New Menu Plan…

while ago – months probably, I stumbled across this blog post detailing how she’d put together a fab monthly menu planner. Not having the time/supplies at the time – or some other reason, who knows, I bookmarked the post with the intentions of coming back and replicating it myself.

Finally, on Saturday, I got around to it. Instead of buying business cards and protective sheets, I used what I had on hand (I’m trying to make an effort do that, and “make it work” rather than buying something because it has to be THE SAME). In my case I had trading card protective sheets and card stock. So I modified, and while my end result is probably much larger than hers, I’m in love with it.

I typed out Mon – Sunday cards using a large strong font, and then proceeded to go through my cook books and recipes to make the individual meal cards. I made only main courses, no sides, and also included other Misc. cards including – vacation, eating out, try a new recipe, holiday, freezer cooking and freezer meal. I only made cards for recipes we’ve made before and liked enough to make again more than once – and if they were really involved (like stuffed shells) I opted not to and we can save those for special occasions (like holidays). On freezer cooking days (at least this month, since that’s what I’ve got planned) I put in the freezer cooking card but then put a meal card behind it, plans being to make that meal, and double or triple it to put up the extra in the freezer. Freezer meals are just that, pull out one of those meals we’ve stashed in on cooking days and enjoy. 🙂

On the back of each meal card I typed out the total ingredient lists for the meal, so that I can pull them down and tabulate how much of everything I need to add for my shopping list – EG 1 lb mozzarella for lasagna, + 1 cup shredded for mac & cheese + 1 cup for pizza = 1 pound and 2 cups mozzarella – you get the idea.

I also hung a small snack sized baggie next to the planner, this is where I put all my extra meal cards.

So, I’ve now got my whole months meals planned! I’m sure there will be some changing, and maybe a few spur of the moment going outs or pulling a pizza from the freezer or something, but it’s nice to be done with the big stuff already – now each week I just have to figure out sides and breakfasts/lunches – makes it so much easier!
This week, we’re having:
Mon – Spicy Chicken Pesto Pasta
Tues – Bruschetta Chicken
Wed – Freezer cooking with stuffed meatloaf
Thur – Chili
Fri – Chicken & Rice Casserole
Sat – Freezer Meal
Sun – Beef Pot Roast

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