Sunday, January 23, 2011

In a food mood….

That’s what Marybeth calls it.  I think it sums up how I’m feeling.  I was not able to sleep in this morning – long story – baby and husband did not want to cooperate with me….Oh, THEY slept in until 9.  NINE!!! 

So I came downstairs and started on the menu planning.  It’s that time of year again that I need to take control of the menu again.

Soccer practice starts full force this week.

So, I hit my favorite website.  It used to be, but they merged or something and now they are  It still works for me.  I can sift thru recipes based on certain specifics. Main dish, poultry, casserole, crock pot, easy, cheap (two of my favorite descriptive words, haha)

So, in no particular order, here are the dinner options for the next 12 nights.

  1. Lasagna (we actually had that tonight)
  2. King Ranch Chicken (tons of different recipes out there for this, it’s so easy, but so good.  everyone LOVES it)
  3. Chicken and Dumplings (I use flour tortillas instead of dumplings..another big hit around here.)
  4. Spaghetti
  5. Tuna Casserole (but Bubba doesn’t get this – he has a seafood allergy NO SEAFOOD OR SHELLFISH AT ALL FOR HIM)
  6. HollyBeth’s Goulash
  7. Taco Casserole
  8. HBC (it’s a casserole with Hash Browns)
  9. Ranch Chicken thighs
  10. Meatloaf and mashed potatoes
  11. Black Bean Chicken
  12. Coney Island Casserole (this is a new one for us, but the reviews on it were 5 stars and it’s a family pleaser…we’ll see!)

That’s 12 nights of dinners.  I also have breakfast for dinner if I decide to deviate from these.  I don’t have the nights planned out, but rather I’ll pick the night before what we are going to have. 

How did I come up with this and prepare for it?  Well first off, it has to be something that everyone is going to eat – tastes good, simple, and that I can cook ahead of time.  (I start cooking dinner by 2 in the afternoon), so if it’s a casserole or something that can go in the Crock Pot..I’m all about it. 

I went to my website (, picked things out using the recipe sifter.  FYI…….I did set up an account and if I find something I like I save it to my online cookbook..then when I need some ideas – there they all are! 

I list out ingredients that I need for each meal, then I go to the cabinet and cross off what I have, then I go to the store.  My list says like “green beans 2” which is 2 cans of green beans.  Or chicken bag 3.  Yeah, you guessed it, 3 bags of the frozen chicken breasts. 

Each night gets some sort of side or sides, fruit and/or veggie.  I had to get breakfast and lunch stuff…..OF COURSE, I went to Aldi, got everything but FOUR items, then went to Bi-lo.  (the only things Aldi didn’t have that I needed were, cans of diced green chili’s, green onions, black olives and diced FROZEN hash browns.  they do have the refrigerated kind, and they are super yummy, but the casserole does better with frozen. 

I spent $137 at Aldi and $38 at Bi-Lo.  (I picked up more than 4 items at Bi-Lo because they had some things on special).

So, for $175 all of our meals are set!!! 

I LOVE that feeling.

Lola went with me.  She likes being my assistant.  She helped me make the lasagna for tonight….My family will tell you it’s good.  and it is, but it’s not as good as Ninni’s or our dear friend, Mrs. B’s.  (Mrs. B makes her own homemade sauce and it is so good.  thank goodness she knows we love it and she is so good to bring us some when she makes it…but that’s another story.)

What is your food mood?  Do you plan ahead?  What does our family like to eat? Do you love your crock pot or hate it? 

1 comment:

Shelia said...

i love the crock pot. I work full time outside of the home and am a single mom so evenings are CRAZY!!!! Your menu planning is a lot like mine. I pick out several meals then see what I have in stock then go to the grocery store. I really like some of your meal ideas and am going to incorporate those this upcoming meal planning. I have a super easy lasagna recipe that my kids love. Also i have a recipe using mac n cheese. My kids love both and both are super easy to make.