As promised to my 2 loyal followers, a meal plan post…

17 May

I have finally given in to meal planning, and I wish I had done it a long time ago! I have always hated late afternoons/early evenings, because it meant that it was time to figure out something for dinner. It was stressful and exhausting, and often ended up with a run to the grocery, which wasted time and money. I have read for a couple of years how much time and money a meal plan saves, and I can say that after just a few weeks of doing it that it definitely will save us lots of time, money, and my sanity! I might even say that I am starting to enjoy cooking again…

So I told some friends on Facebook that I would share my meal plan, along with links to those you can find online, and if anyone is interested in recipes for those with no link, I will post those too.

Monday: Sour Cream Noodle Bake

Tuesday: Homemade Pizza and Breadsticks using this as the dough

Wednesday: Date Night!

Thursday: Baked Creamy Chicken Taquitos

Friday: Baked Potato Soup     This recipe looks good, and doesn’t have gross stuff added in like celery. *shudder*

Saturday: Cowboy Quesadillas  These seem like a nice change from our normal, plain (but good, of course) cheese and chicken version.

Sunday: Pot Roast for lunch (have to plan a good lunch or the kids revolt since they really want to have fast food)            Chicken and Dumplings for dinner

Monday (23rd): BBQ Biscuits  I love these, they are super easy, and always a hit with my picky kids I will post the recipe soon.

Tuesday (24th): Chicken Spaghetti    But no little pimentos because that would make my boys flip out–or Anna, you could share your recipe with me…

Wednesday (25th): Date night!

Thursday (26th): Pasta with meat sauce and homemade bread (see bread dough recipe link above)

Friday (27th): Beef Empanadas  I haven’t found the right recipe yet, and a friend is supposed to share it with me, but I am still planning on making these

As for sides, I usually just serve a side salad, or steamed broccoli or green beans. Very simple. I am planning on making this fresh corn casserole one night, maybe to go with the BBQ Biscuits, but I need to find the corn on sale first.

I came up with this plan last Friday night, made out my grocery list according to what I did not have, and shopped on Saturday. I bought all my groceries for these meals, plus stuff for breakfast and lunches, for $150. That is a HUGE difference in what I had been spending bi-weekly on groceries, and it was all from about an hour of planning. The return on investment for the one hour is definitely worth it. I was easily spending double that amount biweekly, plus we were eating out too often because I didn’t have a solid plan in place. I am excited about what a difference this will make for us, and I know John is excited that I finally am saving us more money and cooking more!

If you don’t meal plan, I really think you should try it for a couple of weeks, and see if it doesn’t help you out too!

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5 Responses to “As promised to my 2 loyal followers, a meal plan post…”

  1. Erin H. May 17, 2011 at 8:06 pm #

    I make those same chicken taquitos but I leave out and tweak it quite often. They freeze really well and end up being a great fast food “I don’t have time to throw anything together” dinner. Oh and I like to get a whole chicken and boil it, then cut up all the meat and make a bunch in advance. Just a few thoughts that might help you in your meal planning endeavors.

  2. RondaT May 17, 2011 at 10:05 pm #

    I don’t put Pimentos in my food because the cafeteria at Union put them in *everything* when I was there. Think mashed potatoes, green beans, mac and cheese etc with pimentos. YUCK! We asked them why and they said it was for “color”. Really? pretty strong flavor there just for color.

  3. cheesefemme May 17, 2011 at 10:19 pm #

    Erin, thanks for the idea! I will definitely have to try that.
    Ronda, that is SO GROSS. Somebody told me that they used to have a sign up that said “All you can have” and they were so excited because they thought they could pig out and keep going back for more. Then they went up for seconds and the lady told them no and they asked why, and she pointed to the sign and said “ALL you can have.” In other words, one walk through is ALL you can have. Ha ha ha. I have laughed so much about that. Those cafeteria ladies were CRAZY!

  4. NikkiikkiN May 17, 2011 at 10:48 pm #

    Its nice to see someone else’s list of easy meals. Thanks for the ideas, mine are getting redundant!

  5. Debby May 19, 2011 at 7:18 pm #

    I’m impressed! I am sooo lazy about cooking and rely too much on frozen Trader Joe’s/Costco entrees. 🙂 You are smart to plan ahead and save $$, and your menu sounds delicious, too!

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