2021 Meal Planning… Menu 5

We got to go out to dinner, like a date! I was so excited. I will admit, we cheated just a bit, but it felt so good to take a night off and enjoy one meal at one of our favorite restaurants.

For meal 5, we coupled some leftovers with a new recipe for Beet and Goat Cheese Salad. This selection was inspired by a similar salad we had shared the night before, although a little less elegant than the amazing, professional Italian chef we like so much. In addition to the recipe below, please check out my inaugural cooking video featuring this very same salad.

Beet and Goat Cheese Salad

Course: Salad, Side Dish
Keyword: beet, goat cheese, spiralizer


  • 1 lb raw, spiralized beets
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp Italian seasoning
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • 1/4 cup roasted pecans
  • 1/4 cup goat cheese, crumbled
  • 1/2 cup baby spinach, minced
  • 1 tbsp white balsamic vinegar
  • 2 tbsp olive oil


  • Preheat oven to 450°.
  • If you are using whole beets, wash and peel and them make them into noodles using a spiralizier. If you don't have one, you can dice them. Alternatively, you may be able to purchase pre-spiralized beets in the produce section at your local grocery store.
  • Toss the beets with 2 tbls olive oil and seasoning.
  • Place on a cookie sheet, lined with parchment paper, spread evenly.
  • Bake for 10 minutes and then, let cool.
  • Toss with spinach, and 2 tbls olive oil and vinegar.
  • Add your goat cheese and lightly toss before adding the pecans.
  • Refrigerate until ready to eat.


*Recipe adapted from https://mylifecookbook.com. 

An extra tip… we didn’t finish this the first night and it was actually two days later before we did. While the goat cheese was a little pink, the salad was just as good the second time around which is pretty rare for vegetables tossed with vinegar and oil. The beets hold their structure well on their own. I really like the unique texture and tang to the dish. It is fun to try something new!

Do you like what you read here? Shop Now for all the tools needed to make this awesome dinner on our sister site, La Cuisine, a French inspired kitchen store. We might be located in Bozeman, MT but we ship UPS nationwide.


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Copyright © 2021 Montana Mountain Maven / Tina R. Cusker. All rights reserved.

It’s a Lunch Date

For more than a year now, I have been blessed by a visit from my parents every couple of weeks. After living thousands of miles away for nearly 25 years, this is a pretty big deal. I returned to Montana 5 years ago – which is very hard to believe. Time marches on at an unbelievable pace! I have now lived in Montana (post college) for more years than anywhere else while we served on active duty. Obviously it has always been “home,” but I honestly have no desire to live anywhere else despite of the beauty and grandeur we have been fortunate to experience.

Sloppy Joes with Pickled Beet & Goat Cheese Salad

Back on topic – my parents come to town regularly for appointments, and for most every visit, we are able to have lunch. I don’t take these visits for granted because honestly, there were too many years when we didn’t have any face to face, intimate conversations. We enjoy great conversations at thoughtfully chosen locations, and are rarely limited by the clock unlike most lunch dates. It is especially meaningful to me because my dad has always been a workaholic (he’s a farmer, after all) and seems to only relax when he’s away from home. The 140 miles is exactly what he needs to relieve some of his stress. We rarely visit the same restaurant twice and if we do, it is months apart. I don’t typically fix the lunches for them for several reasons; Bozeman has a phenomenal restaurant scene and it’s fun to check out all the great places, my dad is allergic to dogs and we have two – sometimes three when the grandpup is here, and while I love to cook, it’s always nice when I can be served too. A weekday lunch is a good excuse to do something different. This week, we continued to switch things up and I fixed a simple and tasty lunch: Sloppy Joes with a side salad & Peach Pie. But it wasn’t a manwich style Sloppy Joe, nor an ordinary salad or pie. Check them out – you won’t be disappointed! Note: Don’t skip over the Baked Beans, they come first for a reason.

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