Menu planner: One-pan spinach lasagna offers a complete meal

Thinking ahead to your next few meals? Here are some main dishes and sides to try.

SHARE Menu planner: One-pan spinach lasagna offers a complete meal
One-pan spinach lasagna is a good choice for dinner.

One-pan spinach lasagna is a hearty choice for dinner.

Courtesy of Shadow Mountain/Christy Denney

One-pan spinach lasagna

Servings: makes 8 servings

Preparation time: 10 minutes

Cooking time: about 25 minutes


1 pound mild Italian sausage

4 cloves garlic, minced

8 ounces lasagna noodles, broken into 2-inch-long pieces, or farfalle pasta

4 cups (32 ounces) marinara sauce

2 cups fresh spinach

4 ounces fresh mozzarella, sliced

1/2 cup whole-milk ricotta cheese

1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese

Torn fresh basil leaves for topping

In a large skillet, cook sausage over medium-high heat until browned. Add garlic and cook for an additional 30 seconds. Add lasagna noodles and pour marinara sauce on top. Bring to a boil. Cover and reduce heat to a simmer. Cook for 15 to 20 minutes or until noodles are tender. Stir in spinach and top with mozzarella and ricotta. Cover and let cheeses melt. Sprinkle with Parmesan and garnish with basil.

Per serving: 343 calories, 19 grams protein, 14 grams fat (39% calories from fat), 5.8 grams saturated fat, 32 grams carbohydrate, 71 milligrams cholesterol, 1,052 milligrams sodium, 4 grams fiber.

Carb count: 2.

Herb-marinated lamb chops

Makes 2 servings

Preparation time: less than 10 minutes; marinating time: 30 to 60 minutes

Cooking time: 10 minutes


1 teaspoon dried crushed rosemary

1/2 teaspoon dried thyme

1/2 teaspoon coarsely ground pepper

1/2 teaspoon garlic powder

1/4 teaspoon coarse salt

1/2 cup finely chopped onion

1/4 cup orange juice

2 tablespoons dry white wine

4 1/2 teaspoons olive oil, divided

4 loin lamb chops, 1 to 1 1/2 inches thick (about 1/2 to 3/4 pound)

In a medium bowl, combine rosemary, thyme, pepper, garlic powder and salt. Add onion, orange juice, white wine and half the oil. Whisk together; reserve 1/4 cup marinade mixture for later. Place chops in resealable plastic bag; add marinade. Turn to coat. Refrigerate 30 to 60 minutes. Remove lamb and discard marinade; blot dry with paper towels. (Do not remove onion pieces from chops.) Heat remaining oil in heavy skillet over medium-high heat. Place lamb in skillet. Sear one side 4 minutes or until well-browned. Turn chops and cook 4 more minutes or until desired doneness. Add reserved marinade and simmer 2 minutes. Remove lamb to serving plate. Pour reduced marinade over lamb.

Per serving: 208 calories, 19 grams protein, 12 grams fat (51% calories from fat), 2.9 grams saturated fat, 5 grams carbohydrate, 58 milligrams cholesterol, 344 milligrams sodium, 1 gram fiber.

Carb count: 0.5.

Orange chicken and vegetable rice bowl

Makes 6 servings

Preparation time: 20 minutes

Cooking time: less than 20 minutes


4 teaspoons canola oil, divided

pound chicken breast strips, cut into bite-size pieces

2 cups fresh broccoli florets

2 fresh carrots, thinly sliced

1 medium onion, sliced

1 yellow bell pepper, sliced

1 red bell pepper, sliced

1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger

1 (14-ounce) can unsalted chicken broth

Juice from 1 orange (about 1/2 cup)

Zest (orange part only) from 1 orange

3 tablespoons lower-sodium soy sauce

2 tablespoons cornstarch

3 cups hot cooked brown rice

Heat 2 teaspoons oil on medium-high in a large nonstick skillet or wok. Stir-fry chicken about 5 minutes or until lightly browned; remove. In same skillet, heat remaining oil; stir-fry broccoli, carrots, onion, bell peppers and ginger for 4 to 5 minutes or until vegetables are tender-crisp. Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, combine chicken broth, orange juice, orange zest, soy sauce and cornstarch. Stir until smooth. Add to skillet, stirring constantly. Boil 1 to 2 minutes or until thickened. Stir in chicken and cook until heated through. Spoon over hot rice.

Per serving: 315 calories, 22 grams protein, 6 grams fat (19% calories from fat), 0.9 gram saturated fat, 41 grams carbohydrate, 55 milligrams cholesterol, 391 milligrams sodium, 5 grams fiber.

Green chili

In a 4-quart or larger slow cooker, combine 1 (16-ounce) jar salsa verde (1 3/4 cups), 2 pounds boneless skinless chicken thighs cut into 1 1/2 inch pieces, 1 (11-ounce) can rinsed corn, 1 (15-ounce) can rinsed cannellini beans, 2 fresh chopped cubanelle peppers, 1 medium finely chopped onion, 1 tablespoon minced garlic, 2 teaspoons cumin and 1/4 teaspoon salt. Cover and cook on low 8 to 9 hours. Stir in 1/2 cup chopped cilantro. Serve with lime wedges and reduced-fat sour cream.

With the steaming bowl of “green,” add brown rice, coleslaw and cornbread (from mix) on the side. Munch on oatmeal cookies while you cheer your team to victory. Add some peaches to go with the cookies.

Vegetable curry

Go meatless: Heat 1 tablespoon canola oil in a large nonstick skillet on medium. Add 2 cups sliced carrots and 1 medium sliced onion; cook 6 minutes. Add 3 cloves sliced garlic, 2 tablespoons curry powder, 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper and 1/2 teaspoon turmeric; cook 2 minutes. To a 4-quart or larger slow cooker, add 3 small gold potatoes cut into 1/2-inch pieces, 8 ounces frozen green beans, 2 (15-ounce) cans rinsed reduced-sodium chickpeas and 1 (14.5-ounce) can no-salt-added diced tomatoes. Pour 2 cups unsalted vegetable broth over all. Cook on low 6 hours. Add 1/2 cup frozen petite green peas, 1/2 cup half-and-half and 1 teaspoon coconut extract. Cook 15 more minutes.

Serve over basmati rice. Add a green salad and flatbread.

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