3 meals, 15 ingredients

I live by meal planning. In my opinion, it is the most useful resource for eating well. Meal planning can help you eat healthier and save money. Winning.

There are a lot of meal services out there today, like Blue Apron and HelloFresh, but I’m sticking by doing my own meal planning and grocery shopping. I know it’s not feasible for everyone but if you can meal plan, shop, and prep yourself, you will be creating less waste – which is important for our globe’s health.

I’ve been planning weekday dinners for so long now, I have my system down pat (you can read about it here) but I wanted to post something that could help others who have never planned a weekly dinner menu.

I think starting with a simple base of ingredients is helpful. I’ve created 3 NOM meals with just 15 ingredients. Literally everything you need for these dinners is included below. How simple is that?!

I purchased mostly everything at my local Trader Joe’s but there aren’t really any specific ingredients that can’t be found another grocery store. And odds are, you’ll probably have a few things in your kitchen already.

Not photographed: sourdough bread and frozen peas

I bought enough for 2 people for 3 unique meals + one “leftovers meal.” If you’re flyin’ solo or have a bigger household, you’ll have to adjust the quantities.

Now, without further ado, your shopping list:

  1. Loaf of sourdough bread (or something else crusty and good for toast)
  2. Garlic (to mince)
  3. Bag of spinach
  4. Package of zucchini (2-3 big zucs or 7-8 small ones)
  5. Peas (I bought frozen)
  6. Box of mushrooms (about one cup)
  7. 8 – 10 small tomatoes
  8.  Small bag of farro (mine had 8.8 ounces in it)
  9. Veg broth
  10. One container ricotta cheese
  11. One container parmesan cheese (I got big hunks of it)
  12. Olive oil
  13. Lemons
  14. Salt & pepper
  15. Basil

Below are the 3 recipes I made with the above 15 ingredients. Check back soon for all of the recipes. 🙂

Nom #1

Summer Style Zucchini Lasagna and toast 

A lighter twist on the traditional comforting lasagna. This recipe is packed with veggies so it doesn’t call for much cheese. The noodles are replaced with zucchini. Additionally, I didn’t use a jarred sauce to save on sodium intake. Talk about a great summer dish!

Nom #2

Pea and Parmesan Farro with side of roasted veg

This recipe is quick and satisfying! Plus, it makes a lot so half of it can be saved and used for another meal. It looks and tastes fancier than it is; with the nutty farro and decadent parmesan, plus the peas give it a nice splash of green.

Nom #3

Smashed Pea Bruschetta with sautéed spinach and mushrooms

This dish! All of the nom and flavor and perfection. The flavors burst. It’s creamy with a perfect crunch. It is probably my favorite creation. And, bonus points, it’s easy-peasy (pun intended).

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