5-Day Meal Plan Recap + Grocery List

5-Day Meal Plan Recap

As promised, here’s a recap of the 5-day meal plan that I posted this past week. First things first, why did I all of a sudden meal plan for 5 days (and never before? ha ha). Well, I’ve had the idea for some time, but like many things, it hit the back burner. With the launch of our new meal journal, I thought: “Welp, now’s the time!”

There’s a concept that I touch on in our cookbook… I call it “cooking backward” and it differs from many other meal planning approaches. You see, I’m not a person who plans, organizes, and preps perfect meals on Sundays before the week begins. I’ve tried to do that and have failed miserably every single time. That doesn’t mean I don’t like to prepare my meals efficiently.

So this is what I do: I start with a group of ingredients that I know will stretch pretty far. I jot down a loose plan (in this case, 5 meals) that all use those common ingredients in various ways. Bonus points for ideas that can morph straight into other ideas. Then I start the week! The most important part about this process is to allow for change to happen as it comes. For example, if you read about meal #5, you’ll see that my initial plan for a frittata became the Curried Cauliflower Soup. Instead of tossing out the whole meal when I didn’t have enough leftover veggies, I changed my plan on the fly and still used available ingredients – notably, a lonely a half-cauliflower that was forgotten about in the back of the fridge. It ended up being my favorite recipe in the bunch and it also satisfied what I was craving.

A few things you’ll notice:

– I skipped 2 days in the middle of the “plan” because one night I was too lazy to cook and another night we went to dinner for my sister’s birthday. In the past, these sort of “life happenings” would foil my well-laid plans, but not this time! I just picked up the next day and moved on.

– I didn’t prep too much in advance. My goal was to cook dinner (the grain bowls) on night #1 and use those leftovers for nights #2 and #3. After that, I still used my original ingredients, but I cooked them fresh because I don’t love eating roasted vegetables after they’ve been sitting in the fridge for more than a few days.

– These meals all serve 2 people, because it’s just Jack and me in our household and these were our real life dinners.

Meal 1: Mean Green Grain Bowls
This was the most cooking I did all week. I used the leftovers for the next recipe.

Meal 2: The Big Green Kale Salad
I made the grain bowls stretch by tossing the leftovers with massaged kale. If this isn’t enough food for you, serve it with some crusty bread. You could also add any protein you like. Feel free to make these meals your own.

Meal 3: Quinoa Kale Quesadillas
I sautéed the leftover kale quinoa salad and stuffed it in between tortillas with cheese. The recipe notes that if you’re vegan, use a slather of refried beans as the glue and skip the cheese.

Meal 4: Broccolini & Brussels Sprout Orecchiette
A classic late-week approach because pasta is easy to keep on hand in the pantry. I loved how this recipe reused the kale stems from #2.

Meal 5: Curried Cauliflower Soup
Even though I made the plan, I forgot about the cauliflower I used half of on Day #1. It was the last vegetable I had left and go-figure it ended up being my favorite recipe. I love it because it has great flavor in so few ingredients since I was working with what I had. Of course, I did run to the store for the micro green garnish because I still have to make things pretty for you!

Grocery List:
This was everything I used for the 5 meals for 2 of us. I hope you can use this as a guide and adjust to your own family’s needs and tastes:

(download a Printable PDF HERE)

That’s it for this one! Please let me know if you find this helpful and if you’d like to see more of this in the future :). Happy planning!

Healthy Easter Brunch Recipes

Avocado Almondaise Tartines

This blog is nothing if not seasonal, so let’s celebrate the holiday where rabbits lay the most delicious eggs – Easter!

In all seriousness, this holiday means two things to me – brunch with family & friends and the start of berry season (yay!). So I’ve picked out a few recipes you could serve at an Easter brunch, and a few that are less Easter-y and just scream spring me to me (I’m looking at you, Sunshine Chia Bowls).

You can click directly on the photos to go to each recipe:

Avocado Almondaise Tartines (pictured above)

Shakshuka with Spinach and Harissa

Shakshuka with Spinach and Harissa

Tart Cherry Tabbouleh

Tart Cherry Tabbouleh

Blueberry Coconut Baked Oatmeal

Blueberry Coconut Baked Oatmeal

Roasted Artichoke Avocado Toast

Roasted Artichoke Avocado Toast

Vegan Raspberry Coconut Scones

Vegan Raspberry Coconut Scones

Prettiest Spring Vegetable Crudités

Prettiest Spring Vegetable Crudités

Carrot Quinoa Oatmeal Breakfast Cookies

Carrot Quinoa Oatmeal Breakfast Cookies

Sunshine Citrus Chia Bowls

Sunshine Citrus Chia Bowls

Spinach & Sun Dried Tomato Frittatas

Spinach & Sun Dried Tomato Frittatas

Romanesco Chickpea Salad

Romanesco Chickpea Salad

Ginger Kombucha Cocktails

Almost-Spring Recipes

Spring Broccolini & Kale Quinoa Bowls

I think it’s safe to say that no matter what climate you live in, we’re all experiencing a version of spring fever. It’s been exceptionally beautiful in Austin lately which makes me want to cook (or in some cases, just assemble) meals that are light and fresh and full of green things. Here are some of my favorites that I’ve been in the mood for lately. Click on the photos or the links to go to the full recipes.

Spring Broccolini & Kale Quinoa Bowls (pictured above)

These are packed with roasted chickpeas, broccolini, radishes, herbs, and avocado. Serve with a scoop of (nut-free) pea pesto that’s made with hemp seeds and dill.

Avocado and Mango Brown Rice Sushi

Avocado and Mango Brown Rice Sushi

One of my go-to lunches is the take-out sushi at Whole Foods, which is definitely easier and quicker than making it yourself. But I love being able to customize the ingredients – this avocado mango version with peanut dipping sauce is a favorite.

Broccoli Tahini Pasta Salad

Broccoli Tahini Pasta Salad

Our spring weather has me looking forward to summer, which has me looking forward to pot luck picnics… and this broccoli salad is the perfect healthy dish to bring. It’s made with tahini instead of mayo, and it’s loaded with zucchini, green beans, tomatoes, sun dried tomatoes, and herbs.

Lemon Edamame Avocado Sandwiches

Lemon Edamame Avocado Sandwiches

And speaking of picnics… here are some very green, very packable sandwiches, made with a creamy lemon-edamame spread.

Minty Green Shamrock Shake Smoothies

Minty Green Shamrock Shake Smoothies

A healthier way to celebrate St. Paddy’s day… or any day that you feel like a creamy green smoothie. These are made with almond butter, banana, spinach (which you can’t taste), and mint.

Tart Cherry Tabbouleh

Tart Cherry Tabbouleh

A sweet twist on tabbouleh that uses dried tart cherries instead of tomatoes. It’s tossed with a bright lemony dressing and packed with herbs.

Roasted Artichoke Avocado Toast

Roasted Artichoke Avocado Toast

It’s almost artichoke season around here. Because fresh artichokes take a little bit of work to prep, I like to enjoy the fruits vegetables of my labor in simple ways like these elevated avocado toasts.

Twice Baked Sweet Potatoes with Broccoli

Twice Baked Sweet Potatoes with Broccoli

Since it’s now quite spring, I thought I’d throw a comfort food recipe in the mix. These cozy sweet potatoes are filled with sweet potato rosemary cashew cream, broccoli, scallions, and hemp seeds.

Spring Broccolini Kale & Quinoa Bowls

For more spring recipes, click here!

10 Vegetarian Memorial Day Recipes

Portobello Tacos with Creamy Jalapeño Sauce

Is it Friday yet? I’m SO ready for the long weekend. After a whirlwind 2 days in Toronto this week promoting the book, I’m ready to relax, sleep in, and of course eat some yummy food! If you’re hosting (or heading to) a picnic or BBQ this weekend – here are some very favorite Memorial Day veggie ideas:

Pictured above: Portobello Tacos with Creamy Jalapeño Sauce

Ginger Peach Sangria

First things first, get your guests a cocktail! Mix up a big batch of this ginger peach sangria. It’s light and refreshing – my favorite summer cocktail. Serve it along with chunky Avocado, Black Bean & Corn Salsa and Cucumber Apple Green Gazpacho.

Chunky Avocado, Black Bean & Corn Salsa Cucumber Apple Green Gazpacho

For a veggie main course, try the Portobello Tacos (pictured at the top of this post), Orzo Stuffed Peppers or Chickpea Avocado Salad Sliders.

Vegetarian Orzo Stuffed Peppers Curried Chickpea & Avocado Salad Sliders

On the side: Sara’s Strawberry Tabbouleh and Grilled Corn on the Cob.

Sara's Strawberry Tabbouleh Grilled Corn on the Cob

For Dessert: Gluten Free Chocolate Pecan Skillet Cookies with melty ice cream.

Gluten Free Chocolate Pecan Skillet Cookies

For Dessert #2 (since it’s a holiday two desserts are allowed): Fancy S’mores! Put the Hershey bars away and gather a bunch of non-traditional toppings like crushed blackberries, almond butter, bananas and strawberries. Let your guests create their own customizable s’mores.

Fancy S'mores

Spring Brunch Recipes

Spring Brunch Recipes

Happy second day of spring! I don’t know where you live, but it’s been absolutely gorgeous around here lately so I’m going to brag about it a little bit. The sun is shining, colorful vegetables are showing up at the markets, and mint (a.k.a the only thing my black thumb can “grow”), is spreading like a weed in our yard.

I’m not sure what our Easter brunch plans are yet, but I’m already looking forward to the weekend. If you’re starting to plan your holiday meal, here are a some of my favorite fresh & bright brunch recipe ideas to get you started!

pictured above: Avocado Almondaise Tartines
Mini Spinach & Sundried Tomato Frittatas / Spring Root & Watercress Salad

Spring Brunch Recipes

pictured above: Matcha Mint Iced Tea / Ginger Kombucha St. Germain Cocktails

Spring Brunch Recipes

pictured above: Spring Onion Frittata
Curried Avocado Chickpea Salad Sliders / Strawberry Vegan Waffles