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This Week’s Meal Plan: 5 Simple Weeknight Dinners

This Week’s Meal Plan: 5 Simple Weeknight Dinners

This week, please welcome Rachel Knecht and her meal plans! Rachel is a recipe tester here on Our Site and the blogger behind Baking with Rachel.

Have you ever had a huge dinner mishap? I have!

I was taking a baking sheet filled with chicken, potatoes, and cauliflower out of the oven when the edge of the baking sheet caught on the oven rack. I dumped the WHOLE pan on the open oven door. Of course, dinner was already late and I was in a hurry.

We salvaged what we could and went on with the evening, but I learned two important lessons: Always grab whatever is in the oven with both hands and be realistic about how much time and energy I have to make dinner.

This week I’m focusing on meals that can be made ahead, have short ingredient lists, or are lightning fast to cook. Plus, we’ve included a bonus baking recipe!

With all this extra time at home, I find myself turning to dinners that can be prepped during the day. Try Chinese 5-Spice Skillet Chicken with Green Beans and Peppers for a make-ahead option. For the nights when getting out the measuring spoons seems like too much work, then make Cod Sautéed in Olive Oil with Fresh Tomatoes or New Jersey Italian Hot Dogs—both have extremely short ingredient lists. Quick and easy is the name of the game for Joe’s Special (Scrambled Eggs with Spinach, Beef, and Mushrooms) and Easy Avocado and Black Bean Quesadillas which means dinner is ready in thirty minutes or less.

I hope this week’s meal plan gives you practical, delicious dinner ideas as we cozy up together indoors.

One last thing: We wanted to highlight the ultimate way to save time in your week: having your groceries delivered right to your door. Click on the red “Add to Shopping List” button at the bottom of any recipe (or meal plan) and check it out! We call this feature “Relish” and we’re into it because, really, dinner can be simpler.

  • New to Meal Planning? Start here! 10 Things to Know If You’re a First-Time Meal Planner
  • Looking for Last Weeks Meal Plan? Here you go! (Plus, all past meal plans!)


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This simple dish is freezer-friendly and ready in 35 minutes. I love the combination of orange with 5-spice powder. Serve with Ginger Pineapple Fried Rice. Just don't forget to let it sit in the marinade for at least two hours!

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This fast, diner-style scramble makes quick work of a weeknight meal. Pile it in a tortilla for a tasty wrap, or spoon onto a plate and serve with a hoagie or sourdough roll on the side. My family is crazy for scrambled eggs, and turning them into a dinner is the kind of outside-the-box thinking this tired mom needs.

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My microwaved cheese quesadillas need an upgrade, and this skillet version will put vegetarian quesadillas right back on the menu. Double the black bean filling and save it to make nachos over the weekend.

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This recipe is so incredibly quick and perfect for a weeknight family dinner. It is also very versatile—if you don't have fresh tomatoes use canned, and any type of fish fillet is tasty with olive oil and tomatoes, so you really can’t go wrong. Pair with Boulevardier Cocktail and your favorite pasta or rice.

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I’m not gonna lie: Hot dogs are one of those foods that I pull out of the fridge when the kids are extra tired and cranky. It’s a no brainer kid-win, but mama needs a little something extra to get excited for hot dogs. This recipe does the trick. Sautéed vegetables turn hot dogs into a win for the whole family.

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Bonus Weekend Baking Project

I don’t know about you, but I often turn to the kitchen for a little relaxation. Scooping, stirring, and pouring ingredients to create a tasty treat is especially rewarding. The comforting smells emanating from the kitchen, along with the smiles it brings from the family adds to the joy of baking.

Brownies are always a favorite at our house and this is the perfect recipe. Simple cocoa powder is the only chocolate needed. Hurray!

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