Monday, October 27, 2008

Weekly meal planning.

A few posts ago, I mentioned that I loved Citymama’s genius idea of posting weekly menus. I finally decided to get onboard and do this myself. Another great idea, that I am stealing from this blogger is to hang up a chalkboard in our kitchen and write out the daily menus.

I find that it really saves me time and effort when I do a little planning ahead (duh, right?) There is nothing worse than getting home at night from a long commute and workday to be confronted with the dilemma of what to make for dinner. Inevitably, I end up sticking fish sticks in the oven and eating corn out of a can. Not healthy or appetizing. Although, Dylan does love fish sticks (or any fish for that matter).

We also end up saving a lot of money and time shopping. I take my shopping list to the store and if there are other items that are on special, I’ll adjust our menu to accommodate. Also, writing out my list really saves me from forgetting something and having to take another trip to the store. Because, every time I enter a grocery store I end up leaving with $50 minimum worth of groceries, even if the only thing I needed was a gallon of milk. It is dangerous territory!

We went to the grocery store on Sunday and were able to buy all the ingredients for 2 weeks worth of food for under $200 (that includes lunches!) Most of the meals I make actually have enough left over for 2 meals, so I can either freeze some or we eat leftovers, stretching our dollar even further.

This is our menu for the week.
Sunday: Vegetable Pie and breast of chicken patties (more about the vegetable pie in a later post!) **Follow this link to the recipe.

Monday: Turkey burgers, homemade potato fries (usually I do sweet potatoes, but I want to utilize the Russets that I had left over from the vegetable pies)

Tuesday: Oven baked fish, broccoli & peas

Wednesday: Chicken tacos & Mexican rice

Thursday: Highland Halloween Festival, so maybe we will have leftover taco salad

Friday: Halloween night! Chicken chili, corn bread and side of veggies

Saturday: Griffin’s Birthday party, so we probably won’t be hungry for dinner, but I have back up salad/soup/loaded baked potatoes

Sunday: Crockpot Spaghetti & Meatballs (the best marinara sauce ever from Everyday Italian, but I make it easy on myself and do it in the crock pot.)

If you have any easy recipe ideas that are great for weekdays (prepares and cooks in less than 40 minutes) I’d love to have them. I feel that our menus are limited to what the boys can/will eat. Which means really no spicy or too exotic. Bummer for me, I know! Now you know why I always want to eat Asian or exotic when we dine out.

Let me know what you're eating this week!


jen said...

um...Can I come live with you?

Anonymous said...

You've inspired me to plan out a week-ahead menu. I'm sure by doing this I would save a ton of money at the grocery store and get back to limiting my grocery runs to once a week instead of what has become two or three times. ... I can empathize about being limited to what I can cook. Except that my limitations come from my husband as much as the kids!--Fran

QGIRL said...

Fran, it has been a lifesaver for me! Post your menus, I'd love to see them.
Jen, you are welcome to come and live with us anytime. :)

Lisa said...

That is smart. I try to do it, but I'm not that organized. My challenge is to try and craft lunches that Brian can take to the city because he doesn't have a frig. he can use. We need to put them in a cooler but he carries all of his workout clothes too - so if we add a cooler he feels like he's carrying all of his belongings in one bag!! I do a lot with turkey - turkey meatballs, turkey chilli, etc.. But I like the chicken chilli idea.

dp said...

I write out a weekly menu too. Usually on Sunday right after breakfast we talk about who gets to choose on which days and what it is they want. It makes my life so much easier. Then I go to the store myself and take my sweet time shopping. Inevitably, I have to make a midweek trip to the store (like for fish), but it's just in and out because I already know ahead of time what I'm picking up. Planning ahead really does make life so much easier!

Niki said...

I started something similar to this last year. I logged what we ate on a calendar then rotated it every now & then. I need to mix it up a bit, so will look forward to your ideas!