The waters are stirring. The BTS orientations and meetings are upon us, and the hustle and bustle will get even crazier for a while. #1 turns 16 soon, and there’s everything that comes with that. So my way of gaining a little bit of control is to menu plan. Knowing what’s being prepared for dinner (Crock Pot, programmed oven, or someone else starting the water boiling) is a huge relief in my busy world.
Although I must admit that one day last week, I put frozen ingredients in the Crock Pot, with a timer, which I’ve done before. Unfortunately, I forgot to put the pot in the On position, so the timer turned on, but not the pot. Ingredients were still cold, so they went in the fridge for the next day. And DH made a trip to Papa Murphy’s. (That was not a good day for many reasons.) The next day I called #2 to be sure the pot had actually turned on!
This week I’ve pre-made some meals, streamlined others, and frozen still others. It’s all about the Easy during the week, with fun cooking on weekends. I do still enjoy cooking, but realize I can’t do it every day anymore, which is sad. So I make do, and get my fix one day per week. On Sunday evening I even cut up vegs for the week and made the rice. I have no idea where that burst of energy came from, but I crashed soon afterward. Here’s what’s on our dinner menus this week:
Sunday: Split chicken breasts (.99/# or $2.89) grilled the day before and nuked to reheat, pork & beans (.19), cauliflower (.40) with a leftover baked potato mashed in. About $3.50.
Monday: Beef hot dogs (.50), buns for the guys (.69), chips for the guys (.50), baby carrots for boys (.20), cauli chunks with dressing to dip for adults (.08). About $2.00 when you figure in condiments.
Tuesday: Italian marinted dump-style chicken breasts (~$2), brown rice for the guys (.35), broccoli (.88/# or .44). About $2.80.
Wednesday: Boneless pork ribs (~$1.50) marinated in sauce TBD, cauliflower (.40), steamed baby carrots (.40). About $2.50.
Thursday: Rope sausage (1.94), brown rice for the guys (.35), apples (.20), peas (leftover and frozen, so considered FREE). About $2.50.
Friday: Chicken enchiladas Frankensteined from various recipes and ingredients (chicken = 1.95; whole wheat tortillas = 1.20; onion ~.10; cheese .50; sour cream .79; misc seasonings and other ingredients from leftovers), tortilla chips (.50), salad from my garden (FREE-ish). About $5.00 — and there will likely be leftovers for lunches.
Saturday: TBD based on leftovers, grocery deals, experimenting, and the weather (for grilling). Estimate about $4.00.
These menus will get my family through the week for about $22.00, or a little over $3.00 per meal. Remember, I have a teen with a hollow leg, who’s doing manual farm labor this summer! With a little energy put into planning, it’s still possible, at least for now, to feed the fam at a reasonable cost.
For more inspiration and awe, visit Menu Plan Monday. What’s on your menu? What deals are you putting to use?