When life gets interesting, I like to bake.

I think the title explains it all?

While I’ve not been showing up on this space much in the past few weeks, I’ve been putting in some serious time in my kitchen. This has made me very happy. So I thought I’d share some recipes with you that I’ve been particularly loving – as evidenced by my nice little archive of weekly menu plans I’ve got stuck to my fridge. I used to do everything in spreadsheet format but that got a bit boring, then we got a new printer and – to cut a long IT story short – it’s annoying; so I got this planner from Kmart instead. I love it! There’s something therapeutic about sitting down and writing out your meals for a week vs doing it in spreadsheet form, even though it’s much less efficient and much more messy.

Cheesy cauliflower pesto bites ¦¦ I am a big fan of things with hidden veg in because I am basically a giant toddler at times. The recipe turned out great, and although I wish I had a cool cloud cutter like Sam does, my boring circles will have to do. Thanks for this one Sam! I can see this coming in very handy for lunches, picnics, and accompaniments for meals when I get bored of the old pasta/rice rotation.

Neapolitan Baked Oatmeal ¦¦ I have no joke sent this recipe to three people in the past week. I love it! It’s my breakfast of choice at the moment – and has been for some time. I love it because it’s gluten free, vegan, and refined sugar free. It also tastes like none of those things. Basically Kristy is a genius and has managed to make something healthy taste like it’s not at all! I made big batches of this when strawberries were in season so my freezer is well stocked. When I can’t easily get strawberries I just go for the chocolate and vanilla layers. This also keeps me full for a decent length of time which is a rarity in a breakfast!

Chickpea and feta salad ¦¦ I am on a massive chickpea binge right now and I have no idea why. Aside from just roasting them in some spices, a recipe I have been using for a more interesting lunch is basically as follows: roast together some chickpeas and red peppers (sorry! capsicums) in olive oil. Add to some feta, a red chilli, some rocket leaves, cherry tomatoes, and some mint and coriander leaves. I think you can pretty much free range on the quantities depending on your preference. It makes for a delicious and filling lunch and I am a big fan. Because chickpeas.

Chicken crockpot meatballs ¦¦ Thanks to Kristin for this recipe which is the first ever meatball recipe I’ve tried that a) stays together and b) doesn’t involve a lot of onions that never cook properly and c) actually tastes good! Chicken mince is fairly new to me (why? I have no idea) but I am rapidly realising how genius it is. For what it’s worth, I sub the normal breadcrumbs for gluten free breadcrumbs and everything works just fine for me.

Quinoa enchilada casserole ¦¦ This is definitely a fellow blogger recommendation only I don’t remember who it was. If it was you, thank you! This is now my staple dish for: new families, the infirm, potlucks, dinner parties, or when I don’t have the imagination to think of anything else. It’s delicious, gluten free, vegetarian, and can be made dairy free and vegan by taking out the cheese. It’s a one size fits many requirements dish, also it takes very little time, also you can make ahead and/or freeze it. I love this.

Greek quinoa bowl ¦¦ This recipe isn’t exactly ground breaking but it’s genius in its simplicity. This recipe is quite a new find for me, but I can already see it becoming a staple. I’m weird and picky so I don’t even do the dressing, just a mixture of lemon and lime juice, then I’ll add in whatever else I’ve got lying around. Like…

Roast chicken from Costco ¦¦ Alright, we’re straying into non-recipe territory here. However, I have recently made the groundbreaking discovery that Costco sell whole rotisserie chickens for $5.98. That and one of their giant tubs of mixed salad for $9.99 (or the Greek quinoa bowl above) and we’re set for a good 5 days worth of meals. Other things I’ve loved buying in bulk from Costco: quinoa (as you can probably tell), chia seeds, feta, Callebaut chocolate chips, meat in general. Things I have been disappointed by at Costco have included their sushi trays (not really like actual sushi and actually quite strange), a top that fell apart when I washed it, and a slab of Diet Coke that turned out to be cheaper at Coles (when on promo, anyway).

Any recipes you’re loving recently? Do you shop at Costco? Can you recommend anything for me to buy? This totally isn’t sponsored by the way, just in case you were wondering. I just want to maximise my membership.

Happy Meal Planning Monday!

-Rachel

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10 Comments

  1. Jen
    17th October 2017 / 05:21

    Yes!!! Baking is my favorite thing to do when things get out of whack.

  2. 18th October 2017 / 01:46

    I love meal planning every week too, and I swear that’s the only way that I can actually make sure that I’m eating semi-healthy! We don’t really make that many breakfast meals, usually we just eat some sort of breakfast bar, but the baked oatmeal recipe sounds really good! We’re also huge fans of Costco, and I swear Chris could spend all day in there trying out samples and walking down each and every aisle! We usually just buy a lot of toiletries in bulk, but every time I’ve bought their food it’s been so good!

  3. 18th October 2017 / 10:45

    Oooh yum, these sound delicious and oh so varied! Cooking really is good for the soul and I love getting creative in the kitchen, it’s just so rewarding!

  4. 20th October 2017 / 20:12

    Yaaaayyy!!! I am SO glad you’re loving that baked oatmeal recipe!

    But hold up a minute… Costco rotisserie chicken is gluten free?!?!!!

  5. 20th October 2017 / 23:01

    I need to make a trip to Kmart and get that planner (which you know means also buy 100 other things I don’t need). I have to meal plan or I seriously do not know how to function. I love anytime of Mexican quinoa recipe, I feel like we rotate quite a few. I need to try the baked oatmeal I am boring and eat the same thing every day.

  6. 22nd October 2017 / 01:35

    LOL a hidden vegetable?! I love that term… because I’m also a toddler. One of my staff members and I have a running joke (that is actually true, so probably not a joke) about eating our vegetables for the month. That’s real.

  7. 24th October 2017 / 21:33

    I love using cauliflower in creamy soups and such….those cauliflower bites sound very tasty indeed! I know they have Costco in the US but I’ve actually never been inside one. There is no grocery store that I like here…maybe that’s why Angel does all the grocery shopping for the first time in our marriage…

  8. 27th October 2017 / 17:36

    Chickpeas are my favourite! I would happily eat them every day. That salad sounds amazing.

  9. 5th November 2017 / 09:50

    I love your idea of having the weekly menu plans stuck to the fridge! I can usually plan out several meals for the week, and the rest are “fend for yourself” in the household.

    All of these recipes sound amazing—especially the quinoa chicken casserole! One of my favorite ways to destress in the evening is to put on an audiobook and bake… as long as I don’t have to do the dishes afterward haha.

    Thanks for sharing these recipes!

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