Family · Health/Fitness · Recipes

Weekly Dinner Menu – 2/6 to 2/10

I’ve had a few questions about what I do for the rest of my meals during the week so I’ll address that here. Breakfast is easy. Shakeology is my go-to because it’s packed with nutrition and I know I’m starting my day off the right way (you can get it here). For the rest of the day, I often use what I make for dinner the night before as lunch for the following day. I find it easier to just cook enough for dinner that night and lunch the next day than to prep a full week in one day. I enjoy making dinner at night, so this works for us. If you prefer to prep one one day and make it easier for yourself during the weeknights, go for it! 🙂
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Monday – 

Spaghetti squash: Rinse off your squash and poke about 15-20 holes in it with a paring knife. Place it in the crock pot with about 1/2 an inch of water. Cook on high for 3-4 hours, or low for 5-6 hours. Once it is soft, remove it from the crock pot, let it cool enough to handle, cut it in half length-wise, and remove the seeds. Once cleaned, scrape out the flesh with a fork and place in a large mixing bowl with some marinara sauce and 1/4 cup of Parmesan cheese. Once the spaghetti squash is mixed well, split it evenly between the two rind halves, top with mozzarella cheese, and broil in the oven on low until the cheese is brown and bubbly. Grab a fork and it it directly out of the boat.
Marinara sauce – I usually make this ahead of time on Sundays if I will be using it during the week. You can freeze any leftovers and use it for future dinners. In the crock pot I add cans of crushed tomatoes and tomato sauce (1 or 2 large cans of each depending on how much I want to make), a drizzle of olive oil, Italian seasonings (basil, oregano, thyme, rosemary, salt, pepper, garlic powder), and one small finely diced onion. I turn the crock pot to low and let it cook for 3-4 hours, stirring occasionally. Warning!!!! You WILL want to grab a piece of crusty Italian bread and gobble this up once it’s done. Plus, your house will smell AMAZING.
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Tuesday:
Chicken I use boneless/skinless chicken breasts for this and sliced/pounded them to even thickness. Put your oven on 400 degrees. While the oven is heating, bring a large saute pan to medium heat and drizzle with olive oil. Once the oil is hot, season the chicken on each side with salt, pepper, and garlic powder then brown the chicken breasts slightly on each side. They do not have to be cooked through because they will be finishing the cooking process in the oven. After all the chicken has been browned, place them in a large baking dish and pour over the top a combination of: 1/3 cup chicken stock, the juice of two large lemons, and a pinch of salt. Cut another lemon into slices and lay the slices over top of all the chicken (I did one lemon slice per piece). Place in the oven and bake for 25-30 minutes depending on the thickness of the chicken. Remove from the oven and drizzle with the pan juices after plating.
Zucchini “fries” – cut your zucchini in half width wise, then cut each half into quarters (or more depending on how fat your zucchini is, mine were skinny) lengthwise so they look like sticks. On a baking sheet sprayed with cooking spray, line the zucchini sticks up SKIN SIDE DOWN about 1/4 inch apart. I used about 5 small zucchini for this and it covered a large baking sheet. Spray the tops of the sticks with olive oil (or other) cooking spray then sprinkle with Parmesan cheese, sea salt, and garlic powder. Bake in the same 400 degree oven as the chicken for about 25-30 minutes, until the Parmesan cheese gets brown and crispy.
Serve with brown rice or whole grain pasta for an added starch.
***NOTE: I made enough chicken for dinner this night, lunch the next day, AND dinner on Wednesday night. I used 4 very large chicken breasts that I sliced thinner and it was enough for us.***
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Wednesday:
Lemon Orzo Soup –
In the crockpot, add:
2 chicken breasts (cooked the night before), diced into small pieces
2 large carrots, peeled and chopped
2 celery stalks
8 cups of reduced sodium chicken stock
the juice of 2 large lemons (save the peels!)
2 cloves of garlic, minced
Sprinkle of oregano, thyme, salt, pepper
Let these ingredients cook on high for 2 hours.

After two hours, uncover the crock pot and add:
-1 cup of COOKED orzo (under cook about 2 minutes since it will continue to cook in the crock pot)
-1 packed cup of chopped fresh spinach
-the peels from the two lemons
Cover and let it cook on low for one more hour. Serve with a sprinkle of Parmesan cheese.
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Thursday:
One pan salmon dinner –
Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Spray a large baking sheet with cooking spray. In a mixing bowl, drizzle broccoli florets with olive oil then season with salt, pepper, and garlic powder. Place two (or more) salmon portions in the center of the baking sheet and season however you prefer (I used Old Bay, because, yum) then spread the broccoli florets around the edge of the pan. Place in the oven and bake for 25 minutes. Everything should have golden brown edges and be ready to eat! Of course, if you would like a starch, add in some brown rice or whole grain pasta leftover from Tuesday night 🙂

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Friday:
For {Pizza Friday} flatbread pizza recipes, please refer back to previous weeks menus! They are all starting to look the same. Lol!
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