7 Day Menu Planner for October 29, 2017

Sunday Family

The whole family will enjoy BRAISED CHICKEN CACCIATORE. Serve it over SPAGHETTI (or other noodles). Add BROCCOLI, a LETTUCE WEDGE and GARLIC BREAD. For dessert, VANILLA ICE CREAM topped with toasted COCONUT is a fine finish.

Prepare enough chicken and spaghetti and save some coconut for Monday. Save enough ice cream for Thursday.

Shopping List

bone-in skinless chicken thighs, coarse salt, black pepper, flour, canola oil, crimini mushrooms, green bell pepper, onion, no-salt-added chunky red pasta sauce, spaghetti (or other noodles), broccoli, lettuce, garlic bread, vanilla ice cream, coconut.


makes 4 servings
Prep time:
15 minutes
Cook time:
about 35 minutes
  • 1 1/2 to 2 pounds bone-in skinless chicken thighs
  • 1/2 teaspoon coarse salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 3 tablespoons canola oil
  • 8 whole crimini mushrooms, quartered
  • 1 medium green bell pepper, cored and sliced
  • 1 medium onion, sliced
  • 1 (24-ounce) jar no-salt-added chunky red pasta sauce

Season the chicken thighs with salt and pepper. Place flour in a pie plate; coat chicken with flour, shaking off any extra. In a large cast-iron or heavy skillet, heat oil on medium-high. Add chicken to pan and cook 5 minutes on each side or until brown all over. Transfer to a plate; cover to keep warm. In same skillet, cook mushrooms 3 minutes or until all moisture is evaporated. Add pepper and onion; cook 3 minutes. Add sauce and mix well. Add the chicken with any juices to skillet. Simmer on medium-low 20 minutes or until the chicken reaches an internal temperature of 165 degrees. To serve: Transfer chicken to a platter and spoon sauce over the chicken.

Per serving: 434 calories, 30 grams protein, 20 grams fat (42 percent calories from fat), 3.1 grams saturated fat, 35 grams carbohydrate, 132 milligrams cholesterol, 834 milligrams sodium, 5 grams fiber.

Monday Heat and Eat

Dinner will be ready as soon as you heat the leftover CACCIATORE and SPAGHETTI. Serve it with GREEN BEANS. Dessert is APRICOTS topped with leftover TOASTED COCONUT.

Save some green beans for Thursday.

Shopping List

green beans, apricots.

Tuesday Meatless

Wrap up a no-meat dinner with CORN AND BLACK BEAN WRAPS. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a bowl, mix together 1 (15-ounce) can rinsed reduced-sodium black beans, 1 (11-ounce) can rinsed Mexicorn, 1/2 cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese, 1/4 cup chopped cilantro and 1/4 cup salsa. Spoon one-fourth of bean mixture down center of each (of 4) 8- to 10-inch flour tortillas and wrap like a burrito. Wrap each in foil; place on baking sheet and bake 10 minutes or until thoroughly heated and cheese is melted. Serve with extra salsa and reduced-fat sour cream.

Add sliced AVOCADO on a bed of LETTUCE. For dessert, make BANANA PUDDING with 1 percent milk, and add a sliced banana for a flavor boost.

Shopping List

canned reduced-sodium black beans, canned Mexicorn, shredded Monterey Jack cheese, cilantro, salsa, flour tortillas, reduced-fat sour cream, avocado, lettuce, banana pudding mix, 1 percent milk, bananas.

Wednesday Express

Try MARGHERITA PIZZA (such as Kashi) for a healthy-as-possible, quick meal. Add packaged MIXED GREENS. Dessert is FRESH PINEAPPLE.

Shopping List

Margherita pizza (such as Kashi), packaged mixed greens, fresh pineapple.

Thursday Kids

Let the kids help prepare GRILLED CHEESE SANDWICHES tonight. Serve with leftover GREEN BEANS, CHERRY TOMATO HALVES and the kids' favorite DIP. A tiny scoop of leftover VANILLA ICE CREAM with STRAWBERRIES is a cool dessert.

Shopping List

bread and cheese for sandwiches, cherry tomatoes, dip, strawberries.

Friday Budget

CREAMY PASTA WITH BACON AND PEAS is spot-on for a low-cost meal. Serve with a LETTUCE WEDGE and CRUSTY ROLLS. For dessert, FRESH PEACHES taste good.

Shopping List

mini-shell or other small pasta, lean bacon, olive oil, butter, black pepper, frozen peas, half-and-half, fresh mint leaves, lemon, parmesan cheese, lettuce, crusty rolls, fresh peaches.


makes 8 servings
Prep time:
15 minutes
Cook time:
for the pasta plus about 10 minutes
  • 1 pound mini-shell or other small pasta
  • 8 slices lean bacon, cut crosswise into thin pieces
  • 2 teaspoons each olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons butter
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 cups frozen peas
  • 2 tablespoons half-and-half
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh mint leaves
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 4 ounces finely grated parmesan cheese

Cook pasta according to directions; reserve 1 cup pasta water, then drain. Meanwhile, heat a large skillet on medium. Add bacon, oil, butter and some pepper. Cook 4 minutes or until bacon is crisp. Immediately add peas and cook 2 minutes, stirring continuously. Add the half-and-half and mint. Add cooked pasta to skillet; stir to mix. Add lemon juice. Bring to simmer on low; remove from heat. (Mixture should be thickened; add pasta water for desired thickness.) Add parmesan; stir to mix. Serve. (Adapted from "Jamie Oliver's Food Revolution.")

Per serving: 440 calories, 18 grams protein, 19 grams fat (39 percent calories from fat), 7.4 grams saturated fat, 49 grams carbohydrate, 35 milligrams cholesterol, 453 milligrams sodium, 3 grams fiber.

Saturday Easy Entertaining

For a special meal for guests, BALSAMIC HONEY-GLAZED LAMB CHOPS fits the bill. Serve the chops with your RICE PILAF and GOCHUJANG GREEN BEANS. Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Whisk 2 tablespoons canola oil with 2 tablespoons gochujang sauce, 1 teaspoon ground coriander and 1/2 teaspoon coarse salt. Toss mixture with 1 pound trimmed green beans. Roast on a rimmed, foil-covered baking dish 20 minutes or until tender, shaking twice. Add a BIBB LETTUCE SALAD and SOURDOUGH BREAD. Buy FRUIT TARTS for dessert.

Shopping List

shoulder or rib lamb chops, olive oil, fresh or dried thyme, black pepper, coarse salt, balsamic vinegar, honey, fresh pears, rice pilaf, canola oil, gochujang sauce, ground coriander, fresh green beans, Bibb lettuce, sourdough bread, fruit tarts.


makes 8 servings
Prep time:
15 minutes
Cook time:
about 15 minutes
  • 8 shoulder or rib lamb chops (about 2 pounds)
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves (or 1 1/2 teaspoons dried)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons coarse ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon coarse salt
  • 1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 4 small fresh pears, cored and cut into 10 slices each

Brush chops with oil and sprinkle with thyme, pepper and salt. Heat a large nonstick skillet on medium-high. Cook chops 10 minutes, turning once. In another large skillet, combine vinegar and honey; bring to a boil. Add pears to simmering vinegar mixture, turning to coat. Cook 3 minutes or until pears are glazed and just tender; remove fruit from skillet. Place browned chops into mixture. Turn chops every minute to glaze with sauce. Cook to desired doneness. Serve chops with glazed fruit and drizzle with sauce.

Per serving: 272 calories, 19 grams protein, 8 grams fat (26 percent calories from fat), 2.6 grams saturated fat, 32 grams carbohydrate, 62 milligrams cholesterol, 181 milligrams sodium, 3 grams fiber.

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