My 10 year old came home from school the other day and told me a joke.
Ima, have you cleaned yet for Pesach?
A little bit, mostly upstairs. Why?
Well, have you started cooking?
Nope, not yet!
Well, you’d better get on it. Pesach is coming. Don’t be in De Nile!
And there you have it, my friends. My 10 year old’s pun unwittingly shamed me into menu planning.
While he may have motivated me to finally get on the ball, the truth is that I’m not especially stressed this year about what we’re going to eat for Pesach. There are two reasons for that:
#1. I have decided that I’m just not going to make myself crazy.
This year, I’m wholeheartedly embracing the “less is more” approach. Sure, there are a few special dishes my kids really look forward to, but for the most part, our meals are going to be basic and simple. Not only does this cut down on my stress, but it also cuts down on our costs. Win-win, in my book.
#2. I have been eating a (mostly) Whole30 diet for the last several months.
Which means I’m used to shopping and cooking Whole30: Protein + vegetables and fruits + nuts and healthy fats. Pesach is practically the same thing! Sure, there is some matzah brie and matzah pizza on the menu (gotta keep the family happy!), but by planning to eat mostly Whole30, I’m far less stressed about rushing out to buy all the specialty Pesach items.
** Note: We are eating out for one of the seders and sharing the cooking with the other two families. For the second seder, it is going to be just the five of us, plus my mother in law (I love having one seder for just family; my kids really get to share everything they’ve learned this year, and I get to do all my schtick — including setting the table to look like Moses has parted the Red Sea).
Friday, April 22nd ~ 1st Night of Passover
Breakfast: Scrambled eggs, smoothies
Lunch: Baked potatoes, cottage cheese, cut-up veggies
Seder: We are bringing a chicken dish (maybe this Shabbat chicken with dried fruit or this Spicy Baked Chicken?), roasted veggies, and fruit salad.
Saturday, April 23rd ~ 2nd Night of Passover
Breakfast: fruit salad, yogurt, hard boiled eggs
Lunch: Salmon, accordion potatoes, spinach salad (We need something a bit lighter after the heavy seder)
- All the seder plate stuff
- Chicken Soup with Matzah Balls
- Hard Boiled Eggs w/ salt water (aka “Egg Soup” — a family tradition my husband grew up with)
- Chicken dish (I’ll save a few pieces from whatever I make for the 1st night)
- Cauliflower rice
- Chocolate covered strawberries
Sunday, April 24th
Breakfast: Matzah brie – sweet and savory (half of us like it sweet, the other half prefer savory so we always make it both ways). This overnight matzah bake looks interesting, too.
Lunch: Make-your-own salad bar, with lots of different chopped veggies, nuts, avocado and grilled chicken breasts plus homemade dressing.
Dinner: Matzah pizza for the kids – the adults will probably have left-overs (or nothing?)
Monday, April 25th
Breakfast: Smoothies (This Orange Creamsicle smoothie is a favorite. I might even try making my own almond milk this year. I hear it’s pretty simple.)
Lunch: Egg salad with homemade mayo served on matzah or lettuce leaves, cut-up veggies
Dinner: Meatballs, marinara sauce & zucchini zoodles
Tuesday, April 26th
Breakfast: Broccoli, mushroom and spinach omelettes
Lunch: Lunch-to-go – We have a fun day planned in town, so I’ll pack matzah and cheese sandwiches, spreads and some cut up veggies to take in a cooler in the car.
Dinner: Hamburgers, french fries and salad (maybe I will even make Pesach rolls for the family, but I will happily eat my burger in a lettuce leaf)
Wednesday, April 27th
Brunch: Matzah brei and cut-up fruit (I’ll probably just eat the fruit and a hard boiled egg.)
Dinner: Sweet potato gnocchi with sage & browned butter, steamed broccoli
Thursdy, Aprail 28th
Lunch: Left-overs, salad
Dinner: Chilled fruit soup, grilled chicken breasts (marinated in lemon and garlic), accordion potatoes, red cabbage salad, Israeli salad. Flourless chocolate cookies and lemon strawberry sorbet for dessert.
Friday, April 29th
Breakfast: Matzah brie (last day!)
Lunch: Unstuffed cabbage (made on the stove top, not in the crockpot), mashed cauliflower, roasted Brussels sprouts. Matzah “crack” for dessert.
Dinner: Left-over — Honestly, by this point, I am usually burned out and my kids are exhausted. The younger ones may not even stay up for kiddush.
Saturday, April 30th
Breakfast: Matzah with spreads – egg salad with homemade mayo, mashed avocado, cream cheese, etc. (fend for yourself?)
Lunch: Left-over chilled fruit soup, chicken schnitzel “fingers” (with homemade mayo for the binding, rather than eggs – I find it prevents them from drying out as much on the plata) dredged in matzah meal or TJs’ almond meal, roasted veggies. Left-over cookies, crack and sorbet for dessert.
Dinner/Seudah Shlishit: Left-overs? Whatever I scrounge out of my fridge?
Snacks: I’ll make sure to have plenty of fruits, veggies and nuts on hand. And I will no doubt make a few batches of chocolate covered marshmallow clusters — and some nut & raisin clusters, too, because they’re “healthy” ;-).
Picky eaters: As we’ve talked about before, I am blessed with two adventuresome eaters and one particular eater. I’ll make sure to have plenty of matzah pizza fixings on-hand, as well as hard-boiled eggs, fresh fruit and some raw veggies.
Tell me, what’s on your plan for meals this Pesach?!
Looking for more menu planning inspiration? Check out these posts from year’s past.
What’s on your Passover menu? Any traditional favorites that make the list year in and year out? Please share below – I know we all need more inspiration!