Hope you all are having a great weekend! As promised, I’m sharing our weekly dinner menus and tips for the January Whole30. In my previous post, I mentioned we’re starting on 1/9, so if you were on the fence, late to the Whole30 party, or out of town…there’s still time to join in the fun this month! Seriously, though, it’s a fantastic way reset and start the year feeling your best 🙂
I hesitated in sharing my menus, because to be honest, most of the time we keep it pretty simple around here! On one hand, I didn’t want y’all to be bored with my basic menus. On the other hand, I also realized there are surely others out there like me…busy balancing family, work, and life, yet want to know how to prioritize delicious, easy, nutrient dense meals while on the Whole30! (I’m not a recipe blogger/writer so bear with me on my recipes/descriptions and please feel free to ask questions if something sounds confusing!)
During our first week of Whole30, I keep it super simple with meals everyone in the family likes. Most of the meals I’m listing here are already in our rotation. After the first week, I like to introduce a new or more complex recipe for variety, but I’m realistic about how much time I have to spend cooking! I don’t want to be over ambitious with my meal plans and then end up stressed about it. Doing that would be totally missing the point of enjoying the process of preparing healthy food during the Whole30. Someday I’ll have more hours to spend in the kitchen, but that’s not my current season of life!
Below are more details on the meals, along with links to the recipes I use where applicable. I’ll also list some lunch and snack ideas below for you to browse…
Sunday: Chocolate Chili (recipe by Melissa Joulwan/Well Fed cookbook)
A delicious, filling chili recipe everyone loves…make a double batch! Top with a few avocado slices and you’re set! Compliant beef broth (read those labels!) can be tough to find sometimes, but I’ve used vegetable broth and it worked perfectly! My favorite chili powder to use is Morton and Bassett Chili Powder (found online and Central Market locally) which contains cayenne for a little extra kick…
Monday: Chicken, Rosemary Red Potatoes, and Broccoli
- Chicken simply cooked on the stove over medium heat, with a little ghee or avocado oil and salt and pepper.
- For potatoes: Preheat oven to 425. Chop into quarters and toss in with EVOO or avocado oil. Season with salt, pepper, and dried rosemary. Bake at 425 for about 20 minutes (pull them out and turn over at halfway point) I like to broil mine for a few minutes at the end to make then a little toasty.
- For broccoli: Cut (or buy already cut!) broccoli into florets. Lightly toss or spray with compliant oil of choice, along with fresh chopped or powdered garlic and salt and pepper.
Tuesday: Taco Salad
- Sauté 1 chopped red bell pepper and 1/4 or 1/2 yellow onion (depending on how much you love onion) in oil of choice until onion is translucent.
- Add extra lean ground beef and season with Chili Powder blend mentioned above and a little salt. If you don’t have this chili powder blend, you can use salt, pepper, garlic powder, cumin, paprika, and a sprinkle of cayenne to create the same flavor. Always check ingredients, even on spices!
- Cook on medium heat until the ground beef is cooked through.
- Serve over greens of choice, or inside lettuce wraps and top with compliant guacamole or slices of avocado and salsa. So easy.
Wednesday: Green Salads with Chicken Breast and Whole30 Ranch Dressing
- I buy salad greens that are pre washed and ready to go!
- Add cucumber, red bell pepper, carrots, cabbage, and tomatoes.
- Top with slices of chicken breast and compliant store bought or homemade ranch dressing, balsamic vinaigrette, or other dressing.
- Homemade “dump ranch” (using cilantro) is a staple in our house!! You have to try it at least once, you’ll be sold. It’s very easy to make with an immersion blender. We also love Tessemae’s and Primal Kitchen compliant dressings.
Thursday: Lettuce Wrapped Burgers with Sweet Potato Wedges & Brussels Sprouts
- Cook burgers as you normally would on the grill or stovetop, seasoned with salt and pepper. Use romaine or iceberg lettuce leaves as wraps, and top with your fave burger toppings: tomato, avocado, jalapeños, and mustard (anything that’s compliant!).
- Sweet Potato Wedges: Preheat oven to 425. Toss the cut wedges in oil of choice (I like avocado or coconut, but avocado is better for roasting at higher temps.) Sprinkle with salt, pepper, cumin, and paprika. Bake for 20-30 minutes, depending on your oven. Halfway through, turn wedges over. I broil them for the last 5-10 minutes for more browning/crispy skins.
- Brussels Sprouts: Cook 3-5 chopped slices of compliant bacon in a large pan. While the bacon cooks, wash and quarter the sprouts. Once the bacon is lightly done, turn off heat and add the sprouts to the pan. Toss the sprouts in with the bacon/fat until evenly coated. Transfer the bacon and sprouts to parchment lined cookie sheets and sprinkle with salt, pepper, and dill(optional). Bake at 400 for about 20 minutes turning once midway through cooking time.
Whole 30 Pro Tip:
Review your schedule to find windows of time to meal prep and cook! For example, Sunday is our major meal prep day! Monday and Thursday are busy afternoons/evenings, due to kid’s activities, so I never cook on these nights, just reheat some of what I’ve prepped on Sunday. Tuesday and Wednesday evenings are cooking nights for me, but since I’ve already prepped some things on Sunday, I usually only have to make the side dishes. Fridays are for leftovers again or dining out!
On Meal Prep Day:
- I prepare dinner for that evening along with enough to have leftovers.
- We also prepare extra proteins such as hard boiled eggs, chicken breasts, and a batch of seasoned “taco” meat.
- Roast a variety of veggies so they’re ready to go for scrambles in the morning, or to reheat as sides for lunch or dinner.
- Scheduling a couple of hours to do this sets us up for success the rest of the week!
- Leftovers. You’ll be so happy when you have food prepped and ready to go in the fridge! Saves so much time!
- Tuna or chicken salads made with compliant mayo. (Or make it in less than a minute using this recipe with your immersion blender) So many variations, easy and filling. Serve over a bed of greens, with a side of fruit or chopped veggies.
On the Go Snack Ideas:
- An Epic Bar (love the Chicken Sriracha and Chicken Sesame BBQ) or other compliant meat/jerky bar with a piece of fruit or raw veggies (Cucumbers, baby carrots, and snap peas are my favorite)
- Lara Bar or RX Bar: Use the fruit and nut based bars carefully. Read more on this topic here.
- A serving of olives and raw veggies
- Complaint turkey wrapped around avocado slices
- A serving of fruit and handful of nuts or single serving nut butter packet
If you’re active, check out the meal template for more details on pre/post workout meals and snacks. Also great for info on how to build your Whole30 meals like a pro!
- I like to use parchment paper over foil for roasting/baking veggies.
- Use shallow cookie sheets. They work better for roasting than pans with higher sides.
- Give your veggies “room to breathe.” Don’t crowd the pan, as this causes them to steam instead of roast and they might come out on the soggy side!
- Use Avocado Oil for higher temperature roasting. It has a much higher smoke point, around 500.
This post ended up being a lot longer than I’d planned! Please let me know if there’s anything else I can include that’s helpful to you in next week’s menu! What are you prepping this week? Feel free to share in the comments…
Thanks for stopping by! xx