Monday, February 16, 2015

Meal Plan Monday - February #3

Another Monday, another meal plan. I hope I'm inspiring some of you to not fear the kitchen, and to cook for your family. Even if you are using a lot of shortcuts, as long as the finished product came from your hands, you are helping shape the way your children will respond to food as grown adults. I know we are all busy, but finding a 30-minute window a few times a week can make a world of difference. I was brought up on home-cooked meals, and I swear it affirmed the love and respect of food that I have today.

If I menu plan early for the next week, it helps keep me on track for the week. I like to plan on Wednesdays or Thursdays and grocery shop on Thursdays or Fridays. That way, I can shop the circular and make sure to add any digital coupons to my club card, which saves me money. Have your grocery stores gone digital yet? It is so much nicer than remembering to clip coupons!

We stuck to last week's meal plan five out of seven days this week! On Valentine's Day, we ended up having meatloaf, drinking a nice bottle of Pinot Noir that I picked up from Naked Wines (sign up here*) and watching bad sci-fi movies on Netflix. Not exactly romantic, but comfortable. My husband and I went to dinner on Sunday night to celebrate instead, and avoided all the crowds.

*If you sign up for Naked Wines using my referral link, you get a $100 voucher towards your first order and I get a small credit towards future purchases*

Crunchy Black Bean Tacos from Six Sister's Stuff
Carrot Slaw
Meatless Monday again! My kids and husband really don't miss the meat when we go meatless once or twice weekly. The trick is to not get stuck in a rut when trying to eat less meat. These crunchy black bean tacos look like a great switch-up to our routine, and I think everyone (even the pickiest) will enjoy them, especially paired with carrot slaw.

Tex-Mex Zucchini Boats
I created this recipe with my kids a few summers ago when the summer zucchini growing in the backyard was at its peak, and we ate zucchini EVERY NIGHT. This recipe actually got my teenagers to like appreciate zucchini. My recipe will be up on the blog soon, you don't want to miss it!

Turkey Cheeseburger Macaroni
 fresh fruit and veggies
The meaty filling that stuffed my zucchini yesterday does double-duty, and today it will transform ordinary pasta into the most flavorful cheeseburger macaroni ever. I use ground turkey instead of beef to reduce our red-meat consumption, but either ground meat works in both these dinners.

Shrimp Pad Thai
Teriyaki Chicken Cutlets
My husband and I love the exotic flavors of the Far East, and Thai food is one of our favorite. Pad Thai is one of those dishes that sounds a lot more complicated than it is. The Good Eats Pad Thai recipe is the one that I follow. Since the youngest is still picky about things like shrimp, I will cook up a batch of teriyaki chicken cutlets for him to eat.

Teriyaki Chicken Sandwiches
Sweet potato fries
Did you think that I would become a short-order cook for my preschooler? Absolutely not! Since yesterday I made my tot Teriyaki Chicken Cutlets, I make a huge batch of them (you know, cook once, eat twice). These super-fun teriyaki chicken sandwiches include sliced pineapple, sweet onions, and spicy Sriracha mayo.

Mongolian Grilled Lamb Chops from Kevin is Cooking
Grilled veggie packets
Steamed rice
This warm weather (this is supposed to be winter!!) has my mouth watering for something grilled. These Mongolian grilled lamb loin chops are the perfect winter-buster and remind us that summer will be here soon enough. Pair them with steamed rice and smoky, seasoned Asian veggies for an excellent dinner perfect for entertaining.

Slow-Cooker Spicy Pork Green Chile Stew from A Dish of Daily Life
Sundays should be lazy, so why not let the slow-cooker do all the work for you? This dish should provide plenty of leftovers too, so that's at least one meal already planned for next week.

Be sure to join in on the conversation over on Facebook throughout the week! Feel free to stop in and say hi anytime!

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