Spring Meal Planning

Chinese Noodles with Spring Vegetables – 2 Guiding Stars

Ah spring…colorful flowers, the return of green grass, longer days, and warm sun. It’s also a time of endless school activities, spring sports, and other commitments that pull on your time and schedule. While Guiding Stars can’t alleviate your busy schedule or to-do list, we can make meal planning more manageable. Our tips won’t add to your plate—they’ll make eating nutritiously both convenient and attainable.

Next-Level Nextovers

Streamline a busy week with recipes that let you recreate today’s meal into something unexpected. Nextovers, or intentional leftovers, not only save time, they also reduce waste, allowing you to use up prepped ingredients. And they let home chefs work hard today, but not tomorrow. Make extra for this Spaghetti with Turkey Meat Sauce and turn leftover noodles into Chinese Noodles with Spring Vegetables. Or fix a simple quinoa side this evening that becomes Quinoa Pesto Salad tomorrow.

Easy Cleanup

Less cleanup means more time outdoors on bright spring days. Lean on low-effort sheet pan dinners that cook while you’re enjoying other activities. Prepare an array of proteins and vegetables to use in a variety of ways throughout the week. Or try unique recipes like this Maple Salmon Bake or Cod Packets with Zucchini, Tomatoes & Mint. Of course, using the grill as much as possible means you’ll be outside and likely left with few dishes. Lastly, use your slow cooker for something other than soups or stews. Set this Moroccan Chicken in the morning, enjoy a long afternoon of spring sports and events, and return to dinner.

Quick Assembly

Springtime is highlighted by fun events like recitals, concerts, and other celebrations. And often these occasions are immediately followed by gatherings at home with family and friends. These special, memorable days can be tough on a host who has little time to prepare for guests. So scheduling time to prep are part of your meal planning is essential. I love blanching veggies ahead of time to assemble quick delicious dishes and salads. Or create unique kebabs to enjoy from the grill in minutes. Prepare quick apps ahead of time, and welcome guests with a refreshing beverage.

Perfect for the Field

If spring sports and activities have your schedule packed, you need meals that can be easily enjoyed on the sidelines. Salads and sandwiches are likely go-to options, but they don’t have to be boring. Start by reviewing your family’s schedule. Then base your menu on the nights you can be home so that you have great ingredients on hand. For example, make Roasted Vegetables with Miso-Lime Dressing with grilled chicken (always make extra!) for dinner tonight. Then you can bring an Asian-inspired salad to the field tomorrow. Or use the grilled chicken for a Roasted Red Pepper & Chicken Wrap that’s way more interesting than a basic sandwich.

There are many convenient ways to put spring on your plate and get back to enjoying your family and friends. Look to Guiding Stars to curate menus and find nutritious products at the supermarket. They’ll help save you time and make it easy to follow a nutritious diet.