When I started feeding Avery solids about a month ago, it ignited something inside of me. I began feeling more inspired than ever in the kitchen, for both her and our family. I want to feed her different types of foods and get her experiencing different textures and flavors, and I also wanted to eat with her every single night. The only problem is, Avery eats pretty early and even though I LOVE an early bird special, I pretty quickly found it challenging to make an entire dinner and then consume it in the amount of time it takes her to finish her small amount of food. And because of that, I was trying to cram in the food as fast as possible or it would sit on the plate until she was tucked in bed and then I would eat it cold. Neither situation was ideal. I’m a person who wants to eat slow, enjoy my food, and take pride in the work I did in the kitchen, so that timing wasn’t going to work for me longterm.

That’s when I came up with a solution…I would romanticize dinner a bit, at least compared to what I had done in the past. I would prep dinner a bit before Avery ate, but I would make sure I had a starter salad to eat with her while she ate her dinner. That way she was able to see us eat (mimicking is very important as babies learn to chew) while also having time as a family around the table from an early age. The only problem is…I’m not a huge salad person. So I had to start getting creative. And that led me to searching through my own recipes, finding recipes on Pinterest, and scouring different cookbooks, as well. Now every week, I come up with a weekly dinner menu game plan. I already have breakfast and lunch covered most days so it’s not something I think much about, but having dinners all planned out by Sunday so I can have all the groceries I need, is definitely super helpful with ensuring those meals happen.

In our meals, you’ll see three things:

1. A salad with dinner types of greens and sometimes fruits and/or grains.

2. A main dish that always includes an animal-based protein. I try to mix up the protein throughout the week so we aren’t having the same one every night.

3. A veggie side dish. I also try to do a different vegetable every night so I’m getting an array of different vitamins and minerals.

Ever since I started doing this a couple weeks ago, our meals have been so much more fun and enjoyable! So I thought I would start sharing those menus here so you could get some inspiration for yourself! Below is a little template of what the week looks like, Sunday through Thursday, then below that it has the links to those recipes. If there aren’t recipes, you won’t. You get the drill. I find that we often eat out Friday and/or Saturday, or we simply eat whatever we have left in the fridge or freezer, so I really don’t need to plan those days out. And if you’re wondering what we do with leftovers…we eat them for breakfast or lunch! Food rarely goes to waste here because I think every piece of food is worth saving for later (like one floret of roasted broccoli…don’t you dare throw that away, we have small tupperware for a reason). But enough about meals, let’s actually get into them!!


Salad: Watercress with Fennel, Avocado, and Orange

Main: PaleOMG Roasted Chicken

Veggie: Grounding Roasted Roots with Herbed Jalapeño Yogurt Sauce


Salad: PaleOMG Asian Cucumber Salad

Main: PaleOMG Asian Noodle Stir Fry with Shrimp

Veggie: Roasted Purple Cabbage


Salad: PaleOMG Kale Caesar Salad

Main: Reverse Sear Steaks

Veggie: Lentil Pasta with Rao’s, Spinach, and Eggplant


Salad: Lemon Arugula Pearl Couscous Salad

Main: PaleOMG 10-Minute Honey Garlic Salmon

Veggie: Oven Roasted Broccoli


Salad: Deconstructed Wedge Salad

Main: PaleOMG Black Bean Tacos with Bison Taco Meat

Veggie: Mexican Roasted Zucchini 

I hope all these recipes and links help inspire you to eat more salad, eat more greens, and definitely eat more protein! I’ll be sharing new menus every Sunday on the blog!

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  1. Darcy Nelson says:

    Your graphic is so pretty. Definitely looking forward to this each week!

  2. Carie says:

    This is probably too much to ask AND probably a pain since everyone shops differently i.e. in store, on line, etc. But, I was wondering if it would be possible to also include an exportable/downloadable shopping list? I feel like such a bratt for asking, but if you already have it……:)


  3. Sarah says:

    My parents believed in family dinner and also believed in taking time for themselves without children each day. Until we were probably 10 or 12, my parents had a glass of wine and cheese and crackers while my siblings and I ate dinner. After we went to bed, they then had their dinner together alone. Once we were pre-teens, we all started having dinner together, and my parents had at least one date night per week. My parents have the best marriage of any couple I know because they always took care of it; and we are all a very close family.
    Just some ideas if they would work for your family too!

  4. Courtney H says:

    Could you share your recipe for your lemon arugula pearl couscous salad please ma’am?

    1. juli says:

      no recipe yet!! planning to make it on the fly that day. if it turns out tasty enough, i’ll definitely share it!

  5. Laura says:

    i know this takes a long time to compile, compose, and share, but it is AWESOME!!!!! thank you! dinner for a fam can be so tricky. you are the BEST!

  6. Jennifer says:

    Love this! Inspired me to pick up some different veggies and looking forward to spicing up our weekly meals! I appreciate you sharing this!

    1. juli says:

      yayyyyy! that is exactly what I wanted from sharing these posts!!