What’s your favorite no-cook dinner for hot nights?! As the temperature rises, cooking in a hot kitchen just isn’t fun. Some nights you just want to skip using the oven or stove for dinner, and maybe it’s even too hot to grill outside. You might need something a little lighter, more refreshing, and healthier, of course. For those times, look to these recipes to help you out. None of these requires you to heat anything up, yet all are still full of the nutrients your body needs to feel its best.

    1. Chicken and guacamole tortilla roll-up
    2. Gazpacho
    3. Open face tuna salad on whole grain bread
    4. Huge chopped salad (farm share!) with feta and nuts/seeds  (from Julia M.)
    5. White bean and roasted chicken salad
    6. Shrimp salad-grab shrimp cocktail from the store and layer on your favorite greens.
    7. Minty chickpea salad with couscous (okay, so you need to heat up a cup of water in the microwave for the couscous. I think you can handle it.)
    8. Veggie/hummus/hard boiled egg/pita/tabbouleh platter  (from Cerissa L.)
    9. Arugula, Italian tuna and white bean salad
    10. Thai beef rolls 
    11. Watermelon steak salad
    12. Cucumber avocado soup
    13. White bean caprese salad
    14. Southwestern salad with black beans, shredded cheddar, avocado, romaine and tomatoes
    15. Sesame lime chicken salad
    16. Smashed white bean and avocado club, mash cannellini bean beans on whole grain bread, top with avocado, tomato and sprouts.
    17. Antipasto plate with marinated olives, chickpeas, prosciutto and cheese
    18. Shrimp Caesar salad
    19. Lobster or crab roll
    20. Waldorf chicken salad – use rotisserie chicken: chop chicken, grapes, walnuts and combine. Mix with a little greek yogurt or mayo.
    21. Curried tofu salad
    22. Tuna or chicken salad stuffed into a pepper or tomato
    23. Picnic in a glass

    What are your favorite no-cook meals? Pop over to our Facebook group and share a recipe or strategy working for you this summer. 

Instead of a regular meal plan this week, I thought I would share some meals you can make with leftover ham. If your refrigerator looks likes mine today, these recipe ideas may come in handy. Using up what is in your fridge first is the first step in meal planning. Make space in that fridge so you can find the healthy choices first, instead of burying them behind too many leftovers.

How to use up leftover ham

Zucchini zoodles with ham peas and basil

Zucchini Zoodles (or noodles) with Ham, Peas and Basil from Real Food Whole Life.

Ham cobb salad recipe

Ham Cobb Salad from Damn Delicious


Make sandwich kabobs for the kids school lunch. Details at Momendeavors.


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Ham and cheese spinach puffs from EatWell101.


Potato and ham soup. This looks perfect for our rainy day today. Recipe from The Chic Site.

**When you realize you are over your sodium intake for the week, pop over here and pick out a green smoothie to make.

Have a great week and use up your leftover ham!

Happy March everyone! It’s an exciting month ahead with St. Patrick’s Day and Easter to celebrate. We also have March break, friends and family coming to visit and warmer weather to look forward to. Oh, and my birthday next weekend with a trip to try dim sum for the first time. Looks like a fun month ahead!

Here’s what’s cooking in our kitchen on the weekly meal plan.

Slow Cooker Thai Chicken Soup Recipe


Slow Cooker Thai Chicken Soup (recipe) -doesn’t the picture above look so pretty?!

Slow cooker Sloppy Joes (recipe)   -Swap out the brown sugar for maple syrup. This recipe was a big win.

Mexican Grilled Chicken Cobb Salad- inspired by this recipe but I’ll make my own taco seasoning mix.

Sheet Pan Salmon- I was looking for an easy salmon recipe that would make enough for the Superfood Salad below. This honey mustard salmon recipe looks awesome.

Roasted Lemon and Pepper Salmon Recipe


Superfood Salad with Blueberries (recipe)

Sweet Potatoes in the slow cooker (recipe)- some days I really want a warm lunch so I’m going to try this and have them ready to go for lunch this week. Top with some mashed avocado or black beans.

Superfood Salad with Blueberries

Beautiful picture from FoodieCrush.



Carrot Cake Breakfast Cookies (recipe)- this may end up being a lunchbox addition too!

Baked Apple Cinnamon Porridge- recipe from the Deliciously Ella cookbook. I’ve already pre-ordered her new book coming out in April. This was so good JJ had 4 helpings. (or maybe he needs a grown-up bowl.)


Carrot Cake Breakfast Cookies

Recipe from GreensnChocolate

p.s. Grab the ingredients now so you can make my recipe for Irish Soda bread. I’ll make two this year so we have enough to share with friends! Enjoy.


For more inspiration, see three years of past dinner plan heremy Pinterest board here, or OrgJunkie for a link-up of weekly meal plans. Some affiliate links are included. 

Ready for a fast 5 minute hummus recipe?! For a long time, I didn’t think I could make my own hummus. After many failed attempts of gritty, flavorless hummus, I gave up. However, with energy this month, I decided it was high time to try a homemade hummus recipe again. This time it was a win.

I was motivated to find the right recipe since the kids go through a lot of hummus. Those little plastic tubs from the store can be licked clean at one sitting between the three of them. Although they prefer it with whole wheat pita bread, we often serve it with veggies at snack time. I’m all for anything that provides encouragement for more vegetables in their tummies.


Our latest creation comes out smooth and yummy. The biggest difference in the texture is probably due to using a Blendtec blender. We have been so happy with ours and it’s at least two years old now. (Although I would love a quieter one!) The hummus came out quite smooth. If you don’t have a high speed blender, a food processor can work almost as well.

This recipe is for a basic lemon and garlic hummus. You can create variety with this recipe by adding in more garlic to make it spicier, roasted red peppers, beets or chives to start. Create your own version and have fun playing around with it. The recipe makes over 4 cups so you could also take half out and then add some extra ingredients to give yourself two different flavors to choose from. Store it in an airtight container and put a layer of plastic wrap over the top to keep it the freshest.

Enjoy. {recipe adapted from Oh She Glows cookbook}

Easy healthy 5 minute hummus recipe

Prep Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 5 minutes
Course: Appetizer, Snack
Keyword: hummus
Servings: 4 cups


  • two 15 ounce cans of chickpeas drained
  • 10 tablespoons of olive oil
  • juice of 2 lemons
  • 3 tablespoons water
  • 2 tablespoons tahini
  • 2 cloves of garlic peeled
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • salt and pepper to taste


  • Add all ingredients to a blender or food processor and blend until desired texture is reached.
  • Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to one week.


One to two garlic cloves may be enough for little kids. If they find it too spicy, stick with one clove and no pepper.
Tried this recipe?Mention @emilyroachwellness or tag #erwellness!

Healthy Homemade Hummus Recipe for Snack. Cute washi tape labels!


Lemon garlic easy hummus recipe

Happy February! Stay warm and cozy my Boston friends. Get some soup and hot chocolate going and have fun in the snow!

We are making some new dishes and bringing back old favorites this week. Now is a great time to write down some of your family’s favorite dinners so you have a quick cheat sheet for those week’s when you don’t have time to create a meal plan from scratch.

White bean mushroom stew real food recipe


  • Turkey White Bean Chili from shutterbean (recipe). Great for a Sunday as it’s a stovetop chili, not a slow cooker recipe.
  • 5 Ingredient Garlic Rosemary Roasted Chicken (recipe). This looks great for a weeknight and then use leftovers for salads or quesadillas.
  • My favorite slow cooker recipe is this one. I’m so ready to make it next week as I see lots of cold weather on its way. Warning- it’s a little labor intensive at the beginning, but so worth it at the end.
  • White bean and mushroom stew-another oldie but goodie. (even I go through my old meal plans to get ideas, this soup recipe is a love and great with a baguette on the side.)


  •  I picked up two books from the library to have the kids look through this weekend and choose some new lunch ideas. One is Everyday Bento and the other is Best Lunch Box Ever. The kids are in anti-sandwich mode so I’m also referring back to this post I wrote about non-sandwich lunch ideas and the ebook.


  • Blueberry Breakfast Quinoa (recipe). Isn’t the photo below amazing?!


  • Sunshine Smoothie from thefauxmartha. (recipe) This was so good!
  • Pumpkin muffins…I’ve made these for years and I clearly need to retake some pictures for this recipe post!

Breakfast quinoa recipe


p.s. don’t forget Valentine’s day is coming up! Make some plans now for next weekend. Enjoy.


For more inspiration, see three years of past dinner plan heremy Pinterest board here, or OrgJunkie for a link-up of weekly meal plans. Some affiliate links included. 

Who is ready for some snow?! Although we moved to Canada, we won’t get the big blizzard bombs like last winter. We all watched the American news today and we amazed to see forecasts of two feet, or 61 centimeters. A few of the recipes on the meal plan this week will be sure to warm you up after a round of snow shoveling.

This week I took a look at two (new-to-me) cookbooks, Food 52 and Whole 30. Food 52 is well written and is organized by season. In the winter section, the Best New Year’s Resolution Dish called out to me. It seemed like an appropriate week to try the One-Pot Kale and Quinoa Pilaf. Let me tell you, it was a winner. Even my husband liked it, and he is not a kale and quinoa kind of guy. The recipe made a lot and it was even better the next day as a healthy lunch option. (Note- I couldn’t get the kids to try this one…maybe next time.) 

Healthy living cookbooks

In the Whole 30 cookbook, there is a lengthy explanation to teach you what to eat/what not to eat if you are following their program. We are not doing the Whole 30, although I do appreciate the idea behind it. In our season of feeding little kids, I just don’t want to create different meals for everyone in the house. I try to make sure we are all eating the same thing, quinoa aside.

What I did like in the cookbook is the recipe section. There are some great main dishes that I am trying out. A couple of the vegetarian dishes look promising, and how can I not test out some recipes from the “Fancypants Meals” section.

On to the menu plan…

Dinner Ideas

  • One-Pot Kale and Quinoa Pilaf (recipe)- I’m sure the exact recipe is perfect, but I swapped out pine nuts for walnuts and parmesan cheese for the goat cheese and it still turned out lovely.
  • Lentil and Sausage Soup for a Cold Winter’s Night (recipe, also in the cookbook)- this is on deck for us next week. I’m giving lentils one more try…if I can learn to love quinoa, maybe lentils will be next.
  • Breakfast Hash- this is essentially a sausage and peppers dish, jazzed up with sweet and yellow potatoes. It was a love for the grown-ups, the kids were not super impressed. It came from the new ebook from A Little Coconutty. I found her on instagram and have used her cute menu plan printable the past couple of months. I bought the ebook this week and enjoyed reading it and get some new recipe ideas. The ebook is here (I’m not an affiliate) and her IG account is here if you are in need of some healthy eating inspiration. (note- I used Whole Foods chicken sweet italian sausages and cooked it for 40 minutes and it was great.) This is also a Whole 30 recipe if you are following the program.
  •  Walnut Crusted Pork Tenderloin-this was the kid’s favorite this week. All 3 devoured their dinner and got seconds. It was super easy for a weeknight dinner meal. (grab the book from the library for the full recipe, otherwise find it here.)
  • Easy Chicken Tortilla Soup (recipe) – game day dinner as the Pats take on the Broncos.

Lunch List (pop over to my Lunch Pinterest board for more ideas)

  • Toast 12 ways, ideas from Traci at Shutterbean.com. Dried apricot, blue cheese, walnut toast. Yes and yes. This is why I don’t do the Whole 30.
  • The quinoa kale pilaf should be in your lunch routine. I’m making it part of mine.
  • Kid’s lunch favorites this week were bagels with cream cheese, turkey & cheddar sandwiches and hard boiled eggs.

Vegetable prep for the Breakfast Hash recipe


Breakfast Time

Snack Bite

  • Peanut Butter Cookie Dough Bites (recipe)- from thefauxmartha (see above)

Healthy living recipes and meal plan

Well, those recipes should keep you busy this week. Or not too busy, as nothing is too complicated. Listen to that minimalist cooking podcast, or episode 48 from Radio Cherry Bombe for more healthy living inspiration. It’s from October but I still think about it, and feel validated about having a cocktail during the week. Cheers.


For more inspiration, see three years of past dinner plan heremy Pinterest board here, or OrgJunkie for a link-up of weekly meal plans. Some affiliate links included. 

Happy December! As this month of celebration twists and turns your usual routines on their heads, meal planning can take a back seat. It has to a point in my house, as I mainly do it in shorter bursts instead of tackling the whole week at once. This is working great for us, just not for writing a weekly post for my readers. I thought I would take a moment to share a few of our favorite recipes this month to help inspire your menu planning this week.

Main Dish

  • Honey Garlic Shrimp Skillet– this recipe is quite fast to prepare as long as you get deveined shrimp. Serve it with some basmati rice and drench it with the extra sauce.
  • Slow Cooker Chicken Tikka Masala– Easy to toss into the slow cooker in the morning (or during nap time) and it will be ready for dinner. The flavors were mild enough for all the kids.
  • Slow Cooker Chicken and Chickpea Stew– Another easy one to prep ahead for busy weeknights. This is perfect for a cold winter night along with some bread. I strain the broth a bit for the kids and it was a winner.
  • One Pot Cheeseburger Casserole– A repeat dish that makes a lot so we froze half. It reheats well on stove or the microwave.
  • Chicken Nuggets– old faithful. Always good for those nights when no one is feeling adventurous.

We also did a fun little taste test last month of hot dogs/veggie dogs/tofu dogs. I’m not allowed to do that again in our house. Ever.

Baked Oatmeal to-go cups


  • Baked Oatmeal to-go– easy to make and customize with fun toppings. We made a bunch nut free so they could go to school with the kids. Their favorite topping- chocolate chips.
  • Stovetop Popcorn– made with coconut oil this is still a family favorite snack. Make some to eat and string the rest for the tree!


  • Gingerbread Pancakes– these are gluten free as they use oatmeal ground into flour as the base. One kid had 5, another didn’t love them. I would grind up my oatmeal a little more next time so it’s less grainy, but I definitely will make them again.

Easy weeknight dinner recipe ideas

I’ll save the desserts for a latter post…on deck today is our holiday Buckeye Balls to get ready for my Mom’s visit to celebrate Christmas a little early. Thanks for taking the time to read this and I hope you have a lovely holiday season!

For more inspiration, see three years of past dinner plan heremy Pinterest board here, or OrgJunkie for a link-up of weekly meal plans. All images from Ricardo magazine. Some affiliate links included. 


I am taking a little time off from regular meal planning and I came across the summer meal planning list I pulled together last year. Having a list of go-to meals can be helpful as you look at the week ahead. Many of these dinners are barbecue friendly, and also great for hot summer nights when you don’t want to heat up the kitchen.

While I’m taking a break from regular meal planning posts, you can find all the past menu plan posts here. I am also spending a fair amount of time on Pinterest updating my favorite boards with new recipe inspiration. I’ve reorganized my boards so it’s easier to find some recipe inspiration. I’m loving my new Salad board and  Beverage board where I’m storing all my new favorite smoothie recipes.

Easy summer dinner ideas

Here are some of my go-to dinner ideas for when the days are lazy and long and it’s too hot to stay in the kitchen.

And get the free printable with bonus ideas so you can hang it on your fridge this summer as a reminder!

  • Hamburgers with native corn 
  • Grilled Chicken with a salad and homemade salad dressing.
  • Waldorf Chicken Salad Sandwiches (grill extra chicken the first night, use leftovers for the second.)
  • Grilled/ Pan seared Fish.  All fish usually needs is a little olive oil and salt and pepper for the grill.
  • Fish Sandwiches
  • Steak Tips with grilled zucchini or summer squash
  • Grilled Pork Tenderloin
  • Mac and Cheese with ham and corn for lazy nights.
  • Hot Dogs.  (We buy Applegate or something with no nitrates/nitrites)
  • Pulled Pork Sandwiches (slow cooker)
  • Salsa Chicken (slow cooker)
  • Frittata with fresh veggies and herbs
  • Boiled Lobster Dinner (a splurge for some, or free for us when I get them from my Dad. My kids LOVE lobster!)
  • Grilled Pizza with pre-made dough from the freezer
  • Pesto Pasta with stir fried chicken. (Recipe for Homemade Basil Pesto)
What are your easy summer dinners to add to the list?

For more inspiration, see three years of past dinner plan heremy Pinterest board here, or OrgJunkie for a link-up of weekly meal plans. (affiliate links included here which help support this site.)

As we look ahead to the final weeks of preparing school lunches, let’s try to keep things fresh and fun. Here’s a little roundup of easy surprises you can add to your child’s lunchbox or after school snack time routine. Who knows, maybe your kid will try a new piece of fruit if presented with a little humor?

Have fun with these adorable lunchbox ideas!

Cute lunchbox orange

1. Happy little orange snail. (Use a food safe pen.)

Grape caterpillar for lunch


2. Line them up! Grape caterpillars.

Cute apple turtle for lunch

3. Sneak in some apple turtles.

Chicks and the mama eggs

4. What came first? The chicken or the egg?

Owl lunch design

5. Give a hoot for this fun owl lunch surprise.

Healthy kids bento lunch

6. Skip the work and just stick with a fun bento box for the kid’s lunch. The Yumbox is still a favorite since it’s lightweight, easy to clean and spill-proof. Pack them for a summer picnic or a car trip. These will make the cut for us on our Toronto road trip in August!

If you want ALL of my easy smoothie recipes in one handy printable recipe book, click here. All recipes are kid-approved!

Enjoy the last few weeks of packing school lunch. Then on to camp lunches…

Sources 1. 2. 3. 4. 5.

Which one is your favorite adorable lunchbox idea?


Pineapple Delight dessert for summer

Pineapple Delight is the recipe that always make me think of summer and my Grammy. Summer is often a nostalgic time. People have strong memories of vacations, family gatherings and lazy summer evenings. They want to repeat this pattern year after year. Food often plays an important role in recreating these memories. Both of my parents grew up in large families so I remember going to family parties all the time. Each family had their own favorites and today I’m sharing on of my favorite summer desserts my Grammy would make, Pineapple Delight.

Grammy had eight children. Yes, eight. So you can imagine that our families were always loud and crowded. Grammy didn’t have a lot of free time to spend in the kitchen, but she had a few tricks up her sleeve. This Pineapple Delight is a perfect summer recipe since it’s no-bake, and can be made ahead. I can totally see myself making it this summer at our little red cottage in the morning and having it ready to go for a cookout in evening.

Pineapple Delight Dessert Recipe

It’s funny how some things never change. Even what my Grammy and I use in our kitchen is mostly the same. We both use our Pyrex®, a World Kitchen brand, measuring cup to put together most of the recipes we make. Pyrex is celebrating it’s 100th anniversary this year. It’s pretty cool to see certain kitchen tools have withstood the test of time.

See the giveaway link below and share your favorite recipe of all time. Win a set of Pyrex 100 classic kitchenware!


I think it’s amusing to see old recipes and how they are written. I had to Google what a #2 can means in today’s world. I updated the recipe to reflect our standard measurements.


Best way to crush wafers or other crumb toppings? Toss them in a zip top bag and grab your rolling pin. This rolling pin I found in an antique store in Essex. I also love these neat-os bags instead of plastic ones. I’ve been reusing this gallon storage bag for well over a year.

This recipe is a no-bake recipe. Super easy, but it also contains eggs. Choose wisely.


I grease my pans with coconut oil. You can also use butter, coconut oil spray, or ghee.


I just love pineapple. Maybe this is why this recipe has stuck in my mind for so many years.


Whipped cream really is easy, if you have the time. Plan on letting it whip for no less than 5 minutes to get it stiff.


I went for pecans in this recipe. You could also make it with walnuts.


Please arm your kitchen with an offset spatula. It makes spreading or frosting anything so much easier!

Serve this in small glass mason jars to complete the vintage effect. I also love to reuse the Bonne Maman glass jars, they are the perfect size for dessert in jars.

Pineapple Delight

A delicious no-bake summer dessert, perfect to make ahead and bring to a party or BBQ.
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Author: Emily Roach


  • 1/2 package vanilla wafers
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 stick of softened butter
  • 2 cups confectioners sugar
  • 2 20 oz cans crushed pineapple
  • 1/2 pint heavy cream
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans


  • Grease a 9x11 pan with coconut oil.
  • Crush wafers. Put 1/2 wafers in the bottom of the pan and reserve the other 1/2.
  • Cream butter, eggs and sugar and beat until fluffy.
  • Pour mixture on top of wafers.
  • Drain pineapple and put on top of egg mixture.
  • Whip cream until stiff. Mix with nuts and put on top of pineapple.
  • Sprinkle remaining crumbs on top.
  • Refrigerate approximately 8 hours.
Tried this recipe?Mention @emilyroachwellness or tag #erwellness!

Pyrex 100