Whole 30, Day 20 – Shopping & Menu Planning Made Easy!

Produce section of grocery store

It’s Saturday, so that means grocery shopping at our house. Before embarking on this Whole 30 Challenge, we often found ourselves stopping by the grocery store 4 or 5 times per week. Sometimes more. Thanks to some necessary planning head however, we’ve now got it down to one big shop per week, plus a trip to the butcher.

Before we left the house today, I used my white board to create a list of what I want to cook for the next week, looked at what I needed, compared it to what we already had on hand and made my list accordingly. Here’s what it looked like:

Day Item to Make Ingredients I have Ingredients I need
Sunday Stew Beef, venison, onions, garlic, rutabaga, carrots, yams, broth, spices Turnips, parsnips
Salsa Tomatoes, green peppers, onions, apple cider vinegar, tomato paste Jalapeno pepper
Salads Grapefruit, peppers, carrots Lettuce, fennel, peas, cabbage
Egg Casserole Eggs, portobello mushrooms, spinach, turkey sausage, ground turkey
Dressing Apple cider vinegar, walnut oil, Dijon, spices Apples, avocado
Kale chips Olive oil Kale
Monday n/a
Tuesday Chicken fingers Chicken breast, coconut, coconut milk, spices
Cucumber salad Cucumbers, ACV Light olive oil (to make fresh batch of mayo)
Wednesday Sheppard’s pie Carrots, broth, coconut flour, spices Cauliflower, *ground beef, beans, peas
Egg Casserole *ground beef
Thursday n/a
Friday Fish *fish
Saturday n/a

there you go, the last column became our grocery list for today and the table itself goes on the fridge for easy refernce when cooking. Handy, since I rarely follow recipes.

The beef I’ll get at the butcher on Tuesdays (when it’s freshest) and the fish I’ll buy fresh on the way home that night, but otherwise we’ve managed to pare our shopping trips from shopping 4 – 5 times per week, with cooking and cleaning every night, to shopping once a week, cooking 4 and having a full 3 nights out of the kitchen, while still having a fridge full of tasty Whole 30 approved meals whenever we’re hungry. We think it’s brilliant. You can use the framework of our plan. Fill in your favorite dishes and customize  your own menu plan and grocery list.

Do you have time-saving tips to help make eating healthy easier? We’d love to hear them!

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Whole 30, Day 16 – Breakfast Made Easy “Meat Lover’s Breakfast Casserole”

Breakfast Casserole with salsa and tea

Planning really is the key to success with a challenge like the Whole 30 – or really, just eating healthy in general. And perhaps there’s no other time when the payoff is sweeter than first thing in the morning. I don’t know about you, but the last thing we want to do in the morning is cook. So we’ve moved to cooking breakfast casseroles, egg dishes with an extra kick of meat and veggies. We make a big batch and it lasts for days. This version turned out as one of our faves – we’ll definitely make it again. Topped with a little chunky salsa – delish!

Meat Lover’s Breakfast Casserole

Ingredients:

  • 3 turkey sausages (unprocessed/drug-free if you can find it – check labels, many have sugar!)
  • 1 lb lean ground beef (grass-fed preferred, can use ground turkey or chicken)
  • 3 large portobello mushrooms, chopped into small pieces
  • 2-3 cups spinach, sliced
  • 12 eggs
  • italian spices, sun dried tomatoes, salt & pepper
  • 1 Tbsp coconut oil

Instructions:

  1. Preheat oven to 385f
  2. Cook sausage in a pan, browing all sides, set aside to cool – then slice on diagonals
  3. Cook ground beef, breaking up and browning
  4. Coat casserole dish liberally with coconut oil
  5. Layer sausage pieces flat on bottom of casserole dish
  6. Add cooked beef on top, sprinkle spices on top
  7. Add mushrooms, then spinach. Top with sun-dried tomatoes
  8. Blend eggs in a separate bowl (I use a magic bullet)
  9. Before placing in oven, press surface evenly with a spatula or flipper. You should be able to see egg mixture coming through the spinach.
  10. Cook for approx. 20 – 25 minutes, shaking pan to check if middle is firm.

Feel free to experiment with different meat and vegetable combinations but beware of making the body of the casserole too deep. If your eggs don’t show through the top layer, you’ll end up with a dry crispy top.

Give it a try and let us know how you like it. Feel free to share your favorite combinations in the comments below.