Sunday, January 3, 2010

Menu Plan Monday - January Edition

Last week I had said that I was going to try something new with my menu plans.  I was going to try to combine adding fewer new recipes each week and bringing back old favorites too.  Hahahaha!  It didn't go down like that at all. In red is what we actually ate last week...

Monday ~ Garlic Chicken Farfalle (new recipe) due to a very late lunch, no one was hungry for dinner.
Tuesday ~ we'll be out for friends' birthday celebrations
Wednesday ~ Soup & Sandwiches
Thursday ~ Mexican Lasagne we went to our friends' house for New Year's Eve, I made Chili instead to take over since it was a "soup & salad buffet" theme
Friday ~ Pizza Loaf (sorta new - going to try an old classic on a recently found recipe of french bread that we fell in love with and is delicious, so I shall call it a "new" recipe =) ) Since the chicken was thawed for dinner Monday that didn't get eaten, we were going to do Monday's dinner instead.  Then at 4:30pm we realized it needed to be in the crock pot 6 hours we had Chicken Pasta Toss instead.
Saturday ~ Oriental Pasta (resurrected from the archives) lots of leftovers, so we ate those instead of make more leftovers...
Sunday ~ Turkey Noodle Soup (comfort food at its best!)

Now we jump ahead to this week.  I'm changing it all up this time around.   After my pantry debacle last week, I decided it was time to really challenge myself.  I'm going to try to cook out of our pantry and freezer for the month of January.  I was pleasantly horrified at how much I have stashed away, so this really shouldn't be too hard.  Don't get me wrong, I know I'm saying this on January 2nd, we'll talk again come the 30th!  But in all honesty, I tried to approach this with a logical frame of mind.  I took note to the various meats I have in the freezer to help determine what I had to work with, and we have a lot of pork!  There are a few new soup recipes we'll be trying, as well as meals from the freezer, "recycling" meat into other meals, and of course the obligatory "breakfast for dinner" meals that we love.  After I assembled together the meals for the month, I wrote down all the ingredients needed to put each main dish on the table.  (I figured I have enough rice and flavored rice mixes, frozen veggies and other possible side dishes in the cupboard that I'd only need to really focus on the main dish anyway.)  Then I totaled everything up and went to the kitchen to see what I had and what would be needed.  I'm quite pleased with my shopping list for the month!!  Excluding milk, we'll spend about $20 for the whole month for cool is that?!?!?  After Christmas, I needed the bleeding in my wallet to stop, and this is certainly one way to do that.  We'll save all around ~ groceries, gas, whimsical shopping splurges, etc.  Gotta love that!

I have planned for 25 meals which will allow for leftover nights.  I'm not going to assign every meal to a night at this point because I'll need to group together certain meals so that everything gets used to try to minimize waste, since that is the name of the game.  So, in no particular order, here's the plan for the month:

1.  Baked Spaghetti with Bread Machine Garlic Bread (**planned for this week)
2.  Pulled Pork Sandwiches on homemade hamburger buns
3. Turkey Bundles using homemade crescent rolls
4.  Homemade Pizza
5.  Pizza Loaf
6.  Sunday Chicken Dinner in the slow cooker (**planned for this week)
7. Mexican Lasagne
8.  Pumpkin Pancakes
9.  Chili Mac (freezer meal)
10. Philly Cheesesteak Sandwiches (freezer meal) on Italian rolls
11. Pretzel Dogs
12. French Toast
13. Meat Mix
14. Split Pea Soup (**planned for this week)
15. Herbed Pork Roast
16. Creamy Pork Potpie
17. "Wacky Mac" spaghetti (this will be on the 26th as this is what Kelton has asked for for his birthday dinner.  He's also asked for "strawberry cake with chocolate on the bottom and a cherry on top" for the cake, and I'm still trying to figure out how to accommodate his request!!)
18. BELTs (**planned for this week) That's a BLT with a fried Egg on it...
19. Spinach Lentil Stew
20. Turkey tenderloin
21. Sausage Tomato Soup
22. Pork Noodle Soup
23. Italian Chicken Rice Soup (probably substituting turkey for the chicken)
24. Crock pot broccoli beef
25. Kris Kringle Pancakes

If anyone has any ideas how to make Kelton's birthday cake come to fruition, please let me know!!

Check out more menu plans at Orgjunkie's page.


  1. What is "Wacky Mac" Spaghetti?

  2. Haha - it's actually the name of a pasta. It has wagon wheels and elbow mac and other pasta. I'm not sure why he loves it so much but he does!!

  3. I am definitely impressed with your planning and your savings. I think many of us are having these freezer and pantry use it up weeks or months. I cleaned cabinets and pantry over Christmas break and was surprised at all I had on hand. I haven't reorganized my freezer yet but will do so this weekend. I hope you will post your slow cooker links to Crock Pot Wednesday. The meme for that will be up Tuesday evening. Have a great week.