Meal planning, as a practice, has helped me reduce a lot of wastage in the kitchen and also save up on time and money when doing grocery shopping. I started posting 7-day vegan meal plans a few months ago to exchange ideas within the community. I would love to hear from you about your experience of cooking with or without meal plans!
There are weeks when I do give meal planning a skip and that’s okay. But 2-3 days within the week and I start to miss the ease that process brings. This month I thought along with the weekly meal plan, I’ll also share a few updates from the month because there have been many! If you would like to skip and updates, click here to jump to the meal plan directly.
Volunteering at a Head-Hands-Heart Retreat on building bridges
I’ve been volunteering with Service Space online and offline for many years now. One of the things I was excited with the US move was that it would allow me more opportunities to serve in person. So this month I went to Banyan Grove which is an entirely volunteer-run home for Service Space volunteers to cultivate inner transformation. I volunteered and participated in a beautiful head-hands-hearts retreat that a few friends facilitated. The question tugging us all at the end was how can we continue to build bridges with others and move towards wholeness.
Volunteering in Schools as Garden and SEL educator
In Houston, I’ve recently started volunteering with Urban Harvest to take outdoor garden classes during the summer school camps. The objective is to introduce mindfulness with garden education. Since my gardening capabilities are limited to mainly apartment gardening, handling a school garden and building activities around it for kids ranging from kinder to 7th grade, really takes a lot of time. I’m totally enjoying the process and how I am both a student and a teacher in this process. The other day we harvested some cucumbers, cherry tomatoes, and basil and made “raw pizzas” with them! The kids were excited and I was so happy to see how they were enjoying tasting everything individually and together and noticing the difference in tastes.
If you have ideas for activities in an outdoor garden classroom, do share them with me. The kids are super excited with new things to do!
But this also means that I have lesser time at home and meal planning is even more important now. The first week that I started volunteering in school I had just come back from a retreat and I didn’t get time to sit down and plan a menu for the week. On my way back home, I will mentally be trying to remember what’s in the fridge. I would be back home around 5pm, open my fridge and wonder what to cook. Then one day I just sat down and planned the week ahead and meal prepping and cooking is back to being a joy than a chore.
The one thing that I really enjoy about being in Houston is the easy availability of Indian vegetables! I haven’t cooked okra in 5 years because we didn’t find it in Angola or Romania; baby eggplants and fresh coriander were a rarity and fresh curry leaves! I am like a child in an Indian store here 🙂
Below is the meal plan that I followed last week. You can download the vegan meal plan with grocery list and prep notes here.
7-day vegan meal plan with recipe links
|BREAKFAST||LUNCH||DINNER||SNACKS for in-between meals through the day|
|MONDAY||Homemade Granola with Almond milk and berries||Tomato - Garlic Toast with green salad||Potato & Fenugreek stir-fry|
|Vegetable Sticks with green chutney|
|TUESDAY||Blueberry Oatmeal||A sandwich with leftover potato sabzi & green chutney||Bhindi Masala (Okra)|
Whole Wheat Flat Bread (Plain Paratha)
|Crispy Kale chips|
|WEDNESDAY||Spinach and Pineapple Smoothie||Beans Salad||Mixed lentil Curry, Rice and Raw Salad||No bake Nutella oatmeal Cookies , fresh fruits, and nuts|
|THURSDAY||Millet Drink: Ragi & Banana Smoothie + fresh fruits||Lentil curry & Rice (leftovers from dinner)||Quinoa Bowl|
|Bread slice with nut butter & Fresh Berries|
|FRIDAY||Overnight oats with fresh fruits||Fennel & Radish Salad||Burrito Bowl: Vegan beans chili, roasted peppers, salsa, and rice||Date bars|
Idli Sambhar ( Indian steamed rice cakes with lentil curry and curry leaves & coconut chutney)
|Eat Out||Steamed Edamame, Fruits, & nuts|
Jowar (Sorghum) Pancake with green chutney.
Banana & Strawberry Smoothie
|Tawa Pulao||Anything you wish! (Chips/ cookies/ edamame/ date bars/ fruits/ nuts...)|
A few notes:
- This meal plan does not have all the exact recipes and some dishes are linked to their closest recipes. Feel free to drop me a comment if you need any help with the exact preparation.
- Chutneys like coriander chutney and coconut chutney can be made over the weekend and kept in fridge for the whole week.
- Same with other snack items like date bars, cookies, and kale chips — make over weekend and keep for the week.
The last couple of months have been quite a ride. From moving countries to travel, to starting a new job. I haven’t been able to post as regularly as I would want to. Can’t believe my last post was on 8th June! Since I am still settling in, I don’t want to make any promises to myself and then feel that I failed on them :o. But I would love to connect with you all on everything and anything related to food, gardening, volunteering… let’s just say life!
Connect with me
If you try this meal plan or any of the recipes here a try, I would really love to know. Tag your picture with #weekendkitchen on Instagram or connect with me on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, and/or Pinterest.
Or join our newest (and a little slow) journey into Recipe Videos.