Incredibly quick and easy is my goal this week. And I’m pretty confident that the meals this week won’t break the bank at the grocery. We’ll be using (what I consider) to be mostly staples.

Monday: Crispy Potato Curry: I like this recipe because it’s your veggie and carb all in one! I think I may add some more vegetables (like carrots and peppers) to the roast, just to add some more nutrition. If you like naan, because you’re a human with a soul, try this Paleo Naan recipe. Or, buy some! Costco has a pack of a million individual sized naan pieces (not gluten free) that can be frozen. I found them in the “ethnic” refrigerated section…by the kimchi, seaweed salad, and pork buns.

Tuesday: Whole 30 Sloppy Joe’s with…spaghetti squash/buns/sweet potatoes/white potatoes/rice/quinoa/cauliflower rice. That’s a ton of options. If you have a favorite recipe, by all means use it…but “Whole 30” ensures that there’s no added sugar from condiments, or general ick from a can. This recipe is very fast, and can easily be doubled or tripled if you want to make it in bulk and freeze for another day. ***If you plan to freeze, portion it out before freezing, so you don’t have to thaw the remainder and re-freeze.***

Wednesday: Mexican Pizzas- This used to be my Taco Bell jam! This, a Supreme Chalupa, and Dr. Pepper. Because when you’re 16, you can treat your body like a landfill, because the future is never going to come for you. Anyway…there’s no recipe for this one. I just plan to use corn tortillas (that I’ll lightly pan fry), layered with black beans, and taco filling. I pulled some taco seasoned chicken (for the male), and some taco seasoned jackfruit (for me) out of the freezer. Then I’ll top with “cheese” before putting in the oven to melt, and serve with guacamole.

Thursday: Avocado curry rice noodles with shrimp: My only issue with this recipe, is that I find the serving size to be incredibly unrealistic. I think I can get 4 servings out of this…6 would leave me needing to make another meal an hour later. Use whatever kind of noodles you have/like. You could also substitute the shrimp for chicken, tofu, or just add a lot of vegetables and make this a vegan dish.

Friday: Protein grilled on pineapple skin: Sounds weird, I know.  I’m going to use cod for this, because I have some. This would be great with another white fish, salmon, or chicken. I’m just trying this because I love pineapple, I always cut my own, and I’m hoping that there’s a use for all the waste. I’m going to serve this with Pineapple Fried Cauliflower Rice, and I will most likely not make this with all of the bacon and eggs that the recipe calls for. I just don’t require that much protein.

Saturday: 15 Minute Spicy Shrimp with Pesto Noodles: I don’t think I’ll make this with shrimp. I haven’t determined what I’ll use instead, but…something. Helpful, I know. If you have a favorite pesto recipe, by all means. You can also use store-bought, which will really save time. The sauce would taste great on quinoa too, if you don’t want pasta twice in one week, or if you don’t want to use zucchini noodles, per the recipe.

Sunday: Funday- free day! Try a new recipe, go out, eat PB&J’s…

I think you’ll find that this week’s recipes are easy peasy. It looks like the sun might be coming out for a bit…not trying to jinx us poor slobs on the EC. So, if you’re lucky enough to feel that beautiful Vitamin D, take some extra time outside and spend less time in the kitchen. This week’s recipes are half DIY recipes, and half “real” recipes.

Monday: BLT salad- You’ve had a BLT before, yes? Take the B, L, and T, and put them in a bowl. Spruce it up by adding more “salad” ingredients like avocado, carrots, hard boiled eggs, onion. You can skip the bacon and use turkey or chicken instead (or a combo for added protein). Lightly dress the salad with olive oil and your preferred seasonings.

Tuesday: Taco Tuesday- Oldest trick in the book. There are so many possibilities, all of which will taste great if topped with homemade guacamole. If you’re looking for inspiration, search on Pinterest. You can be specific with your keywords (Whole 30 Mexican, Paleo Mexican, Gluten free Mexican, etc.).

Wednesday: Asian bowls- Another meal that can be thrown together with finesse.

-Begin with a base (rice, quinoa, or cauliflower “rice”- whatever you choose, make enough to last for tomorrow and Saturday).

-Pick a lean protein (chicken, tofu, shrimp, tempeh) and marinate it in soy sauce/coconut or liquid aminos/tamari (all will lend the same flavor, but some are NOT gluten free).

– Grab a bunch of vegetables and stir fry in a small amount of sesame oil

-Put it all in a bowl. You can top this with peanut sauce, sriracha, or anything else that makes you happy.

Thursday: Vegan Dal with Spinach– Read the directions….I’m going to go with the red lentil version, because it will cook so much faster. This is a dish that can stand up to your freezer. If you don’t have mustard seeds…don’t worry- I never do. You can use fennel seeds, fenugreek (seeds or ground), cumin seeds, or just skip it completely.

Friday: 5 Spice Paleo Chicken Tenders–  This is an easy recipe, that (I think) will not require you to buy much. If you have a well stocked spice cabinet, you’ll be set. To save time, buy raw chicken tenders. When I bake chicken like this, I like to take a metal cooling rack and put it on top of my baking tray, before laying the chicken on it. This way, the chicken cooks all over and gets crisper.

Saturday: Seared Scallops with Quinoa and Apple Salad over Butternut Squash Puree– Fear not. I’mma break this down for you:

  1. Buy organic butternut squash puree (mine is in a can). This will save all the time of peeling, chopping, cooking, and pureeing the squash.
  2. You were supposed to have made a grain earlier in the week! If not, jokes on you, my friend.
  3. You can use another protein if you don’t like/want/have scallops. Although, once you know how to properly cook scallops, you’ll feel like a baller and will want to do it all the time. I get my scallops from Costco. No shame. The key is to thaw them (you can transfer them to the fridge the night before, and then THOROUGHLY dry them. I take a plate, cover with a couple layers of paper towels, put the scallops on the plate, more layers of paper towels. Don’t press down…you don’t need to. Just let them set that way for 10-15 minutes. Then season. Then cook in a hot, greased skillet. Depending on the size, only 2-3 minutes per side is all that’s needed. Don’t flip them around a lot…you won’t get that beautiful, tasty carmelization that you want. Also, I don’t cook enough for leftovers….re-heated scallops? Vom.

Sunday: Mini Paleo Burger Bowls– What can I say? I like the whole, “bowl” scenario. These bowls can have whatever kind of toppings you like on a burger. If you don’t like/want/have plantains, substitute roasted potatoes.

Monday: Hearty Vegan Spanish Potatoes– This dish is seriously good. It comes together easily, but takes a little while to bake. Potatoes, am I right? If you don’t have saffron, substitute paprika. To me, this is more of a side dish. Serve with eggs to keep this vegetarian/breakfasty, or with roasted chicken and a side salad.

Tuesday:  Spicy Chicken and Sweet Potato Bowls– This recipe makes a lot of food. You could follow the recipe, and set yourself up for lunch leftovers, or halve it if you get bored easily.

Wednesday: Paleo Butternut Apple Chicken Salad w/ Creamy Maple Dressing– This salad is easily tailored for your dietary needs. I recommend buying frozen, or pre-cut butternut squash to save time. If you don’t want to use coconut milk for the dressing, try subbing olive oil. Use half the amount, taste, and adjust the seasoning.

Thursday: Mediterranean Roasted Cauliflower and Lentil Tacos with Lime Tahini– To save time, skip the lentil portion and just use canned black beans. Be sure to chop the cauliflower relatively small, to be sure that all parts get spiced and roasted. Fresh out of sumac? No worries. You can substitute lemon pepper seasoning. And if you don’t have/want to use pomegranate, try raisins or chopped dates. You just want to add a pop of sweetness and texture.

Friday: Treat Yo Self. Kitchen’s closed tonight.

Saturday: Summer Cobb Salad– Summer….wishful thinking. Essentially, this is a “clean out the produce” salad. Use whatever fruits and vegetables that you have, on top of whatever kind of greens you like. I love big salads. You can not eat too many fruits and vegetables. Load up, and then you have room left over for dessert.

Sunday: Magic Mushroom Sauce– This stuff is seriously easy and seriously delicious. You will not taste the cashews, but if you’re not a mushroom fan- I’m sorry. This recipe post gives many examples for how to use this sauce. It’s a perfect vegan replacement for alfredo sauce, is delicious on chicken, or mixed with quinoa and vegetables and baked as a casserole.