Sunday, August 22, 2010

Menu Plan Monday--Keeping It Simple, Keeping It Sane

I would recommend a periodic week without a plan to anyone. It was wonderful.

Salad can be a yummy dinner
We're back home now, so my menu planning is resumed. This week, however, I'm keeping it simple. Over the weekend, I took a look at some of the things I'm going to have on my SAHM plate this semester and realized that I need to minimize the amount of time I am spending in the kitchen. I love to experiment, but for sanity's sake, I need to put some simple meals on the table. My family will be just as happy and it will free me up to do other things.

To help save time, I'm planning on conducting a freezer cooking day this coming weekend. I have not done a "day" of freezer cooking since we moved (3 months ago!). In my head, the extremely small size of our kitchen and the cramped nature of my freezer have been deterrents. However, spending the last two months cooking something for dinner nearly every day has made me really miss the convenience of having pre-made meals! So I'm taking bulk cooking up again--we'll see how it goes!

In the meantime, here are the simple meals that I have planned for this week:

Breakfasts: smoothies, banana pancakes (from the freezer), cold cereal
Lunches: sandwiches, leftovers

Dinners by weeknight:
Monday--Salad with chicken, tomato, raisins, cheddar cheese, croutons, and cucumber.
Tuesday--Enchiladas (from the freezer) with fresh guacamole
Wednesday--Parmesan Tilapia (in the crockpot!) with broccoli
Thursday--Dinner at Home Group
Friday--Pizza Night (the dough is already in the freezer) with salad
Saturday--Black Beans and Rice with Smoked Sausage and carrots
Sunday--Slow Cooker BBQ Pulled Chicken Sandwiches with green beans and corn

What are your simple go-to meals? Please share! Frugal ingredients are a plus.

Linked to Menu Plan Monday.


  1. I love me some black beans and rice with smoked sausage and carrots! We eat that (or some variation) at least once a week. And my 14 month old can put away some rice & beans!

    My go-to meal is spaghetti. It doesn't get much easier than noodles, sauce, and ground meat. We like the Bertolli sauce best, and sometimes Publix has it B1G1 and we stock up. :) Otherwise I make a simple sauce myself.

    Those freezer cooking days are wonderful to have behind you, but they're quite a feat to actually buckle down and do. I try to occasionally make up a double of something and freeze the extra so one night the following week or two I can pull it out.

  2. I got a sense that you were feeling a wee bit overwhelmed this past month. Glad to hear you are downshifting in some areas. Less is more sometimes, right?

    Taco salad, chalupas, sloppy joes, and Vietnamese roasted chicken in the slow cooker are some of my go-to meal options when trying to simplify. I've got several of these in the queue for this month!

  3. I understand all to well what you mean by not having time to cook. I'm starting school today, so I have a feeling meals are going to get a lot more simple around my house to. Good looking menu for this week. :)

  4. Sounds like a great menu! I may have to try the banana pancakes :)

  5. The tilapia looks great. I agree - keeping it simple usually saves time and money! The easiest thing I do is saute some vegetables (usually squash) and grill some chicken.

  6. Salad definitely a full dinner in our house!

  7. I am gonna steal the Tilapia recipe!

  8. I know exactly what you're talking about. I love to cook and try new things, and I would love to cook everyday but it's impossible with the little ones. I agree with Andrea, a good salad is fantastic! Chinese chicken cashew salad or raspberry walnut salad is always a go-to around here.

  9. Mmmm. Black beans and rice with smoked sausage sounds divine to this pregnant lady! I think I could eat that three times a week.

    This feta pasta is one of my favorite fallbacks:

    Also baked spaghetti, sandwiches and soup, omelets ...

  10. That salad just looks so yummy!! :)


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