Next Week's Meal Plan: 5 Easy Meals for Busy Holiday Weeks

Next Week's Meal Plan: 5 Easy Meals for Busy Holiday Weeks

Meghan Splawn
Dec 9, 2017
(Image credit: The Kitchn)

This week is bookended by Christmas tree hunting and cookie decorating adventures, along with a few parties and a family birthday dinner, so my dinner objective is to feed us plenty of vegetables and protein without much fuss.

I'm still planning on making my family's favorite comfort foods, like pasta and pizza, but they'll be filled with vegetables to help balance out the celebratory feasts we'll be having elsewhere during the week.

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.

(Image credit: Joe Lingeman)

Monday: Pan-Roasted Cauliflower Pasta with Smoky Tomato Sauce

My 6-year-old is having a love affair with cauliflower right now, so I'm happy to tuck it into dinner once a week or more as long as she's eating it up. But this pasta dish also pleases a picky 3-year-old and my husband with its pizza-like qualities.

(Image credit: Joe Lingeman)

Tuesday: Thanksgiving Lentil Salad

This lentil salad is everything you want to eat during the winter: tender lentils, roasted sweet potatoes, toasty pecans, and sharp onions with strands of kale. My kids will actually eat this sans kale and with toasted bread on the side. I'll make a huge batch to eat for lunches this week too.

(Image credit: Joe Lingeman)

Wednesday: Slow Cooker Pork and Cider Stew

This pork stew is a perfect weeknight dinner party recipe. You can start it in the morning before work, come home and throw a salad together and cut up some crusty bread, and welcome guests with cold cider and this incredible stew. That's exactly what we intend to do in the middle of the week.

(Image credit: Lauren Volo)

Thursday: Red Beans & Rice in an Electric Pressure Cooker

This was my husband's dinner request and he's throwing this together, as he has recently taken to experimenting with the Instant Pot. We are swapping white rice for brown and will go easy on the spices for the kiddos, but this is a family favorite.

(Image credit: Emma Christensen)

Friday: Pizza with Crispy Kale, Butternut Squash, Bacon & Smoked Mozzarella

I'm totally going out on a limb with this one, because pizza with kale is hard to pass by my kids, but this is what I'm craving for pizza Friday! I'll make sure there's extra dough to make more pizzas without kale, just in case.

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