Meal Planning | week one
This is totally new for me so I’m not quite sure how I want to structure these Meal Planning posts…but I want to keep things loose and fun. To get kicked off, I’m going to share some of the stuff (read: Word docs) that I’m using to organize meals (they’re a work in progress). Feel free to download and make them your own. What type of meals do you like to make during the week? How organized or unorganized are you? What are your favorite meals?
For favorite family meals, I’m using this MENU PLANNING document to keep ideas in one place. Consider this a master planning/brainstorming document. Anytime you see a delicious recipe in a magazine or a cookbook just add it to the list. I included Breakfast and Lunch because I find them equally challenging to plan for (for my kids, not me). Some of these recipes are specific and some are just general ideas.
This next document is way more detailed, it’s my weekly MENU + GROCERY LIST. I’m going to use last week’s menu for reference because Stella is going to be out of town this week and Gavin and I can eat cereal for dinner and be happy. This menu shows an extremely meatball-heavy week because Gavin was going back to school and he loves meatballs. Simple enough. The grocery list is looking a little sparse as well because we had lots of fruits and veggies from our garden and our house is pretty stocked right now.
I’ll go through each day and link off to recipes as needed, give notes on changes I made to the recipes and what we thought overall. The goal is for you to get inspired, try some new recipes…but most of all, let me know what you think!!! xoxo
GREEK MEATBALLS WITH ISRAELI COUSCOUS
This recipe was from Giada and you can find it here. I cut way back on the cinnamon in the meatballs and I didn’t even add any to the sauce. I also used Israeli couscous. I threw some feta, kalamata olives, lemons (next time I would use preserved lemons) + lots of fresh herbs (including basil) on top. I liked it…but felt like the recipe could be tweaked a bit (to be honest). Gavin was having none of it, by the way. I think the meatballs minus the tomatoes sauce with couscous + tzatziki would have been delicious. Think about it. Also, would consider using quinoa to make it wheat-free…sometimes I like to go without. I would like to mess around with this recipe more…I think it has promise.
I made double the marinara so that I would have it ready for Wednesday. I also threw my pizza dough together (recipe here) so that it would be ready on Friday night (this took 10 minutes max), prepped some labneh (5 minutes) for snacks and called it a night. Clearly, I was feeling pretty ambitious about meal planning right out of the gate.
ROASTED BONE-IN CHICKEN BREASTS + ROASTED BROCCOLI
I love to follow this bone-in roast chicken breast recipe from Ina. The actual recipe is for her Chinese Chicken Salad which is like CRACK…if you’ve never made this, MAKE IT. For this meal, however, I just followed the chicken part. It’s AMAZING. I roasted the broccoli, lightly drizzled with some olive oil + sprinkled with sea salt at 450 degrees F for about 25 minutes and we couldn’t stop shoving it in our mouths. The final squeeze of lemon over the top cinched it for me. I could eat this breakfast, lunch and dinner. This was such an easy dinner and everyone was happy. I skipped croutons (with the chicken) and the kids just had some baguette on the side. Gavin was starting school on Wednesday and thank god I had frozen cookie dough in the freezer. These Dark Chocolate Tart Cherry Sea Salt Cookies (BALLERS) got shoved in his lunchbox the next morning.
CLASSIC SPAGHETTI + MEATBALLS
I was digging meal planning by day three…I didn’t even have to think about feeding people. Heaven. I made spaghetti + meatballs in the morning (I have the best recipe and it’s in the queue to post) and they sat around and got delicious all day long. I also made the most amazing blueberry muffins that I really want to fine tune for you guys and also post…I used almond meal and hemp seeds and they were hella healthy and everyone loved them. I ate too many, which probably then made it unhealthy. Such is life. Feel a touch guilty for not sharing the recipe for either…if you want my Spaghetti + Meatball recipe email me…I’ll share it!
I was exhausted come Thursday and told the kids it was leftover city. I roasted sweet potatoes (425 degrees F for about 45 minutes) and used leftover roast chicken, some cheddar cheese, some salsa + greek yogurt and dinner was done. Get organic sweet potatoes and eat the skin…it’s loaded with good-for-you stuff. I love eating sweet potatoes like baked potatoes. Are you doing this? It’s heaven….total comfort food. We were still talking about the roasted broccoli.
FRIDGE ‘POUR ME A MARTINI’ PIZZA NIGHT
Pizza dough was done. YAY!!! Just needed to be brought to room temperature and given its last rise. Boom. Dinner was done. We bought three heads of broccoli at the store to roast. We can’t be satiated.
On My Mind
- Let me know if you try any of these recipes or what you think of them OR what you think of these new posts…do you need help with meal planning too?
- I hope this gets your week off on the right foot. I hope you’re feeling inspired and excited to try something new. If you saw a recipe in my MENU PLANNING document that you’d like me to perfect and share, let me know.
- That very top photo is of Stella eating Zucchini Labneh Pizza…I’m working on this recipe it was so so SOOOOO good!!
- I can’t even believe that tonight is the last episode of The Night Of. I’m beside myself.
- I’m feeling good about this week. Great things are going to happen. I can feel it. Sending lots of well wishes + good vibes.
- Leaving you with one last pic of my grapes…that are about to take over my patio. If we were neighbors I would share.
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