Now that summer is here and the farmer’s markets are back in swing, our meal planning has changed a little bit. Instead of selecting recipes, making a grocery list, and then hitting the grocery scene- we allow for a little more flexibility. Since we never know what fresh and inspiring things we’ll find at the market, we have a general idea of the main courses we want, but then leave the side dishes up to what looks good from the local farmers.
After arriving home with our produce, we scoured the cookbooks together, looking for just the right recipes to use our ingredients in for the week. Our boys are generally good veggie-eaters, but knowing they picked out the vegetables plus the recipes to use them in makes healthy eating much more exciting. This must be the best kept secret in getting kids interested in real food!
Want even more Paleo dinner inspiration? You’ll find an entire archive of past meal plans HERE – we hope to help you incorporate balanced meals into your weekly planning.
Here’s what we ate for dinner this week:
Monday: Kalua Pig, Plantain Fritters, and Salad
—> Kalua Pig recipe from Nom Nom Paleo, made super quick and easy in the Instant Pot
—> Fried Green Plantains recipe from Nom Nom Paleo
—> Salad is whatever Veg we have in the fridge, but you can find inspiration —> HERE!
We’ve been using our Instant Pot more and more lately- it’s perfect for summer when we don’t want to heat up the kitchen, but still want to cook some of the more affordable, slow-cooking, tougher cuts of meat. Plus, we’re running around enjoying the warm weather and don’t have a ton of time to spend in the kitchen! We can’t recommend one of these pots enough! Kalua pig is simple and always delicious, and the leftovers are even better!
Tuesday: Smashed Steak Skewers with Cherry Barbecue Sauce and Pistachio Apple Salad
—> Smashed Steak Skewers with Cherry Barbecue Sauce recipe from Nom Nom Paleo, also in Nom Nom Paleo: Food for Humans
—> Pistachio Apple Salad from Nom Nom Paleo: Food for Humans
Another winning dinner! The cherry barbecue sauce was incredible (you can buy a similar, pre-made version here if you don’t want to make it) on the steak, and this salad was the perfect pair for a light, refreshing weeknight meal.
Wednesday: Little Sister’s Birthday Party
Instead of cake, my sister requested a real-food, healthy dessert option for her birthday. She had the most incredible spread of fruits (including some dipped in chocolate!) to go along with grilled steak kabobs and a big, beautiful spring salad!
Thursday: Mussels and Summer Vegetable Casserole
—> Mussels from the freezer section of Trader Joe’s
—> Summer Vegetable Casserole recipe from The Paleo Cupboard Cookbook
We knew we would be out of the house all afternoon and wouldn’t have much time to make dinner. Matt prepped the veggie casserole ahead of time, and all we had to do when we got home in the evening was pour the mussels into a pan and heat them for a few minutes. Lots of veggies and nutrient-dense seafood (convenience food!) on the table in less than 5 minutes!
Friday: Peruvian Chicken Takeout
We love this meal so much that we had to re-create the recipe, which you can find —> HERE! For dinner in a pinch, Peruvian chicken, yuca fries or plantains, and a quick salad is one of our take-out go-to’s!
Saturday: Asian Short Ribs, Grilled Pineapple, Mango Salad
—> Asian Short Ribs recipe on our blog and also in Beyond Bacon
—> Pineapple slices simply grilled for a couple minutes on each side
—> Mango salad was from Trader Joe’s
Our secret is using pork backbones instead of short ribs- they are super meaty, incredibly tender, and pretty affordable. We grilled some pineapple slices alongside these sticky-sweet ribs, and threw together a quick mango salad from the store.
Sunday: Chicken in Champagne Sauce, Mashed Cauliflower and Spring Peas in Butter
—> Chicken in Champagne Sauce recipe from The Domestic Man
—> Cauli-Mash recipe from Beyond Bacon
—> Fresh peas from the farmer’s market, sautéed in butter for a few minutes
This was every bit as delicious as it looked! Comfort food at its finest, thanks to Russ’s chicken recipe and our favorite mashed cauliflower, along with the gorgeous peas we found at the farmer’s market… all swimming in insanely flavorful champagne sauce! In case you’re wondering… the secret to getting cauliflower puree this smooth and silky is steaming it until tender, and then putting it through the Blendtec with plenty of melted lard!