2018 Monday Meal Plan: Week 23 (May 28-June 3, 2018)

I know, weeks 21 and 22 are missing.  What can I say?  Life got busy.  We had no plan.  I just reverted to survival mode, quick dinners, a little too much takeout, and pulling stuff from the freezer on a whim daily.  The last 2 weeks of school does me in every single year.  I should remember that for next year and prep ahead!  Back at it this week.

PDF MEAL PLANNER

Breakfasts:

Who doesn’t love a BLT?  This one is without the bread, in salad form, with some egg and spinach in addition to the usual BLT ingredients.  Plus a tangy, slightly sweet vinaigrette that I can practically drink it’s so good.

BL(S)T Breakfast (or Lunch!) Salad with Honey Mustard Vinaigrette

Lunches:

Trying this Skinnytaste.com recipe for Harissa Chicken for the first time.  I made it in my Instant Pot (affiliate link), and I find that fresh, unfrozen chicken breasts are done in 12-13 minutes at high pressure, vs. the 20 she suggests, but your results may vary!  I am serving mine over brown rice with cucumbers and peppers and some tzatziki sauce on the side.

Easy Shredded Harissa Chicken

Processed with VSCO with l4 preset

Dinners:

Monday – No recipe, but we are having teriyaki chicken kabobs.  I marinate chunks of chicken in teriyaki sauce, and then alternate with chunks of bell pepper on skewers and grill.  Brown rice and a veggie tray on the side.  If pineapple looks good at the store, maybe that too!

Tuesday – My favorite grilled flank steak recipe with some roasted red potatoes and asparagus on the side.

Grilled Rosemary Flank Steak

Wednesday – Leftovers.

Thursday – The kids have a swim meet in the evening, so leftovers or takeout.

Friday –  Cheeseburger Pasta Bake and a veggie tray.

Saturday – Spicy Honey Brushed Chicken Thighs, tomato and cucumber salad and roasted sweet potatoes.

Sunday –  Leftovers.

 

 

Posted in Baked Pasta, Breakfast, casserole, chicken, Dinner, Easy Breakfast, Easy Lunch, Instant Pot, Leftovers, Lunch, Make Ahead, Mason Jar Meals, Meal Plans, meal prep, Quick Breakfast, Repurposed Leftovers, salad, Slow Cooker | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

BL(S)T Breakfast (or Lunch!) Salad with Honey Mustard Vinaigrette

Salad, for breakfast?  Why not….it’s a great way to get those veggie servings in early in the day, and fuel your activities for the day.  For me, personally, as it heats up in Arizona, I find hot breakfasts less appealing many days.  This is one I came up with last summer, but never wrote down until now.  It also makes a great lunch, and if you have some fresh avocado to dice and add right before serving, do that too!

These instructions are for making the salads ahead in mason jars (affiliate link), but you can use any container that works for you, or just prep the ingredients and assemble right before eating as well.

Makes 4 servings.

Ingredients:

Dressing:

  • 1.5 TB honey
  • 1.5 TB dijon mustard
  • 3 TB olive oil
  • 1 lemon juiced (around 1/4 cup)
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Salad:

  • 7 stalks of celery, sliced thin
  • 16 oz container of grape tomatoes, halved
  • 4 cups of baby spinach (around 1/2 of a 6 oz bag)
  • 6 cups of romaine, sliced
  • 4 slices of bacon, cooked and crumbled
  • 8 hard-boiled eggs

Instructions:

  1. Make dressing by blending all ingredients except salt and pepper thoroughly.  Taste and add salt and pepper to taste.  If prepping salads ahead, divide dressing among 4 quart-sized mason jars (affiliate link).  Otherwise store in a tightly sealed container until ready to serve.
  2. If making ahead, layer ingredients in jars bottom up, in the following order: dressing, celery, tomatoes, spinach, lettuce, bacon.
  3. When ready to serve, shake jar and dump contents onto a plate, top with sliced hard-boiled eggs (and avocado if desired!).  Enjoy!

Processed with VSCO with e4 preset

 

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2018 Monday Meal Plan: Week 20 (May 7-13, 2018)

It’s a crazy week after a crazy weekend.  Have you ever read that blog by Jen Hatmaker about being the worst end of year mom ever? She has competition.  And that competition is me.  I’m barely hanging on here surviving the last 3 weeks of 4th grade.  Feeding anyone anything is a challenge, much less 3 healthy meals a day.  We got a taste of summer break early here in Arizona, and frankly, we liked it.  I mean, obviously, ten days into it for real I’ll be ready for school to start, but right now, I’ve deluded myself into believing those slow easy mornings and long days will be amazing (side note: they won’t.  There will be lots of whining, begging for electronics, and forcible removal from the house to attend camp so mom can work, but for now, I’m living in a grass is greener dream land……)

And on that note, here’s what we are eating this week:

PDF MEAL PLANNER

Breakfasts:

Making it easy on myself with Mixed Berry Banana Smoothies  and hard boiled eggs.

Lunches:

Skinnytaste Instant Pot Chipotle Chicken Bowls with Lime Cilantro Quinoa

Dinners:

Monday – Takeout.  What can I say.  I failed to plan over the weekend, and I’m typing this post at 6:02 PM.

Tuesday –  Chicken tacos or salads (build your own) using this Crockpot Chicken For Tacos, Taco Salads, Nachos and more!

WednesdayKorean Rice Bowls.  Yeah, I know.  We eat these too much.  But the point is, everyone actually eats them….

Thursday – Leftovers or takeout.

Friday – Leftovers or takeout.

Saturday – the good news is, in the business of this past weekend, I forgot to cancel my Plated Box this week, so 2 meals!  I didn’t even have to think of them.  Saturday is Cuban Rice Bowls.

Sunday – thank you again to Plated (well, actually thank you to me, for not remembering to cancel, and for paying for it)!  Pan Roasted Chicken with Warm Farro Salad.

I hope your week is amazing and that (if applicable) you are still capable of being a most excellent end of the year school mom!

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2018 Monday Meal Plan: Week 19 (April 30 through May 6, 2018)

My planning and prepping is more crucial than usual this week – trying hard to keep myself on track with the kids unexpectedly out of school…we are so proud of and grateful for our teachers who are out fighting for education funding in Arizona!  #RedForEd!

It’s hot already here in Phoenix – as usual for this time of year – so I’m making a transition to cold lunches for the week, and moving away from soups and stews for a while.

PDF PLANNER [JUST KIDDING!  GOOGLE DRIVE HATES ME.  TO COME WHEN IT DECIDES TO LIKE ME AGAIN]

Breakfasts –

I prepped the second version of these for the week.

Just crack an egg….

Lunches –

Layered mason jar salads for the week.  In the following order (made 5 salads):

Lime vinaigrette:

  • 2 TB lime infused olive oil
  • 3 TB red wine vinegar
  • 1/2 tsp dijon mustard
  • Fresh cracked pepper and sea salt

Chopped veggies:

  • carrots
  • celery
  • bell peppers

Chopped romaine lettuce

Chunks of broiled chicken (marinated in greek yogurt, lime juice and salt and pepper before broiling)

Blue cheese crumbles

Dinners –

Monday:

We will use up the last of last week’s leftovers.

Tuesday:

Slow Cooker Italian Beef as sandwiches on whole grain rolls, with a veggie tray.

Wednesday:

Pesto Parmesan Chicken, pasta with marinara, roasted broccoli.

Thursday:

Crab Cakes (except I bake them instead of frying in oil), coleslaw and oven baked fries.

FridayCheeseburger Pasta Bake, veggie tray.

Saturday: Leftovers for the kids, the adults are going out.

Sunday: Leftovers or takeout.

Posted in Baked Pasta, Breakfast, casserole, chicken, Dinner, Easy Breakfast, Easy Lunch, Freezer meals, Italian, Leftovers, Lunch, Make Ahead, Mason Jar Meals, Meal Plans, meal prep, Quick Breakfast, salad, Slow Cooker | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

2018 Monday Meal Plan: Week 18 (April 23 through 29, 2018)

The year is continuing to speed by fast than the sound of light……the end of April in Arizona means the beginning of hot summer weather, the last month of school, and the frantic planning of summer vacations and summer camps and childcare while the kids are off school. I was going to say it’s a very busy time of year, but I’m starting to realize that with 3 school-aged children, they pretty much all are!

PDF MEAL PLANNER

Breakfasts –

Egg White Breakfast Tacos

Lunches –

Chopped Chicken Cobb Salad in a Mason Jar

Dinners –

We have some leftovers to use up from this weekend and last week (homemade chicken nuggets and spaghetti), plus the following:

Monday –  Leftovers

Tuesday – My Take on Korean Rice Bowls and cucumber salad.

Wednesday –  Slow Cooker Chicken and Dumplings.

Thursday – Chicken Tortilla Soup with a veggie tray.

Friday – Leftovers for the kids and spouse, moms’ night out for me!

Saturday – I’m going to try this Skinnytaste recipe for General Tso’s Chicken, as it is a takeout favorite for all of us.  Maybe we can find a way to keep it healthier!

Sunday –  Leftovers

Enjoy the last week of April (yep, already!).

Posted in Breakfast, chicken, Dinner, Easy Breakfast, Easy Lunch, Freezer meals, Korean, Leftovers, Lunch, Make Ahead, Mason Jar Meals, Meal Plans, meal prep, Quick Breakfast, Repurposed Leftovers, salad, Slow Cooker | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

2018 Monday Meal Plan: Week 17 (April 16 through 22, 2018)

Week 17….planned and prepped!

PDF PLANNER

Breakfasts:

These yogurt and berry parfaits, except I used strawberries this week, along with a hard boiled egg on the side.

Fruit and Yogurt Parfait.

Lunches:

All of my containers are currently full of single serving leftovers in the freezer, so it’s time to each some of those instead of cooking more!  Many of these are in there.  🙂

Make Ahead Lunches (Subtitle: Why I Sometimes Don’t Eat Lunch – Part 2)

Dinners:

I’m only planning 4 dinners as the spouse and I will be out of town Friday through Sunday nights, and the chances of the small Asians eating my food without me here to threaten and force strongly encourage them to do so is low.  There will certainly be leftovers for at least 1-2 nights though.

Monday – Sheet Pan Dinner with Chicken Thighs, Potatoes and Green Beans 

TuesdaySkinnytaste Honey Sesame Chicken (Slow Cooker/Crockpot) with brown rice and cucumber salad.

Wednesday – No Boil Chicken Sausage and Pasta Casserole, veggie tray.

Thursday –  Leftovers or takeout.

Friday – Leftovers, takeout or out.

Saturday – Skinnytaste Healthy Baked Chicken Nuggets, veggie tray.

Sunday –  Takeout or out.

Posted in Baked Pasta, Breakfast, casserole, chicken, Dinner, Easy Breakfast, Easy Lunch, Freezer meals, Leftovers, Lunch, Make Ahead, Meal Plans, meal prep, Quick Breakfast, Repurposed Leftovers, Slow Cooker | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Sheet Pan Dinner with Chicken Thighs, Green Beans and Potatoes

A sheet pan dinner is an easy prep, easy cook, easy clean-up weeknight dinner!  You can come up with any combination of protein and vegetables and seasonings you like.  This is a standard in our house.

Sheet Pan Dinner with Chicken Thighs, Green Beans and Potatoes

Ingredients:

  • 2 pounds red potatoes (about 6 medium), cut into 3/4-inch pieces
  • 8 boneless, skinless chicken thighs
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1-1/4 teaspoons Kosher or sea salt, divided
  • 1 teaspoon dried rosemary, crushed, divided
  • 1 tsp dried oregano, crushed, divided
  • 3/4 teaspoon black pepper, divided
  • 1 lb of green beans

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 425°.
  2. In a large bowl, combine potatoes, oil, garlic, 3/4 teaspoon salt, 1/2 teaspoon rosemary, 1/2 teaspoon of oregano, and 1/2 teaspoon pepper; toss to coat.
  3. Transfer to a large sheet pan lined with foil or parchment paper and sprayed with cooking spray or oil.
  4. In a small bowl, mix remaining salt, rosemary, oregano, and pepper. Sprinkle chicken with this mixture; arrange over potatoes.
  5. Roast until chicken is cooked through and potatoes are just tender, 25-30 minutes.  Remove from oven and turn chicken and potato pieces.
  6. Add green beans to pan.  Roast until green beans are tender, 10-15 minutes longer. Stir to combine; serve.  Yields 4-6 servings.
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2018 Monday Meal Plan: Week 16 (April 9 through 15, 2018)

Week 16 already!  Breakfasts, lunches, 4 dinners….it’s a wrap.

PDF MEAL PLANNER

Breakfasts –

I made these, but the kids are scarfing them down so fast, I need to make more to get through the week!  Just crack an egg…

Lunches –

Caprese Mason Jar Salads with Broiled Chicken

Dinners –

Monday:

Southwestern Skillet Stuffed Peppers (with strawberries on the side)

Tuesday:

Okay.  We were totally supposed to eat this recipe on Sunday.  But the box came missing some ingredients, and I didn’t have time for it Monday (thanks baseball!), so it’s Tuesday instead.  Sorry for the spring re-run.  If it helps, instead of this on Sunday we had pizza.  That someone else cooked.  And delivered.

 Chicken Tacos with Mexican Street Corn

Wednesday:

I’ll serve this with roasted sweet potatoes and a green veggie.

Soy Ginger Pork Roast (Crock Pot/Slow Cooker)

Thursday:

Leftovers or takeout.

Friday:

Leftovers or takeout.

Saturday:

Bee-Bim Bop

Sunday:

Clean out the leftovers or go out!

 

Posted in Breakfast, casserole, chicken, Dinner, Easy Breakfast, Easy Lunch, Freezer meals, Italian, Korean, Leftovers, Lunch, Make Ahead, Mason Jar Meals, Meal Plans, meal prep, pork, Quick Breakfast, Repurposed Leftovers, Slow Cooker | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Just crack an egg….

Prepped Ahead Egg Scrambles…..Just Crack an Egg! (Makes 5)

Have you seen the new product called “Just Crack an Egg” in the grocery store?  They look sort of like the Kraft easy mac containers, but are in the refrigerator case with the eggs. I was intrigued by them….just crack an egg, and microwave, and voila!  Breakfast.  I bought a few, and they are really good.  But also, high in sodium, have some additives, and they are close to 3 bucks each.  And they have little plastic baggies in them and opening them all kind of irritated me.  But I was in a mood that day.  I figured I could do better with my favorite wide-mouth mason jars (affiliate link) and some at home ingredients.

These are kid tested, and mother approved.  Well, tested by my kid (he had 2 for breakfast today) and approved by me.

Version 1 Ingredients:

  • 3-4 bell peppers or 8-10 mini peppers, seeded and diced
  • 1 large shallot or 1/2 a red onion, diced
  • 10 oz of potatoes, cubed and cooked (I roasted mine with a tiny bit of olive oil)
  • 4 oz of diced deli ham OR 4 slices of bacon, cooked and crumbled
  • 10 TB shredded cheddar
  • 10 eggs

Version 2 Ingredients:

  • 3 bell peppers, seeded and diced
  • 9 chicken breakfast sausage links (like this chicken and maple variety), prepared per the package, then cooled and diced
  • 10 TB shredded cheddar
  • 10 eggs

Preparation:

Get 5 wide-mouthed, pint sized mason jars (affiliate link) ready.  I like to use these plastic lids (affiliate link) rather than the metal.

Version 1: Divide the diced bell peppers, shallot or onion and potatoes among the 5 jars.

Version 2: Divide the diced bell peppers among the 5 jars.

In separate containers that will fit inside the jars, divide the ham, bacon or sausage and the cheese.  I use these – after I eat the olives – because they fit in the top of the jars and the lid seals them in.  I just like olives.  I wash them and reuse them….lots of things come in these cups though.  Mandarin oranges, fruit cocktail, applesauce….you can use any container or baggie that fits though.

When ready to cook and eat, mix the cheese and ham, bacon or sausage into the other ingredients, crack two eggs over it all, mix, and microwave for 1 minute on high.

Remove from microwave (be careful of hot jars), stir, and cook again for 1 minute.

Be careful, as the jar does get hot!

Enjoy!

 

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Southwestern Skillet Stuffed Peppers

Southwestern Skillet Stuffed Peppers (Serves 6)

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb lean ground beef (ground turkey and chicken also work)
  • 6 bell peppers
  • 1/2 c diced tomato
  • 1/2 c diced onion
  • 1/4 c chopped cilantro
  • 1 Jalapéno, seeded, and diced (optional)
  • 2 c cooked brown rice
  • 2 c jarred salsa
  • 4 oz shredded cheese (optional)

Preparation:

  1. Brown ground beef in the largest skillet you have.
  2. While beef is browning, remove tops from peppers (and save!) and cut the peppers in half.
  3. Remove stem from pepper tops, and dice remaining tops.
  4. Add diced pepper tops, tomatoes, onions, cilantro and Jalapéno to beef.  Sauté for 2-3 minutes.
  5. Stir in cooked rice and jarred salsa.
  6. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  7. Place peppers, cut side down on top of beef mixture and cover, cook 10-13 minutes, or until peppers are crisp-tender.
  8. Remove peppers to a serving platter or platters (cut side up), and divide beef mixture among them.
  9. Top with cheese and serve immediately!
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