Easy Lightened-Up Meal Planning Recipes #6
Hi Friends! Today, I’m sharing my lightened-up family meal planning recipes and a few bonus recipes that I plan on adding to my meal prep for a full week. In addition to lightened-up meal planning family recipes (if you’re looking for other meal plans click here), I’ve been busy packing up our house as we are moving out this week! It’s crazy how fast this has all been happening. From preparing for the move to making selections in the new house, life has felt like a whirlwind. Every day I find myself praying for time management and grace to keep things together. I’m also so thankful for good friends that have stepped in to help us with all of the packing and purging. I could have never done all the moving without them.
Yesterday we packed up the rest of the boxes and Haily asked if we could do worship in the living room. During worship, I found myself crying tears of gratitude and joy as I thought about how far God has brought us a family and all of the memories that we made in this home. It was a moment for sure!
Snow Day Fun
We also made the most of the snow days we had this past week. Hailey, Easton, and I went outside and built a snowman while Ethan and Daron shoveled out snow in the new house. I would gladly choose playtime over work time, especially in these cold temps! Then we all met up at my mom’s house for sledding in her backyard. We ended with a dinner of chili and peanut butter sandwiches (even though Daron and the kids think the peanut butter sandwiches are weird, haha). The highlight of our snow day fun was making homemade snow cream as Daron and the kids had never had it before. Needless to say, we loved it and ended up making it several nights in a row for after-dinner dessert!
As for our meal planning recipes this week, my theme for the week continues to be quick and easy. I tried to pull easy recipes that can be prepared in less than 30 minutes but yet are lower in calories and still family-friendly.
About my Lightened-Up Meal Planning Recipes:
If there’s one thing that I learned this past year, it’s the importance of family and spending time with the people you love. I believe there’s no better way to create memories and real conversation than around the dinner table.
But as a busy mom of three, I know it can sometimes be challenging and even stressful trying to plan out what you’re cooking for dinner each week and putting together recipes. For this reason, I’m going to try and help make meal planning easy for you by sharing my weekly meal plans for dinner.
I try to meal plan at the start of each week. Usually, I put together 7 meal planning dinner recipes for my family of 5. Sometimes, I will add dessert, breakfast, and lunch recipes as bonus meals. I will also add suggested side dishes to the dinner recipes for added meal planning Inso.
Each week’s meal plan will have the recipe links, photos, bonus recipes, and any additional notes that I include that might be helpful to your weekly meal planning.
Skinny Suppers Cookbook:
In 2016, I wrote a cookbook, “Skinny Suppers,” and shared 125 lightened-up recipes. Many of you who follow me already have this cookbook. You will find that I reference many of the recipes in the cookbook as part of my weekly meal plans.
Our Farmer House Community:
Lastly, if you’re on Facebook, join Our Farmer House Community, where I share recipes, cooking tips, and life updates. Plus, you can share recipes and photos with the group as well.
If you wish to get on our Sunday Email List, you can subscribe here, so you never miss a meal plan, recipe, or update.
Lightened-Up Meal Planning Recipes Details:
All of the dinner recipes are designed to serve a family of 4-6 people. Many recipes will have enough leftovers for lunch the next day (my 17-year-old loves taking leftovers to school), or you can reheat for a second night’s meal.
Feel free to switch out the dinner recipes and pick and choose your favorites. I do my best to try and come up with various family-friendly recipes, and I balance the meals out by alternating between different proteins, including beef, pork, chicken, and seafood.
My family doesn’t eat many vegetarian recipes, but I do my best to add at least one vegetarian recipe to the weekly meal plan.
As for the bonus recipes, I try to add a few breakfast, lunch, and dessert recipes to the weekly meal plan to try and have as extras to prepare for your family. The suggested sides are listed alongside the main dinner recipe title and link.
I hope these weekly meal plans inspire you and help you meal plan for dinner each week! If you have questions or recipe suggestions, please send me a message as I would love to hear from you.
Kicking things off on Monday with an easy one-pot dish that makes clean-up a cinch! With everything in boxes, I don’t really have access to all of my pots and pans, so this recipe is a great way to make an easy dinner without the mess. I also like how quickly this meal comes together. My family loves the buffalo chicken flavors of this pasta dish and I like to serve it with a side salad with ranch dressing.
I’m making this recipe for Southwest Stuffed Peppers with Ground Turkey. This is a hearty recipe that works well as a variation for Taco Tuesday! I like to serve this dish with refried beans on the side (I have a great restaurant copycat recipe that will share soon) and or a leafy green salad. Also because Daron doesn’t prefer the whole peppers, I serve the turkey filling inside of high fiber tortillas for him. This can be a great option if you don’t want to use whole peppers.
On the menu for tonight’s dinner, I’m serving up Ground Beef and Asparagus Casserole. This is an easy recipe that I make with crescent rolls, ground beef, and asparagus. For a side dish option, you can serve with whole grain brown rice or garlic mashed potatoes.
I’ve been cleaning out my deep freeze all week and I came across a tray of pork chops to make my easy and flavorful recipe for Parmesan Pork Chops. You will love that these pork chops are baked and not fried, but yet they still taste tender and delicious. I like to use a meat thermometer when preparing pork to make sure that the meat cooks all the way through. For pork chops, the best temperature is 145 degrees. I’ve also made this recipe using my new air fryer and the pork chops cook up great in just a few minutes. I like to serve pork chops with baked potatoes or sweet potato fries and green beans.
You made it to Friday! Celebrate with the family and recreate this Easy Lightened-Up Skillet Lasagna that doesn’t come with all the calories of ordering pizza takeout! This recipe combines one of our family favorites, lasagna into an easy one-pot meal. I like to serve this recipe alongside a leafy green salad and or a fresh fruit salad.
I added this recipe for my Baked Lemon Tilapia as an easy seafood option this week in the meal plan. Even if you don’t have a lot of experience preparing fish in the kitchen, this recipe for tilapia is simple to make and flavorful. Serve with a side salad, asparagus, and garlic bread for a complete meal your family will enjoy.
You can never go wrong with my recipe for Easy 4-Ingredient BBQ Chicken for any day of the week. I added this recipe to the meal planning calendar to make for lunch on Sunday or you can bake up this chicken during busy weeknights as another option. I like to serve it alongside my stovetop mac n cheese or corn.
Sweet Treat: This week I’m sharing a light and healthy recipe for a Blueberry Lemon Yogurt Loaf Cake. It’s also a great recipe to make right now as blueberries are on sale at most grocery stores. I like to prepare it at the start of the week and have it to snack on throughout.
Smoothie of the Week: Brownie Batter Protein Smoothie. During the week, I try to meal replace one meal per day with a protein shake or smoothie. I like to use my favorite brand of protein powder by She Activates! You can order here and for a limited time, it’s on sale.
Pack and Go Recipe: BLT Macaroni Salad. This is a great salad recipe that’s flavorful and loaded with healthy fats and fiber.