Have a poke around Pinterest or a scroll through YouTube and you’ll soon find that there are a million and a half ways to meal plan.
Today, I’d like to talk about just one of them. This rather minimalist approach to meal planning involves selecting “default meals” for each dinner of the week. That way, when the 5 o’clock, “I’m too tired to think about what’s for dinner rolls around,” you’re already sorted. And because rotating through JUST seven dinners can feel a bit limiting for some, I thought it might be fun to explore the possibilities of a TWO-WEEK minimalist meal plan.
A few breakfast, snack, and lunch options for each week + 14 dinners. Sounds easy enough, right? There are plenty of opportunities for substitutions and mild modifications to keep things interesting. And the best part? If you’re out for the night and won’t be preparing dinner — just skip that night’s dinner. You can pick it back up the next time the day rolls around.
Here’s what I came up with…
Week One –
At home (think weekends): Greek yogurt bowls with banana, berries, and granola
On the run (think week days): Green smoothies or toast with nut butter and fruit
At home: Black bean quesadillas with avocado and fruit
Packed: Salad in a jar with whole wheat crackers
Ants on a log, veggies with hummus, and “energy” protein balls
Monday: Chili and cornbread
Tuesday: Deconstructed cabbage rolls and steamed broccoli
Wednesday: Roast chicken (or rotisserie) and root veggies
Thursday: Pasta and salad
Friday: Tacos (or taco bowl) and corn (or corn chips with guac)
Saturday: Soup and garlic bread and salad
Sunday: Breakfast for dinner
Daily treat: a couple squares from a bar of dark chocolate
Special treat: Banana “nice” cream
At home: Pancakes
On the run: Egg cups with fruit or apple cinnamon steel cut oats
At home: Chicken salad over greens with fruit
Fruit, roasted chickpeas, air-popped popcorn
Monday: Thai food
Tuesday: Hummus tuna melt and steamed broccoli
Wednesday: Buffalo chicken nuggets and sweet potato tots
Thursday: Steak and roasted potatoes
Friday: Black bean burgers and fries and kale salad
Saturday: Homemade pizza
Sunday: Shop the pantry/fridge and throw something together!
Daily treat: chocolate covered pretzels
Special treat: chocolate chip cookies
The above is an example of a Two-Week Minimalist Meal Plan that would work for me and my family. To create your own, think about the types of dinners you turn to time and time again. Which do you enjoy cooking? Which ones taste delicious at the end of a busy day? Happy meal planning! (Need more inspiration?)
Do any of you meal plan? Would you consider this minimalist approach?
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