7-Day Third Trimester Pregnancy Meal Plan & Recipe Prep

Pregnant woman eating berries sitting on bed listening to music

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At Verywell, we believe there is no one-size-fits-all approach to a healthy lifestyle. Successful eating plans need to be individualized and consider the whole person. Before starting a new diet plan, consult with a registered dietitian or another health care provider, especially if you have an underlying health condition.

What you eat is important throughout every stage of your pregnancy, even before conception. During the final stretch of your pregnancy (the 3rd trimester) you may feel excited, anxious, and exhausted. You may also feel less hungry due to the overcrowding in your belly, and a feeling of your stomach pushing your stomach up into your throat.

But, nutrition is still important during these final weeks. You even need to eat more! In fact, the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (Academy) recommends consuming 450 more calories per day (compared to your needs pre-pregnancy) to support fetal growth and development. Having a third-trimester pregnancy meal plan to refer to can help you get ahead on your nutrition, freeing up some time to spend on yourself and preparing for your new baby.

Meal planning can help keep you on track, no matter what your nutrition goal is. Prepping and planning doesn’t have to be time-intensive and complicated. A few simple steps, including basic meal constructs, making a shopping list, shopping strategically, and methodically preparing food ahead of time, are what make meal planning a helpful tool to keep you energized, meet your nutrition goals, reduce food waste, and save money. 

Why Nutrition is Important on a Pregnancy Meal Plan

Eating a balanced diet during your pregnancy is one of the best things you can do to keep your body in tip-top shape so it can handle the demands of your pregnancy. The goal of a pregnancy meal plan is to make sure you get the right balance of calories and nutrients to support your health needs and those of the growing baby. 

You don’t need to “eat for two,” but you do need to make smart choices and consume enough calories. When creating a pregnancy meal plan, you also need to take food safety into consideration. Not all foods are allowed during pregnancy, such as raw fish, undercooked meat, and unpasteurized foods, because they may contain germs that are harmful to the pregnancy.

7-Day Sample Menu

This one-week meal plan was designed for a person who needs about 2,000 calories per day, plus an additional 450 calories for the third trimester of pregnancy; so it is a 2,450-calorie meal plan. Your daily calorie goal may vary. For example, if you’re carrying twins you need to add an extra 600 calories to your daily intake and an extra 900 calories if you’re carrying triplets.

Speak with a healthcare provider to get a better estimate of your caloric needs during pregnancy, as there are many factors that affect energy needs during pregnancy.

Day 1

Breakfast

  • Breakfast burrito (two large eggs scrambled, one 8-inch 100% whole-wheat tortilla, one ounce shredded monterey jack cheese, 1/4 avocado, 1/4 cup chopped tomatoes)
  • One medium orange

Macronutrients: approximately 580 calories, 26 grams of protein, 45 grams of carbohydrates, and 34 grams of fat

Snack

  • 7-ounces low-fat Greek yogurt
  • 1/2 cup of blueberries
  • 1 tablespoon of roasted sunflower seeds

Macronutrients: approximately 232 calories, 22 grams of protein, 20 grams of carbohydrates, and 8 grams of fat

Please note that this meal plan recommends low-fat dairy products, however, there is not a general consensus regarding the specific benefits of consuming low-fat or fat-free dairy for pregnant people. In fact, the dietary fat in 2% or full-fat dairy products may boost absorption of several important vitamins. That said, this plan aims to keep saturated fat levels moderate. If you enjoy full-fat dairy, you can absolutely make substitutions.

Lunch

  • Peanut butter and banana sandwich (two slices 100% whole-wheat bread, 2 tablespoons of peanut butter, 1 medium banana cut in slices)
  • 1/2 cup carrot sticks, 1/2 cup sliced cucumbers, 1/2 cup sliced red and green bell peppers with 2 tablespoons of honey mustard dressing

Macronutrients: approximately 648 calories, 18 grams of protein, 82 grams of carbohydrates, and 31 grams of fat 

Snack

  • Eight 100% whole-grain crackers
  • 1 ounce of Swiss cheese
  • 1/2 cup grapes

Macronutrients: approximately 337 calories, 12 grams of protein, 44 grams of carbohydrates, and 14 grams of fat

Dinner

Macronutrients: approximately 443 calories, 40 grams of protein, 34 grams of carbohydrates, and 18 grams of fat

Snack

  • 1 cup of 100% whole-grain unsweetened cereal
  • 1 cup low-fat milk

Macronutrients: approximately 208 calories, 12 grams of protein, 33 grams of carbohydrates, and 4 grams of fat

Daily totals: approximately 2,448 calories, 130 grams of protein, 258 grams of carbohydrates, and 110 grams of fat

Note that beverages are not included in this meal plan. Individual fluid needs vary based on age, sex, activity level, and medical history. For optimal hydration, experts generally recommend drinking approximately 9 cups of water per day for women and 13 cups of water per day for men.

Keep in mind that fluid needs are higher during pregnancy. American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) recommends drinking at least 8 to 12 cups of water a day. When adding beverages to your meal plan, consider their calorie count. Aim to reduce or eliminate consumption of sugar-sweetened beverages, and opt for water when possible.

Day 2

Breakfast

  • 1/2 cup of rolled oats cooked in 1 cup of low-fat milk with 2 tablespoons of raisins, 1-ounce walnut halves chopped, a dash of cinnamon

Macronutrients: approximately 451 calories, 16 grams of protein, 75 grams of carbohydrates, and 12 grams of fat

Snack

  • 1/4 cup hummus
  • 1/2 of a 6-inch 100% whole-wheat pita cut into quarters
  • 1/2 cup carrot sticks

Macronutrients: approximately 211 calories, 8 grams of protein, 33 grams of carbohydrates, and 7 grams of fat

Lunch

  • Tuna sandwich (one 5-ounce can of light tuna packed in water, 1 teaspoon mayonnaise, 1/4 of a green apple chopped, 1 medium stalk of celery chopped, five red grapes cut in quarters, two slices 100% whole-wheat bread)
  • One 7-ounce container low-fat Greek yogurt
  • 1 small banana

Macronutrients: approximately 688 calories, 70 grams of protein, 68 grams of carbohydrates, and 15 grams of fat

It's important to be mindful of tuna consumption during pregnancy due to the potential mercury content. Choose a brand that tests for mercury levels and opt for skipjack or canned light varieties.

Snack

  • 1/4 cup unsalted mixed nuts
  • 1 medium peach

Macronutrients: approximately 262 calories, 7 grams of protein, 23 grams of carbohydrates, and 18 grams of fat

Dinner

  • Turkey burger (3 ounces lean ground turkey, one 100% whole-wheat pre-sliced sandwich thin roll, lettuce, tomato, 1/4 avocado, 1 teaspoon honey mustard dressing).
  • 1 medium sweet potato cut into slices, tossed in 2 teaspoons of olive oil and air-fried or baked in the oven
  • 1 cup steamed broccoli

Macronutrients: approximately 619 calories, 36 grams of protein, 59 grams of carbohydrates, and 30 grams of fat

Snack

  • 3 cups air-popped popcorn flavored with 1 tablespoon of nutritional yeast
  • 1/2-ounce roasted unsalted almonds

Macronutrients: approximately 197 calories, 9 grams of protein, 25 grams of carbohydrates, and 8 grams of fat

Daily Totals: approximately 2,428 calories, 148 grams of protein, 283 grams of carbohydrates, and 90 grams of fat

Day 3

Breakfast

  • Spinach and cheese omelet (2 large eggs, 1 ounce shredded Gruyere cheese, 1 cup fresh spinach, 1 teaspoon vegetable oil)
  • One 100% whole-wheat English muffin with 1 tablespoon almond butter

Macronutrients: approximately 506 calories, 30 grams of protein, 31 grams of carbohydrates, and 31 grams of fat 

Snack

  • 1 cup mixed berries
  • 1 cup low-fat cottage cheese

Macronutrients: approximately 245 calories, 27 grams of protein, 25 grams of carbohydrates, and 6 grams of fat

Lunch

  • Tofu stir fry (4 ounces firm tofu cut in cubes, 1/2 cup fresh broccoli, 1/2 cup sliced carrots, fresh ginger, 1 teaspoon sesame oil, 2 teaspoons vegetable oil, 1 tablespoon low-sodium tamari sauce)
  • 1 cup brown rice
  • 1 medium apple

Macronutrients: approximately 572 calories, 21 grams of protein, 85 grams of carbohydrates, and 20 grams of fat

Snack

  • 1 medium orange
  • 1/2-ounce unsalted roasted pistachios in the shell
  • Eight 100% whole-wheat crackers

Macronutrients: approximately 315 calories, 8 grams of protein, 49 grams of carbohydrates, and 12 grams of fat

Dinner

  • Pasta primavera (1 cup cooked 100% whole-wheat penne pasta, 1 cup mixed vegetables such as broccoli, cauliflower, carrots, 1/2 cup marinara sauce, 2 tablespoons parmesan cheese)
  • 2 cups mixed greens topped with five grape tomatoes, 1/2 cup sliced cucumbers, 1/2 cup sliced mushrooms, 1/2 cup low-sodium canned chickpeas drained, 2 tablespoons balsamic vinaigrette

Macronutrients: approximately 596 calories, 25 grams of protein, 92 grams of carbohydrates, and 16 grams of fat

Snack

  • Five walnut halves chopped
  • 1/2 cup vanilla ice cream
  • 1/2 cup sliced strawberries

Macronutrients: approximately 230 calories, 4 grams of protein, 23 grams of carbohydrates, and 14 grams of fat

Daily Totals: approximately 2,463 calories, 116 grams of protein, 306 grams of carbohydrates, and 98 grams of fat

Day 4

Breakfast

  • Green smoothie (1 medium banana, 2 cups fresh spinach, 1/4 avocado, 1 tablespoon of almond butter, 1 cup low-fat milk, ice) 

Macronutrients: approximately 400 calories, 16 grams of protein, 49 grams of carbohydrates, and 19 grams of fat

Snack

  • 1/4 cup unsalted mixed nuts
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened dried mixed fruit

Macronutrients: approximately 314 calories, 7 grams of protein, 38 grams of carbohydrates, and 18 grams of fat

Lunch

  • 4 ounces broiled salmon
  • Farro salad (1/2 cup cooked farro, 1/4 cup sweet corn, 2 tablespoons chopped red onion, 1/4 cup low-sodium canned chickpeas drained, 1 teaspoon of pine nuts, 2 tablespoons lime vinaigrette)

Macronutrients: approximately 606 calories, 38 grams of protein, 61 grams of carbohydrates, and 25 grams of fat

Snack

  • 1 medium apple
  • 1 ounce of cheddar cheese


Macronutrients: approximately 209 calories, 7 grams of protein, 26 grams of carbohydrates, and 10 grams of fat

Dinner

  • Chicken tacos (4 ounces cooked chicken breast, 1 ounce shredded Monterey jack cheese, chopped lettuce, chopped tomato, two 4-inch corn tortillas)
  • 1 cup beans and rice (3/4 cup cooked brown rice, 1/4 cup canned low-sodium black beans drained, 1/2 teaspoon of lime juice, 1 teaspoon of olive oil, black pepper)

Macronutrients: approximately 721 calories, 44 grams of protein, 67 grams of carbohydrates, and 31 grams of fat

Snack

  • 1 cup 100% whole-wheat unsweetened cereal
  • 1 cup low-fat milk

Macronutrients: approximately 208 calories, 12 grams of protein, 33 grams of carbohydrates, and 4 grams of fat

Daily Totals: approximately 2,458 calories, 123 grams of protein, 273 grams of carbohydrates, and 107 grams of fat 

Day 5

Breakfast

  • Overnight oats (1/2 cup rolled oats, 1/2 cup low-fat milk, 2 tablespoons chopped almonds, two unsweetened dates chopped, 3 tablespoons chia seeds)

Macronutrients: approximately 509 calories, 19 grams of protein, 62 grams of carbohydrates, and 23 grams of fat

Snack

  • One slice of 100% whole-wheat toast topped with 1/2 avocado mashed and 1 teaspoon sesame seeds

Macronutrients: approximately 257 calories, 6 grams of protein, 23 grams of carbohydrates, and 17 grams of fat

Lunch

  • Chicken salad (1/2 cup chopped white meat chicken, 4 cups romaine lettuce, 4 grape tomatoes, 1/2 cup sliced green peppers, 1/2 cup grated carrots, 1 tablespoon unsalted sunflower seeds, 2 tablespoons vinaigrette dressing)
  • 1 medium pear
  • Eight 100% whole-grain crackers

Macronutrients: approximately 603 calories, 26 grams of protein, 75 grams of carbohydrates, and 25 grams of fat

Snack

  • One 6-inch 100% whole-wheat pita
  • 1/4 cup hummus

Macronutrients: approximately 267 calories, 11 grams of protein, 44 grams of carbohydrates, and 7 grams of fat

Dinner

  • 4 ounces grilled sirloin steak
  • 1 cup grilled vegetables (onions, eggplant, and summer squash with 1 teaspoon olive oil)
  • 1 medium baked potato topped with 2 tablespoons low-fat Greek yogurt

Macronutrients: approximately 577 calories, 40 grams of protein, 49 grams of carbohydrates, and 25 grams of fat

Snack

  • 1 medium apple
  • 1 ounce Swiss cheese

Macronutrients: approximately 205 calories, 8 grams of protein, 26 grams of carbohydrates, and 9 grams of fat

Daily Totals: approximately 2,417 calories, 110 grams of protein, 279 grams of carbohydrates, and 107 grams of fat

Day 6

Breakfast

  • Breakfast sandwich (1 large egg scrambled, 1 ounce slice of cheddar cheese, 1 slice of tomato, 1/2 avocado, one 100% whole-wheat English muffin)
  • 1 medium banana

Macronutrients: approximately 591 calories, 22 grams of protein, 64 grams of carbohydrates, and 31 grams of fat

Snack

  • One 7-ounce container low-fat Greek yogurt
  • 1 cup sliced strawberries
  • 20 shelled unsalted roasted pistachios

Macronutrients: approximately 279 calories, 24 grams of protein, 24 grams of carbohydrates, and 11 grams of fat

Lunch

  • Spaghetti and meatballs (1 cup 100% whole-wheat cooked spaghetti, 4 ounces of meatballs made with lean ground meat, 1/2 cup marinara, 2 tablespoons parmesan cheese)
  • 2 cups mixed greens, 1/2 cup sliced cucumbers, 1/2 cup sliced red and green bell peppers, 2 tablespoons chopped red onions, 2 tablespoons vinaigrette dressing

Macronutrients: approximately 545 calories, 23 grams of protein, 71 grams of carbohydrates, and 21 grams of fat

Snack

  • Two slices 100% whole-wheat bread
  • 1 tablespoon peanut butter
  • 2 tablespoons of raisins

Macronutrients: approximately 297 calories, 12 grams of protein, 42 grams of carbohydrates, and 10 grams of fat

Dinner

  • 12 large shrimp grilled seasoned with 1 teaspoon of olive oil, lemon juice, and black pepper
  • 1 1/2 cups couscous made with vegetable broth and seasoned with lemon juice, mint, and 1 tablespoon golden raisins
  • 1 cup green beans sauteed in 1 teaspoon of olive oil

Macronutrients: approximately 466 calories, 26 grams of protein, 66 grams of carbohydrates, and 11 grams of fat

Snack

  • One ounce 70% dark chocolate
  • 1 cup fresh raspberries

Macronutrients: approximately 233 calories, 4 grams of protein, 28 grams of carbohydrates, and 13 grams of fat

Daily Totals: approximately 2,411 calories, 111 grams of protein, 296 grams of carbohydrates, and 97 grams of fat

Day 7

Breakfast

  • 1 cup 100% whole-grain unsweetened cereal
  • 1 cup low-fat milk
  • 1 medium peach
  • 2 large hard-boiled eggs

Macronutrients: approximately 468 calories, 25 grams of protein, 61 grams of carbohydrates, and 15 grams of fat

Snack

  • 1/2 cup low-fat cottage cheese
  • 1 medium banana
  • 4 walnut halves chopped

Macronutrients: approximately 248 calories, 16 grams of protein, 33 grams of carbohydrates, and 8 grams of fat

Lunch

  • Chicken quesadilla (3 ounces of chicken sliced, 2 ounces shredded Monterey jack cheese, one 8-inch 100% whole-wheat flour tortillas; topped with 1/4 avocado, 2 tablespoons chopped green onions, 1/4 cup chopped tomatoes)

Macronutrients: approximately 512 calories, 33 grams of protein, 26 grams of carbohydrates, and 31 grams of fat

Snack

  • Edamame and pea salad (1/2 cup fresh edamame shelled, 1/2 cup thawed frozen green peas, 4 grape tomatoes, 1 teaspoon olive oil, 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar)
  • Four 100% whole-grain crackers

Macronutrients: approximately 289 calories, 16 grams of protein, 34 grams of carbohydrates, and 11 grams of fat

Dinner

  • 4 ounces roasted pork loin
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
  • 1 cup roasted fingerling potatoes 
  • 1 cup roasted cauliflower

Macronutrients: approximately 659 calories, 43 grams of protein, 61 grams of carbohydrates, and 30 grams of fat

Snack

  • 1 medium pear
  • 1/4 cup unsalted mixed nuts

Macronutrients: approximately 305 calories, 7 grams of protein, 36 grams of carbohydrates, and 18 grams of fat

Daily Totals: approximately 2,481 calories, 140 grams of protein, 250 grams of carbohydrates, and 114 grams of fat

How to Meal Plan for Pregnancy During the 3rd Trimester

  • Eat a balanced diet. Eating meals and snacks that contain a variety of nutrient-rich foods from all the food groups is the best way to ensure you get the nutrients your body needs to stay healthy during your pregnancy.
  • Plan small, frequent meals. There’s no set number of meals and snacks on a pregnancy meal plan. However, during the last trimester you may find yourself feeling full fast and find it easier to eat smaller meals more often. If needed, you can further split the meals and snacks provided in this meal plan or add and repeat snacks to create 7 to 9 mini meals throughout the day.
  • Get an adequate amount of folic acid. Folic acid is a B vitamin. Before and during pregnancy, you need to consume at least 400 micrograms of folic acid a day to reduce risk of neural tube defects. Your prenatal vitamins contain folic acid. Plus, you can get this B vitamin from leafy greens, beans, citrus fruits, and fortified breads and pastas.
  • Be sure to eat foods rich in iron. Iron deficiency is common during pregnancy because of the increase in blood volume. Include iron-rich foods in your daily diet like meat, chicken, fish, beans, and leafy greens to meet your increased needs.
  • Consume adequate amounts of calcium to maintain bone strength. The fetus needs a consistent supply of calcium to form bones, teeth, and muscles. If you don’t get enough calcium in your diet, your body takes it from your bones to give to the fetus, decreasing your bone density and strength. Include foods like milk, yogurt, and fortified plant-milk to meet your daily calcium needs which ranges from 1,000 to 1,300 milligrams per day.
  • Avoid high-mercury fish. Mercury is a metal that may cause birth defects when consumed in high amounts. Specifically, mercury can harm the developing brain when in high amounts. Avoid eating fish high in mercury like king mackerel, shark, and swordfish during your pregnancy. 
  • Omit raw fish and unpasteurized foods during pregnancy. Raw fish and unpasteurized foods contain germs that may cause food-borne illness. During pregnancy, you are at greater risk of getting very sick from these germs, leading to serious health complications for you or your fetus. To protect your health, avoid foods like sushi and unpasteurized milk and juice. You should also avoid eating any undercooked meat.

A Word From Verywell

The third trimester of pregnancy is a busy time, planning and prepping for the new arrival. Though eating may be uncomfortable at this time in pregnancy, nutrition is still important. A third-trimester pregnancy meal plan can help you stay on track and give you more time to finish the items on your to-do list and take care of yourself. 

We recognize that meal plans may not be appropriate for all, especially those with disordered eating habits. If you or a loved one are coping with an eating disorder, contact the National Eating Disorders Association (NEDA) Helpline for support at 1-800-931-2237.

8 Sources
Verywell Fit uses only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial process to learn more about how we fact-check and keep our content accurate, reliable, and trustworthy.
  1. American Academy of Family Physicians. Changes in your body during pregnancy: Third trimester.

  2. Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. Healthy weight during pregnancy.

  3. U.S. FoodSafety.gov. People at risk: Pregnant women.

  4. American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. Nutrition during pregnancy.

  5. Assaf-Balut C, Garcia de la Torre N, Bordiu E, et al. Consumption of fat-free dairy products is not associated with a lower risk of maternofetal adverse eventsBMJ Open Diab Res Care. 2020;8(1):e001145. doi:10.1136/bmjdrc-2019-001145

  6. Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. How much water do I need.

  7. Klemm S. Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. Eating right during pregnancy. Published January 8, 2021.

  8. U.S. Department of Agriculture and U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Dietary Guidelines for Americans, 2020-2025. 9th Edition. December 2020.

By Jill Corleone, RD
Jill is a registered dietitian who's been learning and writing about nutrition for more than 20 years.