Monday, November 5, 2012

Meal Plans to the Rescue

Around here, we eat dinner at 6pm. Nothing strikes fear into my heart more than 5 o'clock rolling around and not knowing what we're eating. To combat this tragic situation, I plan our meals in advance. Way in advance. Like I could tell you what we're having three Thursdays from now. To make that easier, we have a loose guideline we like to follow, and some of the  meals we've had on those days:

Pizza Sundays (make your own)
          pizza from scratch, pizzadillas, french bread pizza

Macaroni Mondays (any dish that has pasta as the star)
          lasagna, chili mac, 6 veggie spaghetti

Try Something New Tuesday (we test out a new recipe)
          turkey meatloaf, tangerine chicken, salisbury steaks

Wacky Wednesdays (breakfast for dinner)
          eggs and bacon, pancakes, french toast casserole

Crock Pot Thursdays (I think this is self explanatory)
          super simple chili, hawaiian chicken, chicken and rice

Free / Fish Fridays (leftovers or a fish meal, if fish was on sale that week)
          parmesan salmon, tilapia fish packets, garlic butter baked shrimp

Dad Cooks Saturdays (I don't let him in the kitchen often, but he is actually a pretty good cook, plus he makes the best Mexican food!)
          chimichangas, enchiladas, steaks (I'm not so good in this department)

It's not completely set in stone, but it works. Dinner is so much easier when the meat is thawed and the sides are ready to go. And if I find a new recipe I like along the way, I can put it on the calendar on its appropriate meal day.

I also like to bake on Sundays (french apple tart, cakes, surprise banana muffins, sneaky oatmeal muffins, quick breads like carrot or zucchini or banana, pumpkin chocolate chip muffins). Starting this week, I plan to make a big pot of soup as well. This will give me a quick meal option during the week, and will be easy using the chicken broth I keep in the freezer. If you've been following along, quick and easy food is in high demand around here.

Does your family follow a meal plan? How does it work in your house?

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