Monday, January 25, 2010

January Weekly or Monthly Menu Plan

Let me give you my menu plan first and then I'll tell you how I've changed my planning process.

Monday - Ground Turkey Chili, Cheddar Cheese, Crackers
Tuesday - Chicken Curry, Rice
Wednesday - Ground Turkey Spaghetti, Garden Salad
Thursday - Ham, Roasted Potatoes and Carrots, Biscuits
Friday - Homemade Pepperoni Pizza, Garden Salad
Saturday - Chicken Pot Pie
Sunday - Daddy's Chocolate Chip Pancakes

Several months ago I was again thinking through my menu planning process.  And the thought occurred to me:  My husband took the exact same lunch to work every day for 10 years (ham sandwich, apple, carrots).   

Why am I making myself crazy cooking 30 different meals each month when he doesn't care about variety?!

I was also thinking about how 30 years ago moms didn't have the variety of meals that we have today.  They cooked the same 7-10 meals over and over again for a lifetime.  And nobody went crazy from food boredom.  Again I asked, why am I making myself crazy cooking a variety of different types of meals?

You know what?  I didn't have an answer to my question.  So I decided to simplify my meal plan.

I made a list of 13 different meals we enjoy eating.  Then I picked 7 meals and assigned them to a day.  The meal plan above is the result.

I've been using the same weekly menu plan all month and love it.  The recipes for each meal are all in my head so I don't have to pull out my computer or cookbook.  None of the recipes call for anything unusual or expensive so I have everything on hand and haven't spent a fortune on an ingredient I'll only use once.  Two of the recipes (chili and chicken pot pie) are easily doubled and then frozen which saves me time the following week.

It's a simple plan that helps me feed my family, not to mention the more I practice these 6 meals the better I get a cooking them!

Do you require variety or simplicity in your meal plan? 

For more meal plans visit orgjunkie!


Shoot Son Dang Girl Alissa said...

Alon, Kim, and I were just thinking about planning out our weekly/biweekly menu so that we could save time AND money, and not get stuck in that daily slump of "what do you want for dinner, I dont know, what do you want for dinner?" (and then its 7pm and we end up just scrounging up weird stuff.)

Personally, I dont think I require alot of variety. We usually make a big pot of something at the start of the week and just eat it as left overs until its gone. Lately, we have been making so much couscous its not even funny. Its great. So that simplifies things.
But I seriously love trying out new recipes and try to do that every week as well.

Amy said...

That sounds nice...unless your family (and myself, too) enjoy variety! :) I'm still on the breakfast food Monday, Soup on Tuesday, etc. meal planning....

I do freeze a lot and make enough leftovers for lunch (Andy wants leftovers, not a sandwich everyday--again, it's the variety thing!)...

Enjoy your new plan!

Ann said...

Unfortunately, we are a variety family. Last month we tried just one thing - fried rice every Tuesday. After the fourth week, we were so ready to be done with fried rice, and it's something we all love! So, over the next five weeks we only have it scheduled once - and we'll be repeating pot pie every week during this go-around. At least with the pot pie it will be two chicken and two pork (make from leftover pork roast dinner).

Wherever HE Leads We'll Go said...

I really don't feel like I have a right to comment on your meal plan posts since I am not doing the cooking. : )

Mike likes the same thing over and over and I like a little variety. We do eat the same things over and over, we just have a few more than 7 so that makes us both happy.

Flamingo Mama said...

that is hysterical...the same lunch?! husband would so not be into that.

that being said he keeps telling me to keep it more simple and serve what he really, really likes more often. i just get bored and like variety. plus we have fought for years for my son to no longer be a picky eater...i don't want him to go back to his ol' ways:)

the chicken curry recipe looks yummy!

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