This meal prep-able couscous recipe is super flexible for any meal. Give it a boost with olive oil, balsamic, vinegar, dried fruit, nuts, and tasty cheeses.
This easy meal prep couscous recipe is a staple in our house because it’s so easy to reheat. This recipe only needs couscous, nuts, dried fruit, olive oil, and some balsamic vinegar.
This recipe is a super flexible meal prep side dish because couscous can be turned into a 1000 different dishes depending on what you stick in it. We always use a nut, dried fruit, and seasonings.
Don’t be afraid to be creative with this recipe. You only need couscous, so be as creative as you’d like with your next additions.
How to Cook Couscous
For this recipe, you’ll need to make some straight-up normal couscous. Use a 1:1 ratio for the amount of liquid you’re going to use to the amount of couscous.
In this recipe, we used one cup of chicken broth and one cup of couscous. Bring the chicken broth to a boil and whisk in your couscous. You don’t have to use chicken broth, any liquid can be used. Try using vegetable broth to keep it vegetarian.
Turn off the heat and let it rest for 5 minutes. Your perfectly cooked couscous should look like the image below.
Next, you might want to consider toasting up some nuts. In this recipe feel free to use any kind of nut you have on hand: walnut, peanuts, almond, cashews, or pistachios. You’ll want to toast them first to boost their flavor.
We use about 1/2 a cup of nuts and toasted them in a cast-iron skillet until they took on a slightly deeper color and made the room smell nutty.
Pine nuts are also one of our favorites. We would have used pine nuts in this recipe, but we didn’t have any, so we were flexible and went with pecans!
Adding Dried Fruits
Dried fruit adds a wonderfully sweet and chewy texture to this dish. Dried cranberries are our absolute favorite, but you can use raisins, golden raisins, dried apricots, figs, etc. Choose something you like an have on hand. Some fresh oranges might be a nice touch at the end of cooking, but I wouldn’t add them to the dish and then reheat. Add the oranges right before you serve it.
We always go with a bit of olive oil and vinegar. The oil adds some fat to the recipe which boosts its richness and a good balsamic vinegar is used to balance the fattiness and add more depth.
There are all kinds of different things you could add to this recipe to make it super flexible: sesame oil, olive oil, bacon fat if you’re brave, or even coconut oil.
For vinegar, use anything you have on hand, but we would shy away from white distilled vinegar. It just doesn’t provide any depth to the flavor profile of the dish. We really like balsamic. Malt vinegar is fun too.
Now, in this recipe, we didn’t add cheese, but cheese we have added feta, goat, and blue cheeses with amazing results. If we go with cheese, we normally don’t add it to the final dish but sprinkle it on top when we sever it.
We like to do family-style with this recipe. We keep ours in a single large glass container and just pop it in the microwave when we’re about to sit down for lunch or dinner. No-fuss is required.
This recipe can be reheated several times without losing its luster. If you want to divvy up this recipe into separate containers for more individual meal preps, it reheats just as well.
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Easy Meal Prep Couscous
- 1 cup chicken broth or water
- 1 cup couscous
- 1/2 cup pecans
- 1/4 cup dried cranberries
- 3 tbsp. olive oil
- 2 tbsp. balsamic vinegar
- Bring the chicken broth or water to a boil
- Whisk in couscous and turn off heat.
- Place lid on the pan and let rest for 5 minutes.
- Toast the walnuts until a little darker in color and smell nutty
- Add the cooked couscous, nuts, dried fruit, olive oil, and vinegar to a bowl.
- Gently toss until well mixed.
- Place into a serving dish or distribute into individual meal prep containers.