Simple Meal Plans & Real Life – June 16 – Looking for your ideas and opinions

This past week has been a whirl wind of getting ready for vacation and tying up some lose ends on several projects.  The main goal with our meals this week has been clear out the fridge.

In other news, I’m thinking it’s time to revamp these weekly posts on the meal plans.  I have a few ideas in mind, but I’d love to know what you’d like to see.

Do you like seeing the sneak peek of the main dishes on the plans each week?

Do you like hearing a little about how my family gets dinner done?

Do you have other ideas for these posts or do you tend to just skip these altogether?

Leave a comment or drop me an email to let me know your thoughts!

Simple Weekly Meal Plans

If you’ve been looking for a way to save time on menu planning, you’ll want to look into getting our Weekly Meal Plans.  All the organizing and thinking is done for you.  No grocery list making or side dish planning needed.  I love using these and when I don’t have to do any recipe creation, this is my preferred way to shop and cook.

Here’s a sneak peek at this week’s meal plans.  When you join the Weekly Meal Plan list, you get the grocery list and printable recipes with side dishes included.  You can find out more about how to get the meal plans for yourself by clicking here.

Whole Foods Menu

  1. Italian Sausage Sloppy Joes
  2. Chicken Tetrazini
  3. Pineapple Chicken
  4. Enchiladas
  5. Honey Mustard Grilled Pork Chops
  6. Tony’s Fish
  7. Cherry Cobbler

Traditional Menu

Slow Cooker Menu

  1. Apple BBQ Pork Chops
  2. Smoky Chipotle Chicken Tacos
  3. Easy Meatball Subs
  4. Crockpot Honey Mustard Chicken
  5. Tamale Sandwiches 
  6.  Beef Teriyaki
  7. Banana Split Dessert

Simple Meal Plans & Real Life – May 12

I hope you’ve had a great Mother’s Day weekend!

Isaac was in the chorus of Guys and Dolls, put on by our high school homeschool group.  All the kids did such a great job!  We had Jim’s parents come down on Thursday night and my parent were here Friday and Saturday.

Mia spent last week sewing a lot of bags.  Four bags in four days.  I’m so proud of her sewing skills!  I think she does great, especially since she’s just 11 years old.  I can barely sew on a button.  It’s good that I’ve got her around!

photo-44

 

Last week we mostly ate the Slow Cooker Freezer Meals I made the week before.  I love having those easy meals ready to go!

Simple Weekly Meal Plans

If you’ve been looking for a way to save time on menu planning, you’ll want to look into getting our Weekly Meal Plans.  All the organizing and thinking is done for you.  No grocery list making or side dish planning needed.  I love using these and when I don’t have to do any recipe creation, this is my preferred way to shop and cook.

Here’s a sneak peek at this week’s meal plans.  When you join the Weekly Meal Plan list, you get the grocery list and printable recipes with side dishes included.  You can find out more about how to get the meal plans for yourself by clicking here.

Whole Foods Menu

  1. Sweet Chili Linguine
  2. Apple BBQ Pork Chops
  3. Lentil Tacos
  4. Olive Oil and Italian Herb Roasted Chicken
  5. Peanut Chicken
  6. Chicken Enchiladas
  7. Salted Caramel Cobbler

Traditional Menu

  1. Hamburgers
  2. Complete BBQ Chicken Meal in Crock Pot
  3. Hashbrown Casserole 
  4. Marinated Mojo Pork Chops
  5. Mexican Rice and Beans
  6. Grilled Cheese and Tomato Sandwich
  7. Slow Cooker Banana Foster Bread Pudding

Slow Cooker Menu

Simple Meal Plans & Real Life – May 5

Last week was not the most inspired eating we’ve ever done.  I had a terrible cold all week.  You know the kind where you aren’t sick enough to go to bed, but you aren’t very on top of things either?  I actually made dinner every night, which sounds a lot more ambitious than the reality.  The fact that I didn’t go to the grocery store last weekend due to feeling bad, didn’t help with our dinner situation.

This is one of those weeks where I say to myself,  “Wouldn’t it be nice if there was someone on the internet who had meal plans I could buy that came with the grocery list already done for me?”.  Oh yeah.  That would be me.  And as soon as I was feeling better on Thursday afternoon, I hit the grocery with color-coded list in hand!

Monday – I decided to turn some frozen rotisserie chicken into Thai Chicken Curry Soup.  It was a simple, comforting meal that I ate on for the next few days.

Tuesday – Jim was out of town.  We had pancakes, which we usually do at some point when he is gone.  The boys always want some meat with their meals.  I didn’t have any bacon and wasn’t thinking clearly enough to remember the breakfast sausage in the freezer.  But I did have two packages of smoked sausage.  I wasn’t too sure how that would be with pancakes, but it turns out that it’s pretty good.  My motto: Use what you’ve got!

Wednesday – Still not feeling great.  Still hadn’t been to the grocery.  I decided to slice the second pack of smoked sausage into a can of baked beans.  Fancy, I know.  I did make homemade cornbread to go with it.

Thursday – I shopped for groceries finally!  I used the Slow Cooker Freezer Meals list for May.  Members have access to this now, but it’s scheduled for later this month.  It was late when I got done shopping, so I picked up ham for sandwiches and made a quick Hawaiian Cole Slaw to go with them.

Friday – I made another video to show how to assemble the Slow Cooker Freezer Meals.  And we had one of those meals for our dinner.  I’ll share the video with you this week.  My oldest daughter makes an appearance in this one!

This week, I’m hoping to do some recipe creating.  Fingers crossed that I’ll have some successes to share with you soon!

Simple Weekly Meal Plans Sneak Peek

If you’ve been looking for a way to save time on menu planning, you’ll want to look into getting our Weekly Meal Plans.  All the organizing and thinking is done for you.  No grocery list making or side dish planning needed.  I love using these and when I don’t have to do any recipe creation, this is my preferred way to shop and cook.

Here’s a sneak peek at this week’s meal plans.  When you join the Weekly Meal Plan list, you get the grocery list and printable recipes with side dishes included.  You can find out more about how to get the meal plans for yourself by clicking here.

Whole Foods Menu

  1. Freezer Burritos
  2. Oven Baked Chicken Tacos
  3. Loaded Baked Potatoes
  4. Toasted Apple & Brie Sandwiches
  5. Italian Parmesan Herb Chicken & Potatoes in Slow Cooker
  6. Honey Lemon Pepper Salmon
  7. Strawberry Shortcake

Traditional Menu

  1. 15 Minute Chicken and Dressing Skillet
  2. Ranch Meatballs with Pasta
  3. Sloppy Cubanos
  4. Bacon, Tomato, Basil Pasta
  5. Beef Quesadillas
  6. Sweet and Spicy Chicken Legs
  7. Banana Chocolate Chip Cookies

Slow Cooker Menu

Simple Meal Plans & Real Life – April 28

Easter weekend threw me a little off schedule.  We went out of town to be with family.  Meredith’s cousins threw her a lovely bridal shower.

It was a great weekend, but when we got back in town I really needed to hit the grocery.  I did that on Monday and tested the Traditional list for an upcoming week in May.

photo-41

 

You can see from the photo which meals were planned for the week.  I knew that I would be making some of those meals, but I also knew that I had recipes to create this week.  No worries, since all the meals use common pantry ingredients I knew I would have what I need by sticking to the list.

Here’s how it all worked out this week:

Monday - I decided to buy ground pork instead of beef for hamburgers.  It was a lovely evening, so we fired up the grill.  Instead of detox salad, I served sweet potato fries and cucumbers and tomatoes.

Tuesday - I was looking forward to trying the Mojo pork chops, but the store didn’t have that type of marinade.  I bought Caribbean Jerk instead.  It was great!  We had Pressure Cooker Mac & Cheese and broccoli with it.

Wednesday - I did another spin on Basic Chicken Skillet, this time giving it a Mexican flair.  The resulting recipe combines elements of Mexican Beans and Rice with the Basic Chicken Skillet.  Easy, quick and family friendly.

Thursday - I created yet another spin on Basic Chicken Skillet.  This time I went with a stir fry.  The homemade sauce turned out great.  I used Napa cabbage in the dish.  That was easy to swap out for the kale that the grocery list called for.

Friday - I’m writing this post on Friday afternoon.  Jim and I decided we’ll have a date night tonight.  I’m not sure what the kids will be eating, but it may be the grilled cheese and tomato sandwich that was on the menu.  Everybody needs a simple dinner sometimes!

Simple Weekly Meal Plans

This is a great time to become a member of our Weekly Meal Plans.  You get access to a whole month at a time.  Since this is the end of the month, that means that you’ll be getting all of April and all of May when it posts next week.  A whole extra month!

Here’s a sneak peek at this week’s meal plans.  When you join the Weekly Meal Plan list, you get the grocery list and printable recipes with side dishes included.  You can find out more about how to get the meal plans for yourself by clicking here.

Whole Foods Menu (these are edited on our plans to make them Whole Food compatible)

  1. Whole Chicken in Slow Cooker
  2. Black Bean Tacos
  3. Skillet Chicken, Peppers & Tomatoes
  4. Penne Gorgonzola Grilled Chicken
  5.  Spaghetti
  6.  Lemon Tilapia with Veggies
  7. Whole Wheat Chocolate Chip Cookies

Traditional Menu

  1. Chicken Enchiladas
  2. Hamburger Stroganoff
  3. Corn Chowder
  4. Pork Tenderloin
  5. Turkey Italian Sausage and Tortellini Salad
  6. Baked Pasta with Cauliflower and Cheese
  7. Peanut Butter Cookie Pudding

Slow Cooker Menu

Simple Meal Plans & Real Life – March 10

We’ve been working behind the scenes on some exciting new additions to the Weekly Meal Plans.  I can’t wait to share with you, but I’m not quite ready yet.  I will say, I think you’re going to love it!

Last week started off with snow and ice and ended with highs in the upper 50s.  Crazy Kentucky weather!  Our dinners ranged from newly created recipes to simple things like pancakes and sausage.  We also had grilled cheese and tomato soup for one meal, which tasted great on a snowy day.

Simple Weekly Meal Plans

If you’ve been looking for a way to save time on menu planning, you’ll want to look into getting our Weekly Meal Plans.  All the organizing and thinking is done for you.  No grocery list making or side dish planning needed.  I love using these and when I don’t have to do any recipe creation, this is my preferred way to shop and cook.

Here’s a sneak peek at this week’s meal plans.  When you join the Weekly Meal Plan list, you get the grocery list and printable recipes with side dishes included.  You can find out more about how to get the meal plans for yourself by clicking here.

Traditional Plan

Slow Cooker Plan

1. Maple Apple Chicken 
2. Refried Beans without the Refry ( For bean and beef burritos)

Simple Meal Plans & Real Life — March 3

It’s a new month, with new Weekly Meal Plans!

And we are edging closer to spring, even if the weather doesn’t quite feel like it yet.

Last week was my week to cook for lots of different company.  We had planned to have dinner with a family from church on Sunday, but they ended up having to cancel Saturday night because of sick kids.  I had already made a lot of food though, so  the seven of us feasted on pulled pork, hash brown casserole and Texas sheet cake.  And we had plenty for leftovers on Monday night too.

On Tuesday night, we had one of the slow cooker freezer meals I had stashed in the deep freeze.  This time it was Hawaiian Meatballs.  I am officially in love with slow cooker freezer meals!

Wednesday night I hosted book club.  I cooked a big pot of Velma’s Chili and a batch of Goat Cheese Biscuits.  For dessert we had Brownies with ice cream and wild berry sauce.  So good!  And that made enough to have again on Friday for lunch when my parents and uncle came to bring the new pantry.

Thursday night I tested a recipe for a client.  Unfortunately, it was a huge flop.  I hate it when that happens, but when you’re trying new ideas and recipes, you’re going to have the occasional flop.  Back to the drawing board for that one.

This week, I think things will be more normal for our dinners.  I’m hoping to test some more new recipes though.  Fingers crossed that I have better luck!

Look for the full story with lots of pictures of our new pantry coming early next week.  I’m in love with it!

photo-14

Simple Weekly Meal Plans

The beginning of the month is a great time to try our Weekly Meal Plans.  All the planning and thinking is done for you.  No grocery list making or side dish planning needed.  I love using these and when I don’t have to do any recipe creation, this is my preferred way to shop and cook.

Here’s a sneak peek at this week’s meal plans.  When you join the Weekly Meal Plan list, you get the grocery list and printable recipes with side dishes included.  You can find out more about how to get the meal plans for yourself by clicking here.

Traditional Plan

3. Rotisserie Chicken

Slow Cooker Plan

1. Philly Cheese Steak Soup in the Slow Cooker
2. Complete BBQ Chicken Dinner
3. Slow Cooker Breakfast Casserole
4. Smoky Chipotle Chicken Tacos
5. Honey Hoisin Chicken
6. Ham Caribbean
7. Pear Tart with Cream Cheese Icing

Simple Meal Plans and Real Life – January 20

It’s a little early in the year for this (aren’t we all supposed to be super-charged, high energy, and goal oriented in January?), but I’m already in a recipe slump.  That’s probably not a great thing to admit since I’m a food blogger.  But I’ve had some trouble coming up with ideas for new recipes to share here.  It’s a phase, and one I’m sure will pass.  I’ve been through this before, so I know it’s temporary.

I’m sure it has a lot to do with the fact that I started the Whole 30, quite the Whole 30 and at least for this week I need to watch my intake of high potassium foods.  Frankly, it all leaves me a little tired of food in general.

That said, I’m so glad I have a freezer stocked with the January Slow Cooker Freezer meals.  That’s the menu that you see posted below in the Slow Cooker Plan section.  We’ve already had the Beef Stew and let me tell you, that was phenomenal!

And I do have one idea for an easy slow cooker soup recipe that I’m going to be testing this week.  Fingers crossed that it turns out well!

Simple Weekly Meal Plans

If you find yourself in your own version of a cooking slump, you’ll want to look into getting our Weekly Meal Plans.  All the planning and thinking is done for you.  No grocery list making or side dish planning needed.  I love using these and when I don’t have to do any recipe creation, this is my preferred way to shop and cook.

Here’s a sneak peek at this week’s meal plans.  When you join the Weekly Meal Plan list, you get the grocery list and printable recipes with side dishes included.  This week includes the Slow Cooker Freezer Meals Plan!  You can find out more about how to get the meal plans for yourself by clicking here.

Slow Cooker Plan

1. Slow Cooker Potato Soup

2. Easy, Shredded Taco Beef in the Slow Cooker

3. Chicken Broccoli Divan in the Crockpot or Oven

4. Slow Cooker Chicken Cacciatore (as pork)

5. Crockpot Teriyaki Chicken

6. All day Beef Stew

7. Chocolate Chip Cheeseball

 

Traditional Plan

1. Healthier Sausage McMuffin Casserole

2. Chicken Tortilla Soup

3. Pan Fried Shrimp Sandwiches 

4.Angel Chicken

5. Beef Tacos

6. Pepper Jack Mac and Cheese 

7. Apple Cinnamon Skillet Monkey Bread

Simple Weekly Meal Plans and Real Life – November 4

WeeklyMealPlansandRealLife

Every week I swear to myself that I’m going to take notes on what our dinners are each night.  When I start to write these posts, I can never remember what we’ve eaten!  I end up wracking my brain to remember, when I could just jot it down each day.

Some of you may be thinking to yourselves, “Doesn’t she follow her own meal plans?”

The answer to that is yes and no.  I do shop with the lists for the plans.  Last week, I shopped with the Slow Cooker Freezer Meals Plan and tested all those recipes on Saturday.  I was able to put 7 meals in the freezer with just 1 hour of work!

But, I didn’t want to use all of those meals in one week.  And I’m always testing new recipes.  The great thing about the plans is that they use common ingredients.  If you shop with the lists, you’ll have what you need to make lots of different dinners.  It’s nice, because sometimes you just want to veer from the plan for whatever reason.

Okay, back to last Saturday.   I made all the meals on the slow cooker freezer plan.  I also made a meatloaf for Peter’s birthday dinner and put it in the freezer.  I created a new recipe for Spiced Apple Cider Slow Cooker Oatmeal.  And made a big pot of chili for that night, which we ate on Sunday after church too.

Whew!  That was a lot of cooking in one day.

On Monday, I had another recipe to test, but I used one of the freezer meals to make it.  Peach BBQ Pork Sliders with Apple Cole Slaw was the result.  Yum!

On Tuesday, Jim was out of town.  We had the rest of the bbq, along with French fries and a wedge salad.

Wednesday night, I used another of the slow cooker freezer meals.  I love these things!  It’s so easy to dump them in the crock and turn it on.

Thursday was Halloween.  More importantly, it was Peter’s 19th birthday!  We had meatloaf, cream cheese mashed potatoes, broccoli and spinach salad.  We usually end up with a bunch of candy, in addition to the cake, but trick-or-treating got postponed for bad weather.  It was nice to spread out the sugar rush a bit.

I did make chocolate cake with chocolate icing.  Cake stands are pretty, but mine is not very stable.  Too much weight on one side crashed the cake to the counter, which we all thought was hilarious!  It wouldn’t have been nearly as funny if I was serving people other than my own family.

cakecrash

 

And yes, they did laugh at me for taking a photo before putting the cake back on the plate.

Simple Weekly Meal Plans

Here’s a sneak peek at this week’s meal plans.  When you join the Weekly Meal Plan list, you get the grocery list and printable recipes with side dishes included.  November features your easiest Thanksgiving ever, with easy recipes to keep you spending more quality time with your family instead of the kitchen stove.  You can find out more about how to get the meal plans for yourself by clicking here.

Slow Cooker

Traditional

Slow Cooker Freezer Meals Plan – Simple Weekly Meal Plans and Real Life Oct. 21

This is the week with our slow cooker freezer meals plan.  I was able to put all of these meals together in just under an hour.  If you’d like to watch a video of the assembly process (the video is only 9 minutes long), you can find it here.  I love having these meals stashed away in the freezer!

The Weekly Meal Plans for November will also include a week of slow cooker freezer meals.  And because you have access to a whole month at a time, if you join now, you’ll get both October and November.  Big bang for your buck!  You can find out more about Weekly Meal Plans by clicking this link.

WeeklyMealPlansandRealLife

 

Last week, I tested the recipe for Slow Cooker Corn Chowder.  I also created a recipe for ALDI that turned out fabulous.  I can’t wait to share it with you!

Jim was traveling again.  There were several nights that we ate left overs instead of me cooking a new meal.  Having a big pot of soup at the beginning of the week is great for that.

I shared this photo of a sunrise on Instagram earlier this week. Doesn’t it look like God signed His name in it?  Can you see the big G and what looks like a signature behind it?  So cool!

Godsignedsunrise

Simple Weekly Meal Plans

Here’s a sneak peek at this week’s meal plans.  When you join the Weekly Meal Plan list, you get the grocery list and printable recipes with side dishes included.  And October has a week of  Slow Cooker Freezer Meals, with a plan to make 6 meals in about 1 hour.  You can find out more about how to get them for yourself by clicking here.

Slow Cooker Plan

 

Traditional Plan

  1. Breakfast for Dinner 
  2. Baked Chicken and Summer Vegetables 
  3. Shrimp Tostadas 
  4. Ravioli with Tomato and Onion Sauce 
  5. Pizza Steak Sandwiches 
  6. Cheesy Hamburger Soup 
  7. Apple Crinkle 

Simple Weekly Meal Plans and Real Life – Oct. 7

WeeklyMealPlansandRealLife

 

You can find out what’s on the Weekly Meal Plans for this week by scrolling to the end of this post.

This has been kind of a quiet week around here.  Jim and Peter have been in Sydney, Australia.  They’ve had a fantastic trip.  Yay for Facetiming!  We were able to talk to them nearly every afternoon/when they got out of bed in the morning.  The 14 hour time difference meant I was cooking dinner while they hadn’t eaten breakfast.

jimpetersydney

 

As always, I’m fascinated by the food.  Peter said they have a chain there called Pie Face, where they sell meat pies.  He seemed to like them pretty well.

pieface

While Jim and Peter had meat pies, those of at home had typical American fare.

All the nights have run together for me, but I know we had a pasta dish with chicken and parmesan cheese.

Of course, I made pancakes one night.  That’s a supper tradition when Jim is out of town.

We tried out one of the October Slow Cooker Freezer Meals, Chicken ala King.  I served it over cornbread.

I tested a new recipe that the kids loved.  I can’t wait to share how to make Slow Cooker Korean BBQ Haystacks.  Recipe coming soon!

We also ate leftovers a few times.  With only 3 of us home for dinner on most nights, the food went farther.  (Or is it further? Grammar people, help me out!)

Simple Weekly Meal Plans

Here’s a sneak peek at this week’s meal plans.  When you join the Weekly Meal Plan list, you get the grocery list and printable recipes with side dishes included.  And October has a week of  Slow Cooker Freezer Meals, with a plan to make 6 meals in about 1 hour.  You can find out more about how to get them for yourself by clicking here.

All Slow Cooker Plan

Traditional Plan

  1. Oven Baked Chicken Tacos 
  2. Not Your Momma’s Tuna Noodle Casserole 
  3. Beef Tips and Gravy 
  4. Slow Cooker Chicken Bacon Ranch Sandwiches with Creamy Ranch Slaw 
  5. Asian Salmon 
  6. BBQ Ribs 
  7. Chocolate Pumpkin Cake with Caramel
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