7 Day Menu Planner by Susan Nicholson

7 Day Menu Planner For January 19, 2014

Sunday Family

Celebrate family day with your own LEG OF LAMB. Serve it with a Southern favorite, CHEESE AND GARLIC GRITS. Heat oven to 350 degrees. Coat a 7-by-11-inch baking dish with cooking spray. Bring 4 cups water to boil in a large saucepan. Stir in 1 cup quick grits and 1/2 teaspoon garlic salt. Reduce heat to medium-low; cover and cook 5 to 7 minutes or until thickened, stirring occasionally. Stir in 1 (10 3/4-ounce) can condensed less-sodium, less-fat cheddar cheese soup (such as Healthy Request), 1 tablespoon butter and 1/8 teaspoon hot pepper sauce; mix well. Spread mixture in dish. Sprinkle with 1/2 cup 50 percent reduced-fat sharp cheddar cheese and garnish with paprika. Bake 15 to 20 minutes or until bubbly and cheese melts.

Serve with steamed CARROTS and BAGUETTES. For dessert, buy a BOSTON CREAM PIE.

Save enough lamb, grits and pie for Monday.

Shopping List

leg of lamb, cooking spray, quick grits, garlic salt, canned condensed less-sodium, less-fat cheddar cheese soup, butter, hot pepper sauce, 50 percent reduced-fat sharp cheddar cheese, paprika, carrots, baguettes, Boston cream pie.

Monday Heat and Eat

Make LAMB SANDWICHES for an easy meal. Brush slices of rosemary bread (or focaccia) with olive oil. Top with sliced lamb, roasted red pepper strips (from a jar), sliced tomatoes, red-tip lettuce and goat cheese. Warm the leftover GRITS to accompany the knock-your-socks-off flavor of the sandwich. Finish with leftover PIE.

Shopping List

rosemary bread (or focaccia), olive oil, jar roasted red peppers, tomatoes, red-tip lettuce, goat cheese.

Tuesday Meatless

It takes a little extra time, but RISOTTO WITH BLACK OLIVES AND ROASTED RED PEPPERS is worth it. Serve the creamy rice concoction with an ITALIAN SALAD and GARLIC BREAD. For dessert, try TROPICAL FRUITS.

Shopping List

olive oil, arborio rice, dry white wine, low-sodium vegetable broth, canned no-salt-added corn, jar roasted red peppers, canned sliced black olives, dried tarragon, Italian salad, garlic bread, canned or fresh tropical fruits.

Wednesday Budget

We never mind low-cost menus, especially when they have as much flavor as LENTILS WITH BACON AND TOMATOES. Serve the high-fiber dish with a SPINACH SALAD and FLATBREAD. PEACHES work for dessert.

Shopping List

bacon, canola oil, onion, dry lentils, quick-cooking barley, canned lower-sodium beef broth, cumin, allspice, canned stewed tomatoes, fresh parsley, fresh spinach, flatbread, peaches.

Thursday Kids

Tell the kids they are having PIGS IN A JACKET for dinner and watch them laugh. Spread vegetarian refried beans on fat-free flour tortillas. Place heated hot dogs (such as Applegate) on the beans. Top with any shredded cheese; roll and heat in the microwave until the cheese melts. Make a SALAD by tossing shredded lettuce with chopped tomatoes and ranch-style dressing. For dessert, FRESH ORANGE SLICES are refreshing.

Shopping List

vegetarian refried beans, fat-free flour tortillas, hot dogs (such as Applegate), any shredded cheese, lettuce, tomatoes, ranch-style dressing, oranges.

Friday Express

Try BREAKFAST-FOR-DINNER BURRITOS. In a large nonstick skillet coated with cooking spray, cook 1/2 cup chopped onion 4 minutes on medium or until softened. Add 1 cup egg substitute (such as Eggbeaters Southwestern-Style or another brand and flavor); sprinkle with black pepper to taste. Cook and stir mixture until eggs are set. Divide mixture evenly among 4 (8-inch) warmed fat-free flour tortillas; top with 1/2 cup shredded 50 percent reduced-fat sharp cheddar cheese. Fold tortillas over egg mixture; top with drained salsa.

Serve with HASH-BROWNED POTATOES (frozen). For dessert, make instant BANANA PUDDING with 1 percent milk. Stir in sliced bananas and garnish with vanilla wafers.

Shopping List

cooking spray, onion, egg substitute, black pepper, fat-free flour tortillas, 50 percent reduced-fat sharp cheddar cheese, salsa, frozen hash-browned potatoes, instant banana pudding, 1 percent milk, bananas, vanilla wafers.

Saturday Easy Entertaining

Invite friends for delicious ASIAN FLOUNDER. Remove tops from 8 green onions; slice them into 1-inch pieces to measure 1/4 cup; set aside. Cut white portion into 2-inch pieces.

Combine 1/4 cup minced fresh cilantro, 1 tablespoon peeled, minced fresh ginger and 1 teaspoon dark sesame (toasted) oil in a 7-by-11-inch baking dish. Fold 4 (5- or 6-ounce) skinless flounder fillets in half crosswise. Arrange fish spokelike with thinnest portions toward center of baking dish. Arrange white part of onions around fillets. Combine onion tops, 1 more teaspoon dark sesame oil and 2 teaspoons low-sodium soy sauce and pour over fish. Cover and vent with plastic wrap. Microwave on high (100 percent power) 4 minutes or until fish is opaque throughout. Let stand 1 minute, covered. Spoon liquid over fish. Garnish with a lemon slice and serve with JASMINE RICE.

Add fresh steamed SUGAR SNAP PEAS, a BIBB LETTUCE SALAD and SOURDOUGH ROLLS. LEMON-BLUEBERRY ANGEL CAKE DESSERT is a delicious and beautiful lower-calorie dessert.

Shopping List

green onions, fresh cilantro, fresh ginger, dark sesame oil, flounder fillets, low-sodium soy sauce, lemon, jasmine rice, fresh sugar snap peas, bibb lettuce, sourdough rolls, angel food cake, Neufchatel cheese, frozen light whipped dessert topping, fresh or frozen blueberries.