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Nutrition

Meal Planning With Avocados: 7 Days, 7 Ways

By Barbara Ruhs, MS, RDN

An avid avocado-eater and guacamole-lover, Barb is the Registered Dietitian/Nutritionist for Avocados From Mexico and former sports nutritionist for Harvard University. Her philosophy on food is simple: Enjoy what you eat, prepare food with love, and add avocados to everything!

As a Registered Dietitian and Nutritionist, I can’t say enough about the many virtues of avocados. They’re nearly a perfect food — a delicious fresh fruit you can fit into any meal, every day of the week. And there are many reasons you should! They’re virtually the only fruit with good fats (monosaturated fat and polysaturated fat) that help the body absorb vitamins A, D, K, and E. And they’re a good source of fiber, which adds bulk to your diet and can help you feel full faster and help manage your weight.

Whether you’re practicing a traditional balanced diet, or following a gluten-free or plant-based plan, avocado is a perfect way to pack more “goodness” into your meals. One serving of fresh avocado has nearly 20 vitamins and minerals!

Adding avocado to your diet doesn’t have to take a lot of time or effort. It’s a versatile fruit that requires little prep and zero cooking skills, and it can be combined with many pre-made or raw ingredients in a snap. Here’s a week’s full of inspiration to get you started on an avo-tricious journey.

  1. Super Salads Monday

    Avocado elevates salads with a dreamy touch. My advice is to play with texture. Some salad recipes taste great with creamy, melt-in-your-mouth ripe avocados, while others go well with firmer avocado slices. And if you’re looking to sneak even more veggies into your salads, try pureeing avocado into your salad dressing. If you want a dreamy green Caesar or homemade green goddess dressing, we’ve got you covered!

  2. Taco Tuesday

    Avocado and tacos are a classic pair! And a quick, easy, self-assembly dinner for the whole family on a busy weekday night — plus they are customizable to different taste preferences or eating styles. If you want a gluten-free or vegetarian alternative, no problem with simple substitutions. Taquitos and tostadas are a fun spin on taco night, too.

  3. Toast to Wednesday

    On the run? No time at breakfast? While it may be tempting to go for a toaster pastry, avocado toast takes just about the same amount of effort. Simply scoop out the avocado flesh with a spoon and smear it onto your favorite toasted bread. Here are a bunch of toast recipes to get you started. Bonus if you can add eggs, chicken, or berries on top! The combination of fiber and good fats from the avocado and protein provides energy to fuel your day and give you that extra oomph to make it to lunchtime.

    Another tip for early birds who are really in a rush: Grab a spoon, a ripe avocado, and a hard-boiled egg for an unbelievable on-the-go breakfast.

  4. Simply Satisfying Thursday

    One of the best parts of avocado is that it takes minimum effort to prepare a healthful dish. For example, you can mix chopped avocado with rotisserie chicken for a satisfying snack. Or layer avocado on wheat crisps with slices of tomato and a sprinkle of salt. And if you’ve got a sweet tooth, there are lots of ways to satisfy it with avocado (without any added sugar!).

  5. Friday, “Try” Day

    It’s always nice to kick off the weekend by making dinner together as a family — and with avocado, the possibilities are endless! Once a week, make a point to explore a new recipe with avocado. Take a trip around the world, while you’re at it, with globally inspired dishes, like Thai avocado shrimp bowls or Greek zoodles with cucumber and avocado.

  6. Swap-or-Top Saturday

    You can also swap butter with avocado in baking recipes, like these scrumptious cookies and delectable pies. They have about the same amount of fat per volume, and the fat in avocados is good, monosaturated fat with the bonus of fiber and nearly 20 vitamins and minerals. Avocado also makes a great stand-in for sour cream or mayonnaise — a natural fit for sauces, dressings, and sandwich spreads. Try subbing the dairy in your smoothies with avocado for a creamy green twist!

Related: Learn how to tell if an avocado is ripe and ready to blend into a smoothie.

  1. Guac on Sunday

    Reward yourself for a week well done with the most stupendous of treats — guacamole! Since the long ago days of the ancient Aztecs, families have gathered around big bowls of guac to spend quality time together creating memorable moments. If you want to expand beyond the traditional tortilla chip, get creative with other dipping devices: apple or celery slices, veggie crisps and fresh slices of cucumber are all satisfying options! (And a fancy tip: Guacamole also is fun addition to charcuterie and cheese boards.)

There you have it: Seven days and seven ways to sneak avocados, a nutrient-dense food, into your everyday diet. Have a healthful week!

Explore our bottomless archive of avocado recipes for more mealtime inspiration.

By Barbara Ruhs, MD, RDN October 12, 2021

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