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Healthy Dinners in the New Year

We just completed our first week back to school after being off for 2+ weeks. The good thing is: WE SURVIVED!!! We got to school on time. We jumped back into piano and dance and baseball lessons. And we–well–ME! I jumped back into cooking quick healthy meals for my family. If you know me, I LOVE trying new recipes and rarely repeat. But this year, I have vowed to do a better job at SAVING and REPEATING those recipes that were a success.

Here are the ones we tried this week and what we all thought:

Monday: Stuffed Peppers

These were delicious! I roasted the peppers a bit too long (they were super soft and lost their structure) but the flavor was excellent. We have vegetarian friends that I think this will work nicely for. It was tasty and filling enough for the “non-vegetarians” to feel satisfied.

Family Rating: 3 of 4 (Jillian didnt love them-but she did eat them. 😏)

Tuesday: Pan Pizza

Another Rachael Ray recipe!!! I love her!!! This is probably not on the “New Years Healthy” list, but the recipe was fun, different, and super tasty. I doubled her EZ pizza dough recipe and froze 3 of the 4 servings for later use.

Highlight: the sauce was outstanding! And the spicy oil sauce topping brought it to another level! (Kids did not try the oil…they are afraid of spicy. 😊)

Notes: I substituted 1/2 cup wheat flour for white flour in the EZ crust recipe and I really liked how it turned out.

Served with a caesar salad.

Family rating: 3 out of 4 (Bryson wasn’t a fan of the pizza. Day two, though, he heated up a piece and ate it with no complaints)

Wednesday: Roman Chicken

This! This was a huge it with everyone!!! The cooked colorful peppers and the wine spiked sauce gave this main dish a “company worthy” rating. This night there was a “request” to have the leftovers in their lunchboxes the next day. I’d say that is a success!

Served with pear gorgonzola salad with homemade ranch dressing (recipe at the bottom)

Family Rating: 4 out of 4!

Thursday: Zucchini Enchiladas

In the words of Fancy Nancy: Manifique!!!! Not gonna lie, rolling these made me sweat a little but it WORKED! And the results were pretty, packed and totally delish. My Private Selection Roasted Taqueria Style salsa was the perfect ingredient and the perfect balance of flavors to appease all the sensitive tastebuds in our household.

Served with a mixed greens salad and “maybe” just a handful of corn chips. 😊

Family Rating: 4 of 4

Friday Night: Sushi to go!

I wasn’t cooking one more night! It had been a long week!!! Mama needed a NIGHT OFF! 😉

Saturday Night: Zucchini Noodles

Welllll…for one: I knew going into this vegetarian dish that I would have to serve some sort of meat on the side for my “protein pushing” husband. And two: my son doesn’t love noodles. So I was crossing my fingers going into this family dinner.

Results: everyone liked them! One thing I will do next time is reduce the red pepper flakes quantity from 1/2tsp. to 1/4tsp. It was a little too spicy for the kids. With less pepper, I think they would have devoured it all.

Notes:

1. I didnt have enough fresh basil but 1/3 cup worked fine.

2. I might increase the pasta quantity. There were NO leftovers! And if my family was super hungry, they may want seconds.

3. As stated, I would reduce the quantity of red pepper flakes.

4. I served turkey sausages on the side to round out the meal.

Served with a gourmet turkey sausage.

Family Rating: 4 of 4

What would I make again?

I would say ALL of these are repeatable recipes! Talk about success!!! If I was to rank them from best to worst, I would say:

  1. zucchini rolls
  2. roman chicken
  3. zucchini noodles (with the add of a side sausage)
  4. pan pizza (only bec. it isn’t super healthy but I am still dreaming about that sauce)
  5. stuffed peppers (we like a meat stuffed pepper better)

HOMEMADE Ranch Dressing

(that the kids will LOVE!)

  • 1Tbsp. dijon
  • 1 egg

Puree in blender then slowly add:

  • 1/2 c. evoo or avocado oil
  • 1/2 c. almond or cashew milk
  • 3Tbsp. lemon juice
  • 1Tbsp. onion powder
  • 1 clove of garlic, chopped
  • s+p

Stir in:

  • 2Tbsp. chives
  • 1 Tbsp. fresh dill (or 1tsp. dried)

Will last for about a week stored in a lidded mason jar in the fridge.

Send me a note and let me know if you tried any of these! I would love to hear what you thought!!!

Here’s to living a happy and HEALTHY life!

xo, Melissa