Posted in Meals and Recipes

Monday Meals: Side Dishes

Hello! How was your weekend? I can honestly say after being so productive last weekend working on our master bedroom refresh, we were pretty lazy this weekend! The weather was so rainy and dreary, so we kind of took that as permission to be lazy.

We’ve regrouped and are ready to tackle the week ahead!

When the weather has allowed, we’ve been grilling out a bit. Over the past few weeks, I’ve made some of my favorite side dishes, so I thought I’d share them with you ! What I love about these is that that they are all even better the next day for lunch or for leftovers for dinner.

Pasta Salad

I’ve had this recipe pinned on Pinterest for years and make it quite often in the spring and summer months.


  • 1 lb Rotini pasta, cooked
  • 1 Tblsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 c. Italian dressing
  • 1/2 c. of olives, chopped (sometimes I omit these which is what I did this time making it….just due to my personal preference)
  • 1/2 c. grape or cherry tomatoes, cut into fourths
  • 1 large cucumber, chopped
  • 3 Mozzarella sticks, chopped into bite sized pieces (I think I used four because it’s my kids’ favorite part!)
  • 3 Tblsp McCormick’s Salad Supreme (If I can’t find it, I use the Good Season dressing mix)


  • Boil the pasta.
  • Drizzle with the olive oil and stir.
  • Add salad dressing and stir.
  • Add in veggies and cheese and stir.
  • Add in McCormick Salad Supreme, mix together and then refrigerate.
  • Enjoy!

Wild Rice and Carrot Salad

This recipe, like many of mine, was in a Kroger coupon packet years ago. It’s a family favorite as well….even the kids devour it!


  • 2 c. cooked, cooled wild rice or wild rice blend
  • 2 c. shredded carrots
  • 1 c. chopped, toasted walnuts (I always use slivered almonds instead)
  • 3/4 c. golden raisins
  • 1 small shallot, finely minced
  • 2 Tblsp. apple cider vinegar
  • 1/4 c. extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 Tblsp. honey
  • 2 c. roughly chopped arugula (or spinach, kale, or any leafy greens)
  • Salt and pepper
  • Enjoy!


  • In a large bowl, combine rice, carrots, nuts, and golden raisins.
  • To make the dressing, whisk together shallot, vinegar, olive oil, and honey in small bowl.
  • Add salt and pepper to taste. (Also, at this point, I usually end up adding another drizzle of honey! Again, just our preference)
  • Drizzle dressing over rice and carrot mixture, tossing until combined. (Recipe can be made a day ahead up until this point.)
  • Add greens, tossing until evenly distributed.
  • Serve, refrigerating any leftovers.

Asian Slaw

I’ve had this recipe for years. I believe I got it from a friend at a recipe exchange years ago. It’s actually one I’d forgotten about until I was digging through my recipe box recently. I made it as a side when Travis grilled burgers recently, and it was so delish.


  • 1 small head cabbage (I buy the classic coleslaw)
  • 1 package Ramen noodles
  • 2-3 Tblsp. fresh chives, chopped
  • 4 oz. toasted almonds (I used slivered almonds)
  • 1/4 c. salted sunflower seeds

For the dressing:

  • 1/3 c. oil
  • 1/3 c. white vinegar
  • 1/3 c. sugar
  • seasoning from Ramen noodles
  • 1/4 c. water (if slaw seems to dry)…I didn’t feel the need to use water when I made it recently.


  • Crush noodles, set aside.
  • Toast almonds in the skillet for a couple of minutes.
  • Stir together noodles, slaw/cabbage, chives, almonds, and sunflower seeds.
  • Pour dressing on just before serving.


***Toss everything together, minus the noodles, and chill. Then, add in noodles right before serving. (**This is what I did when I made it) Enjoy!

I hope these side dishes provide ideas for you to add into your meal prep rotation!

I hope you have a great week! For us, it’s time for us to start week 4 of distance learning.

Thanks for reading.

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