This is Back to School Month at My Plant-Based Family so naturally we will be focusing on quick dinners, fun lunch box ideas and easy recipes. Your children may not be back at school yet but these tips and ideas will help you get prepared.
Today’s Plant-Based Meal Plan will focus on dinners. I’m giving you a sneak peeking into the way my brain works when it comes to planning meals. Specifically I’m going to show you how I batch cook to make the rest of the week easy-peasy.
Plant-Based Dinner Meal Plan
Easy Crock Pot Mexican Rice and Bean Casserole is everyone’s favorite. I’ll Double the recipe.
Slow Cooker Potato Soup except I plan to add extra veggies like broccoli, carrots and celery along with some lentils.
Spaghetti (GF) and Lentil Marinara this recipe is used exclusively in my Custom Meal Plans. This is served with raw or steamed veggies.
What to Look For
Can you spot the trends in this Meal Plan? Which ingredients appear repeatedly?
- Black Beans are used in the Mexican Casserole, Nachos and Taco Potatoes.
- Lentils are used in the Soup, Lentil Marinara, Nachos and Taco Potatoes.
- Potatoes are used in the Soup and the Taco Potatoes.
- Quinoa is used in the Nachos and Taco Potatoes
- Tomatoes are used in the Lentil Marinara, Nachos, and Taco Potatoes.
Using the same ingredients in multiple recipes is typical for me. It cuts down the grocery bill and the amount of time it takes me to cook. You see, I don’t start from scratch every day. I like to spend a few hours and get most of this food prepped.
How to Batch Cook the Meal Plan
Let’s take a look at how batch cooking works. This can be simplified even more if you use canned beans.
- Soak black beans overnight.
- Cook black beans, wash and bake potatoes, cook lentils and quinoa, and prep veggies. This all happens at the same time. The beans and potatoes take longest to cook so you would start them first. The quinoa and lentils don’t take long so you would start them next. Lastly wash and chop veggies to use in all of the recipe and for extra snacks throughout the week.
- Put ingredients for Potato Soup in the Crock Pot OR put them all in a large zip lock bag so it’s ready to dump in the Crock Pot.
- Once the beans are done you can make the Unfried Black Beans, Mexican Casserole and Taco Potatoes.
The End Result
Now each evening I only have to reheat dinner or do a little cooking. For example I prefer to cook the spaghetti for the Lentil Marinara right before we eat it. Pasta, especially gluten-free pasta isn’t as good reheated. I’ll also heat and assemble the nachos and Taco Potatoes right before eating. Most of the cooking is done for the week.
Remember to check out my Back to School with My Plant-Based Pinterest Board and last weeks Lunch Box Essentials post.