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Zero Waste Meal Plan Week 1

Meal Plan

Last Updated on September 11, 2020

Y’all have been loving my rough meal plans on insta. After I go to the farmers market I take a picture of my bounty and then tell you what I’m planning on doing with all of that gorgeous produce. 

zero waste, plant based meal prep from #zerowaste #plantbased #mealprep #mealplan

Most of the time it’s really simple stuff – like nachos. You know I love my nachos. I thought it’d be fun to try and do weekly posts about my meal plans. Then I can see some recurring themes and try to shoot video and make posts about some of my favorite seasonal recipes. 

We’re going to also talk about my food budget. I try to buy everything local, organic, and without packaging on a budget of $60 a week. I go bulk shopping once a month and that shopping trip kinda messes up the $60 a week budget. So, it works out better to say $250 a month of two people. But, since we’re doing this weekly – 

Week 1

First things first, I got wayyyyyyy too carried away last week. So, I have a lot of leftover produce. All of it looks great though. It matters how you store your produce to keep it looking fresh.  

step one: inventory

Before going grocery shopping you should always see what you have left in your fridge and try and make a plan to eat that first.

I have the broccoli, cucumber, peppers, radishes, cilantro, eggs, and basil leftover from last week. 

I prep radishes to throw into salads and they last quite a while in the fridge. Cilantro lasts a long time if you keep it like cut flowers in your fridge. And, we don’t eat eggs very often so that carton will last us almost the month. I’ll bring the carton back after we’ve finished with it. 

step two: budgets

Set a budget. I try not to spend over $30 at the farmers market for a weeks full of produce. Granted if I have a lot left over from the previous week, I can buy a couple more special items. I don’t buy specialty items very often due to budgets, but occasionally it’s fun to splurge! 

step three: shop

Shop till you drop! 

Ok, so not really but this is what I bought this week. 

  • $7 Bread: I typically make bread, but they were selling it without any packaging and I couldn’t resist hauling a delicious loaf home. I slice it almost all the way through, wrap it in the orange reusable bag from bagpodz and then place it in a pillowcase inside the crisper in my freezer.
  • $4 Jam: I only buy jam once or twice a year. But, I am definitely looking forward to toast this week! 
  • $1 Red Potatoes
  • $2.50 Tortilla chips
  • $1 Limes and Jalepeno 
  • $10 Romaine, Tomatoes, Squash, Zucchini, Carrots, Cilantro and Arugula

Total: $25.50

step four: plan

Breakfast: Toast with Jam, Bagels with Mayo and Tomatoes, Plain Bagels, Freezer Smoothies with Almonds/Granola

Lunch: PB&J, Farmers Market Salads, Roasted Veggie Sandwiches, Quinoa and Veggie Bake

Dinner: Margherita Pizza, Nachos, Caesar Salad and Pasta, Fajitas with Rice and Beans, Fried Rice, Burgers

step five: prep 

I’m not very good at executing step five. But, I will probably make some salsa this week, it’s why I have hordes of cilantro. And, whenever I make veggie burgers I always make extra and keep them in the freezer so I have them on hand. 

We make a lot of really simple meals that can be tossed together quickly. A lot of them have the same ingredients, so if I’m roasting veggies I always roast a little more than necessary for tomorrows lunch. 

What are you planning for this week? 

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  1. These photos are totally guilting me into being better about buying from the farmer’s market. Tonight’s planned meal can actually be made with everything you have shown in the above photo! It’s called ratatouille hash; basically potatoes, zucchini, bell peppers, onions, garlic, and cherry tomatoes all sauteed together, seasoned with fresh parsley and thyme. You can also top it with an egg for more protein. You could also sub in summer squash instead of bell peppers or pasta/gnocchi/quinoa instead of potatoes. Another summer staple is white bean chili topped with cilantro and avocado. Eat it with a spoon or tortilla chips!

  2. Babe, you are SUCH an inspiration! So looking forward to our interview.

    I make veggie chili in the summer, it’s great for lunch and dinners At my new house we grow fresh cilantro in our garden which makes for delicious toppings. Also, black beans and quinoa with homemade taco seasoning, smoothies for breakfast, and occasionally a simple baked sweet potato with salt and coconut oil.

    (I can get away with eating lighter…I don’t have to feed a boy hehe!)

  3. This all looks great! Where do you find bulk tortilla chips?!? Tortilla chips is one of the things that I struggle with as I love them and can’t find them not in plastic. Also, how do you get cheese for the nachos and pizza?

    1. I go to the local torterilleria in town. But, you can go to any Mexican restaurant if they make chips. They’ve always been more than happy to fill a reusable bag with tortilla chips. And, it’s way cheaper than buying them at a grocery store.
      I make a vegan nacho cheese I love for nachos. For Justin, I buy his cheese at the deli counter. I bring a container and they place the cheese inside. Ta-da! package free cheese. šŸ™‚
      At my farmers market there’s a goat farmer who sells goat cheese in plastic. I told him I didn’t buy anything in plastic, and he started bringing glass jars to the market. I just bring the empty jars back and they refill them.

      1. Awesome! I had previously thought about asking a Mexican restaurant but wasn’t sure, so now I definitely will! And deli counter is how I have been doing cheese. I also went to a local goat farm with one of my bees wraps and had them cut a piece of cheese and wrap it up which worked great! Thank you for the ideas!

  4. I never thought of storing cilantro that way. Mine goes bad in less than a week inside my cloth produce bag so I’m grateful for the tip! Great meal plans and menus…you’ve inspired me to do better! Thanks šŸ™‚

  5. I don’t plan anymore. It’s just me now, and I go shopping for groceries several times a week, so I just buy what I can eat in two or three days and take it from there. tonight I’m probably having spicy tofu, potatoes and carrots. Oh, and I intend to make bread pudding again this weekend since I’ve got a lot of (completely dried out) leftover bread again.

  6. these tips are invaluable! I’m totally on board with the concept of planning meals, but often become immobilized when it comes down to turning that blank sheet of paper into a real plan that works. meal-planner’s block. since I catch myself thinking "what was that thing I made with ________ that I liked so much?" I see that tracking meal successes would help me out a lot.

  7. Im attempting to make a zero waste meal for a school project, and im not going to be able to find the time to go to the farmers market, any ideas?