We were gone all weekend visiting a new friend I met through Instagram, Victoria Yates and her husband. We had the most wonderful weekend with them just right outside New York City, talking for hours, eating delicious food, exploring their town, and sharing Beautycounter with their community. Victoria is also an Intuitive Eating Coach, so we had so much to chat about. Go check out her blog here.
Since we were away, I didn’t get a chance to type up this week’s intuitive meal guide until this morning. An update on last week’s meal guide – we pretty much ate what I planned and I really appreciated the simple, quick meals. My favorite meal was the chickpea pasta with pesto, so so good!
It’s Valentine’s Day this week! Anyone have fun plans? We will be watching my 2 year-old niece so will have date-night at home. Blake is on dinner duty and I’m on dessert duty – planning to make chocolate cupcakes. For the rest of the week, we’re keeping things simple again. I usually pick 1-2 new recipes to try and then stick to go-to meals for the other nights. This usually keeps costs lower and saves mental time and energy for me during the week. I don’t really have a set plan for Friday or Saturday, so either I’ll run to the store and pick up ingredients the day of or we will have leftovers.
Before we dive in, I want to say that this meal plan is not for comparison, but instead to give you the freedom to listen to your body and ideas for simple, nutritious meals. Everybody has their own unique nutritional needs, and I encourage you to explore what your body needs!
SUNDAY: CHICKEN AND VEGGIE SOUP WITH BREAD
Here’s a meal planning tip – whenever you have chicken on the bone, put the bones in a container (zip-top bag or tupperware) and store in the freezer. Then on a weekend or when you have time, cook up a big batch of bone broth using the bones, carrots, onion, herbs, and celery. I usually find basic measurements for broth online. Once the broth is cooled, store is in large glass mason jars in the freezer for those times I want to make soup. I had some broth in the freezer and since it’s been colder here in Philly, I decided soup would be a comforting meal. With the broth already cooked, the soup came together quick. I used a basic recipe from The Cook’s Illustrated Cookbook and added my own variation. I throw in a ton of veggies – usually carrots, yellow onion, celery, cabbage, peas, and corn – and some boneless chicken thighs, which I shredded after they all had cooked for an hour. Also, my “secret” ingredient to chicken soup is something my mom always added to chicken soup growing up – a dash of Tabasco sauce. I don’t have Tabasco sauce, but I added a squirt of sriracha. I’m serious, it makes all the difference and it doesn’t make the soup spicy. We also had half a take and bake olive ciabatta in the freezer, so I heated that up and we ate it with the soup. This has to be one of my favorite meals.
MONDAY: CHICKPEA PESTO PASTA WITH FETA AND VEGGIES
I bought double the ingredients for this pasta meal last week, so we had everything we need to make a this again. It’s another one of my favorite dishes and comes together in 10 minutes. You can use regular rotini (our favorite shape), but I like the chickpea pasta because it has the protein so I don’t have to add meat to the meal (more for saving money). If you did use regular pasta, perhaps add some shredded chicken or sliced sauteed sausage for some protein to keep you satisfied.
TUESDAY: HALAL CART-STYLE CHICKEN AND RICE
We have a food truck on our street that makes this delicious Halal spiced chicken over aromatic rice. It’s one of our favorites! But in the winter, the truck closes early and in an effort to save some money, I thought it would be fun to make it at home. I found this recipe on Serious Eats, and am so excited to try to replicate it! When I’m trying a new recipe, I try to make it on a night when we don’t have much planned, so I am not rushed, so this week I chose Tuesday.
WEDNESDAY: BLACK BEANS, RICE, AND SAUTEED PEPPERS
Wednesday evenings we have a Bible study at 7pm, so we need a quick dinner. A couple weeks ago, I cooked up a big batch of black beans in the instant pot and froze half. For Wednesday night, I will thaw and heat up the beans to serve over cooked brown rice, salsa, cheese, avocado, and sauteed bell peppers.
THURSDAY: VALENTINE’S DAY!
I think Blake is planning to make steak, salad, and roasted potatoes. I will be making chocolate cupcakes using my all-time favorite chocolate cake recipe, and then either chocolate cream cheese frosting or a pink-tinted cream cheese frosting (got to make them valentiney).
FRIDAY: BREAKFAST FOR DINNER/LEFTOVERS
By Friday, I’m usually feeling pretty uninspired with meal planning/cooking so we will keep it simple with either eggs and toast or leftovers. Depends on how we’re feeling.
SATURDAY: WING IT!
I’m waiting to see how things pan out on Saturday, but will probably go to the store to get ingredients for a meal that sounds good. Maybe I’ll get stuff for homemade pizza!
What are you having for dinner this week?