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Thursday, January 13, 2011

Menu Planning - 1-13-11

I've mentioned many times about the help a menu can be with both time and budget. My menu planning is very simple. At this time in my life I only pencil in my supper meals. I keep breakfast items on hand - English muffins, dry cereals, oatmeal, fruit, eggs, and bacon. For lunch there are soups, canned tuna, tortillas for quesadillas or wraps, salad makings, etc.

In our earlier years, I also wrote down breakfast and lunch menus - partly due to a tighter budget, and partly because there were four of us and things needed to be a little more structured. With children there for meals, it was important to have meals at regular times. I also needed to know exactly what I was having for each meal so I could prep ahead. Now breakfast and lunch take place we feel like eating it! Kinda nice!

I sit down with cookbooks or my recipe box and look for new recipes or things I haven't made in a while that match up to what's in my freezer and pantry or what's on sale in the grocery ads that week. I got broccoli on sale for under $1.50 a couple weeks ago, so I made cream of broccoli soup and had steamed broccoli as a side dish with another meal. The remainder of the broccoli got blanched and then frozen for future meals.

I'll pencil in the days of the week, then the main dish, salad, and/or vegetable to go with it. Sometimes I may switch out the menu and make it on a different day, but I really stick to my menu for the week.

Here's what I've planned for the next week:

The items with ** by them are new recipes. The others are things I've made before that we enjoyed.

Thursday - Day trip to Greenville to take Alli back to school
Friday - **Mini Meatball Sandwiches , Tossed salad
Saturday - **Chicken Strips with Blue Cheese Dressing , Celery & carrot sticks, French Peas
Sunday - Pitch in dinner - Potato Casserole, Salad, & dessert to be determined!
Monday - Tomatoes, Sausage and Pasta with Albuquerque Corn Salad
Tuesday - Chicken Stir Fry & Rice, Popovers - See my Recipe here
Wednesday - Leftovers
Thursday & Friday - Soup Supper for Deacons and their wives - Making several homemade soups, breads and dessert.
Saturday - Sweet Potato Pancakes , Bacon & Fresh fruit

Do you normally make out a menu? How does it help you? Has it helped your budget? What are you making this week?

With love,


Whitney said...

I cannot grocery shop without a menu - otherwise I end up with a cart full of random things that don't go together! I make my grocery list as I'm making my menu, to make sure I don't forget anything I need. This week I planned:

Tues: Chili w/cornbread, celery sticks
Wed: Hot chicken salad, green beans and banana bread
Thurs: Cheesburger Calzones, Corn
Fri: Chicken Enchiladas (using the rest of the chicken I cooked for the hot chicken salad)
Sat: Chili Dogs (with the leftover chili)
Sun: Chicken Roll Ups, Green beans, Parmesana biscuits

Megan said... is a great website that gives you recipes based on what you have already. It's really great if you have some ingredients left over!

Michelle said...

Yes! I'm with Whitney I can't shop without a menu in mind and the weeks I don't my budget shows it! I typically don't plan out breakfast or lunch either, mainly just dinner and then we take the leftovers for lunch the next day. Usually my menus are not this elaborate but the snow days were a nice change of pace!

This week we had:
Monday: Chili with Cornbread Biscuits
Tuesday: Herbed Roasted Chicken Breasts with Roasted Carrots and Asparagus
Wednesday: Pasta e Fagoli Soup
Thursday: One Pot Spagetti
Friday: Leftovers
Saturday: Day Trip Out of the Subdivision! :)

Denise said...

Thanks for the great menus, ladies! Sounds delicious! I'll have to check into the recipe match, Megan. Thanks for sharing!