Sunday, October 5, 2008

How do I menu plan?

I have had a few question lately on how I make a plan for my weekly menu. It is actually really simple.

For breakfast I rotate 3 choices...

eggs, toast, OJ
Pancakes, fruit

The hubby really likes Oatmeal, so sometimes he eats this on his own.

For lunch I pack lunches for work and school on m-f, so it is usually basically the same. On Sat and Sun we usually eat leftovers.

Sandwich-pb&j or lunch meat
fruit or veggie
snack like popcorn, chips, pretzels, or cookies

For dinner, I plan a theme for each night

Sunday is Pizza Night
Monday is Hamburger- usually tacos
Tuesday is Chicken Casserole, however sometimes in the winter or when money is really tight we eat soup and bread
Wednesday is pasta- the family loves spaghetti, and would gladly eat this every night of the week. I also rotate this with Lasagna or Goulash
Thursday is leftovers
Friday is chicken-usually a more traditional dinner with veggies, salad and bread rolls
Saturday is Beef- but not usually an all steak dinner. I try to make dishes that will stretch the meat like beef n broccoli, or fajitas. Both of these could easily get by with just one steak.

Lastly, with these guideline in place, I try to make at least one meal a little more special than the norm. I usually pull this off on Friday or Saturday. Like chicken picatta on chicken night or steak and baked potatoes or pot roast on beef night. I find that when I do that, it kinda satisfies the craving I get to eat out.

Having a basic plan in place is so helpful in keeping a variety. I love to break out the cookbook, and see what new recipe I can add to our repertoire. I also have started getting my 8 year old involved in the planning. She always feels so proud that she got to help plan dinner, and I am teaching her homemaking skill in the process!

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