7 Day Menu Planner by Susan Nicholson

7 Day Menu Planner For April 25, 2021

Sunday Family

Use this simple marinade for GRILLED FLANK STEAK. In a resealable plastic bag, combine 1/2 cup dry red wine, 2 teaspoons lower-sodium soy sauce and 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme. Add 1 (1 1/4- to 1 1/2-pound) flank steak to bag, turn to coat and marinate overnight. Remove steak and discard marinade; pat steak dry. Grill 17 to 21 minutes for medium-rare to medium doneness.

Serve with BALSAMIC ROASTED ONIONS: Heat oven to 300 degrees. In a shallow roasting pan coated with cooking spray, combine 2 large red onions cut into wedges, 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar, 1/4 cup olive oil, 1/4 teaspoon coarse salt, 2 tablespoons lower-sodium soy sauce and 2 tablespoons sugar. Toss to coat. Bake, stirring often, 40 minutes or until onions are softened and lightly browned.


Grill an extra (unmarinated) flank steak and save enough macaroni for Monday.

Shopping List

dry red wine, lower-sodium soy sauce, dried thyme, flank steaks, cooking spray, red onions, balsamic vinegar, olive oil, coarse salt, sugar, macaroni and cheese, mixed greens, apple turnovers.

Monday Heat and Eat

There will be no fuss, no muss tonight with leftover FLANK STEAK, sliced thin and heated. Serve with leftover MACARONI AND CHEESE sprinkled with a little paprika. Add FRESH BROCCOLI and WHOLE-GRAIN BREAD. For dessert, FRESH PINEAPPLE is refreshing.

Shopping List

paprika, fresh broccoli, whole-grain bread, fresh pineapple.

Tuesday Budget

Save some pennies tonight and serve CURRIED LEEK VEGETABLE SOUP. Serve the savory combination with a LETTUCE WEDGE and warm WHOLE-GRAIN ROLLS on the side. KIWIS are good for dessert.

Shopping List

reduced-sodium chicken broth, garlic, no-salt-added tomato sauce, leek, carrots, celery, zucchini, curry powder, crushed red pepper, cilantro, canned chicken breast, coarse salt, lettuce, whole-grain rolls, kiwis.


makes about 9 cups
Prep time:
15 minutes
Cook time:
about 40 minutes
  • 4 cups reduced-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 (8-ounce) can no-salt-added tomato sauce
  • 1 medium leek (green and white parts), chopped
  • 1 medium carrot, sliced
  • 2 ribs celery, sliced
  • 2 medium zucchini, sliced
  • 2 teaspoons curry powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • 2 tablespoons chopped cilantro
  • Pinch coarse salt
  • 1 (10- or 12-ounce) can chicken breast, drained

In a Dutch oven, combine broth, garlic, tomato sauce, leek, carrot, celery, zucchini, curry powder, crushed red pepper, cilantro and salt. Stir well; cover and bring to a simmer. Cook 40 minutes or until vegetables are tender. Stir in chicken; heat through and serve.

Per serving: 70 calories, 7 grams protein, 1 gram fat (12% calories from fat), 0.3 gram saturated fat, 7 grams carbohydrate, 13 milligrams cholesterol, 199 milligrams sodium, 2 grams fiber.

Wednesday Kids

The kids can't resist SLOPPY CHICKEN PIZZA JOES. Serve the kid favorite on toasted whole-grain sesame rolls and add a slice of provolone cheese to the bottom half of the bun. Add BAKED CHIPS and CHERRY TOMATOES alongside. For dessert, try PLUMS.

Shopping List

canola oil, ground chicken or turkey breast, pizza sauce, frozen sweet pepper and onion stir-fry vegetables, canned diced tomatoes, whole-grain sesame rolls, provolone cheese, baked chips, cherry tomatoes, plums.


makes 8 servings
Prep time:
15 minutes
Cook time:
6 to 8 hours on low
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • 2 to 2 1/2 pounds ground chicken or turkey breast
  • 2 (14-ounce) jars pizza sauce
  • 2 cups frozen sweet pepper and onion stir-fry vegetables (or other combination), thawed, drained and chopped
  • 1 (14.5-ounce) can diced tomatoes with liquid

Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet; add chicken or turkey and cook 5 minutes or until browned. Drain, if necessary. Spoon into a 4-quart or larger slow cooker. Add pizza sauce, stir-fry vegetables and tomatoes. Cover and cook on low 6 to 8 hours. Serve warm on buns.

Per serving: 211 calories, 26 grams protein, 6 grams fat (28% calories from fat), 0.9 gram saturated fat, 11 grams carbohydrate, 73 milligrams cholesterol, 414 milligrams sodium, 2 grams fiber.

Thursday Meatless

For a no-meat dinner, try PENNE WITH TOMATOES, KALAMATA OLIVES AND FETA. Serve with a SPINACH SALAD and GARLIC BREAD. VANILLA ICE CREAM topped with fresh STRAWBERRIES makes a good dessert.

Save enough ice cream for Saturday.

Shopping List

penne or other pasta, olive oil, garlic, canned no-salt-added diced tomatoes, Kalamata olives, Greek feta cheese, fresh parsley, dried or fresh basil, parmesan cheese, fresh spinach, garlic bread, vanilla ice cream, fresh strawberries.


makes 8 servings
Prep time:
10 minutes
Cook time:
less than 5 minutes, plus pasta
  • 1 (13.25-ounce) box penne or other pasta
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1 (14.5-ounce) can no-salt-added diced tomatoes, drained
  • 1/3 cup halved Kalamata olives
  • 1/2 cup crumbled Greek feta cheese
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley
  • 2 teaspoons dried basil (or 2 tablespoons chopped fresh)
  • 1/4 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese

Cook pasta according to directions; drain and return to pot. Meanwhile, heat oil on medium in a large nonstick skillet. Add garlic and tomatoes and cook 3 minutes or until heated through. Stir occasionally. Add mixture to pasta along with the olives, feta, parsley and basil. Gently toss to mix. Sprinkle each serving with parmesan.

Per serving: 254 calories, 9 grams protein, 7 grams fat (24% calories from fat), 2.3 grams saturated fat, 39 grams carbohydrate, 11 milligrams cholesterol, 241 milligrams sodium, 2 grams fiber.

Friday Express

For a super-quick meal, buy a ROTISSERIE CHICKEN. Serve it with CORN ON THE COB (sprinkle the corn with fresh lime juice to perk up the flavor) and add a packaged GREEN SALAD. GRAPES are a simple dessert.

Shopping List

any rotisserie chicken, corn on the cob, lime (if desired), packaged green salad, grapes.

Saturday Entertain the Family

SESAME GRILLED TUNA is a family favorite. In a large resealable plastic bag, combine 1/4 cup lower-sodium soy sauce, 2 tablespoons finely chopped green onions, 2 teaspoons toasted sesame seeds, 2 teaspoons sesame oil (dark, if you have it) and 1 teaspoon chili oil. Add 4 (6-ounce) tuna steaks (about 3/4 inch thick). Toss to coat steaks; marinate at room temperature 10 minutes. Remove tuna; discard marinade. Grill on medium-high 2 to 4 minutes or until desired doneness, turning once.


Shopping List

lower-sodium soy sauce, green onions, toasted sesame seeds, dark or regular sesame oil, chili oil, tuna steaks, brown rice, asparagus, mixed greens, crusty rolls, butterscotch sauce.