Menu Plan Monday: June 27, 2016

June 27, 2016

What’s been happening lately at Small Bites by Jessica, lots of link love and this week’s Menu Plan Monday!

Menu Plan Monday

Hope everyone had a great weekend! We had a lovely week away in Nantucket and now it’s time to get back to the grind! The girls started camp today and they couldn’t have been more excited. I’m excited for them too, but feeling a little sad about how quickly they’re growing up. They didn’t even turn back to wave to me as I drove off after dropping them off this morning.  😥

Girls going off to camp!

One thing I have to come to terms with as they’re getting older is having less control over what they eat since they’ll be eating lunch at camp every day. Since I have the menu and know what’s being served, I can make sure our dinner meals balance their day out, at least as best as I can since I never know exactly what they will actually eat at camp. It adds an extra layer to my thought process for meal planning that I don’t need to deal with during the school year, and as you’ll see in this week’s Menu Plan Monday below and in the weeks to come, our meals will have fewer carbs to account for the abundance of carbs I know they eat at camp. It’s always a balancing act!

In case you missed it while I was away, last week was Recipe ReDux time and I shared 5 of My Favorite Recipe ReDuxer Recipes. I was honored to have a few of my fellow ReDux friends share their versions of my recipes on their blogs too. Check out Sonali’s and Jenny’s spin on my grilled avocados and Trish’s vegetarian variation of Kaleigh’s Apricot Pineapple Chicken Salad.

This coming weekend is July 4th, which for us means barbecues and other food-filled fun with friends at the beach, pool, and in our backyards. If the same is true for you, you’ll want to check out our recent post How to Have a Healthy Summer Barbecue and stay tuned for the ultimate BBQ roundup later this week!

Now scroll on down for some great articles and recipes from my fellow healthy food and nutrition bloggers and this week’s menu plan!


How You Can Enjoy Your Vacation and Still Be Healthy @ Truly Nourished

⇒ It’s so challenging staying healthy on vacation (I can tell you firsthand since I just came back!), but Rebecca has some great tips!

Healthy Summer Food Swaps @ Danielle Omar for Cal-EZ

⇒ Two of my favorite swaps in here – jicama and cauliflower rice!

3 Reasons Why Under Eating Won’t Help You Lose Weight @ Nutritious Eats

⇒ Cutting calories way down for weight loss is a huge myth. Melanie explains why and what to do instead!

How to Cut Herbs @ Bite Size Blonde

⇒ Chiffonade is one of my favorite methods for cutting mint and basil, but a lot of people don’t know what it means. Learn how to do it in this video and then put the technique to use with my Asparagus Mint Salad and Corn & Basil Cakes.

How to Cope with the Rising Cost of Produce @ Mango About Town

⇒ One of the biggest excuses I hear from people about why they don’t eat more fruits and veggies is that they’re expensive. There are easy ways to keep the costs lower, including buying what’s in season and going for frozen for out of season produce.

Feeling Fat is Contagious @ Living Well Kitchen

⇒ Fat talk is rampant, especially with women. Resist the temptation to join in on it with these 5 tips from Meme.


Turmeric Roasted Chickpea and Quinoa Salad @ Dishing Out Health

⇒ This looks so flavorful and delicious. Perfect addition to my Herb and Spice Recipe Roundup!

Strawberry Ginger Beet Sorbet @ Lively Table

⇒ How gorgeous is this sorbet? And so healthy and easy to make too!

Summer Panzanella Salad @ Dishing Out Health

⇒ Everything about this salad screams summer and is calling my name!

17 Ideas for Using Canned Tuna and 70+ Recipes to Try @ The Rising Spoon

⇒ Do you like canned tuna? I do, but the same old tuna sandwich can get boring after a while. Not anymore! 70 tuna recipes here to try! Make it 71 with my Apple Cranberry Tuna Salad!

Grilled Radishes with Ricotta, Apricots, and Walnuts @ My Cape Cod Kitchen

⇒ I love roasted radishes, but never grilled them. Time to get to it!

Vegan Avocado Pesto Pizza @ A Whisk and Two Wands

⇒ Avocado pesto as a base for pizza sounds delicious and is certainly a great way to get a nutrient boost!

8-Ingredient Green Quinoa Salad @ C It Nutritionally

⇒ This salad looks so light and delicious. Can’t wait to make it for one of our backyard gatherings this summer!

Simple Peach Berry Cobbler @ Hello to Fit

⇒ Can’t wait to try this for one of our summer barbecues! I love that it’s dairy-free so I can serve after one of our meat meals (since we keep Kosher)!

Gooey Nectarine Turnovers @ The Healthy Toast

⇒ This looks like a really easy and delicious summer dessert. I love using wonton skins (I use them for my lemon ricotta ravioli), although be prepared to do some work!

Red, White, and Blue Yogurt Parfait @ Family Food On the Table

⇒ What a perfect nutritious and delicious (and kid-friendly) way to celebrate the Fourth!

menu plan monday

Week of June 27, 2016

Monday: Veggie Cauliflower Fried Rice with Crispy Tofu

Tuesday: Pistachio-Stuffed Chicken Breasts with Sweet Potato Salad and Roasted Broccoli

Wednesday: Leftovers or defrosted Turkey Burgers if not enough chicken

Thursday: Chilled Cucumber Soup (I haven’t made this in a loooong time, so we’ll see if it gets any tweaks!) with Summer Salad (Arugula with nectarines, avocado, and mozzarella)

Friday: Cilantro Lime Steak with Grilled Corn and Cauliflower Burnt Rice

How was your weekend?

What’s on your menu this week?

Tweet me @JLevinsonRD with #DinnerTonight

Nutritioulicious Menu Plan Monday week of June 27, 2016 including Chilled Cucumber Soup, Pistachio-Stuffed Chicken Breast, Cilantro Lime Steak, Burnt Cauliflower Rice, and Sweet Potato Salad @jlevinsonrd

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  1. Jessica your girls are so precious!! Despite what they may eat at camp, they are definitely getting spoiled with that dinner line up! That chilled cucumber soup sounds amazing for these hot summer days. I hope you all have a wonderful 4th of July weekend! Xoxo

    1. Thanks so much Jamie! Haha…Well I know I’m on the right track with reducing the carbs at dinner since they already came home today and told me they had crackers at snack, bagels at lunch, and oreos for treat!! I haven’t made that cucumber soup in a long time, so hopefully it’s as good as I remember. Time to reshoot it! Hope you have a great fourth as well!

  2. I know exactly what you mean about losing control over what they eat! My little ones are in camp and while I still send their lunches, I know they are getting garbage at snack time and it makes me a little crazy! But at least we can balance it out with homemade goodness when they’re with us! Thanks for including my red, white and blue yogurt parfaits – a fun and festive treat they love!

    1. So glad I’m not alone in feeling this way! I just hope all my hard work of feeding my kids well will remain with them despite all the junky stuff they’re getting outside of the home. Can’t wait to feed them your parfaits!!

  3. Thanks for including my green quinoa salad — one of my faves! Sounds like such a great week (and so many great articles!!)…have a happy 4th!

  4. I totally know the feeling and will be there the next few weeks while we are out of town. As much as I look forward to it I don’t look forward to not having a kitchen and eating out for 18 days.
    Thank you for including my Avocado Pesto Pizza.
    This weeks menu is clean the fridge before leaving in a few days so eats are interesting for sure. Not the best for coming off a weekend gone as well for my daughter’s soccer tournament. I will be fitting in as many healthy eats as possible in the next 3 days.

    1. 18 days is a long time to be eating out. Good luck!! Hope you have a wonderful trip and are going someplace fantastic!

  5. Ah, I’m so sorry, I just teared up for you! I bet that had to be hard, but just know in your heart they didn’t wave because they are so excited to be active little girls, meet new people and come home to tell you all about it, which is something to be proud of as their mom! Your so smart, it is definitely a balancing act. I’m trying to focus on less CHO in our meals too right now, we’ve been doing a lot of recipe testing for the book and I’m noticing the hubs and I are both packing on a little extra weight haha. SHH.. don’t tell him I said that hah! 🙂 Thanks for the inspiration!

    1. Aw, you’re so sweet Liz. I know they are having a ball, they’re just growing up too fast! I shouldn’t complain though. Haha..I won’t tell the hubs – you’re secret’s safe with me!! Hope you have a nutritious and delicious week!

  6. Oh my gosh your kids are going to love camp! My favourite summer memories are from camp for sure!
    Thank you so much for sharing my post on the rising cost of produce! 🙂 Super, super important information. Hope you have a great week!

  7. Your girls are so precious! Hope they have a great week at camp. Gave me a heart ache when you mentioned they didn’t turn to wave…they grow so quickly, but still will always love their momma! Thanks for including my grilled radishes. Ohhh and didn’t you just want to stay on Nantucket forever?

    1. Thanks so much Jenny! I know they love me, just hard seeing them grow up so fast! Ahh yes, so pretty there. Love that I get to go every year!

  8. oh my i have a cauliflower rice recipe that i looove but i haven;t made it in forever. i always make baked tofu so i need to bring the 2 back 🙂
    i love the chilled cucumber soup + burnt cauli rice! i need to try those this summer 🙂 IT’s SO HOT.
    hope your girls enjoy camp! remember to tell them to make healthy choices 😉 (but who knows what they’ll do haha)

    1. Bring ’em back! Hope you enjoy the soup and cauli rice if you try them. And thanks – I’ve been discussing with them without trying to make a big deal about it. Not sure what really happens there though!!