Maybe it’s pregnancy, nesting, or it’s just a new fun “hobby,” but I’ve been really into finding new recipes recently!
Some of them have been healthy and some have been…well, not healthy, but definitely still delicious! 🙂 Bjorn was gone for a month this summer for army, and that’s when I got a bit carried away with desserts! Hypothetically, it’s a little dangerous for me as a pregnant mama to sit home alone with my daughter and a huge batch of raspberry dark chocolate cookies. Hypothetically. 😉
Anyway, for meals I’ve been trying to lean towards more healthy but non-extravagant options. It’s been fun for me to watch various YouTube mamas share about their meal prep plans or their family’s favorite recipes. Because as fun as it is to peruse Pinterest for the most lovely or delicious looking meal idea, those sometimes end up being way too ambitious and exhausting, making them unrealistic for a busy mom!
I’ve been keeping a list of meal ideas and recipes on my free Evernote account (my FAVORITE note-taking service, because it syncs between your phone and computer), although I’m in the market for a new way to organize and store recipes efficiently (there’s that nesting bug again!). I asked you all on Instagram the other day how you store and refer to recipes. It seemed like the majority of you do a hybrid system (Pinterest being the digital aspect of recipe keeping), with a lot of mentions of recipe binders. There’s something so homey about having recipe cards, though! Part of me wants to do that as well! 🙂
Today I wanted to share the meals we’ve actually made – and enjoyed! – in our household recently. I’ll try to cite original sources wherever possible, although in a lot of cases, these notes of mine are including tweaks that I have made for our family.
At the end of the post, just for fun, I’m also including a list of what I have planned for this week. This will have breakfast ideas, snack ideas, and meal ideas as well.
** Note: like I mentioned earlier, I’ve been trying to lean in a healthier direction lately but not all of the meals in today’s post would be considered super health food. I’m not a dietitian; I’m just a pregnant mama of a busy toddler, married to a busy husband, and trying to feed my family well while not exhausting myself with ambitious recipes! 😀 So there’s my little disclaimer. Thank you for reading!
Again, the recipes listed in this first portion of the blog post are ones we’ve actually tried. At the end of the post, I’ll include some new recipes we’re trying this week.
Oatmeal Raisin Bake: adapted from Now That I’m a Mother
- 3 c. rolled oats
- 3/4 c. honey (more or less, depending on sweetness preference)
- 1 tsp. cinnamon
- 2 tsp. baking powder
- 1 tsp. salt
- 1 c. milk
- 2 eggs
- 1/2 c. melted butter
- raisins (2-3 of those small snack boxes; eye it)
Pour into a 9×13 pan. (It’ll look pretty moist.) Bake at 350 for about 28 minutes. To serve, just spoon some out into a bowl, pour milk over it, and heat it up in the microwave!
Superfood Breakfast Cookies: my own recipe (click HERE to see the actual blog post with photos, etc.)
- 2 1/2 cups old-fashioned oats
- 1 1/2 cups flour
- 1 cup dried blueberries & cranberries (can be found sold as a salad topping)
- 1 cup pumpkin seeds (pepitas)
- 3/4 cup ground flaxseed
- 2 T. chia seeds
- 2 tsp. cinnamon
- 1 1/4 tsp. baking powder
- 1/2 tsp. salt
- 1 cup applesauce (I used sweetened)
- 6 T. melted coconut oil
- 6 T. honey
- 4 T. milk (I used the whole milk we had on hand
Preheat oven to 325. In a large bowl, combine oats, flour, dried fruit, pumpkin seeds, ground flaxseed, chia seeds, cinnamon, baking powder, and salt. Stir in applesauce, melted coconut oil, honey, and milk. Let the mixture rest for a few minutes (to let the flaxseed and chia seeds thicken the dough).
Use a 1/4 cup measure to scoop out the dough and place it on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Use your hands to flatten and shape the dough into round, thick cookies. (If the dough is way too sticky to shape, add a little more flax seed or oats. If it’s too thick, add more milk. Between batches, I like to chill the dough so it doesn’t get too sticky before shaping it!) The cookies don’t spread that much during baking so you can fit at least 12 onto the baking sheet at a time.
Bake for 15 minutes. Remove from pan and let cool. Store in fridge. Makes 20-30 cookies.
Lunch & Dinner:
Layered Mason Jar Salads: adapted from Now That I’m a Mother
- 1.5 cups uncooked quinoa, cooked in chicken broth (or in water with half a vegetable bouillon cube thrown in)
- 2 sweet potatoes, diced and seasoned with chili powder, salt, garlic salt, and oil
- leaf lettuce or arugula, chopped up
- plain almonds, chopped
- 1 red bell pepper, diced
- cherry tomatoes, diced
- purple onion, diced very small (set much of this aside so people can add their own amount later)
- shredded parmesan cheese
Layer salads into 4 large mason jars: quinoa first, then roasted sweet potatoes, tomatoes, bell pepper, purple onion (just a little), with lettuce on top.
- Dressing (5-6 T. tahini, 5-6 tsp. olive oil, 1.5 tsp. garlic salt, the juice of 1 lime, salt & pepper to taste, and several T. honey).
Veggie Turkey Quiche: adapted from Blessed Nest
- normal size pie shell: thaw 15-20 min on counter (can also try pre-baking it)
- avocado oil
- chopped onion
- turkey sausage
- broccoli florets, chopped up quite small
- salt, pepper, garlic powder
- 6-8 eggs (less if you don’t have a very deep dish pie shell)
- cream/whole milk
- shredded white cheddar cheese
In skillet in avocado oil: Saute chopped onion, turkey sausage, and broccoli florets. Season with salt, pepper, and garlic powder. Whip up 6-8 eggs with a splash of cream and salt and pepper. Shred your white cheddar. Put veggie/sausage filling in shell. Pour egg mix over it. Top with the shredded cheese (about a cup or so) and more pepper. Bake 30-40 min at 350 degrees.
Southwest Chicken Wraps: adapted from Justine Marie
- 2 cups shredded rotisserie chicken
- 6 whole wheat wraps, or flatbread wraps
- 2-3 roma tomatoes, diced (other tomatoes may make it too juicy)
- 1 red pepper, diced
- 1 avocado, diced
- 15-oz. can black beans, rinsed
- 1 1/2 cups frozen corn, thawed
- 1 head romaine lettuce / 1 large bunch of leaf lettuce, chopped
- Sauce: 1 T. taco seasoning, 1 1/2 cups plain Greek yogurt (regular plain yogurt or sour cream work too if you don’t have Greek yogurt), 1/2 lime juiced
Stir together sauce ingredients in a large bowl. Add in all other ingredients except for lettuce. To assemble wraps, spoon the chicken and sauce mixture into a wrap/flatbread. Then add chopped lettuce and roll up. Enjoy!
Avocado Caprese Salad: adapted from Blair Lamb
- spring mix
- fresh mozzarella pearls
- cherry tomatoes
- balsamic vinaigrette
- fresh basil leaves, chopped
- thinly sliced red onion
- avocado, diced
- rotisserie chicken
- optional: grated carrot
Toss salad together! Serve alongside french bread with butter (Kerrygold butter is AMAZING with french bread), a baked potato/sweet potato (whole or diced up), a flatbread pizza, etc.
Zesty Kale Grain Bowls: adapted from Now That I’m a Mother
- 1.5 or so cups uncooked quinoa, cooked in chicken broth (or in water with half a vegetable bouillon cube thrown in)
- 1-2 sweet potatoes, diced
- chili powder, garlic powder, olive oil, onion powder, black pepper, salt
- 1 red bell pepper
- 1/2 cup plain almonds, chopped
- fresh cilantro, chopped
- 1-2 avocados
- 1 lime
- olive/avocado oil
- feta cheese or shredded parmesan
Cook quinoa. Season 1-2 diced sweet potatoes with 1/4 tsp. salt, 1 tsp. chili powder, 1/2 tsp. garlic powder, 3 tsp. olive oil, 1/2 tsp. onion powder, and some black pepper. Put potato on baking sheet. Then slice 1 red bell pepper thinly and toss in the bowl in some olive oil. Add peppers to baking sheet, too, and bake at 400 degrees till cooked. Pull out peppers once cooked and consider cooking potatoes longer (both take around 20 minutes). Chop up 1/2 cup almonds. Grate 1 tsp. of lime zest. Toast almonds in a small skillet for 2-3 min with a tsp of olive oil, adding 1/2 tsp. chili powder, 1/8 tsp. of salt, a little pinch of the lime zest, and some honey. Cook for a minute or so till almonds are candied.
To make dressing: whisk together 5 tsp. oil, 1/2 tsp. salt, 1 tsp. lime zest, 1/4 tsp. black pepper, 2 T. lime juice, and some chopped fresh cilantro. Then chop up some kale quite small, and massage it. Slice fresh avocado. Assemble bowls with quinoa first, add all the fixings, and add feta cheese (or shredded parmesan) and the dressing on top.
What’s on our meal plan this week:
Apple Cinnamon Oatmeal Cups: from Beauty & the Beastons
- 3 c. oats
- 1 tsp. baking powder
- 1 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp. salt
- 1 c. milk
- 2 eggs
- 1/2 cup maple syrup
- 1 tsp. vanilla
- 1 cup chopped apple (about 1 apple)
Combine ingredients. Bake in muffin tin (and in liners if possible) at 350 degrees for 25 minutes. Store in fridge for up to 1 week.
Egg Cups: from Beauty & the Beastons
- 2 c. broccoli, chopped
- 3 slices bacon, cooked and diced
- 8 eggs
- 1/4 c. milk
- 1/2 tsp. salt
- 1/2 tsp. pepper
- 1/2 c. shredded cheese
Distribute all chopped veggies and bacon into muffin tin. Pour egg mixture on top. Top with shredded cheese. Bake at 350 degrees for 25 minutes or until done. To serve, just heat up cups in microwave.
Frozen Yogurt Bark: from Beauty & the Beastons
- about a cup of fresh fruit, chopped up small
- 1 large container Greek yogurt (any flavor)
Cut up fresh fruit (she used strawberries). Spray nonstick cooking spray onto a large rectangle of parchment paper. Grab a 9×9 or 9×13 type baking dish that you can freeze. Evenly spread half of the container of Greek yogurt onto the parchment paper in the pan. Sprinkle fruit on top. Freeze overnight. Then to serve, you can cut it and pop out chunks of it to eat! PS – although chocolate chips are fun sprinkled on top, when frozen, they may become too hard for toddler’s little teeth!
Energy Bites: from Simply Allie
- 1 c. old fashioned oats
- 1 c. shredded sweetened coconut (sweetened has a softer texture)
- 1/2 c. ground flaxseed
- 1/2 c. mini chocolate chips
- 1/2 c. almond or peanut butter
- 1/3 c. honey
- 1 tsp. vanilla
Mix all ingredients together, roll into 1-inch balls, and store in fridge.
Lunch Idea: Grilled Cheese Sandwiches + Smoothies for lunch. Idea from Jordan Page (Fun Cheap or Free)
Dinner Idea: Penne pasta, with sweet Italian sausage (taken out of casings and browned and crumbled), and alfredo sauce, with roasted veggies on the side. Idea from Beauty & the Beastons.
Dinner Idea: Pita Bread Pizzas.
Dinner Idea: Chicken Parmesan Pasta. Cook penne, put in bottom of a 9×13 baking dish. Take cooked chicken tenders and lay on top. Doctor up a store-bought pasta sauce with fresh basil, some chunks of fresh tomatoes, some spices, sugar, and a splash of milk/cream (but don’t curdle it). Drizzle sauce on top. Then sprinkle shredded mozzarella on top. Broil. Serve with French bread and a salad. Idea from Jordan Page (Fun Cheap or Free).
Snack Ideas: veggie straws, dried apple chips, and energy balls (mentioned above).
Well, there you have it, friends! A lot of great tried-and-true recipes that our family’s been loving, plus a peek at what we’ll be making and trying out this week! I’d love to hear if you end up trying any of these meal ideas or recipes for yourself! As always, feel free to shoot me a message on Instagram or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I love being in touch with all of you!
Have a great week!