight glass jars (e.g. jam jars). And there you have it! Grab it to-go with you for work and just shake everything up right before serving.

Print Recipe
No ratings yet

Chicken Caesar Salad*

Homemade Caesar salad is EASY and CHEAP when you're using Costco's rotisserie chicken! This recipe also includes a homemade Caesar dressing you can whip up with ingredients you'll most likely already have in your pantry.
Prep Time15 minutes
Total Time15 minutes
Course: Main Course, Salad
Cuisine: American
Keyword: 15-minute meals
Servings: 4

Equipment

  • Fine cheese grater
  • citrus juicer
  • Large mixing bowl

Ingredients

  • 1.5 cup shredded chicken breast
  • 1 head Romaine lettuce chopped into bite-sized pieces
  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes halved
  • 1 cup croutons
  • 1 large avocado sliced (optional)

Homemade Caesar Dressing:

  • 1/3 cup parmesan cheese finely shredded plus extra for topping
  • 3 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 Tbsp lemon juice freshly squeezed
  • 4 Tbsp Kewpie mayo or regular mayo adjust to a thick but creamy consistency
  • 2 tsp fish sauce adjust to taste
  • 1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper

Instructions

  • Mix all dressing ingredients together. Adjust to taste. Store in airtight container in the fridge if not using right away.
  • 5-10 minutes before serving, lightly salt the cut tomatoes to draw out excess water. This step prevents the salad from getting soggy.
  • In a large mixing bowl, add lettuce, chicken, tomatoes, and croutons. Add the caesar dressing and toss well to coat.
  • Top if sliced avocado (if using), and more shredded parmesan. Serve immediately. Enjoy!

Meal 2

A bowl of chicken curry laksa, topped with hard-boiled eggs, shrimp, and cilantro on a marble countertop

Curry laksa is a Singaporean version of laksa. While not superior to my fave (Sarawak laksa), this is still a very delicious laksa in its own right.

You’d typically find this dish made with fresh egg noodles, but for the sake of convenience, dried rice noodles work for this dish. In fact, I prefer it over egg noodles.

Tips and tricks on how I prep and store this for up to 5 days

  • Chop all the cilantro at once and store in an airtight container.
  • Hard boil all 4 eggs and store in the fridge with the shell on.
  • Cook all 4 servings of shrimp in a large batch (when you make your first serving). Pat very dry with a paper towel and store in the fridge.
  • Prepare all 4 servings of laksa soup in a large batch and store in the fridge.
  • (Optional) Prepare all 4 servings of noodles, then rinse well until the water runs clear and is free of starches. Spin till very dry in your salad spinner or blot with paper towels and store in an airtight container.

Step 4 is tricky if not done right, so you might find that your noodles only last up to 2 days. I generally skip this step since I can make the noodles fresh as I reheat the laksa soup.

Other common additions to this laksa are tofu puffs and bean sprouts. The former I’ve omitted to stick to minimizing waste in this meal plan, and the latter simply because I hate beansprouts (fun fact)!

But if you want to add some bulk and fiber to this meal, go for it!

As for me, I justify the lack of bean sprouts with the Caesar salad I’m eating along with this plan, ha!

What if I have a shellfish allergy?

Use Maesri’s brand of red curry paste. This is the next best brand of curry paste that I like, but it is milder in flavor. You will need to adjust either with more paste or fish sauce to kick up the flavor. Subsitute the shrimp with either tofu puffs, more eggs, or more chicken!

Print Recipe
5 from 1 vote

Curry Laksa*

Prep Time15 minutes
Cook Time20 minutes
Total Time35 minutes
Course: Main Course, Noodle Dish
Cuisine: Asian, Fusion, Malaysian, Singaporean
Keyword: 30-minute recipes
Servings: 4

Ingredients

  • 1 cup shredded chicken breast
  • 12 large shrimp peeled and deveined (I used head-on shrimp to make shrimp stock)
  • 400 g dried thin rice noodles 3 Ladies brand, soaked in cool water for 30 minutes

For the curry sauce:

  • 3 Tbsp Thai red curry paste Mae Ploy brand or Maesri (if you have a shellfish allergy)
  • 3 Tbsp curry powder
  • 3 Tbsp cooking oil like avocado or peanut
  • 13.5 oz full fat coconut milk
  • 3 cups unsalted shrimp stock or chicken stock
  • 2 tsp chicken bouillon omit if using salted chicken stock
  • 2 Tbsp fish sauce
  • 2 tsp sugar or to taste
  • water as needed

To serve:

  • 5 stalks cilantro roughly chopped
  • 4 large eggs hard-boiled

Instructions

  • Bring a large pot of water to a boil for the shrimp and rice noodles. Lower the heat to a simmer and set aside until the curry soup is ready.
  • Heat another medium-large pot with 3 Tbsp oil over medium heat. Add the red curry paste and cook for 1-2 minutes until it turns a dark red color and becomes fragrant. Be careful not to burn it.
  • Have your shrimp or chicken stock ready. Add the curry powder to the paste, stir well for about 20 seconds, then immediately add the stock. (This prevents the curry powder from burning.)
  • Turn the heat to medium-high and let it come to a boil. Add in the chicken bouillon, fish sauce, and sugar. Stir well and adjust to taste. Stir in the coconut milk and bring it to a low simmer. Add more water or stock if you want more liquid.
  • Bring the large pot of water back to a boil. Cook the shrimp in the large pot of water for the noodles until they reach the desired doneness (about 2-3 minutes). Transfer them to a serving bowl. Then, cook the soaked noodles according to package instructions (about 1-2 minutes for al dente).
  • Divide the noodles, shrimp, and chicken into 4 bowls. Ladle the soup over everything. Top with a hard-boiled egg and cilantro. Serve immediately.

Notes

If using chicken stock instead of shrimp stock, omit the chicken bouillon.
To make shrimp stock, buy head-on shrimp. Peel off the heads and shells and simmer in water for 10-15 minutes, skimming off the foam. For this recipe, simmer all the shrimp heads and shells in 3 cups of water for 10-15 minutes. Use immediately or store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days. Stores well for up to 6 months in the freezer.
You can replace the hard boiled eggs for jammy soft boiled ones.

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Shopping List

checkingredientquantityunitcategorynoteslist type
fish sauce3Tbspcondiments and spicespantry
sugar2tspcondiments and spicespantry
worcestershire sauce1tspcondiments and spicespantry
kewpie mayo or regular mayo0.25cupcondiments and spicespantry
chicken bouillon2tspcondiments and spices(omit if using salted chicken stock)pantry
crouton1cupbread and bakeryor homemadeshopping
full fat coconut milk13.5ozcanned or jarredChaokoh brandshopping
thai red curry paste3Tbspcanned or jarredmae ploy brandshopping
curry powder3Tbspcondiments and spicesshopping
egg4largedairy and misc. refrigerated itemsshopping
parmesan cheese0.33cupdairy and misc. refrigerated itemsparmigiano reggianoshopping
shrimp12largemeat and seafoodshopping
rotisserie chicken2.5cupmeat and seafoodshredded chicken breastshopping
dried thin rice noodles400gnoodles3 ladies brandshopping
avocado1largeproduceshopping
cherry tomatoes1cupproduceshopping
cilantro5stalkproduceshopping
garlic3cloveproduceshopping
fresh lemon juice1Tbspproducearound 1/2 small lemonshopping
romaine lettuce1headproduceshopping
unsalted shrimp stock or chicken stock3cupstock or brothshopping