A Simple Plan

My menu planning was very simple this week. We entertained three times last week and I just wanted to take it easy for a few days.

Here was the plan:

Monday: Roast Chicken (from the buy one get one free sale at Giant last week) with roasted
vegetables and potatoes (all of which I bought at Produce Junction). (I'm going to use another set of parentheses to mention that I also took a stale loaf of french bread from Sunday's dinner, cut it up into cubes, tossed them with olive oil and Mrs. Dash Italian Medley, and roasted them in the oven on 400 degrees for 5 minutes to make croutons to use throughout the week)

Tuesday: Meatloaf Sandwiches (from the left-over meatloaf we had from Sunday dinner. A few weeks ago, I got some individual little ciabatta rolls. I wrapped each one up and froze them. On Tuesday morning, I pulled two rolls out of the freezer and put them in the fridge. At dinner time, I toasted them in my toaster oven and melted some provolone cheese on two slices of meatloaf.

Cheesy meatloaf on top of crusty bread + ketchup = Delicious

Wednesday: We had a snow day and were both home! I pulled some of the turkey chili I made a
few weeks ago out of the freezer and heated it up for lunch. Yummy! For dinner I made a new recipe using some chicken I thawed from the freezer (from a buy one get one free sale on packages of boneless skinless chicken breasts a few weeks ago). I saw a recipe in a cookbook I have all about chicken that I thought I would play around with. I made a few changes and got this:

Pesto Chicken and Vegetables over Pasta
1 box of bow-tie pasta (farfalle)
4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
1 cup of Northern Italian salad dressing
3 or 4 Peppers - red, yellow, orange, or green....I used red - cut into quarters
3 medium zucchini (halved lengthwise)
1 jar of prepared pesto
Croutons (Italian seasoned or homemade like the ones described under '"Monday" above)*
  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Pound chicken until it is even in thickness (you can skip this step but I find it makes the chicken cook so much nicer).
  2. Make pasta according to package directions.
  3. Combine the chicken breasts, peppers, zucchini, and Italian dressing in a bowl...making sure the dressing coats the chicken and vegetables.
  4. Spread the chicken and vegetables in an even layer on a rimmed baking sheet and roast for 15 to 20 minutes (until chicken is cooked through).
  5. Cut the chicken and the vegetables into bite sized pieces.
  6. Combine cooked pasta with chicken, vegetables, croutons, and pesto in a large bowl.
  7. Serve hot or refrigerate and serve cold.
*You don't really need the croutons, but I loved how they soaked up the dressing and pesto and added a crunchy texture to the dish.

Thursday: Leftovers (I had leftover turkey chili and Sonny had leftover pesto chicken and veggies). I also took some avocados that I got at Produce Junction on Sunday and scooped out their yummy insides, added some salt and pepper, and scooped the guacamole up with tortilla chips.

Friday: PF Chang's with friends (only the BEST restaurant ever!) Yay for gift cards leftover from Christmas!

Saturday: Spaghetti and Meatballs (I keep a bag of already cooked turkey meatballs in the freezer) I just throw the frozen meatballs in some store bought sauce and they thaw quickly.

I made a whole week of meals with stuff I had in the freezer and a few things I picked up at the store. Simple and stress-free!


  1. ooo I'm going to have to try that pesto pasta.

    I also wanted to say I made the baked ziti with turkey sausage and I actually did it! I can be your testimony that complete cooking ignoramuses can make it. I doubled the sausage (since the man loves his protein) and the whole thing was very delicious. Since it's just my roommate and I we have happily been eating the leftovers this week :)

  2. That's great, Allison. I love making baked ziti because you can eat it for days!
    The pesto pasta also yields a lot and we've been able to bring it for lunch for a couple of days.