Elf4Health Sponsor: CookSmarts

This post was sponsored by CookSmarts. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

Hi Friends-

Today I want to introduce you to one of our Elf For Health Sponsors- A meal planning service called Cook Smarts! If you’ve been reading The Bean for a while, you may remember that I introduced you to them about a year ago when I reviewed them for the first time. Well guess what? I like them so much we’re going to talk about them again!

Our Elf4Health challenge for today is to plan and prep some healthy meals for the week and Cook Smarts is the perfect tool to help you do that! This year they’re giving our Elf  For Health winners a 3 month subscription to their meal planning service,  however, I think a lot of you could benefit from their services so I thought I’d tell you about them again in case you’re not familiar with them.

Cook Smarts was created by an amazing woman named Jess who was diagnosed with Hepetitis C in high school and decided while she was going through treatment that if she survived, she would dedicate her life to doing something that would help people!

From their website:


Cook Smarts’ mission is to empower home cooks with the inspiration and education needed to live their healthiest and happiest life in the kitchen. We do this by creating lots of practical cooking resources (think the Home Ec class you never got to take), free recipes that work for your busy life, and weekly meal plans that also teach you how to cook. I’ve been lucky to find a great team of kitchen cheerleaders to help me slowly expand the content, products, and services we offer.


As I mentioned above, the need to start Cook Smarts was motivated by a personal promise. However, when I quit my job in October of 2011, I honestly had no clue what Cook Smarts was going to be when it grew up. All I had was a strong belief that the ability to cook simple and real food could contribute to a healthier and happier world. As someone who has always valued the power of education, I wanted to create a company that focused on giving people the smarts and tools they needed to succeed in the kitchen and take control of their health.

As a dietitian, there is SO much I love about this company. While I’m usually able to just wing it in the kitchen, I know there are lots of people out there who benefit from planning out their meals for the week. But let’s be honest, that can be a lot of work! Cook Smarts does that work for you! It provides a meal plan- which you can customize to be gluten-free, vegetarian or paleo if necessary to fit your dietary needs, compiles a grocery list for you and even tells you what you can prep ahead of time over the weekend. It also provides you with notes about ingredients, ideas for leftovers and cooking videos. Plus they have a great blog!

Here’s what it looks like:

When you sign up, they share several meal ideas each week. Here’s what’s on tap for next week:

You choose which meals you want to make and the ingredients are added to a grocery list:

The colored letters indicate which meal the ingredient is for and you can remove items you already have on hand at home.

You can also check out your instructions for things you can prep ahead of time over the weekend:

And when you’re ready to make a meal, they give you complete directions, along with links to instructional videos!

If you don’t like what’s on the menu for the week you can search their meals to add different ones to your meal plan:

Cook Smarts offers gift subscriptions that would be perfect for the holidays! You can give 3 months of meal plans for $21, 6 months for $42 or one whole year for $72. PLUS through Dec 3rd all subscriptions and gift subscriptions are 40% off!  If you’re reading this from Dec 3 – Dec 21st, use the code ELF4HLTH14 for 20% off subscriptions!

They have an awesome website with a great Resources section and you can check out their past meal plans to get an idea of what their recipes are like! And the best part? If you think this sounds good but you’re not ready to commit, they let you try 3 meal plans for free!

I made this Open Faced Turkey Pesto Avocado Melt last week and it was a delicious combo of flavors!

And next time my hubby asks for chicken tenders, I’m trying this version:

So, if you’re interested in learning more about Cook Smarts, check out their website! If you’re ready to give them a try, sign up HERE!



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