Meal Plan Monday! February 13, 2012

Happy Monday! This week’s meal plan comes to us from Mindy of Too Many Jars In My Kitchen. Don’t you just love the name of her blog? I know I can so relate. ;)

Mindy is a 33 year old real-foodie living in Boulder, CO, with her husband of 11 1/2 years and two dogs, Abby and Ashley.  In addition to being a master of jars, real food, and even the GAPS diet, Mindy coaches baton twirling and is also involved as a judge at local competitions.

Mindy’s got a lot to teach a real-foodie in the making. She included answers to some of my interview/discussion topics with her meal plan submission. Here’s her take on them:

Simple Meal Planning - Plan to Eat

My “Conversion” Story

Mine is a bit of a winding road to this point.   It all started with seeing a naturopathic doctor who identified my food allergies, which led me to start looking to incorporate more whole foods, including raw milk, in my diet.  We then met friends who introduced us to The Maker’s Diet, which led us to Nourishing Traditions.  However, I never got around to making the full jump in this way of eating until I decided to start doing the GAPS diet.  Now it’s full speed ahead!

BB: Yeah, there’s really no halfway when it comes to GAPS, huh? Seems like you’re doing really well with it. I’m sure your food allergies will be cleared up before you know it!

Food & Nutrition Goals

One of my current goals is to try to include at least a little bit of organ in meats in some form, ideally each day.  I’m hoping to increase my energy levels and B12 levels by doing so.  That’s why I included liverwurst and pate on my meal plan this week since I often forget to add those foods in my diet.  Also, my meat sauce had some ground up liver in it as well.

That’s great! I’ve been putting in beef heart into my ground meat, and it actually sneaks in their surprisingly unnoticeably! I definitely need to work on upping my liver intake, too. 

Health Goals

Some of my health goals include continuing on the GAPS diet which I’ve been doing for 6 months.  More specifically, I’m working on increasing my probiotics up to a therapeutic level.  I’m currently just up to 3 Bio-Kult per day and it sounds like I should be at 8-10 per day for the therapeutic level.  I still have a ways to go!

Oh my goodness! I had no idea that a therapeutic dosage for Bio-Kult could be so high. Guess I need to refer to that part of the GAPS book!

Kitchen Tips

My biggest tip is to make items in bulk.  I’m usually cooking for just my husband and me, but I’ll still make a dish that has a large amount of servings.  I’ll then either freeze half of it or we’ll eat it for leftovers during the week or both.  For example, on Monday in my menu plan when I make the pancakes, I’ll make a double batch.  Those will last me throughout the whole week with only having to cook them once.  On Thursday I benefit from a meal that I had made previously and frozen half of it.  I love being able to pull a complete meal out of the freezer for dinner!

Cooking in bulk, such a great way to cut down on time in the kitchen. Freezing your leftovers is a good idea too!

Planning Tips: Snacks & Fermented Foods

I make sure I have a variety of crispy nuts, cheese, hardboiled eggs, fruit, and nut butter pancakes on hand for snacks throughout the week.  I also make 2 cups of kefir every other day.  Then I either have some as a snack or include it with my breakfast.  I also generally have a fermented veggie of some sort with both lunch and dinner.  It’s typically either pickles or sauerkraut, although I’m looking to venture out a bit more in the near future.  I also typically drink some kombucha with lunch.

Snacks are so key, and hard to remember to keep on hand. Sounds like you’re doing an amazing job including fermented foods throughout the day with that! I’m also inspired by your dedication to kefir — I’ll have to try to make it more of a regular thing in my kitchen!

Favorite Gadgets or Cookbooks

It’s hard to choose just a few kitchen gadgets (and somehow I still have lots more on my wish list!).  Right now my top favorites are my Cuisinart food processor and my Excalibur dehydrator.  They make so many of my kitchen jobs so easy.  I also love how quiet my Cuisinart is!  It’s also nice to know that I didn’t pay full price for either one.  I bought the Cuisinart off of Craigslist still brand new and in its packaging for about half price.  The dehydrator was a refurbished model that was deeply discounted.  I just love a good deal for expensive kitchen equipment!

As far as cookbooks go, Nourishing Traditions is definitely one of my favorites.  These days, though, while on GAPS, I get most of my recipes online.  There are so many excellent bloggers out there who create delicious GAPS-legal meals.

Nice job getting those gadgets at such a great discount! Craigslist is great for that. And I so agree about finding GAPS recipes from bloggers. There are so many good ones (like you of course!), I think I need to write a post linking to all of them. 

Questions

I would love to hear from your readers what their favorite fermented veggies and ferment recipes are.  I’m looking to start incorporating my own homemade ones instead of the ones I’ve been purchasing up to this point.  What is everyone’s favorite?

I like the Ginger Carrots recipe from Nourishing Traditions quite a bit. It was weird for me at first, but now that I’m more used to salty fermented veggies, I think it’s one of the tastier ones.

Mindy’s Gift to You — A Meal Planning Spreadsheet!

Check this out, guys — Mindy wanted to include her meal planning spreadsheet she uses, so everyone could download and print it out! She usually hand-writes her plans on it, but you could just as easily type it up in there too. Click here to download this handy spreadsheet.

Here’s a preview of what it looks like:

 

Mindy’s Meal Plan

Mindy is on the GAPS diet (like me!), so everything in her plan here is GAPS-legal. Here’s what she had planned last week in that jar-filled kitchen of hers!

Sunday

Breakfast

  • Bacon (ordered from US Wellness Meats without white sugar)
  • Scrambled eggs
  • My favorite veggies for breakfast: sautéed onions, bell peppers, and greens, vegetable soup

Lunch

  • Chef salad (I always keep items, such as cooked meat, cheese, lettuce, carrots, cucumbers, avocado, hardboiled eggs, crispy sunflower seeds, & raisins on hand for making salads
  • Leftover broccoli soup
  • Liverwurst on crackers

Dinner

We’re hosting a potluck at our house featuring a variety of homemade salads.  I’ll be making chicken salad with leftover chicken, homemade mayo, mustard, hardboiled eggs, sea salt & pepper, and diced onions & celery.

Prep

Monday

Breakfast

  • Sausage, scrambled eggs, veggies

Lunch

  • Salmon salad (made about the same way as the chicken salad) on greens with veggies and toppings
  • Leftover broccoli soup
  • Liverwurst on crackers

Dinner

Prep

  • Make double batch of pancakes
  • Strain stock
  • Defrost squash (This past fall I cooked and froze lots and lots of squash in 2-cup portions.  Makes it easy to pull out for soups or side dishes.)

Tuesday

Breakfast

  • Leftover sausage, scrambled eggs, & veggies
  • Pancakes

Lunch

  • Leftover salmon salad
  • Soup (pull some from freezer)
  • Liverwurst on crackers

Dinner

  • Leftover pork belly & veggies
  • Make squash soup

Prep

  • Defrost chicken
  • Defrost bacon

Wednesday – My Birthday!

Breakfast

  • Bacon, fried eggs, & veggies
  • Pancakes

Lunch

  • Leftover salmon salad
  • Leftover squash soup
  • Liverwurst on crackers

Dinner

  • Back to Basics Meal Service Meal – I’m so lucky to have this service available!  Once a week I pick up a meal already made which is GAPS-legal and prepared in a traditional manner.

Prep

  • Defrost sausage
  • Cook chicken in crockpot overnight
  • Defrost spaghetti squash and meat sauce
  • Make chocolate ice cream

Thursday

Breakfast

  • Bacon, fried eggs, & veggies
  • Pancakes

Lunch

  • Leftovers from last night’s dinner

Dinner

Prep

  • Debone chicken
  • Make chicken stock
  • Defrost chicken liver
  • Make quiche (I use coconut milk to make this GAPS-legal and I typically use more than ¼ cup of meat.)

Friday

Breakfast

  • Quiche
  • Pancakes

Lunch

  • Chicken salad
  • Squash soup

Dinner

  • Leftovers/use up what’s in the fridge

Prep

  • Make chicken liver pate (I use the recipe from Nourishing Traditions)
  • Make grain-free crackers
  • Strain/freeze chicken stock

Saturday

Breakfast

  • Leftover quiche
  • Pancakes

Lunch

  • Chicken salad
  • Squash soup
  • Chicken liver pate on crackers

Dinner

  • Go out for a birthday celebration with family & friends!

Prep

 Thanks so much, Mindy, for sharing your meal plan and all your great tips with us, and especially your planning print-out sheet! 

Now, it’s your turn!

To be featured in this series, submit a week’s worth of meal planning from your meal calendar — preferably with links to recipes if they can be found online, or names of cookbooks they were found in — to me by email: emily @ butterbeliever . com (minus the anti-spammy spaces.) Of course since we’re all about real, traditional food around here, your meals have got to be legit. So obviously, no toxic, fake, or super processed ingredients. If you’re not sure what counts as real food and what doesn’t, dig around here a little or just ask me.

Your weekly meal plan could be as simple as just a list with days of the week and what you’re feeding your household for each day — breakfast, lunch, dinner, and hopefully even a few snacks or dessert thrown in there. Or you could get fancy, and submit an image from your meal calendar, or a spreadsheet, or whatever. We just wanna know what you eat! Oh and pictures are great too, if you have any you’d like to share.

(What’s in it for me?)

If your submission is chosen to be featured, you’ll get some goodies!

  • A free e-book. My very first e-book to be sold on the site is coming shortly, and each featured Meal Plan Monday submitter will be getting a free copy. (as soon as it’s ready!) It’ll be worth like, lots of money of course. :-P
  • 10 bonus entries into the next giveaway. Whatever the next prize giveaway is here at BB, you’ll get 10 bonus entries for free!
  • Promotion of your blog or website. You’ll of course get a link and I’ll write you a little blurb, but you could also include links to your own recipes in your weekly meal plan!

So, if you’d like to participate, send in your submissions for a chance to be featured! See you all back here next week!

Simple Meal Planning - Plan to Eat

[photo credit: shimelle on Flickr]

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MEDICAL DISCLOSURE: Your health is between you and your health care practitioner. Nothing in this blog is intended for the treatment or prevention of disease, nor as a substitute for medical treatment, nor as an alternative to medical advice. Use of recommendations is at the choice and risk of the reader.

2 Responses to Meal Plan Monday! February 13, 2012
  1. Thanks for posting my meal plan, Emily!

  2. [...] was excited to be able to share one of my meal plans today.  And it’s all GAPS-legal since I’m still on the GAPS diet, of course.  Be sure to go [...]

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