5 Simple Meals to Make the Week of Thanksgiving

This week’s meal plan offers easy recipes like salmon foil packets and meaty grilled cheese for early in the week, an alternative to cooking a full bird on the big day, and a filling soup to use up leftover turkey just in case you went all out for Thanksgiving this year.

This month, we welcome back Marta Rivera for more of her meal plans. Marta is a trained chef, mom of twins and Army wife, and a Simply Recipes recipe tester and developer!

Most people are looking for easy meals for the beginning of this week, especially here in the States where many are celebrating Thanksgiving.

Even if you’re not celebrating along with us, the simplicity of the throw-together meals in this week’s meal plan will not only make you breathe a sigh of relief, but they’ll also give you even more reasons to give thanks.

Sandwiches are a hit with my crew any time of the year, but they work best for me this week because everyone can chip in to make them while I’m working on the holiday prep.

Foil meals are a no-fuss option that avoid crowding in the kitchen come clean-up time and a hearty soup rounds to get the most of this year’s bird brings an easy end to this week’s meal plan.

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Roast salmon filet on foil with roast grape tomatoes, chopped cilantro and thinkly sliced lime on top.

Even though salmon is the main dish of these meals-in-a-pouch, you can replace it with halibut, orange roughy or cod. Can’t find the harissa paste? Use your favorite spice blend instead. Even the veggies are adjustable. And what’s not to be thankful for when dinner dishes are non-existent? Just crumple the pouches and toss them in the trash.

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Grilled Cheese Sandwich

My kiddos call this a “meat lover’s grilled cheese.” I add a sidecar of pizza sauce to their plates for dipping the sandwiches and they think I’m just the best mom ever. Which, I mean, I don’t disagree. Make this a little spicier by using spicy capocollo, soppressata, or calabrese salami.

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Falafel air fryer recipe

My air fryer is the unsung hero of my kitchen. I should give it more props because when it comes to quick-cooking fried foods it’s a workhorse. Not only will it cut down on the amount of fat in these falafels, the air-frying time is on-par with oil-frying, so I don't have added cook times to contend with or oil splatter to clean up. Serve these stuffed in pitas or wrapped in lettuce leaves for a low-carb option.

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Stuffed Roast Turkey Breast

What if I told you that an all-in-one Thanksgiving dinner recipe exists? It’s true! It’s totally a thing and considering how wild 2020 has been, there’s no reason for us not to try it. Wrap stuffing, cranberries, and turkey together in a compact roll then bake the lot of it is where it’s at for me this year. I don’t have the energy to go all out on a huge bird with all the trimmings, so I’m keeping dinner simple.

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Slow Cooked Turkey With Mustard Sauce

If you kept it traditional and made a big turkey for Thanksgiving, you more than likely have a bit of bird leftover. Thank your lucky stars for a slow cooker stew that uses up the last of the turkey while feeding you heartily.

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Weekend Baking

Cranberry Upside Down Cake

Cranberries aren’t only for sauce. I mean, sauce isn’t a bad thing, but cranberries should definitely get more airtime during the holiday season. This lightly spiced cake is baked upside-down style (think pineapple) and turned out with a flourish. “Ooohs” and “aaahs” a-plenty are sure to accompany this dessert.

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Marta Rivera

Marta Rivera is trained chef with over 20 years in the culinary field and the blogger behind Sense & Edibility. She graduated from the Baltimore International Culinary College with degrees in Culinary Arts and Classical Pastries. Her cookbook is Taste and See Cooks.

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No Image5 Simple Meals to Make the Week of Thanksgiving

  1. Ccos

    Can you make the cranberry cake in a Bundt pan?

    Show Replies (1)
  2. Laura

    Can’t wait to try them. I ama Diabetic so some adjustments are needed

  3. Marti

    For the first time, I didn’t find one recipe that tickled my fancy. That’s an exceptional record for someone as picky as I.

  4. teso59

    Wonderful variety of recipes , something for everyone