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Sunday, May 26, 2013

Meal Planning

I try to cook every night that Lincoln is home and I do really well at that. When I cook I always cook enough for about 4 people. This always usually leaves leftovers that we use for our lunches the next day.  Since I love to cook and do so often I used to just plan my meals for the week and notate them on the bottom of each day in my planner.  I was at Rachael's house not too long ago and noticed her meal planner that she makes on a monthly basis taped to her frig.  I thought DUH MEGAN!!! I should do that in my planner for the entire month.  That only makes the most sense since we only go to the grocery store once a month and stock up on everything.  Not only am I really prepared we can save money at the store by knowing ahead of time what I will be cooking so we aren't buying unnecessary items. 

I started by first recording Lincoln's schedule for the entire month in my planner...I usually only did this on a weekly basis as well.  This helps me plan because I don't cook on the nights that he is working nights.  I'll just fix myself something quick and easy like a salad or tuna. 

After I record Lincoln's work schedule I decide what I want to cook then fill in the blanks all while trying to balance what goes in each week...not too much chicken, not too much Mexican, you get the drift and of course no repeats.  After I get my menu planned I make my grocery list so we know what to pick up from the store. 

May is the first month that I've done this and it really helped.  I'm going to have a ton of meals leftover that will make next month easy because beside Lincoln working his regular schedule he's been working a ton of overtime and its been mostly nights so all those meals that were planned aren't getting used this time around.  To make it easy on me I just circle the meals that I haven't used so I know that I can use those for next month. 

Here are a few of the meals that I've used this month!

Recipe HERE

just your regular spaghetti but instead of beef I used some ground deer meat we had in the freezer from this past hunting season

today's lunch/supper....crock pot cheesey chicken and rice

Today's lunch/supper is actually a rarity because Lincoln is working nights over the weekend but since I'm home and I have to eat too I decided to make something that is easy and Lincoln can take in his lunch. 

I used several chicken breast, 2 cans of cream of chicken soup and 1 diced onion.  I also add black pepper, salt, and garlic powder to taste.

Cook on low for 6 hours then add cooked rice, 1 can of corn, and cheese. Let the cheese melt and cream everything together!


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