Meal Planning Tips + Weekly Menu Featuring Past Meal Plan Favorites

Meal planning doesnt have to be hard. I’ve been meal planning for our household for more than 6 years and it’s actually something that I enjoy. I wanted to share a few tips that are helpful for me when I’m meal planning and grocery shopping for the week.

Only care about the weekly menu? Scroll down!

Find cook book authors and recipe creators that you enjoy and trust

My go to’s are Food and Wine, Bon Appetit, and Jamie Oliver. I know that 9 times out of 10, the recipes that come from these resources are going to be delicious, simple to follow, and full of flavor.

Purchase Produce by the Pound

Find an international or local farmers market that sells produce and herbs by the pound. This will save you money and will help reduce food waste. If you only need 1 shallot there’s no need to buy a prepackaged bag of 3 shallots. You’ll find that a single jalapeno pepper or a single clove of garlic only costs you a couple of cents.

Find favorites but also be open to new recipes

It’s always important to have tried and true recipes that you love and make often. Those are good to keep in mind when you have a buy week or don’t feel like taking out time to meal plan… BUT it’s also important to add in some variety and give new recipes a try.

This Week’s Menu

This week’s menu features 6 favorites from the last 6 weeks of meal plans! They’re all pretty straightforward recipes and are relatively simple to make and are packed with flavor!

Each day includes additional notes, tips, and recommendations to help you prep the meals. Unless noted, all meals are 4 servings.


[Meatless] Monday

Total Time from Start to Finish: Approximately 45 minutes.

The soup recipe serves 2 as a “main” dish. I recommend doubling the recipe if serving 4 adults.

Notes and Recommendations: The soup recipe calls for burbon however this can be omitted from the recipe. If you’d like to pair this recipe with a more substainsial protien it pairs well with grilled shrimp or roasted pork loin.

Meal Prep Tips: The brussels sprouts and the croutons cook on the same temperature in the oven. Cook the brussels sprouts as you’re preparing the soup.


Tuesday

Total Time from Start to Finish: 30 minutes

Notes and Recommendations: Some grocery stores sell italian sausage without the casings. If you want to save time, buy that instead of removing the casings from italian sausage links.


Wednesday

Total Time from Start to Finish: Approximately 45 minutes.

Notes and Recommendations: You can use ground beef or lamb in this recipe. If you’re not a fan of orzo (or don’t have it on hand) you can swap it out for a different type of pasta.


Thursday

Total Time from Start to Finish: Approximately 30 minutes.

Notes and Recommendations: If you don’t have acess to napa cabbage you can replace it with green cabbage. Use whatever type of mushrooms work best or you. I typically eat this on flour tourtillas.


Friday

Total Time from Start to Finish: 1 hour. The majority of this time is cooking time.

For a quick side dish, purchase steam in bag broccoli and then toss with salt and pepper.

Notes and Recommendations: This recipe requires cooking the wings under the broiler in your oven. For this recipe to work (and not burn) the rack placement in your oven is key. If your wings are too close to the broiler they will burn. Check your wings periodically to avoid burning or overcooking. Adjust broiler temperature and turn wings as needed.


Saturday [Splurge]

Saturday Splurge is a recipe that uses ingredients that you might not typically keep in your pantry or is more hands on that something you cook during the week. If you don’t want to cook on Saturday, then don’t. Go grab some takeout and support a local small business!

Total Time from Start to Finish: An hour and a half – most of this time is hands off.

The Torta recipe is for 6 servings. These sandwiches are great for lunch the next day too.

Notes and Recommendations: Although the total time to cook this meal seems long, it’s actually an easy recipe to put together. The majority of the time for this recipe is roasting time for the garlic and the mushrooms.

Meal Prep Tips: Roast the garlic ahead of time. You can roast the garlic the day before or you can roast the garlic in the morning while you’re getting ready for work. The mushroom mix can be made a day ahead as well. Prep your salad while the mushrooms are roasting.

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