Dinner Plans: Roast Beef

Prep 3 Delicious Meals From 1 Easy Roast Beef Recipe

Marinated Roast Beef

The Spruce Eats / Diana Chistruga

Nothing can beat a good Sunday roast. The weekend is the perfect time to cook a big piece of meat with sides, and it's also the perfect time to do some meal prep. Add just a few minutes to your time in the kitchen on the weekend and save lots of time during the week. You'll have three very different meals using just one roast.

Game Plan

Prep Time: 1 hour 45 minutes

  1. Make a large roast beef (5 pounds) and serve hot with side dishes on prep day. Reserve the drippings and store in a container. Let the leftover meat cool.
  2. Divide the remaining beef into two portions, putting two-thirds in one labeled container to make sandwiches and the remaining third in a container for noodle stir fry.
  3. If you have time, prep and chop the vegetables for the stir fry.

Prep Day Loin Roast With Sides

Time: 1 hour 30 minutes

Roast a large herb-crusted beef top loin roast and serve it on prep day with creamed spinach and glazed baby carrots for a delicious dinner. Prepare the side dishes on the stove while the roast cooks away in the oven. Skip the gravy—the roast is moist and flavorful enough without it, and you can use the drippings for the next meal.

Herb Crusted Top Loin Roast
Herb Crusted Top Loin Roast. Photo: Diana Rattray

Getting Dinner on the Table

  • The roast can also be made in the Instant Pot or slow cooker.
  • Cook the beef to medium-rare or medium at most since it will be cooked again in these other recipes.
  • Reserve the drippings from the roast beef in a sealed container in the refrigerator to use for French dip "au jus" the next day.

French Dip Sandwich Night

Time: 15 minutes

Grab the container holding two-thirds of the leftover roast beef and slice thin against the grain. Heat the reserved drippings from yesterday's roast along with beef stock and a dash of soy sauce and Worchestershire sauce while you toast the bread in garlic butter. Serve these French dip sandwiches with a green salad.

Instant Pot French dip sandwiches with jus.
Diana Rattray

Getting Dinner on the Table

  • Replace the ingredients and method for the Instant Pot beef with the beef you cooked on prep day.
  • If you like your au jus thicker, whisk in a tablespoon of cornstarch and water slurry until it reaches the desired thickness.

Thai Stir-Fried Noodles With Beef Night

Time: 15 minutes

Thanks to some prep and leftover beef, you can throw together this Thai beef stir-fry in no time. Cut the beef into thin strips against the grain. Skip marinating and cooking it, simply adding the marinade ingredients to the sauce. Toss the cooked beef in with the stir-fried vegetables at the end just to heat through.

Thai Stir-Fried Noodles With Beef
The Spruce 

Getting Dinner on the Table

  • Swap the vegetables out for your favorites, such as cauliflower, snow peas, or green beans.
  • You can change out the noodles for cooked white or brown rice.

Essential Info

Making quick weeknight dinners is easier when you start with a few building blocks. Dinner Plans is a realistic roadmap to help you achieve that goal, by putting in a few hours of work (planning, shopping, and prepping) at the outset. Preparing a big batch of one ingredient (protein, vegetables, or grains) gives you the flexibility to plan a variety of meals. And who knows? You just might discover your new favorite weeknight recipe in the process!

Show everyone how together you are: Instagram your meal prep photos and tag them #thespruceeats.