Simple Meal Plans and Freezer Meal Video

I posted the video for the April Slow Cooker Freezer Meals the other day.  This time, I show how to package the meals for a smaller family of 3-4 people.  For the record, I still really, really hate seeing myself on these videos.  I hope that seeing the meals prepped is helpful though.

The freezer week for April is April 21.  The recipes will be previewed on the blog then.  But members get access to the whole month at once for all three of the Weekly Meal Plan options – Traditional, Slow Cooker and the new Whole Foods Plans.

Meal Plan collage

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 Skillet
  2. Easy Meatball Subs using homemade meatballs
  3. Homemade Chicken Fingers
  4. Whole Wheat Waffles
  5. Chicken Vegetable Soup
  6. Homemade Pizza (or) Calzone
  7. Amish Oatmeal Cookies

Traditional Menu

  1. Cheesy Chicken Chili Mac
  2. Pizza Steak Sandwiches 
  3. Crab Cakes with Creamy Sauce
  4. Italian Sausage with Bowties
  5. Grilled Chicken
  6. Chicken Cordon Bleu Sliders
  7. Coconut No Bake Cookies

Slow Cooker Menu

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Simpe Weekly Meal Plans and Real Life – December 2

I hope you had a great Thanksgiving with family and friends. We visited my family and Jim’s, eating two turkey dinners in less than 24 hours. Whew! It was fun and filling!

As soon as we got home, I printed the list for the December Slow Cooker Freezer Meals plan and headed to the grocery. I decided not to brave Walmart, where I usually shop, on black friday. We hit Kroger instead.

Shopping in a store that you aren’t as familiar with is always an experience. It takes a bit longer. It’s hard to shop on auto-pilot they way you can if you know all the aisles well. But the store wasn’t crowded. I’m pretty sure Kroger isn’t high on the list for black Friday shoppers.

On Saturday morning, I prepped all the slow cooker freezer meals and shot the video.  The freezer meals week is actually next week, but the plans can be used in any order you like.  Members get access to the whole month at once.

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.  December includes an awesome gift guide for easy gifts you can whip up in your kitchen that are sure to make everyone happy–even the dog! You can find out more about how to get the meal plans for yourself by clicking here.

Traditional

Slow Cooker

4. Roast w/ red wine, onion, garlic & Italian seasoning

 

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Simple Weekly Meal Plans and Real Life – November 25 (Organizing the Pantry and Playing with Pressure Cooking)

We’ve been working on our kitchen for a few weeks, making a few improvements. We had new countertops, sink and faucet installed. Last weekend, we worked on organizing the pantry, adding full extension slides to two drawers and custom dividers.

The pantry had gotten to be a humongous mess. It seems no matter what I do to it, I have a hard time keeping it organized. Part of the problem is there are just 4 shelves. While I was working on getting it back in shape, I called my Dad and asked him if he could design something that would work better.

Dad is a contractor. He’s designed and remodeled a lot of kitchens over the years. As soon as I told him the pantry needed help, he knew exactly what he could do to fix it. I’m not sure when we’ll get started with the project, but I can’t wait! It’s going to be a huge improvement.

For now, here’s the before and after of the pantry. Not a lot of change, but it is better.

pantrybeforeandafter

 

Jim added full extension slides to our utensil drawers last weekend too.  These make it possible to pull the drawers all the way out, so you can see what’s in the back.  He also made custom dividers.  I love getting in the drawers and easily finding what I need.

drawers

 

I’ve been playing around with my new pressure cooker this week.  I absolutely love it for making rice!  I tried it for potato soup the other day.  It worked great, but I think it would have been just as fast on the stove top.  One of these days, I’ll do a post about pressure cooking.

I tried to get a picture of the steam release.  Steam is hard to capture.  Using the cooker has been fun and easy.  It’s very easy to clean and I’m not even afraid of blowing up the kitchen!

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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

1. All Day Beef Stew – Oven or Crockpot
2. Your Easiest Thanksgiving Ever: Turkey Breast in the Slow Cooker, plus all the sides
Traditional
  1. Your Easiest Thanksgiving EverTurkey Breast in the Slow Cooker, plus all the sides
  2. Italian Beef Sandwiches in the Crockpot
  3. Shrimp Scampi 
  4. Turkey and Dumplings (Use up leftover Turkey!)
  5. Lentil Tacos 
  6. Loaded Baked Potatoes
  7. Easy Apple Crumb Cake

This post contains affiliate links.

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Using the Slow Cooker Freezer Meals – Simple Weekly Meal Plans & Real Life

It’s been about a month since I tested the Slow Cooker Freezer Menu (get a sneak peek at it near the bottom of this post).  I’ve been using those meals slowly, only reaching into the freezer when I know the day is going to be too busy for cooking.

But even though I’m trying not to use them all at once, after this week I only have 1 left!

I may be testing some new slow cooker freezer meals soon.  Those meals have made dinner time so simple and having them stashed away in the freezer is like a bit of insurance against the “crazy days”.

Sunday

Last Sunday, we ate leftovers after church.  There were several different things that needed to be eaten and I decided I didn’t want to cook.  It worked out well, at least for me!

Jim and I also went out on Sunday evening.  There was a free jazz concert at a local historic home that we decided to go to.  Before that though, we stopped by Lowe’s.  I’m wanting to give our kitchen a facelift with new countertops and possibly painted cabinets.

counterprice

 

I snapped this picture so I could remember the prices for laminate.  We also priced quartz and granite and decided it would be more than we want to spend.  And to be honest, I like laminate.

We currently have something called Butternut Granite, I think.  It’s not my favorite.  I like it better than I thought I would (the builder chose it before we bought the house), but I’d like to change it to something different.  If you’ve got a laminate you love, leave me a comment!

Monday

Labor Day meant a day off work for Jim and no school for the rest of us.  We went disc golfing with the boys.  They’ve been playing all summer, but I’d never been.  I’m terrible at throwing the frisbee, but it was fun to watch them.

bacontomatobasilpasta

 

Friends had given us a bunch of tomatoes from their garden the night before.  I decided they needed to be part of a pasta dish.  So I made a quick meal with angel hair pasta, bacon, basil, tomatoes and white wine.  I’ll share the recipe soon!

Tuesday

Our son had a soccer game, so we went to watch.  I used one of the slow cooker freezer meals – Honey Hoisin Chicken.  I shredded the cooked meat and we put it on sandwiches with quick cole slaw and sweet potato fries on the side.  Yum!

Wednesday

I used a bottle of Kung Pao sauce with some chicken tenders, onions and bell peppers.  We ate it over rice.  The bottle of sauce had enough kick that all of our mouths were tingly and burning afterward, but it was good.

Thursday

I made another of our slow cooker freezer meals.  This time it was Maple Apple Pot Roast.  It turned out great!  I served parmesan potatoes too – from a box – and they were delicious!  I hardly ever buy boxed au gratin style potatoes, but they just looked so good.  Everyone loved them.  We also had broccoli.  And I made Peach Pie Squares for dessert.  Recipe coming to the blog soon!

And I repurposed our leftover roast for Friday’s lunch.  I shredded the beef, added a can of black beans and some salsa.  Heated it in the microwave and filled taco shells.  It worked great and would have made a good dinner for a small family.

bunny

 

We had some tiny company on Thursday night.  This little guy and two of his brothers were hanging out in our garden.  They were only about the size of the palm of my hand.  Cute!

Friday

It’s Friday as I write this post and I’m planning to make French toast and ham for dinner.  Fancy, I know. *Update: When I went into the kitchen to make dinner, I realized we were out of milk. So I turned the French bread into French bread pizzas, using the ham for a topping and gathering up anything else I could find.  They turned out great!  But I really do need to hit the grocery!

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.  You can find out more about how to get them for yourself by clicking here.  Now, you get access to a whole month at a time!  And September is our focus on stocking the freezer, including the week where you cook 7+ Slow Cooker Freezer Meals in just 1 hour!

Slow Cooker Plan – this is the freezer meals plan!

1. Taco Soup
2. Mediterranean Chicken in the Slow Cooker (as round steak)
3. Whole Chicken in the Slow Cooker
4. Honey Hoisin Chicken in the Slow Cooker
5. Easy Slow Cooker Pork Carnitas 
6. Maple Apple Chicken in the Slow Cooker (as pot roast)
7. blueberry orange bread 

Traditional Plan

Raspberry Chicken*
Mel’s Diner Chili *
Stromboli
Spaghetti and Meatballs
BBQ Chicken Fajitas* (prepare chicken like this)
Beef Stew
Peanut Butter Fluff Pie

Weekly Meal Plans – All Slow Cooker and Traditional – January 13

I love both of the menus this week.  There are some really fast dinners on the Traditional Meal Plan (like 15-20 minutes and it’s on the table).

And on the All Slow Cooker Meal Plan you’ll have a chance to stock your freezer with an extra meal or two.  I love cook-once-eat-twice!

You can see the main dishes for each menu below.  If you sign up to get the Meal Plans delivered to you, you’ll also receive side dish suggestions and recipes.  And, of course, the complete grocery list for each plan and printable recipes.

Want to get the Weekly Meal Plans sent to your inbox?  Get all the info by clicking here.

By subscribing to the Weekly Meal Plans you’ll get:

  • 2 Meal Plans each week – All Slow Cooker and Traditional
  • 6 dinners and 1 dessert for each
  • Side dish suggestions
  • Complete grocery list for each plan
  • Printable recipes
  • Cooking tips and timing tricks
  • Delivered to your inbox each week for just $4 per month
Receive your first set of Weekly Meal Plans the same day you sign up!

All Slow Cooker Meal Plan for Week of January 13

 

Traditional Meal Plan for Week of January 13