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Thursday, March 1, 2012

Menu plan for March

I have a confession.  (Don’t you love it when blog posts start like that? {smile})

So my confession is this:

I do not like menu planning.

And I haven’t a clue why.  But it is just not one of my favorite homekeeping duties.  I would rather clean toilets, fold clothes, and wash dishes instead.

But…

I love having a menu plan! 

Kind of ironic, isn’t it?

And since I love menu planning so much I tend to procrastinate doing it. 

But no procrastinating this month.  I went ahead and planned the whole entire month.  And boy, do I feel like a weight has been lifted off of my shoulders!

Not only did I actually plan the whole month of menus, I am trying a new approach. 

Last week I saw this menu planning post in my reader and I immediately loved the idea. 

February 29, 2012 064

(click picture to enlarge menu plan)

I like the flexibility of this plan.  I really like the blog author’s adorable printable that she made for her menu plan.  I just need some colored ink.  {smile}

So how does this plan work?

Instead of planning one meal for Monday, another one for Tuesday, etc., I am using categories (like the ones at this link) to plan different meals for the month.  These meals can happen on any day that I chose.  For us, some days need to be slowcooker days so there’s a category for that.  I decided that the Make One/Freeze One category would be a good one for us too.  Here are all of the categories that we have on our new plan:

  • Slowcooker
  • No/Less Meat
  • Chicken
  • Pork or Tex-Mex
  • Make One & Freeze One
  • Beef
  • Freebie (Eat out, leftovers, or freezer meal)

 Most of these categories have 5 meal options.  I don’t have food for all of the menu items yet so I chose which ones would take us through the first two weeks of the month and bought for those meals.  I just try to make sure that I have about two meals per category for the two weeks between shopping trips.

At night, I look over the menu, decide which meal will work for us.  (Is it a busy day tomorrow?  Then I pick an easy meal.  A day at home?  I can chose a harder to prep meal or do a make one/freeze one meal.)  I pull from the freezer the needed foods and the next day’s meal is underway!

We are five days into this plan and it has really been great so far!

Want to know what we have on our menu plan?

Slowcooker meals

  • Honey BBQ chicken wings
  • Roasted chicken
  • Roast
  • BBQ meatballs
  • Savory Baked Chicken w/carrots & potatoes

No/Less Meat

  • Potato Soup, BLTs
  • Taco Soup
  • Manicotti
  • Chicken and sausage gumbo
  • Chili w/ hot dogs or baked potatoes

Chicken

Pork or Tex-Mex

  • Sausage with peppers & onions
  • Pork chops and rice oven dinner - 2X
  • Roasted pork loin (if I find a sale)
  • Stir fry pork (will depend on that pork loin being on sale!)

Make One/Freeze One (recipes from the book Fix, Freeze, Feast)

  • Chicken Parmigiana
  • Pecan crusted chicken strips
  • Teriyaki Chicken

Beef

  • Beef stew
  • Shepard’s pie
  • Spaghetti with meat sauce
  • Hamburgers
  • Sloppy joes

Freebie

  • Nothing planned.  This is for nights we eat out, eat leftovers, or eat a freezer meal.  (One night we did a breakfast for dinner in this category.) 

It feels so good to have this done for my family.  And I could even see just using this same menu plan next month with a tweak here or there to get us through another month. 

 

 

 

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