Eating healthy food requires planning. We struggle every week to have healthy, local food on our table while holding down full-time jobs and parenting our two beautiful children who seem to know that dinnertime is THE WORST TIME for a meltdown.
I do my best to at least have some sort of a plan for what we’ll eat. The plan gets changed pretty much every week but at least it ensures that I have something to eat in the house.
When I’m reading/pinning recipes, there are a few key factors that lead me to immediately mark a recipe as NOT WEEKNIGHT FRIENDLY:
- Does it require any kind of full attention? I’m looking at you, pan fried anything. Even scrambled eggs can be a challenge with two little ones fighting at my feet. Stir fry also falls into the category of “This looks easy and this magazine thinks this is a great 15 minute weeknight meal.” It is hard (impossible) to stir fry anything when you are holding a fussy baby.
- Does it require forethought? Let’s say a recipe requires marinating or thawing. This is probably not the weeknight recipe for me. Our weekdays are HECTIC and I have no faith in my own brain (except on Sunday meal prep day- that is my saving grace.)
- Does it have any bizarre or unfamiliar ingredients? I don’t have time to learn new things at the moment. If your recipe calls for, say, anchovy paste, or a type of noodle that isn’t spaghetti, I have to say goodbye.
We do eat every day though, and I’ll share those recipes here that I have tested and given the “Harried Mom Seal of Approval.”
Now after that rant, here’s what we ARE eating this week. This is a pretty lame meal plan but it’s a realistic look at what we can accomplish during the week:
Sunday: Stir fry! (Sundays are a day that we can co-wrangle the kids so this is actually possible)
Monday: Tacos (family favorite!) Pro tip- we precook the meat (which we procure as responsibly as possible) during nap time Sundays.
Tuesday: Breakfast for dinner (we pre-make waffles and pancakes and freeze, and I will be cooking the bacon during Sunday nap time as well.) Since we have chickens, we have a lot of egg-based meals.
Wednesday: Spaghetti with meat sauce
Thursday: Baked potato bar! (AKA take everything out of the fridge plus cheese and potatoes for dinner. I’ll save some of the bacon for this from above)
Friday: We have a standing pizza date with our family every Friday so this is a “free” night
One thing that makes our life WAY easier is buying on bulk at Amazon or other stores. Some items we’ve bought in bulk are: taco shells, bean, rice, flour, applesauce, sugar. Always looking for ways to be more efficient – what do you do to make your weeknights easier?