Easy Weeknight Italian!
Putting healthy food on the table, even on a busy weeknight doesn’t have to be as hard as you think. With a little planning, you can have meals that will be made fresh, in just under an hour! There are a lot of things you can do ahead of time, to make the executing of a healthy dinner a reality. I’ll often plan to get up early enough to be able to chop the onions and garlic that I add to the sauce.I put them in a Ziploc, toss them in the fridge and when I get home from work, they are ready to go! Even better is to have a batch of onions chopped ahead. Sunday is usually my weekly food prep day. I have my menu planned ahead, and sometimes I chop extra onions and freeze them. When I am ready for them, I just pull them out and toss them in! I don’t do this with the garlic, because there is just something about fresh garlic! Cutting onions in bulk on my food prep day, saves a lot of cleanup during the week!
Costco and Whole Foods were the 2 main places I shopped for this dinner. CLICK HERE to get your Rao’s! These AMYLU Organic Italian Style Chicken Meatballs were a super score from Costco. They come in a 2 pack, so you can get 2 meals out of it, if you are a small Family like us!
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Let’s start cooking!!
I always add chopped onion, garlic, and Italian seasoning to my jar sauce. Heading into the winter months, I will put onion and garlic in any and everything I can, to help build up our immunity. Never ever do I use minced garlic from a jar. Garlic from a jar may contain a lot of harmful additives. This article here gives lots of information on why jar garlic is a no for me.
Start by cooking down the onions in olive oil. Costco makes an amazing olive oil that is great for cooking (not a finishing olive oil). Click HERE to get your Kirkland Olive Oil! Then add garlic and cook for about two to three minutes. Now add the sauce and seasoning. After the sauce simmers for about 5 minutes you can add in the meatballs. The meatballs are already cooked, so you are just warming them up in the sauce! The meatballs will add extra flavors to the sauce as well! The meatballs will heat up in about twenty five minutes in the simmering sauce.
The Lentil noodles from Whole foods are the best of all the bean noodles that I’ve tried, but there are a number of good ones out there. Red Lentil Pasta is high in fiber and protein! It is also gluten-free if you are sensitive to gluten.
A quick salad is great addition to this dinner! This is another place where you can add immunity building vegetables!
Another time-saver is if you are willing to get up a little early, you can make the salad in the morning and just toss it in the fridge!
Now the work is done, and you can enjoy and warm bowl of pasta and meatballs! No guilt needed with this dinner! Planning ahead is key. Make your menu on Saturday. Shop and prepare your items for the week on Sunday. I believe ‘busy’ and ‘healthy’ can go together! I enjoy menu planning, food shopping, and food prep. Knowing how much easier it will make my week is my motivation! Cheers! Enjoy!