Hello back to school season! It’s time for a new meal plan that will help you save time, plan ahead, and make lunch packing a breeze. Well, that’s the goal anyways. Life tends to get in the way of our grand plans sometimes. Those early mornings are hard, aren’t they? But, it’s easier to start with a plan and adjust when necessary. My back-to-school meal plan can help you fill in the blank of what’s for dinner when you are making the grocery list for the week ahead.

The recipes I’m sharing use real food ingredients, although I too rely on some quality packaged items to round out my kid’s lunch boxes. They are used when time is tight, or it’s the end of the week and we are out of all the prepped goodies. The kids don’t mind when they get the occasional bag of pretzels or beef jerky sticks. I don’t mind either when I’ve taken the time to read through the ingredient list and weed out the junky versions. Eating well needs to be a balance, for everyone in the family. Time is tight and if you are making a couple of new recipes each week to expose everyone to new flavors, you’re on the right track.

In the coming weeks I’ll share with you some additional lunch packing tips that are specifically for kids. After the novelty of the first couple of weeks, we all need a little variety in the lunch packing routine!

Here’s a few recipes to help you get ready for those after school activities and map out your back to school meal plan!



Late Summer Minestrone Soup– one pot meal that’s quick and uses fresh, local ingredients from Aimee at Simple Bites.

Instant Pot Carnitas-from PaleOMG

Cashew Chicken Sheet Pan– another prep ahead option with paleo and gluten free notes included

Thai Basil Turkey Bowls– make this part of your Sunday meal prep for the week. Grab cauliflower rice in the freezer section to save time. 

One Sheet Pan Shrimp Fajitas– quick 20 minute meal from No 2 Pencil


Great “green” lunch from The Natural Nurturer. The mac daddy of all lunch boxes is the PlanetBox.


Granola Apple Peanut Butter Crunch Wraps– use my homemade granola listed below and swap in a nut-free butter for school to make this work.

Chickpea and Avocado Salad– from the Natural Nurturer

Chili Garlic Tofu Bowlslook for organic tofu to avoid GMOs.


Sausage Pizza Egg Muffins– from Paleo Running Momma

Banana Almond Chia Puddingmake ahead option from Grits and Chopsticks

Homemade Granola– leave out the nuts and add more seeds (like sesame for calcium!) and then use it as a nut-free school option.

Southwestern Breakfast Bowl -from The Do It All Mama. Make this one for dinner and have the leftovers for breakfast. Mix in some spinach to get in a serving of greens first thing in the morning.


Oatmeal Green Smoothie Muffins– totally making these again this week! Super fast to make with your blender.

Cranberry Coconut Energy Bites-swap in pumpkin or sunflower seed butter to make it school-safe.

Fruit Leather-use a dehydrator or your lowest oven setting to set.


*Healthy Batch cooking ideas– tons of ideas for all meals of the day. There are lots of ideas here you can add to your own back to school meal plan.

*I purchased the Real Lunches Real Easy III as I love having something new for packing lunches. It’s worth the $10. I’m not an affiliate but think it’s a great product and something you can share with your kids to get their input. I’ll be printing mine at Staples and having it bound together as a true cookbook.

back to school meal plan with quick and easy recipes

For more inspiration, check out the years of past dinner plans here, my Pinterest collection here, or OrgJunkie for a link-up of weekly meal plans. Leave a comment with your favorite family recipe to add a back to school meal plan.

I spent the better part of this past fall learning about culinary nutrition, and I focused on creating an autoimmune meal plan for women with Hashimoto’s thyroiditis. The strategies I included in those meal plans are applicable to anyone dealing with autoimmune disease. As it becomes more common for us to hear of friends and family getting an autoimmune diagnosis, I want you to have the understanding of which foods may keep symptoms quiet.

When I was three, I was diagnosed with an autoimmune disease. I recovered, but it means I’m more likely to develop another one. Add in a strong family history of autoimmune diseases, an inflammatory arthritis diagnosis, and I’m using these guidelines myself as preventative measures. For the past 9 months, my symptoms have been extremely quiet and I’m so happy I no longer need to read for Advil to deal with ongoing pain.

Autoimmune Anti-inflammatory Meal Plan

How to develop an autoimmune meal plan.

There are a couple of key factors I want you to consider as you plan your meals. You want your meals to be nutrient dense, and anti-inflammatory. Those are your top priorities. How do you accomplish this? By adding in a wide variety of vegetables and gut-healthy foods to your autoimmune meal plan. It also includes the following elements:

*Cold water fish, like Salmon-provides you with essential fatty acids to reduce inflammation

*Bone broth-gut healing and provides collagen and gelatin to ease joint pain

*Chia and flax seeds-helps with elimination and binds with toxins to exit the body

*Organ meat-rich in a wide variety of vitamins and minerals that are easy to absorb

*Seaweed- provides a wide mix  of minerals, including iodine which helps hypothyroid patients.

Changing Your Diet

There are some foods you want to avoid to optimize your health. Those are foods containing gluten, refined white sugar, vegetable oils, and dairy. Why? These are the primary culprits that trigger inflammatory responses. For some people, it’s a flare up of rosacea or lupus. For others, it’s brain fog and joint pain. By eliminating this primary group of allergenic foods, you give your body an opportunity to heal and run as it’s supposed to. For some people with autoimmune disease, you may want to eliminate foods from the nightshade family from your meal plan. That includes tomatoes, peppers, black pepper, eggplant, paprika, and potatoes. I help clients figure this out when we work through their custom nutrition protocol.

Here are some recipe suggestions to get you started. If you need more for a certain category, let me know and I’ll add more to this post.


Chicken Livers with Leeks and Kale by Simple Seasonal

Easy One Pan Salmon with Roasted Vegetables by Cooking Classy

50/50/50 Burgers from Paleo Mom

Salmon Sliders with Sweet Potato Buns and Cashew Cucumber Dip

Balsamic Chicken Drumsticks by Paleo Leap

Coconut Quinoa and Kale Salad by Cookie and Kate

autoimmune meal plan recipe ideas


AIP Carrot and Sweet Potato Chili

Brown Rice and Arame Seaweed Salad– please skip the canola oil and swap in avocado or olive oil instead.


Moroccan Breakfast Skillet from Autoimmune Wellness.

Paleo Pumpkin Pie Smoothie

Grain Free Granola from Minimalist Baker

Paleo Breakfast Hash with Sweet Potato from Balanced Bites


Mochaccino Breakfast Pudding

Green apples and almond butter

Lemon Cashew Energy Balls

Bananas rolled in chia or flax seeds

Further reading:

Autoimmune Wellness Handbook

The Autoimmune Solution

The Anti-inflammatory Diet and Action Plan (the co-author Sondi is a fellow alum of my Culinary Nutrition program!)

For more inspiration, check out the years of past dinner plans here, my Pinterest collection here, or OrgJunkie for a link-up of weekly meal plans.

allergy season meal plan low histamine

Can a low histamine diet help your seasonal allergies? Do your allergies flare up in the spring? Below is an allergy season meal plan, which follows the protocol of a low histamine diet.

Your food choices can help alleviate, or aggravate, allergy symptoms. Histamine is part of our natural immune response. When our body detects something foreign in our body, like pollen, histamine is released to “attack” it. Sometimes our body is too aggressive with the histamine release and then you end up with itchy eyes, runny nose, and sneezes for days.

I had the worst seasonal allergies and it wasn’t until I switched to a gluten-free, dairy-free lifestyle that I found relief without a prescription. Both gluten and dairy can cause chronic inflammation in your body. By removing these two triggers, your body is less likely to overproduce histamine when it’s allergy season. Pair this with a low histamine diet plan and you will set yourself up for fewer sniffles and sneezes!

There are a few other key things to do during allergy season to complement the meal plan below.

  1. Boost your immune system with foods rich in vitamin C and polyphenols.

  2. Use locally grown raw honey repeatedly in the weeks prior to allergy season to prep your body for local pollen.

  3. Increase your intake of fresh herbs, like mint, cilantro, and watercress. All of these increase your levels of quercetin, a natural antihistamine.

  4. Focus on fresh food first (meat, produce.)

  5. Avoid cultured, processed, cured, fermented, and aged foods. (cheese, beer, wine, beef jerky, and smoked meats.)

  6. Avoid soy sauce, Worcestershire sauce, and yeast extract.

RELATED: Do you have Histamine Intolerance?


Allergy Season Meal Plan

allergy season meal plan turmeric pork skillet


Turmeric Pork Skillet from Sweet Treats. This dish is anti-inflammatory, AIP, paleo, and Whole30 compliant.

Chicken Lemon Spinach Stew from A Healthy Life for Me. Adding lemon to chicken soup is a game-changer. Plus it adds a healthy dose of Vitamin C!

Master Cleanse Salad Recipe from Detox DIY. Includes watercress and immune-boosting broccoli. Pair with chicken or hard-boiled eggs as a protein source.

Cilantro Lime Chicken with Avocado Salsa from Joyful Healthy Eats. Cilantro is a great herb for our allergy season meal plan, plus it helps detox heavy metals found in your body. (limit the avocado as it is higher in histamine.)

One Pan Roasted Pork with Sweet Potato, Pear, Apple, and Garlic from Garlic Matters.

allergy season meal plan paleo chicken lemon stew recipe


Easy Almond Apple Quinoa Salad-from Chelsea’s Messy Apron. Apples also produce quercetin, a natural antihistamine. Note, avoid store-bought chicken stock as it often contains yeast extract, another form of MSG. Instead, grab the recipe here for homemade chicken bone broth.


Superfood Breakfast Smoothie Bowl from A Glowing Fridge. The spirulina added here is a blue-green algae that is rich in protein and immune-boosting. I use a powder like this one.


Allergy Season Beverages


Green Tea: delivers EGCG, an antioxidant that blocks the production of histamine and immunoglobulin E.

Bone broth: reduces inflammation. Learn more about why I drink bone broth every morning. 


Probiotics: a dose at night can help boost your immune system during the height of allergy season. Always buy probiotics from a quality source. However, only certain strains of probiotics should be used if you have histamine intolerance (HIT).


Additional Resources

Do you have a Food Sensitivity or Food Allergy?

Healing Histamine (low histamine food list, great for anyone with histamine intolerance)


I hope you learned something new with this allergy season meal plan, with low-histamine food ideas.

This week’s menu theme is a spring gluten free meal plan. I hear from many readers their questions about adopting a gluten-free lifestyle, and what does that mean? What will they eat? I hope the recipes in this week’s gluten free meal plan help you understand that it doesn’t need to be complicated. There are simple swaps to make, and the emphasis is on adding more plants to your plate.

There are a couple of helpful gluten-free swaps I want to mention. Here’s a list of products you want to switch out if you are trying a 100% gluten free meal plan.

  • soy sauce—> use tamari, or coconut aminos
  • worcestershire sauce –> coconut aminos
  • whole wheat pasta –> use brown rice, kamut, or quinoa pasta
  • corn starch–> arrowroot starch
  • flour–> the swap depends on the recipe. I often use almond flour or coconut flour.
  • bread –>brown rice tortillas, or use vegetables as buns, like sweet potatoes or portobello mushrooms
  • shredded cheese –>bagged cheese often has cellulose/flour to prevent it from caking. Shred your own.

This is just a starter list. When I work with clients making a major overhaul, we go through the whole pantry so I can teach you how to read labels and avoid the places where gluten is hiding. I’ve created gluten free meal plans for clients with children who have been diagnosed with celiac disease, autism, and attention deficit disorder. These custom gluten free meal plans cover the full day of meals and snacks, and below are some of the recipe inspiration I used for my latest plans.

sheet pan maple mustard salmon gluten free meal plan

Gluten Free Meal Plan




vegetable egg bake brunch gluten free meal plan

How lovely does this look? Recipe from @thekitchn

For more inspiration, check out the years of past dinner plans here, my Pinterest collection here, or OrgJunkie for a link-up of weekly meal plans.

What’s your favorite recipe here on this week’s spring gluten free meal plan? As asparagus arrive at the farmers markets, it’s time to mix them into your weekly meals. If you wish to talk about a custom meal plan for you or your family, send me an email at hello@emilyroachwellness.com. Let me sort through recipes, map it out, and save you some time in the kitchen.

Welcome back to weekly meal plans! I’ve missed sharing some new recipes and I’ll be continuing the long standing tradition here going forward. The new part I’m playing with is organizing the meal plans into searchable themes, like this week’s Spring Paleo Meal Plan. I know a lot of people are following the paleo style of eating and I want you to be able to click over to the database of meal plans and search for what you need. You can expect to see plans that are anti-inflammatory, low-allergy, vegetarian, paleo, and Whole30. If you have some specific requests, leave a note in the comments.

Spring Paleo meal plan with paleo sweet potato quiche

Spring Paleo Meal Plan

Pick and choose recipes that can work into your own meal plan for the week ahead. The guiding principles for a Paleo meal plan is lots of protein and plants, and no dairy, gluten, and legumes. My exception will be my favorite Irish Soda bread for the St. Patrick’s Day holiday as I haven’t mastered a gluten-free version. Yet.



  • Tuna salad stuffed avocado from my past meal plan.


  • Sweet potato quiche from Real Simple Good -it needs to bake for 45 minutes, so prep ahead! This will make a great lunch too.


For more inspiration, check out the years of past dinner plans here, my Pinterest collection here, or OrgJunkie for a link-up of weekly meal plans.

Let me know what you are making this week. Enjoy the Spring Paleo Meal Plan!


Who’s ready for a fall harvest meal plan?! September is such a gorgeous month with beautiful produce and fresh products at the farmers markets. The air starts to cool, the sky looks bluer and the apple trees are ready for picking. This weekend we spent Sunday picking a very large haul of McIntosh and Gala apples. The crisp I made turned out great, however we ate it so quick I forgot to take a picture for a recipe post. Guess I’ll have to make it again!

The fall harvest meal plan this week highlights apples in a slow cooker recipe, plus some new ideas to as the grilling season slows down. In the coming weeks, the meal plan format here will change. I’m going back to school and starting at the Academy of Culinary Nutrition. I’ll have “cooking homework” and it may not jive with my traditional meal plans here. If you are game to join me during the raw food week…let me know! I’ll be sharing more about how to meal plan, highlighting new recipe ideas and offering healthy eating tips along the way.

click here if you want to get on the list and get my free Smoothie recipe book!

As you write out your grocery list for the upcoming week check out these healthy family friendly recipes from this week’s menu plan. Each featured recipe includes link to the complete recipe.



Monday: Easy Maple Mustard Chicken Drumsticks with Roasted Radishes and Asparagus. If you’ve never tried roasted radishes, this recipe will change your mind about these cute pink veggies.

Tuesday: Slow cooker Marmalade and Vinegar Pork with sauteed spinach and quinoa. Love when dinner is nearly done when we come in the door from soccer.

Wednesday: Turmeric Turkey, with quinoa and salad. Recipe is from the cookbook, The Stash Plan, which got me hooked on drinking bone broth every morning.

Thursday: Slow cooker Apple Cider Pulled Chicken with Quick Apple Slaw. This will be a sandwich night as people need to eat at different times. Use gluten free buns, or wrap in corn tortillas or just serve the pulled pork alongside the apple slaw.

Friday: CORN = Clean Out Refrigerator Night

Easy slow cooker apple cider pork


Thai Coconut Black Rice Pudding– I cooked a side of black rice and it wasn’t well received. Maybe they will all like it in this gluten-free, vegan dessert option.

Have an awesome week! Remember, you can join in the conversation over at our Facebook group: Eat Well, Live Well.


For more inspiration, see years of past meal plans here, my Pinterest collection here, or OrgJunkie for a link-up of more dinner ideas.

Two more days of summer vacation in our house. We are picking up the last round of school uniforms, labeling everything, making lunch plans and eating ice cream as we wrap up a fabulous summer season. For our friends going back to school today, nothing says back-to-school with a heat warning in Toronto this afternoon!

We have arrived at our one year anniversary living in Canada. Our family decided to celebrate with a BBQ this weekend, AND clean out the storage rooms that hadn’t been touched since we moved in. I found more stacks of recipe swipes in my desk, dishes I no longer need, and a stuffed animal missing since Christmas. It was a great reminder for all of us to clear out the excess so we can find the things we love a lot faster. If you need a little help cleaning up, you can read this post, listen to this podcast, or grab this book.

On to this week’s meal plan! 

Dinner {GF= Gluten Free, P=Paleo, DF=Dairy Free}

Monday: (delayed due to summer fun)

Tuesday: Grilled Salmon with White Bean and Arugula salad and peaches and cream local corn. 20 minute dinner recipe! GF, DF. (Grill basket suggestion for fish.)

Wednesday: Chicken Cutlets with Tomato Saute, GF, P, DF.  There are so many local cherry tomatoes at the market and this recipe is an easy way to highlight them. Quinoa on the side is already cooked and stored in the freezer in family size portions.

Thursday: Paleo Short Ribs, carrots and spinach. (Birthday dinner!)

Friday: C.O.R.N. = Clean Out Refrigerator Night.

Weekend: BBQ with friends and Beef Chili with No Crust Apple Pie to celebrate the return of Sunday football games.


Fall Apple and Almond Butter mason jar salad


Pineapple, Banana and Peach Smoothie Bowl


Apple Almond Energy Bites

Easy family meal plan recipe ideas

For more inspiration, see years of past dinner plans here, my Pinterest collection here, or OrgJunkie for a link-up of weekly meal plans.

Welcome back to another meal plan for the final week of August! I’m so ready for our fall routine to begin, although I will miss our leisurely mornings at home! Focus on meal planning tends to increase when a routine changes. It may be back to school season, the birth of a baby, or a return to work. If you are in any of these camps, now is a great time to carve out additional time to create a plan. Stay tuned for a meal planning challenge to help you make creating a menu plan an easy part of your weekly to-do list!

As you write out your grocery list for the upcoming week check out these healthy family friendly recipes from this weeks menu plan. Each featured recipe includes a link to the complete recipe source.

Dinner {GF= Gluten Free, P=Paleo, DF=Dairy Free, NF= Nut Free}

Monday:  Ginger Honey Cashew Chicken and Green Beans (one pot meal!) from Robyn at Real Food Whole Life. (and she has a great new healthy Quick Start guide that just came out for her newsletter subscribers. There’s some very easy to manage steps she suggests for enjoying a healthier life. You can find the details on her site here along with the recipe.)

Tuesday:  Apricot Dijon Glazed Salmon, Roasted Broccoli and Quinoa. (GF)

Wednesday: Honey-Orange Chicken Drumsticks in the crock-pot (GF), with Creamy Yogurt Cucumber Salad.

Thursday: Spicy Shrimp with Yogurt, favorite recipe from the Dinner a Love Story cookbook. Make a lot of the spice rub and save it for those nights when you need to make dinner fast! Grab the recipe here. Since dinner is quick, I have a little extra time to prep a zucchini and fresh corn salad. This is a great time to buy extra corn at the market and freeze the extra!

Friday: Pizza night or dinner out.

Weekend: Labor Day BBQ.


Testing out some new school lunches ideas we found here.


Lemon Chia Seed Granola


Zucchini Chips

 Healthy-meal-plan-to-help-you-plan-dinners-for-your-family (2)


For more inspiration, see years of past dinner plans here, my Pinterest collection here, or OrgJunkie for a link-up of weekly meal plans.

Are you coming out of the hazy, lazy days of summer and starting to feel the urge to get organized again? Need some routine back in your day? Here’s a new meal plan after taking a summer break to enjoy gorgeous weather as much as possible. I read lots of books, magazines and blog recipes and I spent the good part of Sunday morning trying to organize them. The good ones get saved and shared here in my meal plans, and they also get added to my recipe binder.

A little nutrition lesson about farro, which is included in this week’s meal plan in two recipes. Farro, an ancient wheat grain, is a high fiber food. It has a nutty taste and is a great source of protein, magnesium, B vitamins, zinc and iron. It does contain the gluten protein so swapping it for amaranth is an alternative for those following a gluten free plan.

As you write out your grocery list for the upcoming week check out these healthy family friendly recipes from this weeks menu plan.

Our peach and zucchini summer pizza.

Our peach and zucchini summer pizza.

Dinner {GF= Gluten Free, P=Paleo, DF=Dairy Free, NF= Nut Free}

Monday: Roasted Chickens (2) paired with roasted broccoli and red potatoes. (GF)  Leftover chicken will be used for lunches the rest of the week.

Tuesday: Summer Minestrone Soup, vegetarian. My longtime favorite recipe is this one, but I also have made this Paleo version too in the crock pot. For anyone needing more protein in the soup, the leftover roasted chicken is a quick add.

Wednesday: Garlic-Lime Pork with Farro and Kale. (recipe) I don’t often find precooked farro so here are the simple directions: Bring 6 cups water to a boil in a large saucepan. Stir in 2 cups farro and 1 teaspoon salt; cover and simmer 15 minutes or until just tender, stirring occasionally. Drain; transfer farro to a large bowl. Use half for tonight’s recipe and the rest for the Lunch option.

Thursday: Kid’s request night is Chicken Tenders, steamed Green Beans and rice.

Friday: Summer burgers on the grill, local peaches and cream corn and heirloom tomato salad.

Weekend: Peaches are in season and we made a peach and zucchini pizza from Love and Lemons cookbook this past weekend. Check out your local farmer’s market to find some new combinations to put on your pizza. This summer squash and corn recipe is perfect for this time of year.  Try making your own pizza dough with this recipe.


Farro salad with peas, pancetta and radishes. Use the farro made on Wednesday for this salad.


Protein pumped up in this week’s oatmeal recipe from Chatelaine. We made the carrot cake oatmeal and increase the oats by a 1/2 cup. It was a winner!


Too  many apples sitting on the counter so we are making a round of dehydrated apple chips with cinnamon. (NF)


French 75 cocktail…a minty version is also in the cookbook I mentioned. Why haven’t I tried this before?

Healthy weekly meal plan

Pin this to save for later!


For more inspiration, see years of past dinner plans here, my Pinterest collection here, or OrgJunkie for a link-up of weekly meal plans.

This week’s focus is an anti-inflammatory meal plan. So many people are suffering from chronic inflammation and this real food meal plan helps strip away some of the foods that mess with your digestion.

Cheers to all the men and their families celebrating Father’s Day this weekend. I hope it was filled with fresh food and yummy food from the grill. We celebrated with a trip to a local farm to get fresh picked strawberries, try out some lunch from the food truck festival and finish off with some strawberry shortcake. Now it’s time to share this week’s meal plan.
As you write out your grocery list for the upcoming week check out these healthy family friendly recipes from this weeks menu plan. Each featured recipe includes link to the complete recipe.

Zucchini spaghetti recipe

Dinner {GF= Gluten Free, P=Paleo, DF=Dairy Free, NF= Nut Free}

Meatless Monday: Cheese, Black Bean and Corn Stuffed Sweet Potato . (Omit cheese for anti-inflammatory.)

Tuesday: Honey Mustard Chicken Stir Fry GF, DF

Wednesday: Modern Tuna Cobb Salad– Cobb salads are the perfect way to clean out your refrigerator. A little produce, a little protein and you are good to go. Bonus- it’s a no cook dinner!

Thursday: Speedy Asparagus and Chicken Piccata  with millet on the side.

Friday: Burst Tomato and Zucchini Spaghetti with Avocado Sauce


Sesame Ginger Beet Quinoa Bowl– make it and bring it to the office all week, or a playground picnic. { swap the soy sauce for gluten-free Tamari if needed }


Triple Berry and Soaked Oats Smoothie


Chocolate Peanut Butter Cup Pops (I suggest almond butter instead of peanut butter)

meal plan week 25 pinterest


For more inspiration, see years of past dinner plans here, my Pinterest collection here, or OrgJunkie for a link-up of weekly meal plans.