As promised, here is my menu plan, complete with a step-by-step of how I planned it below:
Monday: Spiced chicken breasts, quinoa, red cabbage coleslaw (all recipes from Nourishing Traditions- except quinoa- I just cook it like rice and we use butter and Bragg's on it)
Tuesday: Taco salad with guacamole and sour cream- the way we make it is we break a couple of handfuls of tortilla chips on a plate, add chopped lettuce, diced tomatoes or salsa, grated cheese, some type of protein (this week is black beans, some weeks it's ground meat), and add guacamole and sour cream on top. One of my favorite easy meals!
Wednesday: Dinner is provided at a church event
Thursday: Cream of Tomato Soup (with rice added) and homemade bread
Friday: Dinner with friends. She is bringing chicken and veggie kebabs, and I am making amazing Greek salad and Greek rice.
Saturday: Moussaka (guess it's a Greek weekend) and probably leftover salad and rice from Friday
Sunday: Salmon, sweet potato and broccoli chowder in the crockpot (it's not a crockpot recipe, but that's how I'm going to try making it this time- the review was only a 3/5, but I've been making this for years and I think it's incredible!)
So how did I come up with my menu plan?
1) I went through my fridge and cupboard and freezer, and came up with a list of foods that I already had, and items that I particularly needed to use up. My list included:
-eggplant, cilantro, 4 avacados, red cabbage, red onion, red and green peppers, broccoli, 2 sweet potatoes, cheese
-tortilla chips that needed to be eaten soon
-plus lots of rice, grains, beans in the pantry as well as some canned goods, and an assortment of fish, meat and poultry in the freezer
2) I looked at my calendar to see what our week looked like- we didn't need dinner on Wednesday because we are serving at a church event where dinner is provided, I am hosting a home school meeting on Tuesday so I wanted a simple meal, and I am trying to do crockpot meals on Sundays to make less cooking and cleanup for myself. We had also scheduled a dinner with friends for Friday, so she and I talked on the phone to discuss how we wanted to do it.
3) I made a short list of some yummy sounding meals (from my list of meals, that I talked about in my first menu planning post), that used the ingredients that I already had
4) I plotted the meals onto my calendar, to suit the needs of our week, and when I think I might go shopping for a few last minute ingredients. Then I made a short list (9 items, mostly produce for the Friday night Greek dinner) for grocery shopping. The total shopping will probably come to $30 at most. And that's it!
Today's meal planning took me several hours, because I decided to do what I have been needing to do for a long time and that is work on my master list of favorite recipes. I just need to type it up and then I will take some pictures to show you what it looks like!
Now go visit Menu Plan Mondays for inspiration, or to add your own link!