Welcome to the 2nd week of January. Yep, that’s right , we are now entering week 2 of the New Year – before we know it Thanksgiving will be here. Ha! Just kidding!
Menu planning is an ever changing process. Just when I think I have a system that works for me I need to go and change up a few things. Last week, I was not getting home till around 5:30pm or 6:00pm from work. Also, my girls have dance 3 nights a week. Yes I know it is crazy and I am trying to figure out if that can be changed for next year… Anyway, I realized a couple things. First, I need after school snacks my kids can keep in their lunch boxes so they can eat when they get dropped off at my husbands work. This way they are not starving by the time we all get home. Second, I need food that can be warmed up within 15 minutes for dinner. I hate eating much past 6:30 especially since I try not to eat at all past 7:00pm. Those are my two challenges.
My solution, of course, is to prep and make as much ahead as possible. One change was that I did not freeze everything. The dinners we will eat within the next few days I kept in the refrigerator. This way they will not take as long to warm up. I also made sure to prep all the cheese and veggies for snacks.
I spent about 3 hours yesterday prepping foods and got done most of what I wanted. Although, a few major things – like prepping chicken and pizza dough – I did not get around too. If you follow me on facebook then you saw all the pictures I was posting throughout the process. I tell ya your words of encouragement really keep me going when I want to sit down, turn the TV on, and call it a night! Thank you!
Lastly, many of you were asking for recipes. I posted the links to almost everything below. I plan to post my adaptations and detailed make ahead instructions for each this week. I do use Plan to Eat to organize my recipes and plan my menu. If you join friend me then you can see all the recipes I am using on there along with the option to print out your own grocery lists.
On to my menu plan.
Make ahead tips
- I put together 16 sandwiches yesterday. I used the recipe for the bacon and cheddar breakfast sandwiches but instead made an oven omelet then cut into squares. Doing it this way is so much easier then making them individually on the griddle. I put 10 in the fridge for breakfast this week and froze the rest.
Plain yogurt with frozen fruit and honey
Hummus and vegetables
Make ahead tips
- Quinoa salad will be made Monday night.
- Vegetables were cut on Sunday
Mid morning and afternoon snacks
Cheese and crackers
Make ahead tips
- Cheese was cut and stored in the fridge yesterday.
Leftovers or Pantry Meal
Make ahead tips
- Sesame ginger chicken was made yesterday. It is a slow cooker meal but it only needs to cook for 2 1/2 hours so I felt this was the perfect meal to cook while I prepared other meals for the week.
- I made the soup yesterday however I left the tortellini out. I will cook that separately the night we eat this meal. I will leave it out then just ladle the soup over the tortellini in the bowls. I prefer to cook the tortellini separately because I do not like mushy pasta of any kind. Additionally, my oldest is not a soup fan so she will most likely eat the tortellini minus the soup
- Taco meat was made and stored in the fridge for chopped salads and/or tacos for the kids. Usually, I put this in the freezer but I anticipate us eating this on Tuesday so I figure I might as well leave it out.
- I really wanted to get the chicken chopped and portioned out but time got away from me yesterday. I will prep the chicken for both the Cajun pasta and buffalo chopped salad Wednesday night. Most likely that will be the night we eat the Cajun pasta so that should work out well. The buttermilk blue cheese dressing will be made Tuesday or Wednesday night.
- I really should have made the pizza dough yesterday but I totally forgot. I will throw a batch in my bread machine when I get home from work today or tomorrow. The rest of the steak house pizza should be pretty easy to make.
Skinny Mom’s Kitchen participates in Menu Plan Monday hosted by the Organizing Junkie.
What’s on your menu this week?
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