Meal Plans

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Meal Plan for July Week 2

This month, Summer Miller is back, sharing her meal plans for July. Summer is a mom, a full-time food writer, and also helps test the fabulous recipes we bring you every week at Simply Recipes.

I ease into my work weeks like I ease into my mornings – slow and simple. I do my best to leave my meetings to the other days of the week, and let Mondays serve as the day I set myself up to take care of odd and ends, dig out from emails that have accumulated over the weekend, and take stock of the week ahead.

When I transition to dinner on Monday nights, I take the same approach. I want to hang out with my kids and husband, find out how their days went and see what lies ahead for them. I don’t want to be distracted by over complicated menus.

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Meal Plan for June Week 1

June Week 1 Meal Plan

This month, we welcome back Marta Rivera for more of her meal plans. Marta is a trained chef, mom of twins, and Army wife – and she is also one of our Simply Recipes recipe testers!

One of the misconceptions some people have about homeschool families is that we have really lax schedules. Really, we’re all in the same chaotic boat as far as scheduling goes.

Thankfully, for most of us, summer vacation is nigh!

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Meal Plan for May Week 1

May Meal Plan

This month, Megan Gordon is back with us sharing her weekly meal plans! Megan is a writer and recipe developer living in Seattle, WA, the author of Whole Grain Mornings, and mom to a 2-year-old. Please welcome Megan!

May, I thought you’d never come! While I’m not naive enough to think that we’ll magically start seeing warmer temperatures in Seattle anytime soon, it’s nice to see the flowers in bloom and the longer days always inspire slightly more leisurely cooking in the evenings.

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Meal Plan for April Week 4

Meal Plan for April Week 4

This month, Summer Miller is back, sharing her meal plans for April. Summer is a mom, a full-time food writer, and also helps test the fabulous recipes we bring you every week at Simply Recipes.

Each spring I tiptoe out to my garden to check the buds on our perennials and the blossoms on our apple trees, and to plant seeds for early-season vegetables. As an avid gardener, I want to spend these extra hours of daylight outside with my hands in the dirt.

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Meal Plan for April Week 3

Meal Plan for April Week 3

This month, Summer Miller is back, sharing her meal plans for April. Summer is a mom, a full-time food writer, and also helps test the fabulous recipes we bring you every week at Simply Recipes.

Here we are squarely in the latter half of April and ready to celebrate the best of spring.

We don’t think much about it anymore, but eggs are actually seasonal. Chickens are photosensitive, which means they lay more eggs as our days grow longer.

It’s also about this time of spring where cool nights followed by warm wet afternoons, and morel mushroom season begins.

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Meal Plan for April Week 2

April Week 2 Meal Plan

This month, Summer Miller is back, sharing her meal plans for April. Summer is a mom, a full-time food writer, and also helps test the fabulous recipes we bring you every week at Simply Recipes.

Spring can be a fickle friend, especially where I live in Nebraska. One moment the sun is shining and my family has abandoned their boots for flip flops, and then next week it’s snowing and we cry a little inside.

The plus side of all of this is we can marry cozy, rich foods with spring fruits and vegetables. This week’s meal plan provides tasty dinners (and hope for spring), bringing you the best of both worlds regardless of the temperature outside.

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Meal Plan for April Week 1

April Week 1 Meal Plan

This month, Summer Miller is back, sharing her meal plans for April. Summer is a mom, a full-time food writer, and also helps test the fabulous recipes we bring you every week at Simply Recipes.

Warmer temperatures bring with them a familiar ease to life – more daylight hours, fewer coat buttons to button and less headwear to adorn before flinging open the front door and stepping casually into the sunshine.

Spring comes around to remind us that being outside is a privilege and not a punishment.

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Meal Plan for March Week 4

Meal Plan for March Week 4

This month, we welcome back Marta Rivera for more of her meal plans. Marta is a trained chef, mom of twins, and Army wife – and she is also one of our Simply Recipes recipe testers!

Can you believe that we’re already at the end of March?! I don’t know about you, but it seems as if the new year is flying right by!

Since Easter is next weekend, you may need meals during the week ahead that you can prepare quickly so you can focus on hosting or enjoying your loved ones.

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Meal Plan for March Week 2

Meal Plan for March Week 2

This month, we welcome back Marta Rivera for more of her meal plans. Marta is a trained chef, mom of twins, and Army wife – and she is also one of our Simply Recipes recipe testers!

The French essayist, Marcel Proust, said, “The smell and taste of things remain poised a long time, ready to remind us…”

Obviously, what they remind us of is wrapped up in the event itself, and as we head into the week of St. Patrick’s Day, I can’t help but remember my journey through the heart of Ireland as a young culinary student.

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Meal Plan for March Week 1

Meal Plan for March Week 1

This month, we welcome back Marta Rivera for more of her meal plans. Marta is a trained chef, mom of twins, and Army wife – and she is also one of our Simply Recipes recipe testers!

With so much excellent produce available all year round, you might not always realize that there are food seasons that coincide with the seasons in nature.

That’s right! While it may seem that all fruits and vegetables are obtainable throughout the year (thanks to technology and human ingenuity), the truth is that there’s a particular season for enjoying every fruit and vegetable at its ripest.

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Meal Plan for February Week 4

I often try to keep Monday dinners super simple, but lately I’ve found that it’s Wednesday nights that have been the troublemaker. By this time in the week, everyone’s starting to get tired from the pace of the work (and daycare) week, and yet it’s just not quite close enough to Friday to let our guard down and get excited about the weekend.

So this Wednesday, I’m keeping it simpler than usual with a make-your-own Twice Baked Potato situation! This will go over well with small and large palates alike.

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Meal Plan for February Week 1

This month, Megan Gordon is here to give us a look at what meal planning looks like for her family! Megan is a writer and recipe developer living in Seattle, WA, the author of Whole Grain Mornings, and mom to a 2-year-old. Please welcome Megan!

February can feel like one of the longer months in Seattle, where I live. The weather is often wet and cold, and we’re all starting to itch for signs of spring.

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Meal Plan for January Week 5

January Week 5 Meal Plan

Welcome to 2018! Our contributor Summer Miller is back to share her meal plans for the month of January. 

January is always a reprieve from the hectic holiday season and the one month where our family is light on sports commitments. Fall soccer has ended, spring soccer has yet to begin, and the cold weather keeps us huddled together playing card games indoors.

It’s a month of renewal as I prepare for the flurry of activities that hit our home from February through July.

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Meal Plan for January Week 4

I lived as a vegetarian for more than a decade, and then I met my husband, who happens to be a hunter. I slowly tiptoed into the world of eating, and later, preparing meat, but it took a good while to find comfort in cooking foods so unfamiliar to me.

The first time I made a pot roast the thing was tough as leather. I was in my early 30s and, of course, I had invited people over for dinner to share this pot roast. They were gracious about this first attempt, and I went on to cook many roasts, all of which fared better than the first.

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Meal Plan for January Week 2

It’s about this time of year where the impact of daylight savings time and early evening darkness gets the better of me. I try to combat the lack of light with outdoor daytime activities and then lots of warm cozy soups, bright fresh salads, and vegetable dishes for dinner.

These remind me winter won’t last forever and the freezing wind won’t always settle in my bones.

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Meal Plan for December Week 4

December Meal Plan Wk 4

This month, Summer Miller is back and excited to share her family’s meal plans for December. Happy holidays, everyone!

My general philosophy is to eat as healthy as I can, most of the time. For me, this means that not much is actually off limits, but I focus more on eating in moderation.

When planning our meals for the week, I also try to look at the week as whole and then gauge when we can indulge and when it’s better to plan something lighter.

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Meal Plan for November Week 2

Another week has snuck up on us! Can you believe we’re so close to the New Year? I, for one, have had one of the most eventful years in recent memory. With my husband coming off the heels of yet another military deployment (the second in three years), I can honestly say I’m ready for a bit of zen.

Single-parenting and being responsible for keeping us all fed and happy is no joke. One needs a reprieve from the daily demands life puts on us.

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Meal Plan for October Week 3

Meal Plan for October Wk 3

Welcome to our new series of weekly meal plans! This month, Summer Miller will be sharing with us what meal planning looks like in her house. Summer is a mom, a full-time food writer, and also helps test the fabulous recipes we bring you every week at Simply Recipes.

Life is busy. Leftovers are nice.

Eating leftovers wasn’t at the top of my “to do” list when I was a single 20-something. Now that I’m feeding a family of four, and doing so three times a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year, I welcome the opportunity to double up a dish so I can freeze some for later or pack it up for lunches the next day.

This change in lifestyle was dictated by more than just having a family. I moved to the country several years ago, and no one delivers pizza to a rural address. If I want to eat, I have to make it.

Learning to think ahead took some time, but now I wouldn’t have it any other way. I generally have something at the ready when work deadlines collide with getting dinner on the table, or when the kitchen is in shambles after a day of recipe testing, or when I’m not feeling so great myself and still have mouths to feed. (It turns out you still have to feed your children even when you’re sick and your husband is out town. Who knew?)

Once you establish the habit of cooking with leftovers in mind, I think it is actually more convenient than picking up take-out. It’s certainly healthier than what shows up at your door in a cardboard box!

Each recipe in this week’s meal plan is either large enough to feed an army or is easily doubled, and the leftovers will either last all week or can be frozen for later. A few of the recipes require a little heavy lifting on the weekend, but the payoff comes when you’re eating home-cooked comfort food on Wednesday and you didn’t even need to bring out your cutting board.

Meal Plan for October Week 3

Beef Barley Stew

1 Beef and Barley Stew with Mushrooms: This rich and filling stew makes enough for Sunday dinner, then pack the leftovers in lunchboxes for the rest of the week. If you have time, make these potato dinner rolls – they are simple to make and you can freeze them, too!

 

Baked Vegetable and Cream Cheese Wontons

2 Baked Vegetable and Cream Cheese Wontons: Spend a little time on Saturday or Sunday assembling these wontons, then freeze them. Bake them straight from the freezer for a quick weeknight dinner, or save them to serve as an appetizer at an impromptu party. The recipe makes about fifty wontons, and makes a fun family meal with some miso soup or stir-fried greens on the side.

 

Black Bean Burrito Bowl

3 Black Bean Burrito Bowls: Burrito bowls are one of my favorite meals, but rice and dry beans can both take a while to cook. I usually make double batches of both things on Sunday. They freeze beautifully, and thaw quickly, which makes them ready when I am!

 

Mini Salmon Quiches

4 Mini Salmon Quiches: These little quiche bites are a universal food. They are perfect for breakfast, brunch, lunch, or dinner. Serve them with a salad, like this Quinoa, Feta, and Arugula Salad, and you have a quick and light weeknight meal. This recipe makes twelve mini-quiches, but they’re so fast to make that you can easily double it. Freeze the leftovers and save them for a rainy day.

 

Skillet Pasta with Chicken Sausage, Cheese & Spinach

5 Pasta Skillet with Chicken Sausage, Cheese, and Spinach: You’ve made it to Friday! Yay! You should have enough leftovers in the fridge or the freezer to make this weekend kitchen-free. Cook up this nearly effortless skillet pasta, then pour yourself a hot toddy, watch Netflix and chill. (If you like, lighten the load of this carb-loving dish by serving it with this lemon and garlic-kissed broccolini recipe.)

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