This week is considered “clean week” for Orthodox Christians. Strictly speaking, the Orthodox abstain from meat, dairy, eggs, and fish for the next 40 days in observance of Lent. Seafood with no backbone is allowed throughout, such as mussels, shrimp, oysters, calamari. Since these are very nutrient dense, this is good news for fasting. Unfortunately, for those of us who don’t live in the Mediterranean, these can be a bit pricey. The challenge this week is to not only use what I have and clean out my fridge & pantry, but to also keep things nutrient-dense and low-cost.

Fasting while also being grain-free is a big challenge, since most vegans/vegetarians rely heavily on grains for protein and calories. I’m going to rely heavily on vegetables, seafood, and good fats to nourish us during this period while still keeping the spirit of the fast. Because of our family’s dietary conditions (my weak adrenals and thyroid issues, Kirsten’s need for GAPS, etc.) I am allowing some animal fats, dairy, and eggs for their good fats. I tend to get very weak and stress my thyroid adrenals when I go strict vegan, and since I’m still nursing, I’m allowing myself this dispensation. Not to sound all legalistic, but I feel I should explain myself in case any of my fellow Orthodox readers find my vegetarian menus a “stumbling block. St. Paul says it best when he says:

“But meat commendeth us not to God: for neither, if we
eat, are we the better; neither, if we eat not, are we the worse. But take heed
lest by any means this liberty of yours become a stumblingblock to them that are
weak.”
-1 Corinthians 8:8-13, 9:1-2


Click here for my nutritional tips on fasting with traditional nutrition principles.

Now, for the fridge and pantry cleanout I’m going to list some notable items I have on hand and use them:

Fridge:
leftover tunafish curry, cortido, carrots, 1.5#, parsley, cauliflower (2 heads),
salad greens, peanut butter and almond butter, grapes, 1 zucchini, beets, eggs, leftover vegetable soup, yogurt (goat & cow fil mjolk)

Freezer:
spinach, corn, walnuts, bacon, peppers, chicken makhani, beef broth, walnuts, salmon , cod, shrimp

Pantry:
coconut, dates, almonds, lentils (red & brown), navy beans, sea veggies such as kelp, arame, wakame, dulse

Monday:
B:
eggs, fruit, leftover muffins
L: leftover tuna curry,
D: Asian shrimp & veggie stir-fry w/ sea veggies

Tuesday:
B: carrot/fruit smoothies & coconut honey muffins
L: steamed broccoli w/butter, chicken makhani (for the kids)
D: creamy veggie soup, high-enzyme salad(w/avocado), salmon

Wednesday:
B: peanut butter squash brownies, apples, milk
L: sardines, cheese, celery sticks, miso soup
D: navy bean & spinach soup (for Church potluck)

Thursday:
B: turkey breakfast sausages (kids); green berry fil mjolk smoothies
L: creamy coconut-carrot-ginger soup
D: salmon steaks, salad greens, roasted beet salad

Friday:
B: apple-cinnamon latkes
L: salad (me) hot dogs (kids)
D: honey-baked lentils, green salad

Saturday:
B: fil mjolk smoothies
L: leftovers
D: spinach dal, carrot-ginger curry, chicken makhani (kids)

Sunday:
D: salmon cakes (from leftover salmon) with roasted cauliflower, salad greens

For more menu-planning inspiration, visit The Organizing Junkie.

Fridge & Pantry Cleanout Participants:

Hartke is Online!
Ranee @ Arabian Knits (Lenten)
Country Lady @ Bountiful Storage

You’re Next!

If you would like to participate in the Fridge & Pantry Cleanout, please send me a link to your post listing how you used what you had on hand to create a nourishing meal plan or leave a comment! I’m always looking for inspiration!

Come back Tuesday for my Bargain Meal of the week, which is a thrifty, low-carb, nutrient-dense, meal!

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4 Responses to “Menu Plan Monday: Fridge & Pantry Cleanout”

  1. Rebeca Identicon Icon Rebeca says:

    A blessed Lent to you and your family!

  2. Ranee Identicon Icon Ranee says:

    Please include me in your pantry and fridge cleanout. We have also been trying to cook from our home stores more regularly.

    Here is my post: First Week of Lent.
    Have a blessed Lent.

  3. Country Lady Identicon Icon Country Lady says:

    Posted my clean out the frig for the week photo and ideas. Thanks for sharing. I used up everything last week except for the broccoli.

  4. Mary Identicon Icon Mary says:

    We are also doing a fridge and pantry cleanout. I hope you don’t mind, but after I found out about your challenge, I posted a link to your blog from mine.

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