What’s for Dinner: Our Meal Plan for May

Since starting to share some behind the scenes about our meal planning process, I’ve heard more and more interest from friends and readers about how exactly we make this happen each month. So far I’ve shared why I create monthly meal plans in the first place and a free download so you all can print your own monthly meal plan templates. Most recently I wrote up a bit more detail about what my exact process looks like for those of you who are interested in trying this yourself.

When these types of conversations turn my friends on to the idea of giving it a try, the next question is always: okay so can you just share your meal plan each month? Apparently, coming up with about 21 dinner recipes each month isn’t for the faint of heart (or busy mom). So absolutely, I’ll share mine!

At least for a few months. But first…

A Few Disclaimers About Our Meal Plan

Here are a handful of things to keep in mind, before I get into exactly what’s for dinner this month in our household.

  • I’m an almost entirely plant based eater. My husband is not. My toddler goes with the flow. As a result, a lot of our meals are planned in a way that I can have a protein and nutrient packed meal without animal products. And my husband can still enjoy a piece of meat. On the other hand, my husband is incredibly appreciative of the fact that I meal plan, grocery shop, and cook most nights of the week. So he’s also on board with a decent number of vegan meals each month.
  • My 2 year old daughter eats what we eat, for the most part. So my meal plans don’t include a child only menu. There are exceptions, like if my husband and I are eating out, then Gemma gets a Gemma meal. But even in these cases, I rarely plan her meal. Because we always keep our fridge, freezer, and pantry stocked with staples that can come together for a healthy, kid friendly meal quickly.
  • We’re a-okay with plain and simple meals. As I mention in this post, I try my best to try a couple new recipes each month. I also do my best to plan a healthy mix of quick and easy meals, along with some that are either complex or perhaps ethnic meals. But yes, our meal plan includes the occasional protein + veggie + starch, or salad + protein option.
  • We’re making a concerted effort to eat more salads. If I shared a picture of our meal calendars for the last year, you would not see this many salads on our menu… but we recently decided to try and eat more greens and veggies, so each Monday we do a simple bagged salad (they’re like $2.99 from Wegmans and more than enough for our dinners!) and each add a protein of our choice.
  • We’re busy, but not that busy. Take our family’s meal plan for what it’s worth. My husband works from home. I’m a mostly stay at home, but part time work from home mom. Our daughter is 2. I’m fortunate enough to be able to prep a bit for dinner during the day. And my husband can usually duck out of his office by 5:30 to help. We have work events, and social events, and parents nights outs, yes. But we’re not yet in the stage of family life where I know many of you are. We don’t have practices and dance recitals and school events and away games and even more to work around. Our schedule is perfectly full for us right now. But I fully recognize that many of you with multiple, older kids have a far more hectic schedule, and that adds many layers of complexity to your meal plan options. I salute you, moms!

With that out of the way, here’s what’s for dinner in our household this month.

Our Month of May Dinner Plan

  1. Real life… I don’t remember why I started on the 2nd. Perhaps all of our back to back trips had me a couple days delayed!
  2. BBQ chicken sandwiches, topped with red onion and pineapple and served with a side salad
  3. Pizza
  4. Salad with protein
  5. Simple tacos
  6. Sheet pan dinner: chicken sausage with potatoes and broccoli (inspired by recipes like this, but I choose our own items to mix in)
  7. Skillet tuscan tortellini with “beef” crumbles
  8. Pizza
  9. Trader Joe’s frozen Asian chicken served over rice with steamed broccoli
  10. Veggie spaghetti with tomato bean sauce
  11. Salad with protein
  12. Salmon with avocado bruschetta with green beans
  13. Lentil tortilla soup
  14. Leftovers / pantry dinner
  15. Pizza
  16. Veggie burgers with sweet potato fries and side salad
  17. Simple pasta with salad
  18. Salad with protein
  19. Chicken burrito bowls (Luke and Gemma have chicken, I’ll go heavy on beans)
  20. Lemon garlic shrimp with roasted veggies
  21. Vegan mac and cheese with side salad
  22. Salad with protein
  23. Easy “beef” burrito skillet (We used to make this all the time, and I’m going to try for the first time with my fake “beef” crumbles and dairy free cheese.)
  24. Left overs / pantry dinner
  25. Mediterranean cod
  26. Pizza

And there you have it. A real life look at what our family will eat for dinner this month, after creating a monthly meal plan in advance.

Let me know if the comments if you like this kind of dinner idea roundup, and if so I’ll be sure to do it again in June. And (bearing in mind that I’m by no means a food blogger) you can always check out my “Favorite Recipes” Pinterest board if you’re looking for more inspiration and ideas.

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