Next Week’s Meal Plan: 5 Easy Dinners from a Mom of 4

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(Image credit: Joe Lingeman/ The Kitchn)

I feel like the week when vacation ends and everyone goes back to school is the week I want my easiest, sure-fire winner recipes. As I’m elbow-deep in laundry, spending quality time in the carpool lane, and mopping my neglected floor, I don’t want to worry about what to make for dinner or, worse, hearing a bunch of complaining when everyone arrives at the table!

Here are five recipes that make life infinitely easier for my family of six.

Welcome to This Week’s Meal Plan

Planning my weekly meals is a habit I enjoy. Since I’m frequently asked by friends and family what I’m cooking for dinner each week, I thought it’d be useful to share my weekly meal plan here. Whether you’re just learning to meal plan and looking for a real-life example of how this works or you’re an old pro on the hunt for inspiration, here’s a peek at how I’m feeding my family this week.

New to meal planning? Start here.

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(Image credit: Janssen Bradshaw)

Nothing makes me feel like I’m starting the week out on a high note like having dinner in the slow cooker by 9 a.m. on Monday morning. Plus, everyone in my family is obsessed with cream cheese, so this is an easy sell.

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(Image credit: Joe Lingeman)

This dish sounds fancy, but by serving it up casserole-style instead of fussily assembling each individual serving and using shortcuts like frozen broccoli florets and precooked chicken, it’s actually quite easy. And, most importantly, it’s delicious.

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(Image credit: Janssen Bradshaw)

A sandwich can absolutely be dinner, as long as its loaded with flavor (and a little something green, for good measure). By serving these BLTs on bagels, they feel far from a sad, brown-bag lunch.

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(Image credit: One Lovely Life)

This meal couldn’t be easier — just throw everything for the sloppy Joe portion in the slow cooker. Then, just before dinner, bake or microwave some potatoes and voila! Dinner is ready.

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(Image credit: Janssen Bradshaw)

Movie night with homemade pizza is the perfect way to kick off the weekend. This pepperoni pizza is our family’s favorite; we make it almost every Friday night.

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