Ohio Living

Cooking on a Shoestring: Monday Meal Planning


Cooking on a Shoestring: Monday Meal Planning

Last week on Facebook some of us had a little fun sharing meal plans.  This week, I thought I’d share mine on the site, and give you a chance to share yours too.  I’ll also share one of my favorite tips for simplifying meal planning, and getting dinner on the table for my family despite our busy schedules.

Meal planning is an important tool for stretching your budget.  Plan around food you have on hand, along with what’s on sale for the week.  I’m trying to use up some food in the freezer, so that (along with daily schedule) is my main concern with this week’s plan. 

Here’s what we’re eating this week.  How ’bout you?

Monday: Spaghetti & meatballs, salad or applesauce

Tuesday: Grilled Cheese, tomato soup, fresh fruit

Wednesday: Eat at church for Family Night

Thursday: Roasted chicken, mashed potatoes, veggie

Friday: Taco night

Saturday: Grilled steak, baked potatoes & veggie (chicken nuggets for the kids since they don’t like steak…oh darn!)

Sunday: Campfire food (weather permitting)


Meal Planning tip:  Prep once, eat twice (or more!).  I took advantage of this tip last week when we had the stuffed shells pictured above.  I doubled the recipe for a batch for dinner (plus leftovers), then had two meals’ worth to put in the freezer.  I’ll be able to pull them out and bake them on a busy day and have a home-cooked meal with minimal work.  The only thing that took any extra time or work was stuffing the extra shells, and I stuffed the ones for the freezer while that night’s dinner baked.

This week I’ll do something similar with Thursday night’s roasted chicken.  We’ll eat what we want, then I’ll take the rest of the meat, remove it from the bones, and freeze it with the gravy for a future meal (chicken & biscuits, pot pie, a casserole, etc.)

Your turn–what’s on your meal plan for this week?  Any favorite time-saving tips you’d like to share?  Sound off in the comments below! 

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