Your 7-Day Meal Plan for RA: Anti-Inflammatory Recipes

Written by James Schend | Published on December 20, 2012
Medically Reviewed by George Krucik, MD, MBA on December 11, 2013

Food is important in controlling inflammation. We've put together a full week of recipes using foods that are known for their anti-inflammatory properties. Manage your rheumatoid arthritis by eating right!

Day One


cherry quinoa porridge

For a twist on traditional oatmeal porridge, why not try adding a super-grain: quinoa. Add dried (or fresh) tart cherries. They contain anthocyanin, which is a powerful antioxidant that may help cut inflammation.

Cherry Quinoa Porridge »


pumpkin soup

Pumpkins are an excellent source of beta-cryptoxanthin, a powerful anti-inflammatory. Pair that with ginger, and you have a potent recipe for arthritis relief. Serve this with a fresh green salad for a healthy lunch or as the first course of a holiday dinner.

Quick-and-Easy Pumpkin Soup »


poached eggs

Eggs aren't just for breakfast! Serve this dish with a fresh garden salad and a slice of toasted whole wheat bread for a nutritious dinner. If poached eggs aren't to your liking, try sautéing them in a nonstick skillet.

Poached Eggs with Curried Vegetables »

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Day Two


raspberry green tea smoothie

Looking for a quick and easy breakfast on the go? Smoothies are just the thing for busy folks. Make the tea ahead of time and store in the fridge for a quick breakfast as you’re headed out the door.

Raspberry Green Tea Smoothie »


Kippers, or smoked herring, is an excellent source of Omega-3 fatty acid and makes a great alternative to tuna. The smokiness adds a special flavor to this salad, which can be served on top of mixed greens or spread onto whole grain bread.

Kipper Salad »


turkey chili

On a cold winter evening, nothing warms you up like a big bowl of chili. Although delicious by itself, you can top it with a little reduced-fat sour cream or a sprinkling of reduced fat shredded cheddar cheese.

Weeknight Turkey Chili »

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Day Three


gingerbread oatmeal

Omega-3 fatty acid is a key ingredient in helping to reduce the inflammation of arthritis and other joint problems, but getting enough of it every day can be challenging. This oatmeal tastes great and gets you half your daily requirements of Omega-3s—and no, we didn’t add any salmon to it.

Gingerbread Oatmeal »


roasted chicken wraps

A great time-saver for quick meals is the roast chickens you can get at your local supermarket. Pick up two, one for dinner that evening and another for these tasty lunch wraps. They’re perfect to toss into your lunch bag.

Roasted Chicken Wraps »


brazil nut crusted tilapia

Both Brazil nuts and tilapia are good sources of selenium, a mineral shown to help ward off arthritis symptoms. What’s great about this recipe is that it’s quick enough for a weeknight dinner with the family, but can also be served to company as a fancier dish.

Brazil Nut-Crusted Tilapia with Sautéed Kale »

Day Four


ginger apple muffins

Not only does the dried and crystallized ginger taste great in these quick-and-easy muffins, but they’re also an excellent anti-inflammatory, helping to ease arthritis pain.

Ginger Apple Muffins »


persimmon and pear salad

If you’re taking this salad to work, you’ll want to keep the spinach separate from the dressing. Otherwise, it will wilt too much. Toss the remaining ingredients in the dressing and seal that in a separate container. When you’re ready to eat simply toss together!

Persimmon and Pear Salad »


red pepper turkey pasta

Instead of a tomato-based pasta sauce, this recipe uses red peppers, which are full of vitamin C and beta-carotene.

Red Pepper and Turkey Pasta »

Day Five


buckwheat quinoa granola

Try this wheat-free granola topped with almond milk or soy yogurt for an energizing breakfast.

Buckwheat and Quinoa Granola »


roasted sweet potato soup

This is a great make-ahead soup that freezes beautifully. Double or triple it and freeze the leftovers for quick meals. Roasting the sweet potatoes before simmering will make the flavors more pronounced.

Roasted Sweet Potato Soup »


steamed salmon

Steaming fish and poultry is a great way to lock in flavor, moisture, vitamins, and minerals. Be sure to serve the fish with some of the steaming liquid, as the liquid will soak up the flavor from the salmon and vegetables.

Steamed Salmon with Lemon Scented Zucchini »

Day Six


spinach mushroom fritatta

Similar to omelettes or quiches, frittatas provide a backdrop for an endless combination of ingredients. In this case, we're using nutrient-rich mushrooms and spinach that burst with flavor.

Spinach and Mushroom Frittata »


smoked trout tartine

You’ll often find open-faced sandwiches like this at quaint Parisian bistros. You can bring the essence of the City of Light into your home. Simply serve this meal with a green salad or a cup of soup for a filling lunch or dinner.

Smoked Trout Tartine »


sweet potato black bean burger

These burgers are so fantastic, you may just want to give up eating beef burgers. These “burgers” are high in vitamin C and beta-carotene from the sweet potatoes and lime, and they pack some heat from the jalapeno. If you like more heat, go ahead and add another!

Sweet Potato and Black Bean Burgers with Lime Mayonnaise »

Day Seven


gluten-free crepes

Many people think crepes are difficult to make and only for special occasions. To the contrary, they’re easy to prepare and a great way to make any meal special. Try filling these crepes with sliced strawberries or bananas. Alternately, you can make them for dinner and fill them with a stew or leftover chicken.

Gluten-Free Strawberry Crepes »


lentil and garbanzo soup

This is a great make-ahead soup. Not only does it taste better the next day, but it freezes beautifully. Simply portion into single servings, freeze, and then pop one in your lunch sack for work. It should be thawed out enough to reheat in the microwave when lunchtime rolls around.

Lentil and Garbanzo Soup»


quinoa turkey stuffed peppers

Stuffed peppers is a 1950’s classic, but this recipe gives it a modern overhaul. Instead of packing the stuffing with calorie-busting bread, use quinoa, one of the world’s most powerful super-foods. Skip the green peppers and go for red, yellow, or orange peppers for a sweeter taste.

Quinoa and Turkey Stuffed Peppers»

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