Introducing: Weekly Meal Plans 12/14/15 | Katie Proctor

I’ve been thinking long and hard about this blog. What I want it to become, or if I even want to keep it at all. Sometimes, it feels like a chore. But other times, it feels like a beautiful way to share my thoughts and inspirations with the world. And today, I’m choosing to chase that feeling.

With that in mind, I would like to start sharing weekly meal plans on the blog, because the #1 question I get from people is about how to eat healthier. Some weeks it may be simple like this week, and other weeks I hope to be able to break it down with even more valuable information such as weekly budget, macro counts and 21 Day Fix container equivalents. Let’s see how I do :). My intention for this blog is to help other people and to share my own personal story – the ups and the downs. What I don’t want to happen is feeling like my writing has to be perfect before I put it out into the world. So, I’m releasing myself of the pressure to have amazingly insightful blog posts every time, and I hope you’ll love and appreciate the realness along the way.

So let’s get to the point – my first meal plan!

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I purchased this magnetic meal planner from Etsy {with liquid chalk markers) so that I could easily be reminded of the week’s meal ideas, as well as have something visible in case I needed my husband to help prepare anything. I’m hoping that posting my meal plans here on the blog will help me be more organized in really doing this every week, because truly meal planning and meal prep SAVES ME on weeks that I do it.

I typically survey my pantry to see if there is anything that needs to be used up from the past week and remind myself which staples I have on hand, so that I can build my meal plan from there. I’m certainly getting better about eyeballing recipes and throwing things together as my cooking improves, but I’m still a start-with-a-recipe kind of a gal. So over the course of these meal plans you will be introduced to some of my FAVORITE recipe blogs. I have pretty high standards about the blogs I follow – they must prepare clean, healthy, whole food recipes. I lean gluten-free and dairy-free after my SIBO experience, but since my symptoms have improved significantly following my second course of antibiotics, I’m loosening up the restrictions to see if certain foods really bother me under normal circumstances. I still cook mostly GF/DF at home.

Then, I plan 4-5 dinner recipes assuming that lunch will be mostly leftovers or something simple like a Hilary’s Eat Well veggie burger, 1/2 Ezekiel sprouted English muffin (not GF) and hummus with raw veggies or a baked sweet potato and rotisserie chicken. I will share some examples of simple lunch recipes here, too! For breakfast, I always have my chocolate vegan Shakeology though I’m trying to incorporate even MORE protein in my diet and bought some Fage 2% Greek Yogurt to throw in there this week with my almond milk {look for carrageenan-free} and sometimes cold brew coffee. Having a shake for breakfast has been a lifesaver with my busy schedule and hour-plus commute. For snacks, I pretty much always eat raw fruit or veggies (green apples/bananas/grapes/celery/bell peppers/carrots) with a healthy fat e.g. nut butter, hummus or avocado/guac. Another favorite snack is {organic} shelled edamame for a protein boost.

Here are the dinners I’m preparing this week:

Enchilada Stuffed Peppers – however, I am using ground turkey with green bell peppers as the base {because they were on sale} and canned El Pato enchilada sauce instead of the homemade chili verde sauce. I highly recommend Pato as a brand, because MOST of the canned red enchilada sauces contain wheat or other food additives.

Caramelized Onion & Goat Cheese Pizza – I had frozen a fresh, whole wheat pizza dough from Safeway that I saved for if/when I could eat gluten again and will be spreading that with a local goat cheese, caramelized onions {that I may try in my new Instant Pot!} pre-cubed butternut squash, arugula and prosciutto.

Chipotle Chicken Sweet Potatoes – I prepared this recipe as part of my recent 7-Day Sugar Reset challenge and LOVED it. In fact, I’m thinking about making that FREE group a monthly thing and just changing up the recipes. Would you all be interested in that? For this week, I will be using a rotisserie chicken to keep things simple.

Lentil Sloppy Joes – I like to “cut” my meat-centric recipes with hearty vegetables and legumes for a more healthful approach. So adding lentils and mushrooms will do the trick for my husband’s much-beloved Sloppy Joes! I simply omit the brown sugar from this recipe.

Veggie Masala Stir Fry – I had a bunch of leftover {crockpot} tikka masala sauce from the 7-Day Sugar Reset that I froze, and can’t wait to use again. This will be my last-minute meal if I run out of leftovers – simply tossing that sauce in with some frozen veggies and voila. Dinner in a pinch!

I don’t shop at the same stores every week, but I usually alternate between Sprouts and Safeway. This time, I shopped at Safeway and the total was around $104 for all of the above. I do buy some convenient items, such as pre-made guac, cubed butternut squash and kombucha. I also try to buy organic when I can, but I don’t freak out if I can’t. I’m personally not a multi-store shopper. So, for example I got frozen organic strawberries but had to get frozen conventional cherries. I do my best with what I can, and ALWAYS prioritize organic/humanely raised animal products.

What are your favorite go-to weeknight meals? Download my FREE 21-Day Kickstart Meal Plan here.