So I have a problem y’all, and it is called strawberry season in Oregon. If you haven’t heard of or tried the Hood Strawberry, it is the most incredibly delicious strawberry you will ever eat and you may want to book a vacation to the Northwest in June next year just to get your hands on some. It’s so delicious, I literally made every single meal last week using these strawberries. No one complained.

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Top Image: Strawberry Caprese Pasta Salad from Platings and Pairings on the Oregon Strawberry Commission website

Around me, there are local berry stands on almost every corner, and because I know how short the season is — typically June 1-20 — I stop and buy a half flat of berries whenever I drive by. I end up with so many strawberries that I literally use them in almost every meal so we don’t waste even one berry.

So I am sharing my menu plan with you that I used last week, and as you might notice, it incorporated these heavenly berries into every single dinner I served my family. And they LOVED them all.

Even if you can’t get the Hood variety in your neck of the woods, I am sure you can grab other varieties of strawberries at your local farmers market or your grocer, to sweeten up your menu and bring it into season for next week.

Related: How to make your summer produce last longer.

Handmade colander from Niik Ceramic Goods on Etsy

How gorgeous is this handmade colander from Niik Ceramic Goods on Etsy? Perfect for storing berries, or just eating them right out of the container when you’re snacking.


5 dinners using strawberries that my family adores


Strawberry Caprese Pasta Salad

I discovered this Strawberry Caprese Pasta Salad from Platings and Pairings on the Oregon Strawberry Commission website. It is so light and easy that I will be throwing it together for a quick #MeatlessMonday more often (when transition out of strawberry season I can substitute the cherry tomatoes that are just now starting to appear in my garden).

Related: 8 Fresh Summer Pasta Salads 



Strawberry Basil Chicken

Strawberries, basil and a good balsamic vinegar come together so beautifully in this Strawberry Basil Chicken from Wholesomelicious. This dish comes together in about 20 minutes, and disappears just about as quickly. Strawberries are a magical little gem that can work wonderfully in both sweet and savory dishes, as you can tell. So I cooked some angel hair pasta to serve along side of this dish for the kids. Then, I added a warm baguette (mostly just for me) to soak up any of that extra balsamic vinegar on my plate.


As a side note, this strawberry huller has turned into one of the best under $8 purchases I have ever made. (And you know we love those affordable kitchen gadgets that make our lives easier.) In fact, I bought three of them for all of my little kitchen helpers who weren’t quite ready for a pairing knife.

Related: 5 grilled chicken recipes for summer, to help put that grill to use


Photo: Ty Mecham on Food52

Bacon Lettuce and Strawberry Sandwich

I love a good BLT. And now I love a BLS even more. I was so excited to have found this recipe for Bacon Lettuce & Strawberry Sandwich by Emma LaPerruque on Food52. I mean honestly, can there be a more perfect “welcome to summer” sandwich? Be sure to pay attention to Emma’s tip, and salt those strawberries. It may seem counterintuitive, but it draws out their juices and actually increases their flavor.


Salmon with Strawberry Salsa

Not only is this Salmon with Strawberry Salsa from Tawnie of Krolls Korner gorgeous to look at, it tastes amazing and is so good for you. Salmon is rich in Omega-3 fatty acids, protein and antioxidants, and with strawberries so high in Vitamin C and potassium (among other health benefits) you’ve really got a winning dinner idea here using strawberries. It’s so fantastic when a meal is not only delicious, but provides so many of those good nutrients we all need.



Strawberry, Basil and Balsamic Pizza

Strawberries on a pizza? Yes. And yes, I will fight you over it. We have already established that balsamic vinegar and strawberries are a match made in heaven, and Cookie and Kate combined them on this Strawberry, Basil and Balsamic Pizza, and the result is *chef’s kiss.* You can roll your own dough, buy it pre-made from your local pizzeria, buy it frozen, or if you’re gluten-free, check out our list of  the best gluten-free pizza brands that our readers swear by.

Tip: if you have any strawberries left by the end of the week, throw together a couple of dessert pizzas like the one here and you’ll have a fully themed pizza night to celebrate a successful week of meals your family loves!

Follow our Weekly Meal Plan Ideas for Families board on Pinterest @CoolMomEats for even more ideas!