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Menu planner: Lemon and herb red potato salad complements a filling dinner

Thinking ahead to your next few meals? Here are some main dishes and sides to try.

Lemon and herb red potato salad.
Lemon and herb red potato salad.
America’s Test Kitchen

Lemon and herb red potato salad

Makes 8 servings

Preparation time: 15 minutes

Cooking time: 10 to 15 minutes; cooling time: 30 minutes


3 pounds red potatoes, unpeeled, cut into 1-inch pieces

2 tablespoons white vinegar

1/2 teaspoon coarse salt, plus salt for cooking potatoes

2 teaspoons lemon zest plus 3 tablespoons juice

1/2 teaspoon pepper

1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil

1/2 cup finely chopped green onion, rinsed

3 tablespoons minced fresh tarragon

3 tablespoons minced fresh parsley

3 tablespoons minced fresh chives

2 tablespoons capers, minced

Combine potatoes, 8 cups water, vinegar and 1 teaspoon salt in Dutch oven; bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat to medium and cook 10 to 15 minutes at a strong simmer until potatoes are just tender. Meanwhile, whisk lemon zest and juice, pepper and 1/2 teaspoon salt together in large bowl. Slowly whisk in oil until emulsified; set aside. Drain potatoes thoroughly, then transfer to rimmed baking sheet. Drizzle 2 tablespoons dressing over hot potatoes and gently toss until evenly coated. Let potatoes cool about 30 minutes, stirring once halfway though cooling. Whisk dressing to recombine; stir in onions, tarragon, parsley, chives and capers. Add cooled potatoes to remaining dressing and gently stir to combine. Season with additional salt and pepper to taste. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Per serving: 209 calories, 4 grams protein, 10 grams fat (40% calories from fat), 1.3 grams saturated fat, 29 grams carbohydrate, no cholesterol, 232 milligrams sodium, 3 grams fiber.

Carb choices: 2.

Black bean lasagna

Makes 8 servings

Preparation time: 15 minutes

Cooking time: 40 to 45 minutes; standing time: 15 minutes


1 (15-ounce) can reduced-sodium black beans, rinsed

1 (28-ounce) can no-salt-added or regular crushed tomatoes, with puree

1 medium onion, chopped

1/2 cup chopped green bell pepper

1/2 cup medium salsa

1 teaspoon chili powder

1/2 teaspoon cumin

1 cup reduced-fat ricotta cheese

1/8 teaspoon garlic powder

1 egg

10 no-cook-style lasagna noodles

6 ounces shredded reduced-fat cheddar cheese

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Coat a 9-by-13-inch baking dish with cooking spray. In large bowl, mash beans slightly. Stir in tomatoes, onion, bell pepper, salsa, chili powder and cumin; mix well. In small bowl, combine ricotta, garlic powder and egg; blend well. Spread 1 cup of tomato mixture over bottom of dish. Top with half of noodles, overlapping slightly. Top with half of remaining tomato mixture. Spoon ricotta mixture over top; spread carefully. Top with half of cheddar cheese, then with remaining noodles, tomato mixture and cheddar cheese. Cover with nonstick foil; bake 40 to 45 minutes or until noodles are tender. Uncover; let stand 15 minutes before serving.

Per serving: 271 calories, 17 grams protein, 6 grams fat (19% calories from fat), 3.2 grams saturated fat, 37 grams carbohydrate, 42 milligrams cholesterol, 244 milligrams sodium, 5 grams fiber.

Carb choices: 2.5.

Chicken-corn chowder

Makes 6 servings

Preparation time: 15 minutes

Cooking time: about 10 minutes


1 tablespoon butter

1/2 cup chopped onion

1/4 cup finely chopped celery

1 fresh jalapeno pepper, seeded and minced

2 tablespoons flour

3 cups 2% milk

2 cups chopped cooked chicken breast, or 1 (10- to 12-ounce) can chicken breast, drained

1 1/2 cups frozen corn

1/4 teaspoon dried thyme

1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper

1/8 teaspoon coarse salt

1 (14 3/4-ounce) can no-salt-added cream-style corn

Melt butter in a Dutch oven over medium heat. Add onion, celery and jalapeno pepper; cook 4 minutes or until vegetables are softened, stirring often. Add flour and cook 1 minute, stirring constantly. Stir in milk, chicken, frozen corn, thyme, cayenne pepper, salt and creamed corn. Bring to a boil; cook 5 minutes or until thickened.

Per serving: 266 calories, 21 grams protein, 7 grams fat (24% calories from fat), 3.4 grams saturated fat, 30 grams carbohydrate, 55 milligrams cholesterol, 162 milligrams sodium, 3 grams fiber.

Carb choices: 2.

Grilled balsamic pork chops

Combine 8 boneless pork chops (3/4 inch thick) with 1 1/2 cups balsamic vinaigrette in a resealable plastic bag. Refrigerate 2 to 24 hours. Remove chops, pat dry and discard marinade. Grill over medium heat 8 to 10 minutes, turning once.

On the side, (packaged) rice pilaf and green peas (from frozen). Add whole-grain rolls.

Grilled pork and provolone paninis

Spread 1 teaspoon pesto on each of 8 slices Italian bread. Top 4 slices with thinly sliced cooked pork and 4 (1-ounce) slices provolone cheese. Top with remaining 4 bread slices. Lightly brush outer surface with olive oil; grill in skillet on medium until toasted on each side.

Chili cheese pierogies

Heat oven to 400 degrees. Layer 1 package (thawed) frozen onion pierogies in a 7-by-11-inch baking dish; top with 1 (15-ounce) can vegetarian chili and bake 15 to 20 minutes. Sprinkle with 4 ounces shredded 50% light cheddar cheese and bake 5 more minutes or until cheese is melted. Garnish with reduced-fat sour cream before serving.