Like everything else in life, having a plan keeps you on track with your meals and budget. Making dinner quick and easy is all about the plan. And, by including a balanced mix of fruits, veggies, protein, and whole grains, you can keep things healthy and nutritious.
Saving time and money each week is the name of the game. Make sure you look through your calendar each week before you start. Nothing’s worse than planning a meal you can’t prepare because you get home too late.
Check your pantry and use ingredients you already have available to start your menu. Remember that you can prepare for the week by pre-shredding rotisserie chicken, roasting big batches of vegetables and making time-consuming sides like rice and beans. Doing so keeps your shelves and fridge stocked with prepared ingredients throughout the week.
Fill in your meal plan with favorite recipes that you know your family will enjoy. One-sheet recipes like a sausage, potato and veggie bake and slow cooker meals like kid-friendly pulled pork also make prep and cooking easy throughout the week. Have a fan favorite? Make double and freeze half for another week!
Try out one new recipe a week to keep things interesting and introduce your family to new flavors. Meal planning doesn’t need to be boring - mix it up with something new to make sure you are expanding your horizons.
10-MINUTE MEALS TO GET YOU STARTED
Here are some of our favorite go-to meals that you can prepare quickly and have on the table in no time!
Pizzas & Flatbreads
Start with pre-made crusts and shredded cheese. Top it with grilled veggies and a healthy protein. Or, get creative – BBQ pizza anyone?
Paninis & Quesadillas
Grilled sandwiches or tortillas stuffed with cheese, veggies, and protein make for an easy, balanced meal. Even if you don’t have a Panini press or foreman grill, you can make them in a pan using another pan to press them down. Play with food combinations from your fridge or borrow ideas from your favorite restaurants! Our favorite is an Italian Panini stuffed with pesto and mozzarella.
Breakfast for Dinner
Always a kid favorite! Breakfast can consist of omelets, egg sandwiches, high protein pancakes made with peanut butter, quiches or frittatas filled with your favorite vegetables. Made in ten minutes plus just a little bit of cooking time, serve with a side of fruit, and you're done.
Pasta night doesn’t have to be the same old meat sauce. Mix things up with chicken, tomatoes, and peppers red sauce, consider using pesto with shredded chicken or making a fun taco mac and cheese.
NEED SOME MORE INSPIRATION?
Savory Magazine offers free meal planning tools that can help make it easier. But first and foremost, you can also check out the Savory Sunday section of the magazine for a week’s worth of meal ideas.
Like to keep things digital? Use the meal-planning tool to generate a shopping list or use Peapod to save even more time.