The holidays are notorious for indulgent meals, and rightfully so. Throughout the year I try to watch what I'm eating and make healthy meal choices. When it comes to the holidays, the meals are rich and decadent.
As much as I like a decided season of indulgence, even I can only take so much richness. That’s why I break up the series of festive meals with a week or two of lighter fares.
A sweet and spicy shrimp and broccoli dinner in the beginning of the week is pretty hands off thanks to a large sheet pan and the oven. Pork chops on Wednesday make use of in-season pears in a tangy ginger sauce. Thursday’s hearty low carb “brinner” (breakfast for dinner) is an egg dish that is also gluten-free.
Not only will this week’s meals give you a break from extravagant dinners, many of them will cut down on time spent in the kitchen preparing dinner. These recipes can be prepped in 15 minutes or less.
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Stuffed Squash with Apples and Turkey
Stuffed Squash with Apples and Turkey will use up the last of any holiday leftovers you may have. Cut down on the prep time by roasting your squash on Sunday evening. Store it tightly covered in the fridge and dinner will be on the table even faster.
If you double the rice for this recipe, you can serve it with tomorrow’s shrimp or Wednesday’s pork chops.
Hot Honey Roasted Shrimp and Broccoli
Hot Honey Roasted Shrimp and Broccoli is a nod to my favorite Chinese take-out dish. The honey is made hot by an infusion of spicy chilis, so it’s got a bit of kick to it. If you prefer a milder meal, reduce the amount of red pepper flakes to 1/4 or 1/2 teaspoon.
Pork Chops With Ginger Pear Sauce
Pork Chops With Ginger Pear Sauce take a smidge over 30 minutes to make, so they’re a great midweek dinner option. If you’re like me and like a generous slather of sauce, I suggest doubling this sweet and sour ginger pear version. I’m going to serve these chops with creamy mashed potatoes and a simple garden salad.
Slow Cooker Chickpea Curry With Sweet Potatoes and Red Peppers
Slow Cooker Chickpea Curry With Sweet Potatoes and Red Peppers is a dish I love because I don’t need to babysit it. Thank goodness because I find myself running out of steam this time of year. To shave 4 hours off of the cooking time, soak the chickpeas overnight. Just omit the extra water if you do that.Continue to 5 of 6 below.
Joe’s Special (Scrambled Eggs with Spinach, Beef, and Mushrooms)
If you haven’t gotten on the breakfast for dinner train, this is a great intro. Brinner makes the last meal of the week simple. This recipe is basically an open-faced, less fussy omelet.
Weekend Baking: Flourless Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies
These Flourless Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies are a family-friendly baking project for this weekend. Get help rolling the dough into balls. These ship well, so consider them as the most wonderful gifts to send to family and friends. Plus, they are gluten free!