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what’s for dinner?
What's for dinner?
One of the most dreaded questions you can be asked.
No matter how many times we have cooked dinner in the past, it always feels like so much work to think of what to cook tonight.
The key to making dinner as easy as possible is rhythm and planning.
Creating a rhythm around your meals (looser than a routine or schedule) and planning out the week can take all the drama out of figuring out what's for dinner when you are already hungry and ready to eat.
One way to create rhythm is to plan out a different type of meal for each night of the week.
Our current pattern looks like this:
Monday -- chicken
Tuesday -- grain bowls
Wednesday -- burritos or taco salad
Thursday -- soup
Friday -- pasta for the kids, parents eat out
Saturday -- leftovers
Sunday -- snack board
This is just a loose rhythm. I change it up all the time, depending on what's going on that week and what I'm in the mood to cook/eat. And I change this outline every few months whenever I get bored or feel stuck.
Other possible options include in your rhythm:
* protein & roasted vegetables
* big salad
* ethnic food (Mexican, Italian, Thai, etc)
* breakfast for dinner
* homemade pizza
* "fix it yourself"
* new recipe night
You get the idea. Simply give each night a theme and it significantly narrows your choices. Have two or three favorite recipes for each night and rotate weekly, maybe adding in a new one every once in a while.
One client I work with always makes double every night that she cooks and then they eat leftovers on the next night. So her rhythm is cook, leftovers, cook, leftovers...
Make it easy on yourself.
Using this general rhythm, you can plan out your week and shopping list with much less drama and stress then when you start with every possible recipe available on Pinterest!
What ways have you found to make meal planning easy and drama-free? I'd love to hear about them!
This week on Monday I roasted a whole chicken and then used the meat off the bone to make an easy chicken curry. My kids helped me videotape the process.
Here's a link to the recipe we used for the curry. We substituted coconut oil for vegetable oil, the shredded, roasted chicken meat for raw chicken pieces, and monkfruit sweetener for the sugar. With these changes, this meal is gluten free, dairy free, and sugar free.
I served it with cauliflower rice (for me) and white rice (for the kids -- though they all tasted the cauliflower) and a salad. We made homemade cilantro lime dressing to go on top of the curry and a salad. (Though no one in my family likes salad dressing except me -- they are missing out!)
What are you having for dinner tonight?