Meal planning takes work but with some motivation and a cold Sunday, it isn’t too bad 🙂
I plan according to what’s in our freezer but you could stock up on different cuts of meat by buying whatever is on sale and freezing it. We do this with chicken breasts. When we buy the Family Pack, we save a few dollars per pound. Last time, it was $3.99/lb vs $5.99/lb. We package them into serving sizes and freeze them, mainly for “Curry in a Hurry” which I’ll share later.
Sunday – food prep for Monday’s dinner. Chop veggies and make beef bone broth.
Monday night – Crock Pot Caribbean Oxtail (a little unconventional but I hear it’s amazing!)
Prep time: 15-20 minutes. Cook time: 6 hours. Turn on before you leave for work and it’s ready to go when you get home.
- 2 lb (1 kg) beef oxtails
- 2 onions, diced
- 2 carrots, diced
- 4 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 inch piece of ginger, peeled and minced
- 1 jalapeño pepper, minced (optional)
- 2 cups beef stock, homemade or organic is best
- 3 Tablespoons tomato paste
- 1 Tablespoon allspice berries (or 1 teaspoon ground allspice)
- 1 teaspoon fish sauce (I like Red Boat Fish Sauce)
- 4 sprigs of fresh thyme (or 1 teaspoon dried thyme)
- Coconut oil or fat of choice
- Sea salt and pepper
I usually always have onions and garlic on hand. They season so many things! We also have a drawer of spices, which is essential with home cooked meals. Beef stock can be made ahead of time with beef bones and frozen until ready to use. We always have fish sauce on hand as we use it in curry almost weekly. I buy organic tomato paste, diced tomatoes and tomato sauce at Costco and keep the cupboards stocked.
Thaw pork loin and ground beef for Tuesday.
Tuesday night – Herb Crusted Pork Loin
This is one of my favorite recipes. You can use dry spices and then it’s likely you’ll have most of what you need. Maybe just a lemon since you already have garlic on hand. 😉
Prep time: 15 minutes Cook time: 1-1.3 hours
- 3-4 lbs pork center loin or sirloin
- 2 large sprigs fresh rosemary (about 2 Tbsp chopped)
- 10-12 sprigs fresh thyme (about 2 Tbsp chopped)
- ½ tsp Salt
- ½ tsp cracked Pepper
- 8-9 cloves Fresh Garlic
- 2 tsp lemon zest
- ½ tsp Paprika
While this is cooking, prep the Taco Dip for Wednesday. It’s New Years Day so this is a change-up on the Taco Dip you’re used to and with more protein. Then there is no work on Wednesday for this other than the eating.
Wednesday night – Paleo Taco Dip
This is more time intensive than we normally do during the week but it’s a holiday and a treat.
Guacamole (you can use this recipe or make your own) You need 1/2- 1 cup total
- 1/4 red onion, chopped
- 1 tomato, seeded and chopped
- 2-3 tablespoons fresh cilantro, chopped
- Juice of 1 lime
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- 3 avocados, mashed
Mix all ingredients together.
- 1 lb. grass-fed ground beefYum!
- 1 tablespoon ground cumin
- 1 tablespoon chili powder
- 1 tablespoon garlic powder
- 1/4 cup green salsa (Trader Joe’s Salsa Verde)
Cook meat until no longer pink, add spices and salsa. Mix together.
Pico De Gallo or 5-minute Paleo Salsa (1/2- 1 cup needed)
- 3 large tomatoes, diced
- 1 large onion, diced
- 2 tablespoons diced jalapenos
- 1/2 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
- 2 teaspoons sea salt
- 1/2 teaspoon pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 tablespoon white vinegar
Mix all ingredients together. Allow to set for at least 6 hours, it is better if allowed to sit overnight.
Optional: Raw Milk Cheddar Cheese, shredded (about 1/4 cup)
Shredded Lettuce (about 1/4 cup)
Black Olives, sliced (to taste)
Thaw chicken breasts for Thursday night. This is where it comes in handy to have the bulk divided up into dinner servings.
Thursday night – Curry in a Hurry
Skip making the paste and just have a jar handy. You can switch it up and try red curry paste as well.
- 1 to 1.5 lbs. (about 0.7 kg) boneless chicken thigh or breast, cut into chunks
- 1 can coconut milk
- 4 kaffir lime leaves (can be purchased frozen at most Asian food stores), OR substitute 1 tsp. grated lime zest (I don’t add this and it’s still great!)
- 1 red bell pepper, seeded and cut into chunks
- 1 zucchini, sliced lengthwise several times, then cut into chunks
- Generous handful fresh basil (this usually doesn’t happen either)
- 2 Tbsp. coconut oil
Be adventurous and switch up the veggies you use. You can experiment with what is in your fridge.
You’ve made it to the weekend! After a week of work, cooking and the daily routine, we tend to take Friday nights off and order Thai food. There are great gluten-free options with lots of veggies. It all depends how the week goes. And not every week is this “fancy”. The really busy weeks, we have brats on hand and serve with sauerkraut and peas (or another quick veggie). I’ll share one of those weeks in the future!