A meal plan can be a great place to start if you want to give the Mediterranean diet a shot. If you would like to understand the diet better and learn a few basic rules before you start, we recommend you check out our previous article in the series.
There are 5 ideas for snacks and every main meal of the day in this article. Feel free to use them in any order you like and repeat meals that you prefer or make larger batches of them. The main goal is to get a feel for what the Mediterranean diet is really like. You will be able to find a lot more recipes and make them your own once you have some experience.
Now get a piece of paper ready to make a shopping list, here are the meal ideas for you.
Feel free to use leftovers from lunch or dinner as breakfast, that’s a great way to make life easier for yourself on a diet. Eating leftovers is also a common practice in the Mediterranean region. If you don’t have any leftovers or feel like having something different, try the following dishes.
- Vegetable and egg frittata served with a wholegrain toast
- Chia pudding topped with berries and almond butter
- Wholegrain bread with soft cheese, olives and sliced tomatoes
- Greek yoghurt with berries and walnuts
- Oatmeal with a mix of berries
Snacking on the Mediterranean diet may feel different because you shouldn’t be reaching for any processed chocolate bars, candy or pastries. But don’t worry, there are plenty of tasty and simple options like the following.
- Fresh fruit paired with a handful of nuts
- Carrot, cucumber or celery sticks with a hummus dip
- A hard-boiled egg with a bit of cheese and fresh fruit
- Olives with a piece of cheese
- Smashed avocado on wholegrain crackers
A Mediterranean lunch
Traditionally, in the Mediterranean, lunch used to be the biggest meal of the day and was eaten in the early afternoon. You don’t have to follow this as a rule, just make sure the size and timing of the meal fit your schedule.
- Quinoa, bean, and veggie salad served with a slice of whole-grain pita bread
- A large green salad topped with a baked salmon fillet, red onion, feta cheese, brown rice, and fresh tomatoes
- Pasta salad made with whole-grain pasta, red onion, tomatoes, Kalamata olives, and goat cheese served on a bed of romaine lettuce
- Chicken breast with pesto and sweet potatoes
- Creamy vegetable risotto
We chose dinners that require a bit of cooking because a lot of people are back from work and can spend some time in the kitchen. If you prefer a simpler meal in the evening, don’t hesitate to swap some lunch and dinner ideas.
- Shakshuka, a dish of eggs poached in a sauce of tomatoes, olive oil, peppers, onion and garlic, spiced with cumin, paprika and cayenne pepper
- Roasted chicken with roasted root vegetables and Brussels sprouts
- Fresh trout with artichokes and salad
- Baked lamb with root vegetables and potatoes
- Sautéed shrimp with buckwheat
A full week of Mediterranean recipes should help you get a good idea if this is the diet for you. If you enjoy this way of eating and want to improve your chances of losing weight, you can try the “green” Mediterranean diet. We will take a look at it in the next article of the series.