Getting Creative with Weekly Meal Planning

I’ve been pretty spoiled with being able to “wing it” by not planning out my weekly meals to a T.

I used to live in walking distance of a grocery store, so it wasn’t a big deal if I needed to run out for one thing. But now with the stay-at-home orders, and markets like ours going to Curbside Pick-Up or drive-up orders only, and turnaround times of more than a day, it’s become very important to plan out meals.

Here’s my typical weekly schedule:

Monday – Italian Food

Tuesday – Stir-Fry (Asian, Indian or Caribbean)

Wednesday – Mexican Food

Thursday – Fish & Chips

Friday – Pizza

Saturday – Grilling or Crockpot

Sunday – Breakfast for dinner

For Italian food night, some of our favorites include:

Spaghetti with Sauce or Homemade Meatballs

Lasagna

Chicken Piccata

Chicken Saltimbocca

AsparagusPastaPrimavera

Pasta Primavera

Chicken Parmesan

Chicken Gnocchi Soup

Salad with Creamy Italian Salad Dressing

For salads, we like:

Gorgonzola and Apple Salads

Italian Salad with Lightened Up Creamy Italian Dressing

On stir-fry night, we mix things up with either:

Traditional Asian Stir-Fry

Pepper Steak

Caribbean Jerk Chicken Stir-Fry (pictured above with grilled peaches)

Curry & Rice

On Mexican food night, homemade guacamole and fresh salsas are a staple.

 

Here are our go-to salsa & guac recipes:

Guacamole

Fresh Salsa

Pico de Gallo

Salsa Verde

Pineapple Salsa

Corn Salsa

Then for the main dish, our favorites include:

Tacos

Enchiladas

Chimichangas

Healthy Mexican Casserole with Corn & Beans

Chipotle Shredded Chicken & Rice

 

Thursdays became our “fish & chips” night because it was a quick and easy meal on our busiest night of the week.

Sometimes I use frozen breaded fish, but usually I try to use salmon with olive oil, garlic powder, sea salt and black pepper. Then for “chips” I either make oven fries, hash browns or home fries. If I’m pressed for time, I just roast frozen broccoli or green beans in olive oil and garlic.

Friday is pizza night. I make my own dough using this recipe or this recipe for thick-crust pizza, and find topping inspiration from these 20+ pizza topping ideas.

 

We love this Gorgonzola, pear and walnut pizza recipe – a specialty from Northern Italy.

 

This arugula and cherry pizza is so delicious with in-season cherries!

This sun dried tomato and asparagus recipe would be perfect with our asparagus which is now in season!

Saturday night is often grilling night, or crock-pot night, if we don’t have other plans to be out and about.

Grilling go-to recipes are usually burgers or BBQ chicken. Weaver’s Orchard’s blog archive is full of delicious grilling recipes from cooking classes with Ed Deren.

Many of my favorite crock-pot meals, such as Sloppy Joe’s and pulled pork can be found in this article about making summer meal prep easy.

Now, for my favorite night of the week: Sunday is breakfast for dinner night!

omelettes

If we have a lot of veggies to use up, we’ll make omelettes.

Other times we’ll do crepes like these peaches & cream crepes,

Apple ring pancakes

or choose from our favorite pancake recipes or we’ll even make waffles with a blueberry or raspberry sauce like in this recipe.

I hope this helps add some variety to your weekly meal planning! I know I will be revisiting some of these recipes, and I find that it’s helpful at times to list out all of my favorite recipes, either on paper or in an app like Paprika — my favorite recipe-saving app.

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