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Here you’ll find a roundup of 30+ dietitian-approved healthy meal prep component recipes to mix and match. “Meal Components” are individual parts that make up a meal, like proteins, starches, sauces, and vegetables. Preparing these individual components allows you to mix and match different meals throughout the week, allowing for more variety in your meal prep!

A graphic for a recipe roundup of meal prep components to mix and match.

There are two general ways I like to approach meal prep:

  1. The first is by making large batches of full meals to have “intentional leftovers” for the week. If you’re looking for this approach to meal prep, feel free to check out my roundups for meal prep breakfasts, make ahead snacks, and lunch/dinner ideas!
  2. The second approach is what I like to call the “Meal Component Method,” in which you prepare large batches of different “components” of meals that take longer to cook. With these meal components ready to go, you can then mix and match those components with uncooked ingredients to create custom meals each day, depending on what you’re feeling like!

Today we’re going to be discussing the “Meal Component” Approach to meal prep. I’ll also be sharing 30+ different healthy meal prep component recipe ideas to get you started. This approach to meal prep allows for a bit more spontaneity and flexibility during the week, while still significantly cutting down on cooking time. 

How Does It Work?

With this method, I typically recommend cooking different types of meal components each week. What are these general food components?

  1. Proteins
  2. Starches
  3. Non-Starchy Vegetables
  4. Sauces, Dips & Dressings

That might mean preparing a large pot of whole grains, a couple simple proteins, roasting a few trays of vegetables, and preparing a couple different sauces or dressings. This way, you’ll ensure that you’re going to have quality carbohydrates, healthy fats, protein, fibre, and lots of veggies ready for the week!

With these cooked components, you then can throw together different meals, like stir-fries, grain bowls, salads, sandwiches, pastas, tacos, or egg dishes.

Keep reading to see what “no-prep” ingredients I recommend having in your kitchen to create these meals, as well as different kind of meal ideas you can assemble with your prepped ingredients!

ingredients for meal prep in glass containers

“No-Prep” Ingredients To Keep On Hand

  • Raw vegetables. Chop them up to pair with dips for a healthy snack, or throw them into the meal ideas below.
  • Leafy greens. Greens like baby spinach, kale, or arugula can easily be used as a salad base, or cooked into pastas, stir-fries, or egg dishes.
  • Avocados. Adds a great source of heart-healthy fat to any meal. Use to make avocado toasts, in sandwiches or wraps, or add to salads or grain bowls.
  • Nuts & Seeds. Another great source of healthy fats, including omega-3s, as well as plant-based protein. Sprinkle on top of salads or grain bowls for a nutrition boost.
  • Bread or tortilla wraps. Use bread as a sandwich or open-faced toast base. Tortillas can be used to make wraps, tacos, quesadillas, or burritos.
  • Spices + seasonings. Keep a bunch of different spices or herbs on hand to get a variety of flavours in your meals. Try ones like cinnamon, paprika, turmeric, curry powder, dried basil, or thyme.
  • Fermented foods. Foods like kimchi or sauerkraut add a dose of gut-healthy probiotics and also flavour to your meals. Use them on grain bowls, sandwiches, stir-fries, or salads.
  • Dry pasta. Pasta is cooked in under 20 minutes, and pairs perfectly with any meal prepped proteins or veggies you have! For an extra boost of protein and fibre, try lentil or bean-based pastas.
  • Eggs. This easy and affordable protein source can matched with tons of meal prep ingredients. Make frittatas, omelettes, or scrambles with other prepped veggies or grains. Or, add a hard-boiled or fried egg to sandwiches, salads, or grain bowls.

What Types Of Meals Can You Make?

  • Salads
  • Stir-fries
  • Omelettes, scrambles, or frittatas
  • Bowl meals (grain bowls, buddha bowls, etc.)
  • Wraps or sandwiches
  • Tacos, quesadillas, or burritos
  • Pastas
  • Open-faced toasts

Healthy Protein Recipes

Protein is a macronutrient that plays an essential role in many processes in our body. It helps to build and repair our muscles and all our body tissues. Protein also helps to slow digestion and keep us feeling fuller for longer. If you find yourself hungry not long after a meal, it could be that you’re not including enough protein!

Check out some of the easy protein recipes below. All of these recipes work great for meal prep and can be mixed and matched in a variety of different meals.

Want some no-recipe protein sources that can be added to the easy meal ideas above? Try having items like canned seafood (e.g. tuna, salmon, mackerel), canned chickpeas or beans, or eggs on hand!

1) Garlic Shrimp With Smoked Paprika & Honey

overhead shot of white plate topped with shrimp sautéed in garlic, paprika, and honey with bowls of ingredients around plate
This garlic shrimp with smoked paprika and honey is the BEST way to cook shrimp! A quick, easy, and healthy protein recipe that's only 5 ingredients.
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2) Baked Harissa Salmon

overhead photo of baked harissa salmon over lemon kale quinoa on a white plate. Ingredients garnish the outside of the plate, along with a MSC blue label
This oven-baked harissa salmon recipe is light, fresh, and flavourful! It's an easy, healthy weeknight dinner idea ready in 35-minutes!
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3) Crispy Baked Tofu

white bowl with crispy baked tofu, asparagus, quinoa
This Crispy Baked Tofu With Maple Miso Sauce is a delicious vegan protein idea that pairs beautiful with a side of veggies and grains! Gluten-free, dairy-free, and ready in 30 minutes.
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4) Honey Mustard Garlic Shrimp

closeup overhead photo of sautéed garlic shrimp tossed in honey mustard sauce on a white plate and light pink backdrop
This honey dijon mustard garlic shrimp recipe is so easy and delicious. It's a quick, healthy protein dish that pairs well with everything! Dairy-free + gluten-free.
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5) Baked Salmon With Pistachio Pesto

easy baked salmon topped with pistachio pesto
This easy oven-baked salmon recipe is topped with a tasty dairy-free pistachio pesto. A simple, healthy weeknight dinner ready in 25 minutes!
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6) Crispy Turmeric Salmon

side angle shot of white bowl with broccolini, brown rice, turmeric salmon, parsley yogurt sauce
This crispy turmeric salmon recipe is easy, delicious, and ready in just 20 minutes. Paired with a herby greek yogurt sauce to round out the dish!
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7) Curry Tofu Scramble

curry tofu scramble with red bell peppers and spinach on a plate
This Curry Tofu Scramble is made with spinach and red bell peppers. It's a delicious combination of protein, veggies, and spices that is super easy to make, ready in 30 minutes, and full of healthy ingredients. Tofu scramble is also great for meal prep and can be used in so many different ways! 
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8) Honey Lemon Oven Baked Salmon

Overhead photo of parchment-lined baking dish with four salmon fillets with lemon and thyme on top.
This easy baked salmon recipe features lemon and thyme. It’s a delicious way to enjoy the health benefits of salmon and is ready in under 30 minutes!
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9) Marinated Peanut Tempeh via Minimalist Baker

Saucy, baked tempeh marinated in a spicy-sweet peanut sauce! Super flavorful, hearty, and perfect for topping noodles, salads, & more! Vegan + gluten-free.
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10) Balsamic Mustard Baked Tempeh via The Full Helping

Not sure what to do with tempeh? This easy recipe for balsamic mustard baked tempeh is a perfect place to start. Flavorful & healthy!
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Healthy Starches & Whole Grains

I also recommend prepping one or two healthy starch or whole grain recipes to have a quality source of carbohydrates to add to your meals. Our brains, muscles, and liver all use carbs as their primary fuel to carry out their various and extremely important roles within our bodies

Healthier sources of carbohydrates include things like starchy vegetables (like potatoes, sweet potatoes, corn, or winter squash) as well as whole grain foods (like quinoa, millet, farro, brown rice, oatmeal, whole wheat pastas). Carbs are also found in things like beans, lentils, and fruits. In addition to carbohydrates, these foods are great sources of a variety of micronutrients and dietary fibre.

Check out some of the starch/grain meal prep component ideas below. These dishes can be added to a multitude of different meal ideas. Use them to bulk up salads, as the base of a grain bowl, in a stir-fry, thrown into a frittata, or simply as a side!

11) How To Cook Quinoa: 3 Ways

how to cook quinoa and 3 ways to add flavour
Learn how to cook quinoa perfectly, and try 3 simple but delicious ways to add flavour!
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12) How To Cook Farro

overhead shot of cooked farro in a light blue bowl and a silver spoon
Ever wondered how to cook farro properly? This is the BEST and easiest way to make farro on the stovetop. My technique is similar to cooking pasta and takes 35 minutes or less. Say goodbye to mushy farro and hello to fluffy, chewy whole grain goodness!
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13) Creamy Coconut Corn Rice

Overhead photo of cooked coconut corn rice in a large white bowl.
This creamy coconut corn rice recipe is made with just 6 super simple, pantry-friendly ingredients. It's so easy to make and tastes amazing with your favourite protein! The base recipe is vegan, gluten-free, and dairy-free.
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14) Vegan Cheesy Broccoli Rice

overhead photo of pot filled with vegan cheesy broccoli rice
This cheesy broccoli rice recipe is made with a vegan cheesy cashew cream sauce! It's healthy, so easy to make, and a super delicious side to your favourite protein. Recipe is vegan, dairy-free, and gluten-free.
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15) Cheesy Miso Mushroom Rice

overhead photo of 2 white bowls with miso mushroom rice inside, topped with a poached egg over a light pink backdrop
This cheesy miso mushroom rice recipe is the perfect hands-off alternative to risotto. It's gluten-free, vegetarian, and so easy to make!
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16) Crispy Roasted Potatoes With Chili & Paprika

overhead shot of chili and paprika roastsed potatoes in white bowl with mayo and ketchup
These crispy oven-roasted potatoes with chili and paprika are such an easy, healthy, and delicious side dish! Recipe is vegan and gluten-free.
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17) Carrot Parsnip & Potato Mash

overhead photo of mashed carrots, parsnips, and potatoes in a white bowl with blue dish cloth
This carrot, parsnip and potato mash recipe is a healthy and vegan vegetable side dish! It's a tasty alternative to classic mashed potatoes. It’s creamy, full of flavour and spices, and uses fiber-rich white russet potatoes.
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18) Roasted Butternut Squash With Kale & Coconut Cream

Overhead photo of roasted butternut squash and kale in a white bowl.
This Roasted Butternut Squash is paired with crispy kale, crunchy almonds, and drizzled with a spicy coconut cream sauce. An easy, delicious, and healthy twist on a seasonal vegetable side dish!
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Cooked Vegetable Side Dishes

I don’t think I need to tell you that we should aim to get more veggies in our diet. Having some veggies prepped and in your fridge will highly increase your chances of eating them!

Check out some simple vegetable meal prep component ideas below. They work great as side dishes, thrown into salads, grain bowls, stir-fries, pastas, or frittatas/scrambles!

19) Easy Roasted Broccolini & Kale With Honey

overhead photo of roasted broccolini and kale on a white serving platter with small bowl of honey and silver serving utensils
This easy oven-roasted broccolini (tenderstem broccoli) recipe with crispy kale is a delicious and super simple vegetable side dish. A drizzle of honey after roasting adds the perfect touch of sweetness to the cooked veggies. Ready in just 20 minutes! Recipe is gluten-free and dairy-free.
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20) Garlic Sautéed Green Beans With Dijon Vinaigrette

garlic sauteed green beans with dijon vinaigrette, toasted almonds, lemon wedges on plate
This recipe for garlic sautéed green beans is tossed in a homemade dijon vinaigrette for an easy, healthy and incredibly flavorful vegetable side dish. Finish with toasted almonds and fresh herbs. Ready in under 30 minutes!
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21) Honey Roasted Brussels Sprouts With Blue Cheese

honey and garlic roasted brussels sprouts topped with blue cheese and hazelnuts in a bowl
These honey-roasted Brussels sprouts elevate your standard green vegetable side dish by tossing them in garlic and honey, and pairing them with crumbled blue cheese and toasted hazelnuts. A twist on classic roasted Brussels sprouts, this recipe is delicious, easy to make, and PACKED with flavour.
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22) Balsamic Roasted Broccoli

roasted broccoli with balsamic reduction and basil
This balsamic roasted broccoli features fresh basil and a homemade balsamic reduction. A simple, healthy, and vegan side dish. Plus, it's only 5 ingredients!
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23) Oven-Roasted Radishes

Oven-roasted radishes in a white bowl with chopped parsley
Oven-roasted radishes are an absolute game-changer. If you don’t love raw radishes, you may be surprised at how sweet and juicy these taste! This simple recipe is the perfect veggie side dish, or a colourful addition to any grain bowl or salad. 
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24) Roasted Zucchini With Parmesan & Basil

roasted zucchini with parmesan and basil on white plate
This quick and healthy vegetable side dish is ready in 30-minutes. Full of flavour and perfect for weeknight dinners!
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25) Curry-Roasted Cauliflower

white bowl of curry-roasted cauliflower with mint, cashews, raisins, and yogurt sauce
This Curry-Roasted Cauliflower is paired with raisins, chopped cashews, and a minty yogurt sauce. The cooling sauce is the perfect contrast to the curry spices and sweetness from the raisins. A fun and delicious way to enjoy a cauliflower side dish!
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Healthy Sauces, Dips & Dressings

Last but definitely not least, I always recommend meal prepping a yummy sauce and/or dressing to keep in the fridge for the week.

Having a delicious sauce not only is a way to get in tons of nutrition (these are all great sources of healthy fats), but it also is a way to add a ton of flavour and variety to your meals. Check out some of my favourites below!

26) Vegan Miso Tahini Sauce

vegan miso tahini sauce in brown bowl with gold spoon
This creamy, "cheesy," and delicious miso tahini sauce is made with just 6 ingredients and takes only 5 minutes to make! It's a healthy vegan sauce that's perfect for pastas, grain bowls, and more!
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27) Vegan Hemp Seed Pesto

white bowl with homemade pesto and spoon
This homemade vegan hemp seed pesto is nutrient-dense and can be whipped up in just minutes! Recipe is nut, dairy, and gluten-free.
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28) Herby Yogurt Salad Dressing

Dill yogurt dressing shown in a bowl.
This Greek yogurt salad dressing is made with handfuls of fresh herbs (dill + mint), garlic, lemon, and a pop of cumin. It's creamy, protein-packed, and incredibly refreshing.
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29) Vegan Red Pesto

Overhead photo of a white bowl filled with red pesto spaghetti.
With sun-dried tomatoes and roasted red peppers, this vegan red pesto sauce is easy and delicious! Serve it with pasta, or use it as a dip or a spread. Easily made with or without nuts.
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30) Peanut Sauce via Pinch Of Yum

The Best Peanut Sauce! Smooth, drizzle-able, garlic-and-gingery with a sesame kick. Perfect for noodles, salads, protein, or as a dipping sauce!
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31) Basic Vinaigrette: 3 Ways via Cookie + Kate

Here’s my go-to vinaigrette recipe! So easy and tastes way better than store-bought dressing. This versatile recipe will take your salad to the next level.
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32) Roasted Vegetable Dips: 3 Ways

three roasted vegetable dips in small bowls on serving platter with raw vegetables
These healthy roasted vegetable dip recipes are made with greek yogurt, tahini, fresh herbs, spices, and toasted nuts. Featuring 3 different recipe ideas, including roasted carrots, beets, and butternut squash!
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33) How To Make Chia Jam: 3 Ways

raspberry, blueberry, and apricot chia jam in three glass jars with striped towel
You will love these delicious, healthy, and fiber-rich chia seed jams, three ways. Featuring apricot, raspberry, and blueberry!
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More Meal Prep Ideas

I hope this post has inspired you to approach meal prep in a different way and given you tons of easy meal prep component recipe ideas. Let me know in the comments how you mix and match them!

If you include any of these recipes in your weekly meal prep, let me know in the comments below. Be sure to follow along on Instagram and Pinterest for more nutrition tips and simple, healthy recipe ideas.

Get the Recipe: 30+ Meal Prep Components To Mix & Match, Including Creamy Coconut Corn Rice

This creamy coconut corn rice recipe is made with just 6 super simple, pantry-friendly ingredients. It's so easy to make and tastes amazing with your favourite protein! The base recipe is vegan, gluten-free, and dairy-free.
Overhead photo of cooked coconut corn rice in a large white bowl.
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  • Rinse brown rice in a sieve then transfer to a large pot.
  • Add water, 3/4 cup coconut milk, salt, and pepper to the pot with the rice. Stir, then bring to a boil over high heat.
  • Once boiling, stir the drained corn into the rice. When the liquid returns to a boil, cover and reduce to low heat. Allow to simmer for about 40 minutes. NOTE: all rice brands are a bit different, so please check the packaging of the rice you're using to see the exact amount of liquid to rice ratio and cooking time!
  • Once the liquid has absorbed into the rice and the rice has a fluffy texture, stir in the remainder of the coconut milk. Remove from heat.
  • Garnish with chopped basil as desired (optional) and serve with your favourite protein!


*RICE: I used this long-grain brown rice for this recipe, but you are welcome to use any type of rice you’d like. Please refer to the packaging to see the exact cooking time and liquid to rice ratio. If the ratio differs to the recipe instructions, simply add 1 cup water and the remainder in coconut milk.
*SERVINGS: this recipe will make about 4-6 servings, depending on if you’re enjoying it as a small side serving or a larger bowl of rice.
*LEFTOVERS: Leftovers of this recipe can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for 3-5 days. They can easily be reheated in the microwave or on the stovetop. Do note that coconut milk will harden when refrigerated, so it won’t look very creamy. It will soften again once reheated!
*RECIPE PAIRINGS: Because this coconut corn rice is a source of fibre-rich starch and fats, I recommend serving it with a source of quality protein to balance out your meal. Here are some protein ideas that would pair perfectly:
Or, just keep things really simple with a basic protein – sautéed shrimp or scallops in a little olive oil, salt + pepper; some baked chicken, a steak, crispy tofu, tempeh, etc.
If you’d like to add an additional side of non-starchy vegetables, you can check out my roundup of 20+ easy vegetable side dishes for some inspiration!


As a dietitian, I create recipes with whole food ingredients that provide the nutrients needed for optimal health. My nutrition philosophy does not focus on numbers; however, I understand that this information can be helpful.

Do note that the nutrition info provided is an estimate and I cannot guarantee correctness of the displayed values. These numbers will differ depending on brands used, recipe modifications, and amount eaten. If you require specific nutrition information due to medical reasons, please consult with your dietitian or physician.

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This post may contain affiliate links. Please see my disclosure policy.