I want to keep my readers interested and it seems you guys need to be kept on your toes!  This past weekend I had a big wedding with three events to attend with many wonderful and interesting people!!  I received some welcome feedback about topics you guys are interested in reading!  Love your ideas, by the way!!  One of the more frequent comments has been, “I want to eat healthy and I’m willing to cook, I just don’t know what cook or eat”.

My current endeavor is to create a manual containing everything you need to know without doing anything boring or confusing, like counting your macro intake.  This book will contain menu cycles, each 3 weeks long with no repetition.  Each 3 week cycle will then be used for a total of 3 months.  It will include grocery lists for each week and lots of other helpful stuff!  I have so many ideas for this book!  I’m just getting started and I’ll figure things out along the way.  Eventually, I hope this book will be available for purchase and I can take care of all the planning for you!

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Since this may take years, I’m going to help you out and tell you what to cook this week:

Baked Ziti.  It doesn’t have to be complicated.  Boil some ziti and layer with a store-bought jar of marinara with garlic and basil, low-fat ricotta and reduced-fat mozzarella (slices work nicely).  Heat the marinara in a large skillet and add 1 lb of fresh spinach, just until wilted.  If you want, top with a little parmesan and bake at 375º for 20 minutes.  You can put this thing together the night before, just add about 10 minutes to the cooking time.  You get bonus points if you use whole grain pasta.  Make 2 and freeze one for a busy evening ahead.

Chicken and Rice.  Not complicated.  Throw 3 boneless skinless chicken breasts into a crock pot with 1 can of low-sodium cream of mushroom soup and one can of low-sodium cream of chicken soup.  Cook on low all day.  Serve over 2 bags of Uncle Ben’s Natural Whole Grain Brown Rice.  The night before mix up sliced cucumbers and chopped grape tomatoes with some store-bought, low-fat zesty Italian dressing.  Refrigerate and serve with the chicken and rice.

Taco Soup ←click here for the recipe.  Skip the meat and get your protein from the beans in this soup to save loads of calories and fat.  Dice an onion.  If you don’t have one of these, you are wasting precious minutes of your day:

There is an amazing attachment that will dice an onion in about 2 seconds.  Unfortunately, Amazon doesn’t sell the attachment, but you can get it here: All-Clad Immersion Blender Accessories.  Saute the onion in a little olive oil, just until translucent.  Add to crockpot. Rinse and drain 1 can of corn and toss into pot with onions.  Throw in 1 can of pinto beans, 1 can of black beans and 2 cans of Rotel tomatoes.  Fling in a package of taco seasoning and a package of ranch salad dressing mix.  Sling it all around a bit and leave it in the crock pot on low all day.  Serve with some low-fat sour cream, low-fat shredded cheese and freshly sliced avocado.  Or make it even easier and catapult organic blue tortilla or quinoa chips on the table.  Serve it all in paper bowls and chuck all the dishes in the trash when everyone has licked their bowls…because they will.  Does it get any easier?  This soup freezes well too.

Cook nothing one night because I’m certain you have some leftovers to polish off in the fridge.

Slow-Cooker Pot Roast.  Here’s a link to an extraordinary recipe that I can’t wait to try Low-Fat Slow Cooker Pot Roast Recipe.  Use 1 1/2 tsp onion powder to avoid those watery eyes and save yourself a little time.  Use baby carrots, which are really just carrots that were cut by a machine, labeled with the title baby to make them extra cute.  This will save you time as well.  I would add a couple of cloves of minced garlic (1/2 tsp garlic powder for yet another time-saver), and a bag of Simply Potatoes, diced, but that’s just me.  For ultimate time-saving, throw it all in and skip the browning and herbs.  Dump a bottle of zesty Italian dressing in instead.  Done and done.

Simply Potatoes

It’s the weekend so, give yourself a break and ask someone else in the house to do the cooking.  Or make this super simple Three-Step Zucchini Flatbread.  Pizza is always a hit on Fridays and can be cut into small squares as an appetizer if social eating is on the agenda.  Click the link for the recipe on my blog.

Bring it home on Sunday with Chicken & Herbs de Provence and sweet potato wedges with Sriracha mayo dip.  Follow this link to make a skillet chicken breast moister than you could imagine.  Just season with salt, pepper and Herbs de Provence before cooking.  Before you heat your pan for this chicken, peel (or not) a few sweet potatoes.  Cut peeled or unpeeled potatoes into wedges and coat in olive oil and salt.  Roast at 425º for 40 minutes or until tender and browned on the edges.  Don’t forget to make the dip!  Mayo+Sriracha+grated garlic.  Make ahead if you want, just store in the fridge and give it a quick stir before serving.

A few of these meals are meatless which makes them even healthier.  If you don’t feel like you can do without the meat, just be sure to buy lean ground beef for the ziti and the taco soup.

Hopefully, you will have a more restful weekend, knowing that your meals have been planned for you next week!




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    1. That’s what I was going for! I hope you try a few! I know you are super busy and often get home late. On swim practice nights, the crock pot meals will be your best friend!

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