A Wholesome Ramadan Dinner and 7 day Meal Plan

Complete abstinence from food and water during the entire daylight hours in Ramadan helps the body detoxify of illnesses.But one ought to be careful with food choices made during the early dawn(Suhur) and after sunset(Iftar) meals,especially during the long days in summer.Overeating during Suhur is just as bad to the body as overwhelming the empty stomach with empty calories foods(high fat ,excess sugar)during Iftar.The high fat samosas and pakodas have to avoided at the best;dates,fruits and water are enough to break fast[which is also the Sunnah of the Prophet(pbuh)] followed by a wholesome dinner after the Maghrib prayers.I have to admit the deep fried delicacies were once my indulgence, which most certainly gave me the tummy troubles later,but I have been avoiding them in past two years for much more comforting wholesome foods.

Simple and nutritious Iftar dinner platter like this(and few more in the meal plan below),with whole grains,vegetables,meats,nuts and fruits, should give the idea of eating right during Ramadan.I'm sending the platter over to Ramadan special events : Umm Mymoonah's Iftar Moments ,Mona's Hyderabadi Ramadan food festival and Lubna's Joy from Fasting to Feasting III.

Vibrant Veggie Brown Rice Pulov\Pilaf
Easy to cook this colorful whole grain pulov covers the carbs and fiber in the meal.


Serves 4
3 cups Brown Rice
1 medium onion,finely sliced
1 cup carrots,diced
1/2 cup peas
1 cup Edamame(baby soybeans)
1/2 cup red bell peppers,seeded and finely chopped
1/4 teaspoon turmeric
2 cloves garlic,minced
1/2 inch ginger root,minced
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
1 tablespoon Extra Virgin Olive Oil
2 tablespoon mint and cilantro, chopped.
2 teaspoon apple cider vinegar

Wash the rice and soak it for 15-20 minutes.Meanwhile heat the oil in a skillet on medium high heat. Add chopped onions and cumin seeds.Saute for 4-5 minutes until lightly colored , add ginger and garlic. saute for a minute with turmeric and other spices.Drain the water from rice and add in to the skillet and cook until rice turns pearly white. Now add 4 cups of water, chopped mint ,cilantro and vegetables. Cover and cook until all rice is cooked through about 30 minutes. Sprinkle some apple cider vinegar over rice and mix well. Serve with almond ,tomato or Mint sesame chutney

Baked Chicken with Tandoori Masala and red pepper sauce

The spicy chicken bake provides the essential protein.Reduce the spices in case of heart burn troubles.
serves 4
2 pounds skinless Free range chicken,cut in medium pieces
2 teaspoon tandoori masala(this was store bought,I prefer Sanjeev kapoor's or Shaan's brand of masala mix)
1 teaspoon salt

for the sauce
1 red bell pepper(can also use green),seeded and chopped
1/2 teaspoon each of cumin and coriander powder
1/2 teaspoon hot chili powder
1/2 cup fresh herbs,cilantro or mint or parsley
1/2 teaspoon salt
Marinate the chicken in the tandoori masala and salt for an hour or more.
Prepare the sauce,blend all the ingredients under sauce in a food processor or blender.
Preheat oven to 325F.Transfer the chicken in an baking dish.Bake for about 35 minutes. Get the dish out of the oven and pour the sauce all over the chicken.Cook for another 25-30 minutes until tender and cooked through.Serve warm with the Veggie Brown Rice Pulov\Pilaf.

Mango Pineapple Almond Lassi(Smoothie)

A dessert and thirst quencher in one,the tropical almond lassi is loaded with much needed nutrients from fruits and nuts.
Serves 4
2 very ripe mangoes,peeled and diced
1 cup pineapple chunks
1/2 cup raw almonds
1/2 cup fat free yogurt

Blender together all of the ingredients in a heavy duty blender(like Vitamix) until smooth,chill in fridge until time to serve.Garnish with more raw almonds(chopped or whole)

A Sample 7 day Ramadan Meal Plan
The following meal plan was put together keeping in mind the Ramadan Meal plan guidelines,well balanced meals prepared using whole grains,fruits,vegetable.meat,beans and nuts;avoiding excess sugar and fats.Remember to drink lots of water during the non-fasting hours.And keep the snacking between maghrib and taraweeh limited to whole fruits,dried fruits and nuts.

Suhur(Pre-dawn meal) :Whole grain Bagels(store bought or home made) with Chicken Shorba,reduced fat milk,apple
Iftar(meal after breaking fast):Dates,Methi Buns with Minty Barley soup,Salad Olviye(potato olive salad) , Fruit Chaat
Snacks:Whole nuts(Almonds,walnuts,pecans)

Suhur(Pre-dawn meal) :Pancakes with whole fruits,reduced fat milk
Iftar(meal after breaking fast):Dates,Salmon with Brown rice and kale,Sprouts and Snap peas Salad
Snacks:Whole fruits

Suhur(Pre-dawn meal) :Flax Berry Smoothie,Parathas with Lamb Shorba
Iftar(meal after breaking fast):Dates,Matazeez(Saudi Vegetable pasta)with Fish,Almond Tropical Lassi
Snacks:Trail mix(dried fruit and nut mix)

Suhur(Pre-dawn meal) :Green lentil pancakes with nut chutney,Nature's best drink
Iftar(meal after breaking fast):Dates,Koshary(pasta rice lentils in tomato sauce),Sprouts Olive Salad,Water melon ginger ale or water melon spritzer
Snacks:Whole fruits

Suhur(Pre-dawn meal) :Green Parathas with tomato chutney,scrambled eggs,Almond Cocoa
Iftar(meal after breaking fast):Dates,Haleem(Meat Wheat Porridge),Moroccan Veggie Couscous,Orange Ginger Drink
Snacks:Dried fruits(raisins,figs)

Suhur(Pre-dawn meal) :Shakshouka(Eggs in tomato pepper sauce),Banana,reduced fat milk
Iftar(meal after breaking fast):Dates,Harissa Chicken with Freekah,Orange Carrot Salad
Snacks:whole fruit

Suhur(Pre-dawn meal) :Ragi or Buck wheat Porridge or beet oatmeal with whole and dried fruits
Iftar(meal after breaking fast):Dates,Sesame Chicken with sauteed Cabbage Salad,Fruit N Nut Quinoa,Low fat Falooda
Snacks:Dried fruit and nuts


Umm Mymoonah said…
Your wholesome Iftar Dinner looks perfect, thank you so much for sending it to my event. Your sample menu plan also looks good, will check out those recipes also :-)
Rahin said…
Thanks for a fabulous post Yasmeen, lovely and healthy platter there, the 7 day menu is fantastic
CurryLeaf said…
Love the brown rice and smoothie.The menu plan is healthy and filling and very yummy.
RV said…
Love the pilaf and chicken. This is a great meal plan for Ramadan. I got reminded of my dear friend who fasts every year.
So colorful and flavorful! A perfect Ramadan dinner.


Prerna said…
Wow! can I come to your place for ramadan?? Your menu just left me drooling :-(
Satya said…
wow so many mouthwatering dishes at a time ...perfect menu for ramdan

Unknown said…
Oh wow, what a lovely meal! I love all the colors and flavors
VineelaSiva said…
Wow the plate looks very inviting i love the chicken fry its really makes me hungry Yasmeen.
Wonderful and healthy rice pilaf..I have lot of friends out here who will be fasting..Surely will share with them !!!
thats a great post Yasmeen. the way you planned the delicious meals makes it balanced and healthy. bookmarking this and will send to friends who will keep fast on this holy month.
Joanne said…
Wholesome is definitely the way to go and if anyone knows how to do it right, it's you! This looks fantastic.
Unknown said…
Love all your recipes listed, specially the colorfulo pilaf and wow, that is a yummy looking minus and I love planning but can hardly do it. Have a wonderful ramadan :)
SS blogs here said…
Oh that looks fabulous. I like your idea of the sauce for the tandoori chicken. Good one.
PranisKitchen said…
iftar meallooks so delicious the lassi is my favorite.. so good.. and what a wonderful meal planner.. good one yasmine
Mona said…
Wow, what wholesome meal. If one sticks to foods as such during the whole of Ramadan, then tummy troubles are sure to be at bay.
Jazakallahu Khair for sending this as an entry to the event Yasmeen!
Reshmi Ahmed said…
Alhamdulillah you have a perfect Iftar menu ! would definitely try from urs during ramadhan ...inshallah :)
Simplyfood said…
Wonderful meal plan with yummy healthy and nutritious recipes.
Mina Joshi said…
Wow what a wonderful menu for Ramadhan. All the best with the fasting during Ramadhan.
Cynthia said…
You really take good care of us by suggesting these enticing and balanced meals. Thank you.
Fathima said…
Wow that is a perfect plan laid out... love your pulav... feast to the eyes and am sure for the taste buds too...
Megasharezone said…
It is so amazing and great looking for a good meal. Thanks for your posting. I really love this meal. Cheer.
Afsal_ Alif said…
Ramdhaan Mubarak in Advance......
Haappyy & delighted to see such a well-planned diet to welcome the Holy month of Ramadhan.
Thanx for the Posting......!
And Wish you an eazy-going & a healthy Ramadhaan !
Roumopod said…
Just came across your blog Yasmeen. This surely rocks. Even though it might be hard to stick to the menu wholly, most of it can be followed.
Loved reading it.
Furthermore, a small suggestion. If you could also mention the nutrient values in each meal, that would be so cool. Also you can write customized menus for people who have heart trouble i.e. food low on cholesterol , or diabetics.
Looking forward to seeing your stance on this.
Hamaree Rasoi said…
Fabulous post !!! I'm going crazy over the chicken fry.Have a wonderful Ramadan.

I have an award for you in my blog. Please accept it

Hamaree Rasoi
Shabs.. said…
Fantastic compilation yasmeen....
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Reshmi said…
first time here and amazed by this wonderful post.. the dinner looks colourful.. i'm drooling over them.. bookmarked the mango lassie!!
Lori said…
I have never seen such a delicious looking rice pilaf! I really enjoy these menus.
Muneeba said…
As much as I love your sample meal plan for Ramadan, Yasmeen ... I gotta admit, it sent my husband into a panic attack! ;) He is anti anything healthy, so you can sure that he wants his Suhur and Iftar loaded with carbs :p Typical man.
Dori said…
That certainly looks healthy and would be perfect for anyone health-conscious!
Home Energy said…
Nice picture of Baked Chicken with Tandoori Masala and red pepper sauce and it includes the wholesome Ramadan dinner and 7 day meal plan.
Anonymous said…
Ramadan 2013 said…
Ramadan Mubarak to all! These Ramadan iftar ideas are really amazing.