Week 5 Meals

ridingInspiration and motivation are lacking lately.  Just like everyone else, I have had a hard time getting inspired as to what to cook and trouble staying motivated to eat healthy.  Scrolling through recipes has only brought responses in my head like that doesn’t sound good, what real person would make that, and that has too many ingredients.  What can I say other than I share your struggles!  So with torment in my head like a 3 year old temper tantrum, I have decided on a low carb Mexican lasagna, a recipe for the grill (weather permitting), an Italian sausage stir fry, and some zucchini boats that I know will not disappoint.

Monday:  Low Carb Mexican Lasagna with Mexican Zucchinilasagna

This recipe was great since I haven’t made a casserole in a while.  My family loves casseroles and using low carb tortillas helped fit this recipe in my lower carb lifestyle.  The original link is included from Kalyn’s Kitchen, however I found this was very easy not using a crock pot.  Also, I will decrease the amount of salsa for next time.

Mexican Low Carb Lasagna

  • 2 lbs ground meat
  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1/2 cup salsa
  • 1 package taco seasoning
  • can of diced tomatoes with green chiles, mild
  • about 6 low carb tortillas
  • 2 cups cottage cheese
  • 1 can diced green chilies, drained
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • 2 eggs
  • 3 cups Mexican blend cheese

Heat the oil in a skillet and add the onion.  When translucent, add the ground meat seasoning with salt, pepper, and garlic powder; brown, breaking apart until fully cooked.  Drain the meat after cooked and add back to the skillet with taco seasoning, salsa, and can of tomatoes with green chilies.  Simmer over low heat until most of liquid is gone.

While the meat mixture is simmering, mix together the cottage cheese, drained green chilies, eggs, and chopped cilantro.  Cut the tortillas in half.

Spray an 8 1/2X11 casserole dish with non stick spray.  Add a layer of tortillas(use the straight side of the tortilla on the side of the dish and use as few tortillas as possible) rto cover the bottom.  Make a layer of half the meat mixture, half the cottage cheese mixture, and one cup of the grated cheese.  Then make a second layer of tortillas, meat mixture, cheese mixture, and grated cheese.

Cover with foil and cook in a 350 degree oven for about 30 minute.  Uncover and cook for about 15 minutes more.

*This makes a huge casserole so get ready for lunch made easy!  I wonder how this would freeze?!

*Brown extra hamburger meat for a recipe on Friday to make meal prep at the end of the week a little less stressful.

Kalyn’s Kitchen Slow Cooker Low Carb Mexican Lasagna

Mexican Zucchini

  • 1 Tbsp of olive oil
  • 2 small zucchini, quartered and cut into 1″ pieces
  • 1 Roma tomato, diced, seeds removed
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • juice of half of a lime

Heat oil in a skillet.  Add zucchini and cook for about 10 minutes, until tender.  Add tomatoes and garlic and cook for another 2-3 minutes.  Add salt, pepper, and lime juice.

Tuesday:  Italian Sausage and Broccoli Stir Fry

I have this amazing friend who has been on every step of my blogging journey with me ask for a sausage recipe.  I found this recipe and immediately thought of her and tried it.  And who doesn’t love a one skillet supper?!

Italian Sausage Stir Fry

  • Bag of broccoli florets (or 2 small heads of broccoli)
  • 5 links of Italian Sausage
  • 2 red bell peppers, sliced
  • 1 green bell pepper, sliced
  • 1 can fire roasted diced tomatoes
  • 2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil
  • Italian seasoning, to taste
  • salt and pepper

Heat oil in a skillet.  Add sausage and cook fully, flipping to make sure all sides get brown. (about 15 minutes)  Remove sausage from skillet and add broccoli and peppers stirring frequently until tender.  Add fire roasted tomatoes and seasoning.  While the peppers and broccoli are cooking, cut the sausage into 1/2 inch slices.  Add to the tomatoes and seasoning.  Reduce heat and simmer for about 5 minutes.

Wednesday:  Grilled Hamburger Patties with Grilled Asparagushamburger

This is one of those recipes, you know the kind that there really isn’t a recipe.  Just add whatever sounds good to you!  And then the toppings could be limitless. I wish I could provide great instructions on how to grill the perfect hamburger patty, but I have found they are so tricky (Yet another reason this is a meal planning blog)!   Prepare the asparagus on the grill and this meal makes clean up a piece of cake. However, if the weather is uncooperative or not up for the grill challenge this can be prepared inside, the meat in a skillet and asparagus roasted in the oven.

Grilled Hamburger Patties

  • salt
  • pepper
  • garlic powder
  • ketchup
  • Worcestershire sauce
  • egg
  • ground meat

Mix all ingredients together and patties.  I have found that if I prepare the patties ahead of time and put them in the refrigerator, the patties stay together better on the grill.  Hint: the colder the patty the better they stay together.  Cook until they are done!  For toppings anything is a go.  I just topped with cheese of everyone choice but some sauted onions or roasted green chilies with the cheese on the top would be AMAZING!

*I used about 2 1/2 pounds of hamburger meat making plenty of patties for my rancher and kids to have hamburgers for lunch during the week.

Grilling tips

Grilled Asparagus

  • bunch of asparagus
  • extra virgin olive oil
  • salt and pepper, to taste

Wash the asparagus and remove the ends.  I like to take foil and make a little pouch to grill my asparagus in.  Drizzle the asparagus in the pouch with olive oil and add salt and pepper.  Cook on the grill in the foil pouch until tender.

Thursday: Dance Night!

Friday:  Green Chile Zucchini Boats with Southwestern Saladzucchini

Zucchini boats are a popular item that comes across my pinterest feed.  For some reason, they all are chicken and made the same.  Here is a different twist to the chicken enchilada zucchini boat that keep coming across my feed! With a simple salad, this will be a great finale to an uninspired week!

Green Chile Zucchini Boats

  • Browned ground meat from Monday night
  • can of no salt added black beans, rinsed and drained
  • can of no salt added diced tomatoes
  • can of diced green chilies
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp chili powder
  • 2 zucchini
  • small can of green enchilada sauce
  • shredded Mexican cheese

Cut the zucchini in half lengthwise and spoon out the inside of the zucchini.  (if you have a melon baller that would work great.  I don’t so I use a spoon.)  In a towel over the sink, squeeze out any excess liquid from the spooned out part of the zucchini and chop up.  Add a little of the enchilada sauce to the bottom of a casserole dish and place the zucchini halves in the dish.

In a skillet heat the precooked ground meat, chopped zucchini, black beans, diced tomatoes, diced green chilies, cumin, and chili powder.  Reduce heat and simmer until any liquid is evaporated(about 5 minutes).

Spoon the meat mixture into the zucchini halves, top with enchilada sauce, and shredded cheese.  Top with foil and cook on 350 degrees for 20 minutes or until zucchini is tender.  Remover foil and cook for another 10 minutes.

Southwestern Salad

Get ready because I don’t know if you will be able to handle the complexity of this recipe.  Go to the produce section, find a salad kit that sounds like it fits in this category and prepare according to the directions on the bag.  Usually this entails opening a couple of plastic bags, dumping in a bowl, and mixing.

Just when I think I am lacking motivation, I manage to pull off a week of meals that my rancher and kids loved with enough excitement to get me ready for next week’s meal planning.  What more could a girl want than a happy healthy rancher and kids?  So, gather the family, ring the dinner bell, and pull up a chair.  It’s time for dinner!

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