Tag Archives: family dinners

All About the Veggies

In 6 days I will be embarking on my Ultimate Reset journey.  This 21 day program is designed to reset your body to it’s “factory settings” (so to speak).  There’s a complete guidebook on how this is to be done.  Essentially you end up eating a vegan diet (which is totally fine with me since I could care less about meat!)

After the 21 days, it’s recommended to ease back into regular eating habits…so…in light of that…I thought I’d share some delicious 21 Day Fix Approved vegetarian recipes!

EGGPLANT ROLL-UPS

EGG

 

Ingredients
  • 1 medium eggplant, cut into ¼ inch oblong pieces from end to end.
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 3 cloves of garlic minced, or 1 tsp garlic power
  • 1 cup of organic spinach, chopped
  • 1 cup of 2% cottage cheese
  • 1 tsp basil
  • 1 tsp oregano
  • 1 tsp parsley
  • 3 cups marinara sauce
  • 4 tbs of goat cheese to sprinkle on top
  • 2 tbs oil
  • salt
Instructions
  1. Pre-heat to 450 degrees Fahrenheit and place middle rack in the oven.
  2. Take eggplant pieces and place on a cookie sheet with parchment paper. Salt the eggplant and set aside for 30 minutes.
  3. Roast in the oven for 12 minutes and baste with oil.
  4. Take the chopped onion, minced garlic and olive oil and place into a skillet to saute until both the garlic and onion become translucent and soft, do this while the eggplant is roasting.
  5. In another small mixing bowl add in the cottage cheese, chopped spinach, basil, oregano, parsley, sauteed garlic and onion to mix thoroughly.
  6. Take a ½ cup of marinara sauce and using a spoon spread evenly on the bottom of the 2 qt glass Pyrex casserole dish.
  7. Pat your eggplant strips dry and place 2 tablespoons full of the cottage cheese mixture into the top of the eggplant and roll up. Place the eggplant roll up into the dish with the seam facing down.
  8. Repeat this process until you have no more eggplant and cottage cheese.
  9. Take 2.5 cups left of the marinara sauce and spread over the top of the eggplant roll ups.
  10. Sprinkle the 4 tablespoons of goat cheese over the top of the roll ups and place in the oven.
  11. Cook for 20-25 minutes or until bubbly.
  12. serving = 1 eggplant medium sized eggplant rollup (some are smaller due to the end of the eggplant so the largest size you make I consider 1 serving)
  13. The 21 Day Fix containers = 1 green container, ½ red container, ½ blue container, ½ purple and 2 tsps

Source: http://www.inspiredhousewife.com/eggplant-roll-ups/

CHEESY SPAGHETTI SQUASH

SQUASH

Ingredients:

  • 1 large spaghetti squash
  • 1 16oz container of lowfat cottage cheese
  • 1 jar of no sugar added marinara sauce
  • 2 tablespoons Italian seasoning
  • 1 cup of cheese

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees while you cook your spaghetti squash. We typically slice the spaghetti squash in half, place it on a platter with a small amount of water and steam it in the microwave for 10-12 minutes until cooked.
  2. Scoop out the seeds, then use a fork to pull the spaghetti squash from the sides so it resembles spaghetti and place it into a bowl
  3. Add one container of cottage cheese, Italian herbs and one jar of marinara sauce to the bowl.
  4. Mix until well combined and then add to an 8×10 banking dish.
  5. Top with one cup of cheese and bake at 400 degrees for about 20 minutes, until the dish is warm throughout and the cheese is bubbly.
  6. Slice casserole into 6 portions.

One slice counts as 2 green, 1/2 red, and 1 blue container. (serves 6)

Source: http://www.coupleinthekitchen.com/blog/2016/2/1/cheesy-spaghetti-squash-casserole

STUFFED PEPPERS

stuffed

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups quinoa, cooked
  • 1 cup sliced mushrooms
  • 1 cup whole, peeled canned tomatoes
  • 1 clove garlic
  • Herbs of your choice (we usedHerbs de Provance and oregeno)
  • 4 bell peppers, tops cut off and insides removed
  • 2/3 cups shredded cheese

Directions:

  1. To start, preheat your oven to 400 degrees and also start to make up your quinoa. Upon cooking, it usually doubles in size so keep that in mind while making your quinoa. Once cooked, remove from heat.
  2. In a saucepan, sautee sliced mushrooms until soft.
  3. Add garlic until fragrant then add the can of tomatoes. Use your spoon to break them up a bit.
  4. Mix in quinoa and your herbs.
  5. Scoop filling into each bell pepper.
  6. Pop them into a 400 degree oven for about 20 minutes.
  7. Remove from the oven and sprinkle with shredded cheese.
  8. Put your oven on broil and place the peppers back in for about 3 minutes or until the cheese is toasted and bubbly.

This recipe counts as 2 green containers, 1 yellow, and 1/2 of a blue container. (serves 4)

Source: http://www.coupleinthekitchen.com/blog/2016/1/17/stuffed-peppers

CHUNKY VEGETABLE CHILI

chili

Ingredients:
2 tsp. olive oil
2 medium sweet potatoes, peeled, cubed
1 medium onion, chopped
1 medium yellow bell pepper, coarsely chopped
1 Tbsp. chile powder
1 tsp. ground cumin
1 (28-oz) can whole tomatoes, undrained
1 (15-oz) can chickpeas (garbanzo beans), drained, rinsed
1 (15-oz) can black beans, drained, rinsed
1 (8-oz) can tomato sauce, no sugar added
1 medium zucchini, cubed
6 Tbsp. nonfat plain yogurt

Preparation:
1. Heat oil in large saucepan over medium-high heat.
2. Add sweet potatoes, onion, and bell pepper; cook, stirring frequently, for 4 to 5 minutes, or until onion is translucent.
3. Add chile powder, cumin, tomatoes, chickpeas, beans, and tomato sauce. Stir to combine all ingredients. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low; gently boil, stirring occasionally, for 20 minutes.
4. Add zucchini; cook, stirring occasionally, for 6 to 10 minutes, or until zucchini is tender.
5. Top each serving with 1 Tbsp. yogurt.

container counts: 1/2 green, 2 yellow

Source: https://www.beachbody.com/beachbodyblog/recipes/chunky-vegetable-chili

Weekly Dinner Menu Made Easy

Alright y’all!  As I said, I’m back on this blog and one of the things I like to do is post a weekly dinner menu.  Let’s face it – it’s HARD to come up with meals that are HEALTHY for your family and relatively easy to make.  Maybe it’s not that hard…but…having to do it every…single…week makes it seem tedious and monotonous.

If I don’t have the mental energy to devote some of my creativity to meal planning for the week, I’ll ask my husband – “What do you want for dinner this week?”

His answer usually?  “I don’t know.  Food.”  OR “Something with meat.”

(Insert eye roll here)

I don’t know if it goes like that in your house or not…but in case it does…my goal is to make it simple for you!!

So…here you go…here are 4, HEALTHY and TASTY meals you can make!!!

P.S. They are all Paleo since my plan this week is to follow the Ultimate Reset recipes for breakfast and lunch and have a Paleo meal for dinner.

CHICKEN SATAY WITH CREAM ALMOND SAUCE AND CUCUMBER SALAD

satay

Ingredients:

1 lb chicken thighs, boneless skinless

½ small bunch cilantro

2  English cucumbers

1 (1 inch) piece ginger root

1 lime½ medium red onion

crushed red pepper

honey

natural almond butter

rice vinegar

tamari soy sauce

turmeric

virgin coconut oil

 

Directions:

1. Peel and mince ginger. In a medium bowl, whisk together ginger, almond butter, water, vinegar, soy sauce, honey, lime juice, turmeric, and crushed red pepper. Transfer ½ of mixture to a small bowl (to use as sauce) and set aside.
1 (1 inch) piece ginger
3 tbsp natural almond butter
2 tbsp warm water
2 tbsp rice vinegar
1 ½ tbsp gluten-free soy sauce
½ tbsp honey
½ lime
1 tsp turmeric
⅛ tsp crushed red pepper

2. Wash and dry cilantro. Shave leaves off the stems; discard the stems and mince the leaves. Add ½ (save the rest for the salad) to the medium bowl.

½ small bunch cilantro
3. Cut chicken into bite-sized pieces. Add to medium bowl and toss to coat.
1 lb chicken thighs, boneless skinless
4. Heat a grill pan, outdoor grill, or skillet over medium-high heat.
5. Thread chicken onto 6 skewers and place on a plate. Alternatively, you can cook the chicken pieces directly on the grill/skillet without using skewers.
6. Coat grill or bottom of skillet with oil. Add skewers and cook until chicken is cooked through but still juicy, 3-4 minutes per side.
about 1 tbsp virgin coconut oil
7. In a medium bowl, prepare salad dressing by whisking together remaining cilantro, lime juice, vinegar, soy sauce, honey, and crushed red pepper.
½ lime
2 tbsp rice vinegar
1 tbsp gluten-free soy sauce
1 tbsp honey
⅛ tsp crushed red pepper
8. Peel and thinly slice onion. Wash, trim ends, halve lengthwise, and thinly slice cucumbers into half rounds. Add everything to bowl with dressing and toss.
½ medium red onion
2 English cucumbers
9. To serve, place chicken skewers on a plate, add salad, and have with almond sauce on the side. Enjoy!
Source: http://cooking.mealime.com/recipes/chicken-satay-creamy-almond-sauce-thai-cucumber-salad/1204?servings=4

ZUCCHINI AND SWEET POTATO FRITTATA

FRI

Ingredients:

  • 2 tbsp butter (Ghee) or coconut oil;
  • 8 eggs;
  • 1 large sweet potato, peeled and cut in slices;
  • 2 sliced zucchinis;
  • 1 sliced red bell pepper;
  • 2 tbsp fresh parsley;
  • Salt and pepper to taste.

Preparation

  1. Heat a pan over a medium-low heat;
  2. Add the oil and sweet potato slices and cook until soft, about 8 minutes;
  3. Add the zucchini and red bell pepper slices and cook for another 4 minutes;
  4. While it cooks, whisk the eggs in a bowl, making sure to incorporate a lot of air in the mixture;
  5. Season the egg mixture with salt and pepper and add to the cooking veggies;
  6. Cook on low heat until just set, about 10 minutes;
  7. Finish the frittata until golden under a heated broiler.
  8. Cut the finished frittata into wedges and serve with fresh parsley.
Tip:  Serve it with a side salad!
Source: https://paleoleap.com/zucchini-and-sweet-potato-frittata/

PALEO PIZZA SOUP

tall

Ingredients:

  • 12 oz chicken sausage, sliced (check ingredients)
  • 4 oz uncured pepperoni, cut into 4ths
  • 1 25 oz jar marinara (check ingredients for no added sugar or oil)
  • 1 14.5 oz can fire roasted tomatoes
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 16oz mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 3oz can sliced black olives (optional)
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt, or to taste

Instructions:

  1.  In a large saucepan, cook all ingredients until the onions and mushrooms are tender or for 30 minutes.
  2. Taste add any extra seasonings as desired.
  3. Serve hot!
Tip:  Serve it with a side salad and/or paleo bread
Source: www.jaysbakingmecrazy.com
CREAMY BASIL & TOMATO CHICKEN
Creamy+Basil+&+Tomato+Chicken

Ingredients:

  • 1 pound chicken boneless skinless chicken thighs or breasts
  • 1/2 yellow onion
  • 1 teaspoon coconut oil
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • 2 tablespoons sunflower seeds
  • 1 tablespoon nutritional yeast
  • 1 package basil
  • 1 tablespoon avocado oil
  • Salt & Pepper
  • 1/2 cup coconut milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon arrowroot powder
  • 1/3 cup cold water
  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes, sliced in half

Directions:

  1. Heat the coconut oil in a large skillet over medium heat until it sizzles. Slice the onion into strips while the oil heats, and then add it to the pan. Cook until translucent.
  2. Once the onion is translucent, add the chicken to the pan. Cook for 12 minutes, then flip over and cook for 13 more minutes. (To get the best sear, avoid moving it around too much between flips). Chicken should be cooked through. If it is not, continue to cook until chicken has no pink in the middle and juice run clear).
  3. Meanwhile, prepare the pesto: place the garlic in the bowl of a food processor. Pulse until the garlic is finely minced. Add the sunflower seeds and pulse serval times. Add the nutrition yeast, a sprinkle of salt, and a dash of pepper to the food processor. Finally, add the basil and avocado oil. Pulse until the basil is well minced.
  4. In a small bowl, whisk the arrowroot powder into the water. Add the coconut milk, and then whisk in the pesto. Pour the sauce into the skillet with the chicken. Bring to a gentle simmer. Add the sliced cherry tomatoes. Allow to simmer for 1-2 more minutes, until tomatoes are warmed, and serve.

Tip:  Serve it with a spinach salad

There you go!  I hope you and your family enjoy these recipes!

 

Weekly Menu – Seasoning Recipes

I wanted to do something a little different this week as far as I’m not going to be sharing recipes for meals…BUT…this might even be better because I’m going to share with you different ways to make fresh seasoning blends.

spice

They are very versatile (you’re welcome) and you can use them with your favorite recipes to spice things up (pun intended) and make a healthier version of your favorite meal!

Why make your own seasoning blends instead of buying the pre-made packets at the store?  For MANY reasons!

Here are a few:

  1.  You can control how much salt is in your food.  (They really pile in the salt in those seasoning packets)
  2. Eliminate preservatives
  3. Control all ingredients that go into your food (eliminate toxins)
  4. Say goodbye to MSG
  5. Eliminate unnecessary ingredients like added sugar and starch
  6. There is NOTHING good in processed foods

Taco Seasoning

(This is my favorite one – I use it weekly and I have it memorized)

taco

This is for 1 lb of meat

Ingredients:

1 TBSP child powder

1 tsp onion powder

1 tsp garlic powder

1 tsp paprika

1 tsp oregano

2 tsp cumin

Blend together and enjoy!

Montreal Steak Seasoning

mon

For 1 1/2 – 2 lbs of meat (I’ve used it for burgers)

Ingredients:

Ingredients (8)
  1. 2 tablespoons paprika.
  2. 2 tablespoons crushed black pepper.
  3. 2 tablespoons kosher salt.
  4. 1 tablespoon granulated garlic.
  5. 1 tablespoon granulated onion.
  6. 1 tablespoon crushed coriander.
  7. 1 tablespoon dill.
  8. 1 tablespoon crushed red pepper flakes

Mix well and enjoy!

Italian Seasoning

Can be used for any type of Italian dish that calls for an Italian seasoning blend (like chicken or pasta)

italian

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 teaspoons dried oregano.
  • 1 teaspoon dried marjoram.
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme.
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried basil.
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried rosemary.
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried sage.

 

Blend and enjoy!

Pumpkin Spice

(Because y’all know how much I LOVE pumpkin anything!)

This is enough for one pumpkin pie

pump

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Blend and Enjoy!

Cajun Seasoning Mix

cajun

  • 2 teaspoons sea salt

Blend and enjoy!

Don’t be a stranger, now!

I’d LOVE to hear from you!  Let me know how you like these seasoning mixes and how you used them!!

Chili Cook Off

I LOVE having chili in the Fall and Winter…whether it’s for a party, a football game or just because it’s chilly outside (hhahahaah – like my play on words) it is a staple at my house this time of year.

c

Here are four of my FAVORITE child recipes – HEALTHY and TASTY of course!

All Meat and Veggie Chili – Paleo Recipe

Source: http://www.laurafuentes.com/paleo-chili-recipe-all-meat-veggie/

 

paleo-chili

Prep time: 

Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 8 servings
Ingredients
  • 1½ pounds ground beef
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons (30 ml) oil
  • 1½ cups onion, diced, about 1 large onion
  • ½ cup chopped celery, about 1 stalk
  • 1½ cups carrots,peeled and diced, about 4 medium carrots
  • 2 tablespoons chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon oregano
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper (optional)
  • 4 cups zucchinis, diced, about 2-3 medium zucchinis
  • 1 15-ounce can tomato puree or tomato sauce
  • 1 15-ounce can diced tomatoes
Instructions
  1. In your seasoned skillet or 5-6 quart large cast iron pot, brown beef and garlic. Cook over medium heat until beef is thoroughly cooked and browned. Drain off excess fat, set aside.
  2. Add oil, onions, celery, carrots, and seasonings to the skillet and cook until translucent over medium-high heat, about 5-7 minutes. Once onions are golden and veggies are midway cooked, add zucchini and cook for 2 minutes, making sure you stir everything well.
  3. Add cooked beef, tomato puree/sauce, and tomatoes into the pot and stir well. Bring everything to a boil, stirring frequently, reduce heat and simmer for 20 minutes.
  4. Check on the amazing mixture every so often and stir. Serve immediately.

Tips:  I serve mine with brown rice or paleo cornbread and green beans

Whole30 Chocolate Chili Recipe

It may sound weird…but it’s good…..I promise!!

choc-chili

Source: http://www.andreatooley.com/2014/10/whole30-chocolate-chili/

Ingredients:

  • 1 tablespoons coconut oil
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 pound ground beef  (I used 90/10 lean beef)
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano leaves
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 3/4 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 can (6 ounces) tomato paste
  • 1 can (14.5 ounces) fire-roasted, chopped tomatoes
  • 1 can (14.5 ounces) beef broth

Directions: 

  1. Heat the coconut oil in a pan over medium heat.
  2. 2. Add your diced onions and garlic and cook until the onions are translucent, about 10 minutes.
  3. Transfer the cooked onions to your crockpot.  Next, add the beef to the same pan that had your onions.
  4. Cook the beef until just no longer pink.  Transfer the beef and all the juice to your crockpot.
  5.  In a separate bowl, mix together all of your spices.
  6. Pour the spices into the pan and cook for just a minute until fragrant.
  7. Then, add your tomato paste and beef broth.
  8. Stir until the tomato paste, beef broth, and spices are all combined, about 2 minutes.
  9. Pour the sauce into your crockpot.
  10. Finally, add the tomatoes to your crockpot.  Give everything a good stir, cover, and cook on high for 3 hours.

Tips:  serve with avocados and jalapeños

Healthy Vegetarian Quinoa Chili

Source: http://peasandcrayons.com/2015/10/healthy-vegetarian-quinoa-chili.html

veggie-chili

10 minPrep Time

25 minCook Time

35 minTotal Time

Ingredients

  • 2 cups yellow onion, diced
  • 1 green bell pepper, diced
  • 1 red bell pepper, diced
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 TBSP olive oil
  • 2 cups crushed tomatoes
  • 1 cup corn [frozen or fresh]
  • 1 can spicy chili beans with sauce [15 oz]
  • 1 can black beans, drained and rinsed [15 oz]
  • 2 TBSP chili powder
  • 1 TBSP cumin
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 1/2 tsp smoked paprika, plus extra to taste
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 cup quinoa [red, white, or a mix of both]
  • 1.5 cups water or veggie broth
  • EXTRAS:
  • diced jalapenos or cayenne pepper for a kick
  • veggie broth or tomato sauce to adjust chili thickness
  • all the toppings your heart desires 

Instructions

  1. Chop your peppers and onion and mince your garlic.
  2. Heat a tablespoon of oil in a Dutch oven or a large pot on medium-high heat.
  3. Add onions, peppers, and garlic and cook for about 5 minutes to tenderize the veggies.
  4. Next add crushed tomatoes, corn, chili beans, black beans, and spices; stir to mix.
  5. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer, covered, for 25-30 minutes.
  6. While your chili simmers, rinse your quinoa.
  7. Add quinoa to a small pot with water or vegetable broth to boil [1.5 cups] and bring to a rolling boil.
  8. Once boiling, reduce heat to lowest setting and cover [with the lid propped open a bit to vent] for 12-13 minutes or until quinoa is fluffy. Fluff with a fork and add to the pot of chili.
  9. Total cook time for the chili will be about 25-30 minutes but feel free to leave it simmering on the stove for a little longer, on the lowest setting, if desired to mingle the flavors even further.
  10. Scoop out a bowlful, pile on the toppings, sit back, and enjoy!

The Best Healthy Turkey Chili

Source: http://www.ambitiouskitchen.com/2015/11/seriously-the-best-healthy-turkey-chili/

chil

Ingredients
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 1 yellow onion, chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 medium red bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 pound extra lean ground turkey or chicken (99%)
  • 4 tablespoons chili powder
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt, plus more to taste
  • 1 (28-ounce) can diced tomatoes
  • 1 1/4 cups chicken broth
  • 2 (15 oz) cans dark red kidney beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 (15 oz) can sweet corn, rinsed and drained
  • For topping: cheese, avocado, tortilla chips, cilantro, sour cream
Instructions
  1. Place oil in a large pot and place over medium high heat. Add in onion, garlic and red pepper and saute for 5-7 minutes, stirring frequently. Next add in ground turkey and break up the meat; cooking until no longer pink. Next add in chili powder, cumin, oregano, cayenne pepper and salt; stir for about 20 seconds.
  2. Next add in tomatoes, chicken broth, kidney beans and corn. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 30-45 minutes or until chili thickens and flavors come together. Taste and adjust seasonings and salt as necessary. Garnish with anything you’d like.
  3. Makes 6 servings, about 1 1/2 cups each.

I hope you enjoy all of these recipes!  Don’t forget to share this blog with others – sharing is caring!

Weekly Recipe Round (17) Up

weekly recipe 17

 

Your weekly dinner recipes are hereeeeeeeee!!!   These are all delicious, family-friendly and of course…HEALTHY!!!  Not only am I going to share four, that’s right, FOUR recipes with you…I’m going to give you a bunch of meal prepping tips to make it EASY-EASY-EASY!  All you have to do is go to the grocery store and get cookin’.  And of course, share these recipes and this blog with others J

About 3 years ago, when I first started looking into this elusive meal prepping thing (this is when I did my first Whole30), I thought- who has time for that? How do people not only plan their entire menu for the week, but also prep everything for it?  I only had one child at the time and the thought, to be honest, was totally overwhelming.  Besides, people talked about “meal prepping” like it was a buzz word.  They threw it around just like people throw around the word “self-love” without really understanding what it actually MEANS.

Since I started this health and fitness journey 6 months ago, I began to TRULY understand what it means to meal prep. I found that many times people told you to meal prep, but did not tell you what you actually needed to do and for someone who is the complete opposite of organized, I found that very frustrating!

So, with all that being said, I’m not only going to help you out with the dinner menu for this week, but I’m going to offer you a meal-prepping guide as well. WOO-HOO!

*Side Note- I typically do my meal-prepping on Sunday afternoon. Yes, it takes a couple of hours BUT then I have everything done for the rest of the week and is that worth it?  OH YEAH.

Here are all the recipes!!! (They are from the Cooking Light Magazine)

buffalo quinoa burgers

Buffalo Quinoa Burgers

Serves 4 (1 burger each)

Ingredients

7 teaspoons canola oil, divided

3/4 cup finely chopped onion

1/2 cup finely chopped peeled carrot

3   garlic cloves, minced

3/4 cup water

1/3 cup uncooked quinoa

1/2 cup panko   (I use whole wheat panko)

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1 1/2 cups canned unsalted chickpeas, rinsed and drained  (I use organic!)

1   large egg

2 tablespoons hot sauce (such as Tabasco)

4   (1 1/2-ounce) whole-wheat hamburger buns, toasted

4   romaine lettuce leaves

4   (1/4-inch-thick) slices tomato

Preparation

  1. Heat a saucepan over medium-high heat. Add 2 teaspoons oil; swirl to coat. Add onion, carrot, and garlic; sauté 3 minutes. Add 3/4 cup water and quinoa; bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat to medium, and simmer 18 minutes or until liquid is absorbed. Spoon cooked quinoa onto a large plate; cool 5 minutes. Combine quinoa mixture, panko, salt, pepper, chickpeas, and egg in a food processor; pulse until chickpeas are slightly mashed and mixture comes together. Shape quinoa mixture into 4 (1/2-inch-thick) patties.
  2. Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add 1 tablespoon oil to pan; swirl to coat. Add patties to pan; cook 3 minutes on each side or until lightly browned.
  3. Combine remaining 2 teaspoons oil and hot sauce in a bowl. Place patties on bottom halves of buns; top evenly with hot sauce mixture, lettuce, tomato, and top halves of buns.

Tip: Use a Flat Out Wrap, Sandwich Thin, or Romaine Lettuce Leaves in place of a bun for a low-carb option

Another tip: Serve this with a side of green beans and dilly sauce (1/3 cup plain Greek yogurt, 2 TBSP plain almond milk, 2 tsp chopped fresh dill, 1 tsp fresh lemon juice, ¼ tsp paprika)

**MEAL PREP PLAN**

  1. Make the patties ahead of time (1-2 days), wrap them in plastic wrap and refrigerate. They will hold their shape better once you cook them.
  2. Make the dilly sauce ahead of time and keep in the fridge.
  3. Slice the tomatoes and keep them in a Ziploc bag.
  4. Wash and chop lettuce and put in a Ziploc bag.

Sheet Pan Chickensheet pan chicken

Serves 2 – double it to feed more

Ingredients

Cooking spray

8 ounces small Yukon gold potatoes (about 1 inch) (you could also sub white sweet potatoes, diced up; fingerling potatoes or even sunchokes instead)

1 1/2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

1 tablespoon whole-grain mustard

1 tablespoon minced fresh tarragon

1 tablespoon dry white wine

1 1/2 teaspoons minced fresh thyme

1 teaspoon honey

2   (6-ounce) skinless, boneless chicken breast halves

1/4 teaspoon kosher salt, divided

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, divided

1 teaspoon canola oil

Preparation

  1. Place a jelly-roll pan in oven. Preheat oven to 500° (leave pan in the oven as it preheats)
  2. Carefully remove pan from oven. Coat pan with cooking spray. Add potatoes to the pan; bake at 500° for 10 minutes.
  3. Combine olive oil and next 5 ingredients (through honey) in a small bowl, stirring with a whisk. Sprinkle chicken with 1/8 teaspoon salt and 1/8 teaspoon pepper. Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add canola oil to pan; swirl to coat. Add chicken to pan; cook 5 minutes. Turn chicken over; drizzle chicken evenly with about 2 tablespoons mustard mixture.
  4. Add chicken to jelly-roll pan with potatoes; bake at 500° for 10 minutes or until potatoes are tender and chicken is done. Drizzle potatoes with remaining mustard mixture; sprinkle with remaining 1/8 teaspoon salt and remaining 1/8 teaspoon pepper.

Tip: Serve with a side spinach salad and/or chile and lime roasted carrots (http://www.myrecipes.com/recipe/chile-lime-roasted-carrots)

**MEAL PREP PLAN**

  1. Make the mustard mixture ahead of time
  2. Peel and dice potatoes (if you aren’t using the baby potatoes)
  3. This whole recipe could be made ahead of time and simply heated up in the microwave
  4. If you are serving a side salad with it, chop up all vegetables ahead of time

Caramelized Cabbage with Whole Wheat Penne and Provolone

Serves 4 (2 cups per serving)

CL March 15: Dinner Tonight
CL March 15: Dinner Tonight

Ingredients

6 ounces uncooked whole-wheat penne

3 tablespoons olive oil

2 garlic cloves, thinly sliced

6 cups coarsely chopped green cabbage

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1 Fresno chile, thinly sliced

2 teaspoons grated lemon rind

3 ounces aged provolone cheese, shredded and divided (about 3/4 cup)

1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves

Preparation

  1. Bring a large saucepan filled with water to a boil. Add pasta; cook 7 to 9 minutes or until al dente. Drain in a colander over a bowl, reserving 1/4 cup cooking liquid.
  2. Heat a large skillet over medium heat. Add oil; swirl to coat. Add garlic to pan; sauté 30 seconds or until beginning to brown. Remove garlic from pan with a slotted spoon; set aside.
  3. Increase heat to medium-high. Add cabbage to pan; cook 6 minutes or until browned and tender, stirring occasionally.
  4. Stir in salt, black pepper, and chile; cook 2 minutes.
  5. Stir in pasta, reserved 1/4 cup pasta cooking liquid, and reserved garlic.
  6. Stir in rind and 1.5 ounces cheese.
  7. Divide pasta mixture among 4 bowls. Sprinkle evenly with remaining 1.5 ounces cheese and thyme.

Tip: Serve this with a Shaved Radish and Pine Nut Salad (http://www.myrecipes.com/recipe/shaved-radish-pine-nut-salad)

Another tip: You can easily add grilled chicken to this dish for all you meat-lovers out there

**MEAL PREP PLAN**

(These meal prep tips are intended to be used as a guide IF you plan on cooking the dish the night you are going to eat it…these just speed up the process for when you’re ready to cook that night!)

  1. Cook pasta ahead of time.
  2. Chop cabbage up.
  3. Slice fresno chile up
  4. Shred cheese
  5. Grate the lemon rind
  6. Slice the garlic
  7. Make Radish Salad ahead of time and store in the fridge.

Sweet and Sour Turkey Meatballs with Polenta

Serves 4 (about ½ cup per serving)

sweet and sour

Ingredients

3 cups unsalted chicken stock (or veggie broth)

1/4 teaspoon kosher salt

3/4 cup stone-ground polenta

1 tablespoon unsalted butter

1 1/4 pounds 93% lean ground turkey

2 tablespoons dark sesame oil

Cooking spray

1/4 cup water

1/4 cup unsalted ketchup (I used plain tomato sauce)

2 tablespoons Sriracha (hot chile sauce)

1 1/2 tablespoons oyster sauce

1 1/2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce   (or liquid smoke)

Preparation

  1. Bring stock and salt to a boil in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Gradually add polenta, stirring constantly with a whisk. Reduce heat, and simmer 25 minutes or until liquid is absorbed and polenta is thickened. Add butter, stirring until melted.
  2. Combine turkey and sesame oil in a medium bowl. Divide and shape turkey mixture into 20 meatballs. Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Coat pan with cooking spray.
  3. Add meatballs to pan; cook 6 minutes, turning to brown on all sides. Remove meatballs from pan.
  4. Add 1/4 cup water and remaining ingredients to pan, stirring with a whisk; bring to a boil.
  5. Return meatballs to pan. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 5 minutes or until meatballs are done.
  6. Serve over polenta.

Tip: You could serve this with brown rice or quinoa instead of polenta

Another tip: Serve this with a side of Sesame Sautéed Spinach (http://www.myrecipes.com/recipe/sesame-sauteed-spinach)

 

**MEAL PREP PLAN**

 

(These meal prep tips are intended to be used as a guide IF you plan on cooking the dish the night you are going to eat it…these just speed up the process for when you’re ready to cook that night!)

  1. Make and cook meatballs ahead of time
  2. Make sauce ahead of time.
  3. On the night you plan to eat this dinner add the meatballs and sauce to a pan and cook together until heated through
  4. Make polenta ahead of time.
  5. Cook the spinach ahead of time and re-heat when ready to eat

Here are a few other general meal prep tips to follow:

  1. Make hard-boiled eggs for the week and have them for breakfast or add them to salads
  2. Grill several chicken breasts and add them to salads for the week.
  3. Cook grains ahead of time (such as rice)
  4. Chop and roast vegetables ahead of time
  5. Assemble salads (minus the dressing), store in the fridge and have them ready to take to work all week
  6. Bake oatmeal cups and/or egg muffins to have for breakfast throughout the week

Did you enjoy these recipes?!? Let me know!  I love to hear your comments!!  And don’t forget – SHARING IS CARING…share this blog post on your personal social media pages!!!