A piece of advice for planning out your meals is to create a list of your family’s favorite meals. That way when you get stuck on creating a menu, you can refer back to the list.
Not only will it help you menu plan, you can also make certain you have the ingredients for some of the meals on hand if what you had planned for dinner does not pan out. I know there are days I don’t feel like cooking. If I had meals ready to go, I would less likely stop at a fast food restaurant on the way home from work.
I’m going to share my list of 20 meals that my hungry boys and Hubby enjoy eating. Some of my meals can be frozen or portions can be frozen ahead of time which helps.
The ideas in bold print can be made from items that can be stocked up in the freezer, fridge, or pantry.
tacos – Make ahead and freeze.You’ll only need to get items to top the tacos. (The Youngest’s favorite meal)
sausage and mac & cheese – A very inexpensive meal and one I can keep on hand. (It’s a family favorite meal.)
chicken nuggets and French fries – If I get both of those items at Aldi’s, it’s a budget friendly meal. I can keep the food on hand. I priced it out at about $3 for a meal if you use half of each bag at a time.
Quesadillas – These are quick meals to eat on busy nights. Both boys love basic cheese quesadillas.
Hamburgers or hot dogs – The Imaginative One loves hamburgers. – Get the 12 frozen hamburgers from Aldi. They are about $9 to $10. Those last for at least 2 to 3 meals. It takes about 5 minutes to cook on my indoor grill.
Grilled cheese – I only like American cheese on grilled cheese sandwiches.
School has begun for everyone in my house. I’ve been back at work for 3.5 weeks. The boys and Hubby went back almost 2 weeks ago.
Life has changed a little bit at our house. Hubby has class on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday evenings. Tuesdays and Wednesday’s are his longest evenings. I’ve begun making slow cooker meals on Tuesday nights, so I can leave the meal in the slow cooker on warm. He will eat some sort of snackish meal before leaving for his 4 o’clock meal and then eat his dinner when he gets home.
In order to make it a little easier to put food in the slow cooker, I have been making freezer kits. I spend a few hours on the weekend putting together some of the kits. I use my own list and also some recipes from The Family Freezer. Pull them out the night before, place them in the freezer, and then dump into the slow cooker. Add any additional ingredients, set the timer, and walk away. Makes my life easier.
Another thing that has worked recently for me is to create a monthly meal plan. I’ve done it in the past and am attempting it again. I hope to keep the momentum throughout the year. It’s so much easier to look at the meal plan and make a grocery list.
My plan is to make a list of favorite family meals so that it’s easier to meal plan for the month.
As you see, I never plan for the weekend. It’s a more flexible time in the week. Check out my August meals to see some ideas for Sunday meals.
Now onto this month’s meal plan:
Week 1 – September 1 – September 6
Monday– Hamburgers, hot dogs, chips, and slaw
Tuesday – Beef and Lime Chili- Freezer – Slow Cooker
Wednesday – Leftovers
Thursday– Sweet and Sour Pork – Freezer – Slow Cooker
Friday – Roast from Trader Joe’s – Sides to be determined
If you would like to skip the introduction and go onto the menu, please click here.
I go back to work on either the 7th or the 8th. Technically I’m supposed to be going back to work on the 8th. However, some of the administrators have decided we need to have an extra day so that we can team build. I don’t know if they are actually going to have the team building day on the 7th.
Three years ago, the boys and I had the same spring break which is unbelievable. When Hubby realized we all had the same spring break, he decided it was a perfect time to go on a family vacation. Where did he decide to take us? How about Niagara Falls during the last week of March.
I had bought some wreath shaped pretzels to use for my Rolo Turtles not realizing the Rolos would fall through the wreath. I used one bag of the wreath pretzels for my cinnamon sugar pretzels. Since I had another bag to use up, I found this recipe. Hubby had leftover popcorn oil from an event he hosted in November so this was a perfect way to use the pretzels.
Enjoy these at your Christmas get together or even on New Year’s Eve. Yum!
Oh and the best part of this is there is no baking involved. Sweet!