Menu Plan Monday: April 11, 2016

April 11, 2016

How taking a night off from meal planning is still planning, plus this week’s Link Love and Menu Plan Monday.

Nutritioulicious Menu Plan Monday week of April 11, 2016 including Citrus Salad @jamievespa, Mediterranean Style Egg & Cheese @JlevinsonRD, Gruyère, Asparagus & Pea Baked Pasta @eatingwell, & Moroccan Chicken Skillet @FoodFaithFit

One of my meal planning tips for newbies is to start slow, planning out just one to three meals for the week. Once you get comfortable with the meal planning process and it’s not as time-consuming and intimidating you can add another day to the menu plan.

As you know from my weekly Menu Plan Monday posts, my meal plan includes four to five days of planned meals Monday through Friday. I usually include a night off for myself so I don’t get burnt out – in fact people have commented that they like my “Off Duty” nights and how smart that is!

Well, last week I didn’t plan a night off and as the week went along I regretted it. So by the time Thursday came around I scrapped the menu plan for the night and my husband and I ordered in dinner (the kids had leftovers from the night before). It reaffirmed to me that an important part of planning is planning to give myself a break. I hope you do the same!

Since I had already bought the ingredients for last Thursday’s dinner, I moved that meal to this week’s plan. Don’t want any food to go to waste – after all, that was my meal planning tip from last week! I hope you find inspiration in this week’s menu plan and in the articles and recipes in the Link Love below. Have a great week!


Using Food As a Punishment @ Be Truly Nourished

⇒ Using food as a reward or as a punishment is in line with categorizing food as good vs bad and leads to an unhealthy relationship with food.

3 Easy Ways to Improve Your Gut Health Right Now @ Teaspoon of Spice

⇒ Gut health is hot this year! Great tips from Serena, and check out the link below for gut health recipes from my friend Liz!

Are Baby Greens the Healthiest Greens by Amy Gorin @ Fitness Magazine

⇒ Interesting new research. I better get growing my microgreens in my windowsill box from last Mother’s Day!

Please Don’t Eat Avocado Seeds @ Langer Nutrition

⇒ Have you seen or heard of this recent trend to eat avocado seeds? Don’t do it! Abby does a fantastic job explaining why in her straight-shooting post!

5 Tips for Meal Time Sanity @ The Average RD

⇒ Couldn’t agree more with Jodi’s tips for feeding families. Parents, make one meal only, please!


Gut Health: 15+ Yogurt Parfait Recipes @ Shaw’s Simple Swaps

⇒ Like I said, gut health is trending this year! Boost your gut with these delish recipes

31 Healthy & Tasty Taco Tuesday Recipes @ Amee’s Savory Dish (compiled by Meal Makeover Moms)

⇒ You’ll never have to think twice about Taco Tuesday with these great recipes!

Citrus Beet Salad with Champagne Vinaigrette @ RDelicious Kitchen

⇒ I love salads like this! Reminds me a little of a simpler version of my Salmon Waldorf Salad.

Strawberry Peach Goat Cheese Bites @ Chelsea’s Choices

⇒ These are so pretty, simple, and delicious for a spring or summer get together.

Truffle Roasted Chickpeas @ The Foodie Dietitian

⇒What a fabulous flavor combo and perfect snack!

menu plan monday

Week of April 11, 2016

Monday: Mediterranean Style Egg & Cheese with a variation of Jamie’s Citrus Salad with Fennel, Avocado, and Honey Lemon Dressing (moved over from last week’s menu plan)

Tuesday: Gruyère, Asparagus & Pea Baked Pasta (from March/April issue of Eating Well Magazine)

Wednesday: Steak Salad with Shallot Vinaigrette

Thursday: Off Duty!

Friday: Moroccan Chicken Skillet with Cranberry Ginger Sorghum

Do you give yourself a night off of cooking?

What’s on your menu this week?

Tweet me @JLevinsonRD with #DinnerTonight

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  1. Thanks Jessica for linking to the gut health post! I appreciate it! And I couldn’t agree more- it’s definitely important to give yourself a night off! I keep Gardein frozen chickn tenders for nights like these :)!

  2. It’s looking like another delicious week for you and the family! We’re currently wrapping up day 2 of 3 in Disney and trying to eat as healthy as we can with the available options. I loved Kara’s chickpeas the moment I saw them and I’m heading over to read Abby’s avocado seed article right now. Have a wonderful week Jessica 🙂

    1. Thanks Sonali! Oh, how fun! I can’t wait to hear how Sienna liked Disney! The girls are going to go when they turn 5 next year. I heard there are a lot more options for healthy eating while there – you’ll have to give me the lowdown! Hope you have a blast your last day there!

    1. You’re welcome! haha..thanks – it’s a small window box. I wasn’t thrilled it was my Mother’s Day present last year, but it’s a fun gift!

  3. Having a day off in meal planning is so important! I love that tip!
    Thank you so much for including my post on using food as a punishment. I feel so honored to be included in your Link Love this week!! 🙂

  4. Love this! As a dietetic intern/graduate student, I’m just now for the first time trying to get use to planning and making meals for myself…and it’s HARD. I’ll be going back to look at some of your older posts now 🙂

    Sarah Grace

    1. Thanks so much Sarah Grace! It is hard and takes time, that’s why I recommend starting slowly. Once you get in the groove it gets easier! Good luck!