This week's menus A clip-and-save guide to a week's worth of meals

Menu Planner

December 06, 1998|By Susan Nicholson | Susan Nicholson,Universal Press Syndicate

Each day of the week offers a menu aimed at a different aspect of meal planning. There's a family meal, a kids' menu aimed at younger tastes, a heat-and-eat meal that recycles leftovers, a budget meal that employs a cost-cutting strategy, a meatless or "less meat" dish for people who may not be strict vegetarians but are trying to cut down on meat, an express meal that requires little or no preparation, and an entertaining menu that's quick.


Serve this flavorful Grilled Pork Tenderloin to the family today (see recipe). Serve with your own herb-roasted new potatoes and steamed sugar snap peas. For dessert, toast store-bought fat-free pound cake and top with any kind of berries for your own berry shortcake. Add a dollop of light whipped cream for a finishing touch.

Plan ahead: Save half the pork and the pound cake and prepare enough potatoes for Monday.

Monday/Heat and Eat

Some people might call pork tenderloin sandwiches leftovers, but I call them delicious. Use your favorite dense bread and spread with honey-mustard dressing. For a quick side dish, heat the leftover potatoes and sprinkle with chopped fresh chives. Serve chunky applesauce as an accompaniment. Leftover pound cake with fat-free frozen vanilla yogurt is an easy dessert.

Plan ahead: Save enough yogurt for Tuesday.


Make the kids happy with Chicken Chili (see recipe). Serve it over rice and add a green salad. Let the children help you prepare corn-bread muffins from a mix. For dessert, use leftover frozen yogurt with sliced bananas and caramel sauce for a banana sundae.

Plan ahead: Save half the chili, muffins and caramel sauce for Wednesday.


You'll add savings to your piggy bank when you serve Chili Spuds. Bake 4 (8- to 10-ounce) potatoes. Place one potato on each of 4 plates; slice each one into 8 wedges. Top with heated leftover chili. Serve with a spinach salad and leftover muffins. Instant butterscotch pudding made with skim milk and topped with caramel sauce makes an easy dessert.

Plan ahead: Make enough butterscotch pudding for Thursday.


Vegetarian burgers may not completely replace the old-fashioned kind, but frozen vegetarian burgers are easy and have little fat, so why not try them? Dress them up on toasted whole-wheat buns and add reduced-fat shredded sharp Cheddar cheese, sliced tomatoes, lettuce, sliced dill pickles and, of course, Dijon mustard and low-fat mayonnaise. Serve with steak fries and green peas. Leftover butterscotch pudding is awaiting you for dessert.


Spaghetti With Marinara Sauce (see recipe) is an always-welcome standard on most dinner tables. Serve with a mixed green salad and crusty bread. Add fresh fruit for dessert to complete a tasty, simple meal.

Tip: Double the sauce recipe and freeze for another time.


Your guests are sure to enjoy Grilled Maple-Glazed Salmon Fillets, a quick mock-up of smoked salmon (see recipe). Serve the salmon with Orzo and Pignoli Pilaf (see recipe) and steamed fresh carrots. Add bread. For dessert, alternate flavors of sorbet in parfait or other tall glasses for rainbow parfaits.

Shopping List

What you'll need for this week's menus (consult recipes for exact amounts)


pork tenderloin

whole-grain mustard


dried thyme

black pepper

olive oil

balsamic vinegar

dry red wine

ingredients for

herb-roasted new potatoes

frozen sugar snap peas

fat-free pound cake


light whipped cream


dense bread

honey-mustard dressing

fresh chives

chunky applesauce

fat-free frozen vanilla yogurt


vegetable oil



chili powder

canned Mexican-style tomatoes

fresh yellow and zucchini squash

reduced-sodium chicken broth


cooked or canned chicken breast

cannellini or other white beans


salad greens

corn-bread mix


caramel sauce


baking potatoes

spinach-salad ingredients

instant butterscotch pudding

skim milk


frozen vegetarian burgers

whole-wheat buns

reduced-fat shredded sharp Cheddar cheese



sliced dill pickles

Dijon mustard

low-fat mayonnaise

frozen steak fries

frozen green peas



cooking spray

olive oil



canned tomatoes

tomato paste


black pepper

fresh basil

salad greens

crusty bread

fresh fruit


maple syrup

orange juice

orange zest

cayenne pepper

salmon fillets


black pepper

olive oil



orzo (pasta)

basmati or other white rice

pignoli (pine nuts)

fresh carrots


sorbet for parfaits

Grilled Pork Tenderloin (Sunday)

Makes 8 servings

Preparation time: 15 minutes

Marinating time: 1 hour to overnight; cooking time: 12 to 14 minutes; standing time: 3 to 5 minutes

2 pounds pork tenderloin

1/2 cup whole-grain mustard

3 crushed garlic cloves

1 tablespoon dried thyme

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

2 tablespoons each: olive oil and balsamic vinegar

1/4 cup dry red wine

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