Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Menu Plan Monday

I know. I know.  It's not Monday.  I still did the plan on Monday, I just haven't shared it yet.  I decided instead that going to bed luxuriously early on Monday sounded more appealing, so I went to bed at 9 when the kids did.  Know what?  It was fabulous.  Starting the week with a little extra sleep is so lovely!

Here is the plan that has been, and will be, keeping us on track this week.  I hope your week stays on track too!

Monday (beef)
Breakfast: pumpkin muffins
Lunch: Italian sausage and peppers
Dinner spaghetti with meat sauce

Tuesday (fish)
Breakfast: pineapple muffins
Lunch: beans and weenies
Dinner: shrimp teriyaki, pasta, strawberries

Wednesday (turkey)
Breakfast: cranberry orange muffins
Lunch: sunbutter and jelly
Dinner: turkey meatloaf, mashed potatoes, peas

Thursday (vegan)
Breakfast: pork sausage and cinnamon roasted squash
Lunch: meatloaf
Dinner: lentil dahl

Friday (pork)
Breakfast: sunbutter muffins
Lunch: veg chili
Dinner: lasagna, spinach salad

Saturday (beef)
Breakfast: bacon cheddar muffins
Lunch: calzones
Dinner: tacos

Sunday (fish)
Breakfast: donuts
Lunch: Red Robin?
Dinner: salmon, green beans, melon

Please remember that all links are to the original recipe and may not reflect the changes I make to ensure they are safe for the dietary restrictions in our home.

Monday, August 17, 2015

Menu Plan Monday

Here it is, Monday again!  It is amazing to me how quickly a week can speed by.  This week, I am prepared with my menu plan to help make weeknights a little less chaotic.  As always, I keep a few quick things in the freezer for when the day explodes into crazy and the plan won't work.  Here's the plan this week (with a few holdovers from last week that just didn't manage to happen.)


Monday (vegan)
Breakfast: turkey sausage, Alexia Harvest Saute
Lunch: beans and weenies
Dinner: squash soup, spinach salad with berries

Tuesday (pork)
Breakfast: strawberry muffins, green smoothie
Lunch: sunbutter and jelly
Dinner: crock pot pulled pork, green beans, spiced peaches

Wednesday (beef)
Breakfast: bacon, green muffins
Lunch: pulled pork
Dinner: beef burgers, fries, broccoli

Thursday (fish)
Breakfast: sweet potato hash, green smoothie
Lunch: beef sliders
Dinner: fish sticks, roasted carrots, applesauce

Friday (turkey)
Breakfast: pineapple muffins
Lunch: hummus wraps
Dinner: turkey pot pie

Saturday (vegan)
Breakfast: pancakes with warm apple topping
Lunch: turkey roll up
Dinner: two bean chili, cornbread

Sunday (pork)
Breakfast: breakfast cookies
Lunch: chili
Dinner: italian sausage and peppers, roasted cauliflower, melon

*Note: Links provided are often to the original recipe and may not reflect the changes I make to ensure they are free of the allergens for our house. Each recipe above, as I make it, is free of: dairy, eggs, peanuts, tree nuts, chicken, rice, oats, kiwi, avocado, banana, coconut, and chocolate.

Monday, August 10, 2015

Monday Menu Plan

Back to the routine.  I've gone the whole summer without making a menu plan, and it shows!  Meals have been a constant mystery, and often I'm making last minute trips to the store to pick up odds and ends.  Time to get back to the weekly plan to help reduce the chaos in our lives, and make sure we are eating (somewhat) healthy meals.  That should help smooth out those crazy school nights, which are due to start in less than a week! Eeep!

Monday (fish)
Breakfast: cream of buckwheat
Lunch: leftovers
Dinner: fish tacos

Tuesday (turkey)
Breakfast: zucchini muffins, smoothie
Lunch: fish taco salad
Dinner: turkey meatballs, green beans, oven roasted potatoes

Wednesday (vegan)
Breakfast: sweet potato hash, turkey sausage
Lunch: turkey burgers
Dinner: butternut squash soup, spinach salad with berries

Thursday (pork)
Breakfast: pumpkin muffins (I know, I know.  It's a bit early to start pumpkin-ing.)
Lunch: sunbutter and jelly
Dinner: crock pot pulled pork, roasted corn and zucchini salad, applesauce

Friday (beef)
Breakfast: pork sausage on biscuit, green smoothie
Lunch: ham "lunchables"
Dinner: chili bake

Saturday (fish)
Breakfast: waffles, two berry syrup
Lunch: corn dogs
Dinner: salmon, broccoli, melon

Sunday (turkey)
Breakfast: cereal
Lunch: salmon salad wraps
Dinner: creamy turkey casserole, peas

Sunday, August 9, 2015

Maple Bacon Muffins

Because what could be better than the union of salty savory bacon and sweet maple syrup in a muffin?!

I'm a fan of including protein at breakfast, and my kiddos love muffins, so it seemed natural to merge the two.  This is a sweet treat that makes any morning feel indulgent, but if you prefer to start with a bit more savory in your day try my Bacon Cheddar Muffins.

Maple Bacon Muffins

  • 2 cups flour (I use a blend of spelt, quinoa, and AP... but any combination would work.)
  • 1/2 tsp xanthan gum (only if using a gluten free blend, omit if using gluten)
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 8 strips bacon (more or less according to your taste)
  • 1/4 cup good-quality maple syrup
  • 4 tbsp bacon drippings, cooled (from 8 strips bacon above ^)
  • 1 Tbsp flax meal mixed with 3 Tbsp warm water (to replace an egg)
  • 1 cup non-dairy milk
  • 1 tsp unfiltered apple cider vinegar
First, lets chat about that bacon.  I like to open the pack and just chop it in half.  I put half right into the freezer, then chop the rest into little pieces.  THEN I cook it.  It's so easy to brown that way, just stirring the little bits around.  No constant flipping, no spots that cook less or more... it works for me.  You could also toss it into the oven and cook it, or cook the slices then crumble them.  Whatever makes you happy.  Just as long as we have little bits of delicious crispiness at the end.
Now combine flour, brown sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a large bowl and set aside.  Combine non-dairy milk and vinegar in a large measuring cup or small bowl.  Add maple syrup, flax meal and water.  Then add the bacon drippings from the cooked bacon.  If you don't have 4 Tbsp, then just add the oil of your choice to make up the balance.  Let those wet ingredients sit for a moment, and go ahead and line your muffin tins.
Whisk the wet ingredients to combine thoroughly and add to the dry.  Stir gently to combine.  Fold in the bacon.  Scoop into muffin cups.  (The number you get will depend on the amount of bacon used.  I generally get 11 muffins. Weird.) Bake at 350 for 22 minutes.
You may drizzle with more maple syrup when they come out if you want to pump up the maple flavor, but it is totally optional!





Thursday, April 30, 2015

Quinoa Milk




I have watched quinoa milk showing up in stores for quite awhile now, but always as a blend with other non-dairy milks.  quinoa-rice, quinoa almond, never alone.  We have not been able to sample any of the blends because they include things that are not tolerated in our house.  Then, about two weeks ago: Ta-Da!  Single grain quinoa milk appeared on the shelf of our local Whole Foods.  Of course I bought some to take home and try.  I'm always looking for non-dairy milks that pump up our nutrition. Here are the ingredients on this one:





I brought home the unsweetened vanilla.  I always try to buy milk with no added sweeteners, and I know that quinoa has a rather prominent flavor, so I thought the vanilla might be a good way to ease into it.

Nutritionally, it has less protein that I would expect with only 2g per serving.  Even without added sugar or sweetener it has 2g of sugars per serving!  (My other non-dairy milks have 0.)  It carries a healthy amount of calcium (30%), vitamin D (25%), and vitamin E (30%), with trace amounts of a handful of other important minerals.



Upon pouring a glass, the color is decidedly not white, more of a gray tan.  I chilled mine prior to sampling.  The mouth feel was similar to rice milk, thin and lacking in body.  The vanilla flavor was very prominent on the front end, with a slightly bitter note following.  All of my taste testers noted a slightly unpleasant aftertaste.  Overall my family agrees that this is not offensive in any way, but not a milk they would not chose to drink plain.

My conclusion:  I won't go out of my way to buy this milk.  It might be a nice way to expand the variety in the house on occasion, but it does not carry significant nutritional load, flavor, or body that would make it a must have.  I think that I shall use the remainder of this carton for baking.

Monday, March 9, 2015

Menu Plan Monday

Monday (Vegan)
Breakfast: pork sausage
Lunch: ham
Dinner: pizza

Tuesday (turkey)
Breakfast: squash muffins, green smoothie
Lunch: sunbutter and jelly
Dinner: turkey meatballs, roasted turnips and rutabagas, spiced peaches

Wednesday (beef)
Breakfast: turkey sausage and biscuits, oranges
Lunch: meatballs
Dinner: beef stew, peas

Thursday (pork)
Breakfast: sunbutter muffins
Lunch: beef stew
Dinner: pulled pork, cauliflower rice, roasted beets

Friday (fish)
Breakfast: bacon cheddar muffins
Lunch: pulled pork
Dinner: salmon, green beans, cherry applesauce

Saturday (vegan)
Breakfast: cream of buckwheat
Lunch: on your own
Dinner: 2 bean chili, cornbread

Sunday (turkey)
Breakfast: waffles
Lunch: chili
Dinner: mulligatawny soup, kale salad with apples

Monday, February 23, 2015

Menu Plan Monday

I did a terrible, horrible, rotten job of sticking to the menu plan last week.  The result?  A few holdover recipes on the menu again this week.  And fewer things to pick up at the market this week. So here's to a week of stronger health and self discipline, so that this menu plan comes closer to actually happening! :)

Monday (vegan)
Breakfast: pork sausage, toast
Lunch: ham
Dinner: veggie burgers on bun, roasted parsnips, turnips, and rutabagas

Tuesday (beef)
Breakfast: cream of buckwheat
Lunch: sunbutter and jelly
Dinner: beef short ribs, cauliflower rice, garlicky spinach, spiced peaches

Wednesday (fish)
Breakfast: apple cranberry sorghum
Lunch: beef dogs
Dinner: Thai fish curry over buckwheat ramen, peas

Thursday (turkey)
Breakfast: sunrise cookies
Lunch: hummus wraps
Dinner: herb roasted turkey breast, green beans, cranberry sauce

Friday (pork)
Breakfast: cinnamon roasted butternut squash, turkey sausage
Lunch: leftover turkey
Dinner: Hawaiian pork burger, roasted carrots

Saturday (vegan)
Breakfast: bacon cheddar muffins
Lunch: on your own
Dinner: pizza

Sunday (beef)
Breakfast: berry pop tarts, green smoothie
Lunch: pasta ragout
Dinner: beef stroganoff over spaghetti squash, broccoli, cherry applesauce