7-day menu planner for July 14-20

Credit: 7-Day Menu Planner

Credit: 7-Day Menu Planner

SUNDAY (Family)

Take it easy and buy a Smoked Turkey Breast for family day. Alongside, Endive, Beet and Pear Salad (see recipe) is delicious. Add more color and a real summer favorite, sliced tomatoes, to the plate, along with some whole-grain rolls.

No one can resist Peach Crumble for dessert: Heat oven to 350 degrees. Combine 12 (about 3 pounds) fresh peeled and sliced peaches and 1/4 cup white sugar; spoon into a 3-quart baking dish coated with cooking spray. Combine 1/2 cup flour, 1/3 cup packed light brown sugar, 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg and 3 Tablespoons cold butter in a medium bowl. With 2 knives, cut butter into flour mixture until mixture resembles coarse crumbs; sprinkle over peaches. Bake 40 to 45 minutes or until golden.

PLAN AHEAD: Save enough turkey, tomatoes and dessert for Monday.

TIP: The last time I made this, I used a mixture of peaches, blueberries and raspberries. Delicious.

MONDAY (Heat and Eat)

Use the leftover turkey and tomatoes for a Grilled Turkey, Tomato and Swiss Cheese Sandwich. Use reduced-fat cheese and sliced sourdough bread spread with Dijon mustard, and coat the outside with cooking spray instead of butter. Serve corn on the cob on the side. Warm the leftover Crumble for dessert.

TUESDAY (Express)

Make dinner quick tonight and warm up a precooked Ham Steak. Rub Cajun seasoning blend on both sides before heating if desired. Serve with Sweet Potato Fries (from frozen) and deli Broccoli Salad. Make cornbread from a mix. Plums are your dessert.


Make it Taco Night for the kids. Let them choose their favorite ingredients such as lean ground beef, shredded cheddar cheese, mild salsa, reduced-fat sour cream and diced avocado to fill the taco shells. Add some rice on the side. Bite into a nectarine for dessert.

THURSDAY (Meatless)

We enjoyed these Bello Burgers for a meatless dinner: Heat grill and coat 4 large portobello mushrooms, 1 large red bell pepper cut into quarters and 1 sliced red onion with cooking spray on both sides. Grill the vegetables on both sides about 4 to 6 minutes or until lightly charred and tender. Meanwhile, whisk together 2 Tablespoons reduced-fat Italian dressing with 2 Tablespoons low-fat mayonnaise. Spread whole-grain hamburger buns with dressing mixture. On bottom bun, layer lettuce, tomato, mushroom, peppers and onion. Cover with top bun.

Serve immediately with baked chips. Scoop Vanilla Ice Cream for dessert.

PLAN AHEAD: Save enough ice cream for Saturday.

FRIDAY (Budget)

Save some money and serve Oven-Fried Pork Chops (see recipe). Add green beans, a crisp lettuce wedge and crusty bread. For dessert, strawberries are delightful.

SATURDAY (Easy Entertaining)

Entertain your friends with your own Lamb Chops. Serve with Cannellini Beans with Rosemary (see recipe), fresh asparagus, a Romaine Salad and sourdough rolls. For dessert, a wedge of chilled cantaloupe with a scoop of leftover ice cream is refreshing.


Servings: makes 6 servings

Preparation time: 15 minutes

Cooking time: none

1 1/2 pounds beets, trimmed, peeled and shredded

1/4 cup sugar, plus extra for seasoning

1 1/2 teaspoon coarse salt, divided

3 Tablespoons sherry vinegar, plus extra for seasoning

2 Tablespoons Dijon mustard

1/2 teaspoon pepper

1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil

2 heads Belgian endive (4 ounces each), halved, cored and sliced thin on bias

2 pears, peeled, halved, cored and cut into 1/8-inch matchsticks

1 cup cilantro leaves

Toss beets with sugar and 1 teaspoon salt in large bowl and let stand until partially wilted and reduced in volume by one-third, about 15 minutes. Meanwhile, whisk vinegar, mustard, pepper and remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt in a large serving bowl. Whisking constantly, slowly drizzle in oil until combined. Transfer beets to salad spinner and spin until excess water is removed, 10 to 20 seconds. Transfer beets to bowl with dressing. Add endive, pears and cilantro to bowl with beets; toss to combine. Season with salt, pepper, extra sugar and extra vinegar to taste. Serve immediately.

Per serving: 272 calories, 2 grams protein, 19 grams fat (59% calories from fat), 2.5 grams saturated fat, 27 grams carbohydrate, no cholesterol, 754 milligrams sodium, 6 grams fiber.

Carb count: 2.


Servings: makes 4 servings

Preparation time: 15 minutes

Cooking time: 20 minutes

1 egg

2 Tablespoons milk

1 cup cornbread stuffing mix

4 trimmed pork loin chops (1/2-inch-thick chops, about 1 1/2 pounds total)

1 (20-ounce) package frozen roasted potato pieces

Heat oven to 425 degrees. In shallow bowl, beat egg and then stir in milk. Place stuffing mix in a pie plate. Dip chops into egg mixture; coat both sides with stuffing mix. Arrange chops in a single layer on one side of a large rimmed baking sheet coated with cooking spray. On other side of sheet, arrange potatoes, mounding as necessary. Bake 20 minutes or until internal temperature of pork reaches 145 degrees and potatoes are browned and crisp; turn and stir once after 10 minutes.

Per serving: 462 calories, 44 grams protein, 10 grams fat (20% calories from fat), 2.3 grams saturated fat, 44 grams carbohydrate, 164 milligrams cholesterol, 837 milligrams sodium, 4 grams fiber.

Carb count: 3.


Servings: makes 4 servings

Preparation time: 15 minutes

Cooking time: about 5 minutes

2 Tablespoons olive oil, plus 1 teaspoon optional

1 teaspoon finely chopped fresh rosemary

Zest and juice of 1 lemon

1 small clove garlic, peeled and minced

2 (15-ounce) cans rinsed cannellini beans

1/4 teaspoon coarse salt

Pepper to taste

Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet on medium. Add rosemary and lemon zest; cook and stir 30 seconds. Add garlic; cook and stir 30 seconds. Add beans; stir carefully to coat in oil. Squeeze in lemon juice; add salt and pepper. Cook, stirring constantly, 1 to 2 minutes or until beans are hot. Spoon into a warm serving bowl and add additional oil if desired.

Per serving: 228 calories, 8 grams protein, 8 grams fat (30% calories from fat), 1 gram saturated fat, 31 grams carbohydrate, no cholesterol, 526 milligrams sodium, 8 grams fiber.

Carb count: 2.

Susan Nicholson is an Atlanta-based cookbook author and registered dietitian. She can be reached by email: susan@7daymenu.com. Follow Susan on Twitter: @7DayMenu. The Menu Planner is also accessible at 7daymenuplanner.com. Read Susan’s blog: makingthemenu.com. And check out Susan’s book: “7-Day Menu Planner for Dummies” is on shelves now. Order yours on Amazon.com.

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