Monthly Meal Plan (April)

by Maryann Tomovich Jacobsen, MS, RD on April 1, 2014

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April is a special month for a couple of reasons. First, it’s Little D’s birthday. And second, it’s my birthday 3 days after his. I used to think it was good to have my birthday over-shadowed by my kid (getting older blah, blah blah), but now I want my birthday back. So I make a point to celebrate it too.

Below is what I’m planning for our month of meals. Each week I look at what I have planned and usually change a few things depending on our schedule. But so far its working great.

For more meal planning inspiration, see Org Junkie.

What’s Cooking?

Monday Mexican: Black bean and Chicken Quesadillas (Chicken Enchiladas, Turkey Tacos and Fish Tacos)

Tuesday Italian: Baked Shrimp and Broccoli with pasta (meat lasagna, spaghetti, veggie lasagna)

Kids’ Choice: Lately they’ve been wanting grilled cheese and avocado sandwiches

Thursday: Slow Cooker Pork Tenderloin with potatoes and red pepper veggie stir fry (shrimp stir fry, chicken soulvlaki and slow cooker chicken curry)

Friday (no meat): Grilled Salmon with Avocado dip, rice and salad (salmon cakes, black bean burgers and baked steelhead trout)

More from Cooking Light

Cooking with Asparagus

Arugula Salad Recipes

Avocado Recipes

How we do kiddie birthday parties

Little D had his big bash Sunday, something he has not been patiently waiting for. We had it at a park with a jumpy castle and invited family and friends. I chose a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle theme since that is what Little D is into at the moment.

When it comes to birthdays and food, I like to have something the birthday person likes and Little D requested pizza. We ordered a variety of pizzas — cheese, pepperoni and veggie. But I also think about balance. I had a few trays of fruit and veggies as appetizers along with Kettle baked chips. We filled the cooler and made sure there was water and 100% fruit juice for the kids.



For dessert it was chocolate cupcakes with chocolate on the inside, because Little D is a chocolate freak. No giveaway baggies with candy but we did have these rings from the cupcakes the kids took home.


Just a simple but fun day with a wonderful boy who is turning 5.

Links and updates

Don’t miss the giveaway with Grow with Me Tee that ends tonight. If you don’t win, they are offering a special 15% discount until April 7th by using the coupon code RAISEHEALTHY15. If you’re interested, you can order here.

I’ve been hearing a lot about how some olive oil isn’t the real deal, so on WebMD, I discuss how to choose a high quality one.

On She Knows, I point out 7 nutrients even healthy women miss out on.

In a feature for Today’s Dietitian, I get into the research on midlife nutrition and why women of all ages need to be aware of these “watch outs” (it’s a little long and technical but worth the read).

In this guest post on, I point out 5 common toddler feeding mistakes that throw parents off track early in the game.

Yonni Freedhoff discusses the right way for your child to be weighed at the doctor’s office.

Well, that’s it for now. Let me know how you are doing in the comments!

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{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Suzanne April 1, 2014 at 12:36 pm

Hi Maryann,

I’ve been meal planning weekly now for a few years and while it makes healthy eating and life in general much easier, it’s still a rush sometimes to come up with the plan. When you posted a while back on a monthly plan, I decided to print a calendar and write out a rough plan of meals and snack ideas for the rest of the month to give it a try. Like you, I changed a few things each week, but it was really nice to have some structure already in place. Initially it seemed like it would be a lot of work to come up with a month, but since we already have several meals we like to eat it was surprisingly quick and much easier to plan for variety. I’m trying it again this month…thanks for the inspiration!

Just curious – when you offer your kids choice each week is it a choice between a couple of dishes or do they choose randomly?


Maryann Tomovich Jacobsen, MS, RD April 2, 2014 at 1:00 pm

Hey Suzanne! Glad to hear the monthly meal planning is working for you. As for kids choice, its just me and the kids those nights because my husband works late on Wednesday. I give them two choices of what I have on hand and it has to be easy because it’s my easy night. But you could ask them ahead of time what they want so you can make sure you have the item. I just like having one night where I don’t have a lot of dishes and the middle of the week is perfect.


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