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June meal plan ideas are all about using what’s best for price and taste. Even in Wyoming, the weather is starting to warm up. We had a dusting of snow just before Memorial Day, so we didn’t plant the rest of our garden until the last Saturday of May. In April, I started salad greens and radishes in my hot box, but something (a rabbit?) broke into the box and made a meal for themselves. Because of our late season, I’m still buying produce and looking for deals. Focusing on what’s in season, along with referencing EWG’s Dirty Dozen and Clean 15 list, helps us get the most bang for our buck with these June meal plan ideas.

 

Did you know that not only produce is seasonal but protein is too? Before refrigeration, there were specific times for harvesting meat and protein.  Grass-fed beef and wild game are most flavorful in the fall. Pork season begins in the fall and moves into winter. Lambs, born in February and March, are ready for processing in July and August. Chickens, hatched during peak laying time in the spring, would have been large enough for harvesting around late June. Even now, spring and early summer is a great time for eggs. Chickens are in their peak laying time–making it a great time to hit up chicken tenders for extra eggs to add to your June meal plan ideas.

Seasonal Produce

A friend gave my husband a bag of asparagus that grew wild along the ditch bank by her house. If you don’t have wild asparagus growing near you, it’s in season in stores. Another wild option, tender dandelion leaves! Make sure, if you are wildcrafting, you know they have not been sprayed with pesticides or visited by dogs. Spinach and lettuce are in season, along with radishes and soon rhubarb. Where you live, you may find these items plus chard, carrot, cucumber, chicory, onion, green bean, early potato, new potatoes, nettle, tomato, pea, and celery. Strawberries and apricots are the star fruits for June, along with some varieties of cherries. Raspberries may be ready in your location too.

Cost and Availability

In many parts of the country, purchasing meat in the grocery store is either a) quantity limited, b) cost-prohibitive, c) both. If you have always wanted to purchase locally from farmers or ranchers, now is a good time to investigate this option. Eatwild and LocalHarvest are both excellent resources for finding local protein producers.  Also, check with your local Weston A. Price Foundation representative. Chapter leaders often have a list of resources for meat, eggs, and produce.

This June meal plan focuses on seasonal availability as much as possible while adding in items that tend to be affordable year-round such as cabbage, carrots, select canned goods, and dry legumes. A weekly Big Salad offers a great way to use up any odds and ends stashed in the fridge or freezer. Not a salad fan? Consider throwing together a soup out of whatever is available.

Are you a fan of beans and legumes? Or are you currently looking for ways to add more economical beans to your diet? I can help! My new cookbook, Stretchy Beans: Nutritious, Economical Meals the Easy Way, is coming soon! Sign up for my newsletter to be alerted to when it is available.

Need More?

I link directly to recipes whenever possible, but sometimes I make a note about how I alter a recipe to accommodate budget or nutrition. You’ll find these notes in the To-Do List and Notes further down in the post of June meal plan ideas.

The Details

This collection of June meal plan ideas serves four or five average eaters. You can make needed adjustments based on your family size and personal desires. And also, these meals often build off of each other. This collection of meal plan ideas features whole, real, and traditional foods. Foods are often (but not always) fermented, cultured, soaked, sprouted, or soured.

Don’t have a sourdough starter? Learn how to catch a wild starter.

Be sure to scroll down to the To-Do List and Notes section for lots of valuable information!

Consider

As many states, counties, and towns see their lockdowns lifted, now is the time to consider what the next few months may bring. Historically, pandemics have more than one wave. This virus is expected to have a resurgence in the fall. Using information from your own personal experience during the current lockdown can help you plan for similar situations in the future. Stock up on food slowly over the summer so you don’t need to shell out a huge amount of money at once. Grow a garden and preserve through canning, freezing, or dehydrating. Go in with three other people and buy a quarter of a cow each. Consider preparing now for what may happen in the future. My book Stock The Real Food Pantry has additional tips and information to help you fill cupboards and increase food security, no matter what the future may hold.

 

Week 1

Monday: Salmon Cakes with Homemade Lemon Mayonnaise
Tuesday: Garbanzo Bean Curry (Stretchy Bean, more about this in the To-Do List and Notes)
Wednesday: Chopped Asparagus Salad (Budget tips in the To-Do List and Notes)
Thursday: Breakfast for Dinner! Baked Oatmeal
Friday: Hummus Platter and Arabic Meatballs (Read more about this in the To-Do List and Notes)
Saturday: Main Dish Salad (Read more about this in the To-Do List and Notes)

Week 2

Sunday: Salmon and Rice Salad (Read more about this in the To-Do List and Notes)
Monday: Middle Eastern White Beans and Rice (Fasooli) (Stretchy Bean; more about this in the To-Do List and Notes)
Tuesday: Marinated Asparagus with a 5-Minute Egg
Wednesday: White Beans and Spinach (Read more about this in the To-Do List and Notes)
Thursday: Breakfast for Dinner! Oatmeal Pancakes
Friday: Main Dish Salad (Read more about this in the To-Do List and Notes)
Saturday: White Beans and Cabbage

 

Week 3

Sunday: Wild Salmon Spanish Omelet
Monday: Majadareh (Stretchy Bean; more about this in the To-Do List and Notes)
Tuesday: Asparagus Bisque (Read more about this in the To-Do List and Notes)
Wednesday: Lentil and Vegetable Soup with Dumplings (Read more about this in the To-Do List and Notes)
Thursday: Clafouti
Friday: Sprouted Lentil Tacos (even my meat-loving husband enjoys these tacos!)
Saturday: Main Dish Salad (Read more about this in the To-Do List and Notes)

Week 4

Sunday: Strawberry Cobb Salad with Balsamic Lime Vinaigrette
Monday: Crockpot Pinto Beans, Rice & Sauteed cabbage (Stretchy Bean; more about this in the To-Do List and Notes)
Tuesday: Sourdough Waffles With Fermented Strawberries
Wednesday: Bean and Cheese Quesadillas (Read more about this in the To-Do List and Notes)
Thursday: Egg Salad
Friday: Navajo Tacos with Sourdough Fry Bread
Saturday: Main Dish Salad (Read more about this in the To-Do List and Notes)

Partial Week

Sunday: Quick and Easy Gyros
Monday: Curried Egg Salad
Tuesday: Congee (Read more about this in the To-Do List and Notes)

To-Do List and Notes

Week 1

Monday:

Salmon Cakes with Homemade Lemon Mayonnaise.

Making your own mayonnaise takes only a few minutes to yield a delicious reward. Use high-quality eggs from pastured or free-range chickens. If you don’t want to make your own mayo, flavor store-bought mayonnaise or yogurt with a little mustard, lemon juice, and Worcestershire sauce.

After dinner, put five cups (about two pounds) of garbanzo beans/chickpeas on to soak.

Tuesday:

I love cooking beans in broth to increase nutrition. Broth acts as a protein sparer, helping to stretch a small amount of meat into a complete meal. If using your crockpot, start the beans in the morning and let them simmer all day. Allow 45 minutes to an hour to prepare the Garbanzo Bean Curry.

Portion the 4 cups of garbanzo beans out for the curry, then divide the rest and store in glassware for future meals: 2 cups for Wednesday,  2 cups for Friday, and 1 cup for Saturday. Any additional beans can be stashed in the freezer for future use.

Wednesday:

I found this Chopped Asparagus Salad recipe when I was looking for a new idea for garbanzo beans. I loved the idea but had to make some adjustments for the recipe to better fit my budget.

Here are my changes:

  • Find wild asparagus growing on the ditch bank (great, if you can. Otherwise, now is the time to buy it since it is less expensive and more flavorful when in season. Asparagus is on the Clean 15 list, so you don’t need to worry about it being organic).
  • Use 2 cups of previously cooked garbanzo beans instead of canned.
  • Use 1/2 of a half of a regular cucumber. Cut it in half at the equator and then in half again lengthwise. Scoop out the seeds. Save the rest of the cucumber for Friday night.
  • Dice a regular Roma tomato instead of buying cherry tomatoes. Remember, tomatoes are on the Dirty Dozen list, so they should be purchased organic, or grow them yourself.
  • Use green pepper instead of “colorful” peppers.
  • Skip the jarred red pepper (you can make your own roasted pepper if you’d like. Here’s how.)
  • Substitute cubed cheddar cheese for the feta.
  • Use rice wine or apple cider vinegar in the dressing.

Thursday:

Baked Oatmeal

Years ago, when my now-adult children were young, we stayed at a bed and breakfast on the Oregon Coast. The proprietor made baked oatmeal for breakfast, and she was kind enough to share the recipe. This version, from Traditional Cooking School, allows for soaking the oats in advance to improve digestion.

Friday:

We like to keep Friday nights fun and festive. Hummus, tzatziki, slices of cucumber, olives, cheeses, dried fruit, pita wedges, and crackers along with tiny minty meatballs (to be eaten off of a toothpick) make for an almost celebratory meal.

Saturday:

Main Dish Salad. We scour the fridge and freezer for bits of meat and veggies to top the salad. I cut all of the fresh vegetables, cooked meats (are there any meatballs left from last night?), beans or legumes (you saved a cup of garbanzos for this dish), and cheeses on a large cutting board, which then becomes the serving board. If I don’t have any cooked meats lurking in the fridge, I’ll hard boil some eggs and/or mix up salmon or tuna salad from a can.

We add small bowls of shredded cheese, olives, sunflower seeds, peanuts, etc., then everyone fills their plate with salad greens and whatever toppings they want. Finish it off with a homemade dressing (I love this one) and maybe a nice crusty bread.

Week 2

Sunday:

This Salmon and Rice Salad is very flexible! The original recipe calls for smoked salmon. That tends to be cost-prohibitive for me, so I use wild canned salmon. To help with the cost of the salmon, I order it online by the case when it is on sale. Azure Standard is my first choice for this, but I’ve also ordered from Amazon.

After dinner, put five cups (about two pounds) of white beans on to soak. You can use small white, Navy, Great Northern, or cannellini–your choice.

Monday:

I love cooking beans in broth to increase nutrition. Broth acts as a protein sparer, helping to stretch a small amount of meat into a complete meal. If using your crockpot, start the beans in the morning and let them simmer all day. You’ll want to allow about 45 minutes to prepare the Fasooli.

You’ll use 3 cups of beans for tonight’s Fasooli. You’ll need 3 cups for White Beans and Spinach, 1 cup for Thursday’s salad, and 2 cups for Saturday night’s dish. The rest can be stashed in the freezer for future use.

Tuesday:

Marinated Asparagus with a 5-Minute Egg

The asparagus needs to be made in advance to allow for the marinating process. Make it the night before and serve cold with the warm egg over the top. Yum. Serve with a side of hash browns and/or crusty bread slathered in butter.

Wednesday:

White Beans and Spinach. What a wonderful dish for when spinach is in season! Before we moved to Wyoming, we spent a winter living in Northern California. The town held a weekly farmers market where we purchased all of our produce. Spinach, grown organically, was a wonderful treat in the early spring. This recipe, as written, serves two and should be doubled for a family. You could use a variety of greens in this instead of all spinach. Mustard or collard greens will also work well with a little adaptation: remove the stems and increase the cooking time until the greens are tender.

Thursday:

Oatmeal Pancakes

Start the oatmeal to soak early in the day or the night before.

Friday:

A nice big salad hits the spot! We scour the fridge and freezer for bits of meat and veggies to top the salad. Mixing cabbage with lettuce gives a nice crunch. I cut all of the fresh vegetables, cooked meats, and cheeses and put them on a large cutting board, which then becomes the serving board. If I don’t have any cooked meats lurking in the fridge, I’ll hard boil some eggs and/or mix up salmon or tuna salad from a can. You’ve saved a cup of white beans from earlier in the week to use in this salad.

We add small bowls of shredded cheese, olives, sunflower seeds, peanuts, etc. Then everyone fills their plate with salad greens and whatever toppings they want. Finish it off with a homemade dressing and maybe a nice crusty bread. Yum!

Saturday:

White Beans and Cabbage. The key to this dish is to cut the potatoes into a very small, consistent dice. I also use 2 potatoes instead of just the one called for in the recipe for a slightly heartier dish.

 

 

Week 3

Sunday:

Wild Salmon Spanish Omelet

This stovetop omelet is incredibly adaptable. Use this as your guide to create your own variation for using up abundant spring eggs.

Put five cups (two pounds) of lentils on to soak for this week’s Stretchy Bean.

Monday:

Instead of cooking a big pot of lentils, I prefer to sprout a big container. I find sprouting lentils results in a much nicer consistency as opposed to cooking and reheating. Sprouted lentils tend to go a long way. We’ll make four meals out of these lentils.

Early in the morning, drain and rinse the lentils in a colander, after soaking overnight. Put the colander on a plate and cover with a towel (to keep out dust and such).  Soak 1 cup brown rice for tonight’s Mujadareh.

About an hour before you wish to eat, take out 5 cups of lentils for tonight’s meal. Rinse the remaining lentils, put the colander on a plate to collecting dripping water, and cover with a towel so they will continue to sprout. Follow the instructions in this post for making Mujadareh.

Tuesday:

Asparagus Bisque

Oh my! Creamy and Delicious. I use onions instead of leaks. And chunks of chicken instead of crab. Serve with a crusty bread.

Wednesday:

Tonight’s Lentil and Vegetable Soup with Dumplings is inspired by this recipe.

About an hour before supper, take 2 cups of sprouted lentils from your container. Rinse the remaining lentils and continue to sprout. Put tonight’s lentils in your soup pot. Add 8 cups water (or 4 cups water and 4 cups broth), 4 carrots (peeled and sliced), 3 or 4 celery stalks (peeled and sliced), 1 large onion (peeled and sliced), 1 can diced or stewed tomatoes, 1 teaspoon salt, 1 teaspoon garlic powder, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Bring to a boil and cook for 10 minutes. Meanwhile, mix up the dumplings using this recipe. After the soup has cooked for 10 minutes, follow the cooking instructions for adding the dumplings. Leave covered for the entire 20 minute cooking time. Delicious!

Thursday:

Clafouti.

This tasty dish, something like a frittata but featuring fruit, is a wonderful treat. Feel free to omit the coconut flour or use a different type of flour as desired. This is a great recipe to use up bananas that have been neglected.

 

Friday:

In the morning, rinse the lentils. If you’d like to make your own sourdough tortillas for tonight’s lentil tacos, this recipe is my favorite.

Sprouted Lentil Tacos

Any leftover lentils can be used in tomorrow night’s salad. I prefer to lightly steam (about 3 minutes) lentils instead of eating them raw.

Saturday:

Salad night! Scour the fridge and freezer for bits of meat and veggies to top the salad. Mixing cabbage with lettuce gives a nice crunch. I cut all of the fresh vegetables, cooked meats, and cheeses and put them on a large cutting board, which then becomes the serving board. If I don’t have any cooked meats lurking in the fridge, I’ll hard boil some eggs and/or mix up salmon or tuna salad from a can. Lightly steamed, and then cooled, lentils add a wonderful crunch.

We’ll add small bowls of shredded cheese, olives, sunflower seeds, peanuts, etc. Then everyone fills their plate with salad greens and whatever toppings they want. Finish it off with a homemade dressing (this vinaigrette is a family favorite) and maybe a nice crusty bread. It is so good!

Week 4

Sunday:

Strawberry Cobb Salad with Balsamic Lime Vinaigrette

You can use chicken, pork, or steak in this. Or eliminate the meat altogether and add more hard-boiled eggs. Leftover beans (from your freezer stash) could also be considered in place of the meat.

Put five cups (two pounds) of pinto beans on to soak.

Monday:

I love cooking beans in broth to increase the nutrition. Broth acts as a protein sparer, helping to stretch a small amount of meat into a complete meal.

After dinner, divide the remaining beans into two containers. One container should be beans only (very little juice). These will be pureed or mashed for Wednesday’s quesadillas. The second container, including juice, is for a big batch (enough for two meals) of chili.

Tuesday:

Sourdough Waffles With Fermented Strawberries. To ferment the berries, start 2 days before. If making yogurt cheese, start this the day before. Start the waffles to soak in the morning.

Alternate no advance prep idea: Use this recipe for the sourdough waffles (no soaking needed) and add cut strawberries to the top.

Wednesday:

No advance preparation is needed unless you’d like to make your own sourdough or soaked whole wheat tortillas. This is so, so quick and easy. Mash or puree the beans (you may have already done this earlier in the week).

  1. Spread a generous bean layer on the tortilla, sprinkle with shredded cheese (to your own taste), and top with a second tortilla.
  2. Grill in a hot cast iron skillet (I like to add a little butter so the tortilla crisps nicely) until the first side is lightly brown.
  3. Carefully flip and repeat with the second side. If desired, you can add thinly shredded meat to the pureed beans and cheese before grilling. Yum!

Thursday:

Egg Salad. Delicious served over salad greens or in a sandwich. We love to use Sourdough English Muffins as our bread.

Friday:

Navajo Tacos with Sourdough Fry Bread

If you didn’t start the sourdough fry bread last night, start it early in the morning. Don’t have a sourdough starter? Fry bread can also be made out of your favorite bread dough.

Saturday:

Main Dish Salad. We scour the fridge and freezer for bits of meat and veggies to top the salad. Mixing cabbage with lettuce gives a nice crunch. I cut all of the fresh vegetables, cooked meats, beans or legumes, and cheeses on a large cutting board, which then becomes the serving board. If I don’t have any cooked meats lurking in the fridge, I’ll hard boil some eggs and/or mix up salmon or tuna salad from a can. You’ve saved chicken on Sunday for this dish.

We add small bowls of shredded cheese, olives, sunflower seeds, peanuts, etc., then everyone fills their plate with salad greens and whatever toppings they want. Finish it off with a homemade dressing and maybe a nice crusty bread. It is so good!

June Meal Plan Ideas

Partial Week To-Do

Sunday:

Quick and Easy Gyros

This is a great recipe for stretching a pound of ground meat! Keeping no-knead dough on hand makes the flatbread portion of this recipe come together quickly. I mix up the recipe as instructed in the free handout, then keep it in a bowl in the fridge. I use whole wheat instead of einkorn.

Monday:

Curried Egg Salad

I can’t remember how I first learned of adding curry to egg salad but it soon became a favorite! The linked recipe is a “fancier” than my usual curried egg salad fare, but it also feels a little heartier.

My simple version is to mix together the mayo, curry powder, honey, lime juice, sea salt, and pepper. Add in chopped hard-boiled eggs. Serve over greens or as a sandwich.

Tuesday:

Congee

This is a dish that used to be a regular part of our meal plans. It is incredibly economical and incredibly versatile. Brown or white rice, broth, vegetables, and (possibly) a little meat makes a comforting and satisfying dish.

Looking for more meal plan ideas? Check out the meal plan archives here.

One of my favorite ways to enjoy cabbage is fermented. Sauerkraut, kimchi, cordito–all are wonderful versions of kraut. Want to create your own safe-to-eat and delicious fermented salsas, chutneys, pickles, or krauts? You need my friend Wardee’s FREE fermenting formulas Cheat Sheet! Click here to learn more…

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