I enjoy cooking very much but the part I don’t love is planning! I feel like my meal plans start to look the same from week to week and so I’m going to start sharing “Meredith’s Menu” here in an attempt to mix things up a bit and stay accountable to trying new recipes. I typically plan 2-weeks of meals at a time (usually around 12 dinners), because I despise grocery shopping and try to go as infrequently as possible. I am able to budget better this way because my shopping coincides with my husband’s pay schedule. Here is my list of our meals for the next two weeks. Most of them are fairly “clean” and nutritious, but I’m not perfect with this. I try to eat healthy most of the time but it’s all in moderation!
1. Mexican Skillet Dinner. This is a new recipe I found last week and we all LOVED it. It will be a regular in my rotation.
2. Pork and Black Bean Chili. Yum!
3. Flatbread pizza. I buy Flatout brand flatbread and use it as a pizza crust. Sometimes we use whole wheat pitas instead. Use whatever toppings you like and bake according to package directions.
4. Skillet Penne with Sausage and Spinach. I often make this with quinoa instead of pasta. See recipe for modifications.
5. Chicken tacos. Cook 3-4 chicken breasts on low in crock pot with 1-2 cups fresh salsa. Shred and serve in corn tortillas (or flour) with desired toppings. I typically like mine on rice or a bed of lettuce instead. This is a great meal that my entire family eats without complaint.
6. Beef stew. I made this last night and thickened with tapioca starch instead of the flour and jar of gravy (too processed!).
7. Roast chicken with sweet potatoes.
For such a long time I was scared to death to roast a chicken but it’s the easiest thing in the world. Take a whole chicken, wash and pat it dry. Stuff the cavity with an onion (whole or halved), some garlic cloves (whole, peeled), some celery stalks (cut to size) or even a lemon. Rub a small amount (teaspoon or two) of olive oil on chicken skin and season with salt, pepper, rosemary, thyme (whatever you like) and put in shallow roasting pan, breast side up. Bake at 425 for 30 minutes, then turn down to 300 for 1.5 hours. SO easy. I like to serve roasted sweet potatoes with it. Or baked sweet potatoes. And something green (salad, green beans, asparagus).
9. Chicken and wild rice soup. I avoid dairy so this is a meal I usually skip but my family loves. You can also thicken with tapioca starch or cornstarch instead of the flour. You could probably sub almond milk to make it dairy-free but I’ve never tried that.
10. White chicken chili. My all time favorite winter recipe!
12. Lemon chicken with green beans and potatoes. Use frozen green beans if you can’t find fresh, not canned!
A salad or green veggie is my favorite go-to side dish for most of these meals! Enjoy!