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Whether you are a beginner in the kitchen or just want to begin again, check out my tools and tips for meal planning.

It’s so simple, and the best part is that once you start the system, it will grow, become more refined and make meal planning as easy as 1-2-3.

But that’s not all!  There are many benefits of using my guide to meal planning.

– Going to the supermarket becomes less of a chore.

– Think of all the time you’ll save while shopping.

– You only buy what you need, which means you’ll spend less money.

– You can budget better (and who doesn’t wish they had extra money in their pocket).  

– You’ll be able to coordinate foods to use in various meals throughout the week which will help minimize food spoilage.  That’s another big money saver!

With my system, you’ll end up making what everyone likes to eat, so as I always say, you can “Keep everyone around the table happy.”

What you want to do is print a blank calendar template.  And look! I’ve made one for you, and it’s a free download. Click here for my Free Meal Planning Calendar Template.

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The Beginner's Guide to Meal Planning - Instant Download

Here is how I started out and you can adjust this to suit your family’s tastes.

I started by choosing two evenings a week for meat/chicken meals. (We always have fish and meat/chicken on Friday night for Shabbat, so this is two meals in addition to that).  

Monday & Wednesday: meat/chicken

Sunday & Thursday: dairy

Tuesday: fish

Saturday night: pasta or pizza 

If you keep kosher, the advantage of choosing your meat days is that everyone in the family knows when the dairy days are and to not get fleishik by mistake).

It should look something like this:

SundayMondayTuesdayWednesdayThursdayFridaySaturday
DAIRYMEAT/CHICKENFISHMEAT/CHICKENDAIRYMEAT/CHICKENPASTA/PIZZA





















Here I have one fish, two dairy, three meat/chicken.  It almost sounds like a Dr. Seuss book.  If you eat a vegan or vegetarian diet, just fill out your calendar template accordingly.

Start by filling in meals that you know your family likes to eat.  Do a little research though rebbetzinunplugged.com for other recipes your family will enjoy, including starters and side dishes. Then add those to your new calendar template.  

You don’t have to fill out the entire month at once.  Even if you have just two weeks filled out, you can repeat those meals. 

As time goes by, add new meals that your family enjoyed and you can remove ones that didn’t go well. (Eventually, you will have three months worth of meals to choose from).

When you have about three weeks worth of meals, take a weekly calendar board like this one, and pick 7 meals from your filled out calendar.  Add a green vegetable and a starch and youre ready to go.

It’s as easy as that.  It takes about five minutes and you’re all done!  If you’d like to take a peek at my three months worth of meals, you can check that out here.

This Classic Italian Gnocchi recipe is easy and delicious. It takes a little time and attention, but lets the one eating know that you care.

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These little pillows of wholesome goodness are sure to satisfy any palate.  Gnocchi can be made of just potato or you can incorporate other flavors that everyone will love.  Some popular variations are carrot, beet, spinach, sweet potato, hazelnut and more. This comfort food is a favorite in my house.

Classic Italian Gnocchi are Quick and Easy!

This classic Italian gnocchi recipe is quick and easy to prepare.  It’s a hands-on type of recipe, but there is nothing complicated about it.  My kids love to give me a hand when I’m making gnocchi.  (It may be just to get me to double up the recipe, since they are so incredibly delicious).

Gnocchi can be served with a simple marinara sauce, a creamy bechamel or even just with olive oil and some parmesan sprinkled on top. My absolute favorite is gnocchi with butter and sage, or as we say in Italy, “Gnocchi con Burro e Salvia.”  It is such a wonderful taste and leaves the house with a fragrant aromatic smell. 

Between the flavors you can add to the gnocchi themselves and the many types of sauces you can whip up, gnocchi is a very versatile dish that can be served as a main course or even a side dish.  

Leftovers? What Leftovers?

I have never (ever) had any leftovers when I’ve made gnocchi.  Although, if you do, they will heat up very well in a pan with whichever sauce you choose. You can also make the dough ahead the night before and leave it in the fridge in an air-tight container until you are ready to cook the actual gnocchi. But, the entire process isn’t so time consuming.

Even though I usually have my dinners for the week planned out it advance (you can download my free weekly meal planner here, once in a while I ask my family “What should I make for dinner?.”  I would say that “Gnocchi!” is amongst the responses 90% of the time.

Classic Italian Gnocchi AKA Love in a Dish

5 from 5 votes
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Servings 6
Calories 191

Ingredients

  • 2 3/8 cups flour (300 grams)
  • 7 medium potatoes (1 kilo before peeling)
  • 1 egg
  • salt to taste

Instructions 

First Things First

  • Put on some of your favorite music.
  • Peel and boil potatoes in a large pot (like a pasta pot) of salted water
  • Drain potatoes and mash with a potato masher or a fork
  • Taste and add salt if necessary
  • Add flour and egg and combine by hand

Making the Gnocchi

  • Reboil water (add some water to the pot, if necessary)
  • On a floured surface, roll out 3 strands of dough
  • Slice strands into individual pieces (see photo)
  • Add approximately 10 gnocchi at a time to the boiling water
  • They will float to the top when they are ready (around 1 minute)
  • Remove cooked gnocchi with a slotted spoon
  • While gnocchi are boiling, roll out and cut other strands and keep the cooking process going
  • The gnocchi can be served by pouring a heated sauce on top. Or, they can be transferred to a large pan and heated in the sauce of your choice.

Notes

Since potatoes come in all shapes and sizes, use a digital scale to weigh out the potatoes (and flour) in grams for precision. And here’s another tip! I tape a piece of baking paper down on my counter top or table and work directly on there. It makes for a super fast and easy clean up!
Calories: 191kcal
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Italian
Keyword: comfort food, gnocchi, gnocchi recipes, italian food, what to make for dinner

Nutrition

Calories: 191kcal | Carbohydrates: 38g | Protein: 6g | Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 27mg | Sodium: 11mg | Potassium: 63mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 40IU | Calcium: 12mg | Iron: 2mg
                                                           

Does this sound like something you would try?  I’m excited to hear from you in the comments below!

Homemade Classic Italian Gnocchi

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