Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Meal Planning: Two Weeks of Dinners Plus Plenty of Leftovers

Hey there friends! I know some of you have probably resolved to start writing monthly meal plans. I started writing these two years ago, and when I’m diligent and stick with it they save me so much time and money! There are so many wonderful blogs with meal plan templates, suggestions and ideas. You just have to find the one that works for you.

For my family, it works best when I have the whole months worth of dinners planned out and I do the shopping on a bi-weekly basis. I’ll make a trip here and there for things we may run out of, like milk. But by sticking with this plan, I save tons of money by not making a trip to the store every day. We are probably all guilty of picking up a few unnecessary items on those random trips. Do yourself a favor and go in with a plan! It really helps me!

Here is a link to the blog that inspired my planning strategy. If you haven't checked out Confessions of a Homeschooler, you definitely should!

A quick note about our eating habits; While I try to keep things healthy and nutritious, we are still coming down from our holiday overindulgence high. So there are a few things here that are not so healthy, but we love them. (I’m looking at you, waffle fries)

So for the first two weeks of January, here is what’s for dinner in the Murray Home:

January 1st: Hamburger Soup with homemade bread

January 2nd: Oven Baked Meatball Subs with Waffle fries

January 3rd: Roast Chicken and Potatoes with Salad

January 4th: Baked Spaghetti

January 5th: Bacon Wrapped Meatloaf, Mashed Potatoes and Mixed Veg

January 6th: Chicken Curry Stir-fry with Veggies and homemade Naan Bread

January 7th: Sausage Potato Soup with Rolls

January 8th: Chicken Enchiladas with Rice and Beans

January 9th: Homemade Pizza

January 10th: Leftovers

January 11th: Chicken Pesto Penne with Asparagus

January 12th: Beef Stew with Herb Dumplings

January 13th: Chicken Pot Pie

January 14th: Chili Colorado Burritos with rice and beans

January 15th: Ginger Beef Mushroom Kale Stir-fry with Rice

Notes about the plan: 

My recipe for Homemade bread makes enough dough for two batches. I use one on the first day and freeze the second ball for my rolls later in the week. I make a lot of homemade baked goods and whatever we don’t eat freezes up nicely.

Most of the recipes produce enough food to feed a larger family than mine of three. We use the leftovers for lunches during the week or in a pinch.

The Chicken Pot Pie recipe makes two large pies. I suggest you freeze one or give it to a neighbor. Its a wonderful recipe!

Saturdays are our Free Day. We either eat leftovers, grill something up or splurge on eating out or ordering in. We keep the eating out and ordering in to once a month.

I print out copies of recipes I plan to try. That way, I can make notes about things I change or add, whether they were a big hit or a dud. I keep them in plastic sheet protectors in my GIANT Red Recipe Folder. I'm old school like that I guess.

I hope this simple plan helps you on your way to your New Year’s Resolution! Keep with it and you’ll reap the rewards in years to come.

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  1. Great ideas for hearty dishes when it is SO COLD outside! Thanks for sharing!

  2. these all sound like such yummy dinners. I go shopping today then I can plan out my meals for the next two weeks.

  3. Yummy ideas. Thanks for linking up to #brilliantblogposts

  4. love your meal plan oh my so tasty and I know filling great to help keep you warm
    come see us at

  5. I've never thought if meal planning that far in advance but it totally makes sense!!!

    Thanks for linking up with the Saturday Spotlight!!

  6. These all sound delicious! I may have to borrow some meals from your meal plan ;)

    Stopping by from the Saturday Spotlight! <3

  7. These all look delicious. I'm never that organized with my meal planning!

    1. I usually fall off the planning wagon, but its so helpful when I can keep it up. Thanks for reading!

  8. These all sound amazingly delicious! I will definitely be making some of these meals! Thank you for sharing!
    Enjoy your weekend!

  9. wow this meal plan sounds delish! I keep trying to do a meal plan and end up plugging in the same old same old, so this is great, some favorites and then some new ideas. I usually cook extra too for lunches and 'Scrap Day' so I hear you there :)

    1. As I'm nearing the end of this meal plan, I'm realizing that I made WAY too much food! But its been so nice to have hot lunches and I even threw a few leftovers in the freezer for quick meals later on.

  10. A great list of meals for the cold weather that is upon us. Thank you for sharing with the Clever Chicks Blog Hop! I hope you’ll join us again next week!

    Kathy Shea Mormino
    The Chicken Chick

  11. Thank you so much for posting this - so good to have someone else's plan to look at for inspiration! These all look great x

  12. Some great meal ideas, I'll be pinching a few of these!

    Gym Bunny Mummy | Bloglovin’ | Facebook

  13. Fab meal inspiration. Thanks for linking up to #tastytuesdays

  14. Running to a store everyday sure costs a lot of money. That used to be our biggest downfall. We used to shop like that all the time not just a few days a week, I mean every day. It was insane! We finally got a plan together and if we stick to it, it works. Thanks for linking up to Scraptastic Saturdays. This post will be shared via Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest. Have a wonderful week.

  15. I use to really plan out my meals when I was feeding a family of 7. Now that it's just hubby and I I'm not quite so regimental. I do a mental planning at the beginning of the week and pull what ever meat I need out of the freezer that morning. Thanks for sharing with SYC.

  16. Lauren, what a great menu, thanks so much for sharing with us @ Mum-bo Monday, we love having you each week!

  17. Wow, looks like you have some tasty meals on the menu! I don't meal plan but with everything I have been reading lately, I may need to start! Thanks for sharing on the Art of Home-Making Mondays! :)

  18. Your menu plan sounds delicious and you really have mapped it all out really well. It's lovely to get back to healthier eating after all the indulgence of the holidays. Pinned and will tweet. Thank you for sharing with the Hearth and Soul hop.

  19. That's an impressive meal plan....I especially like that you've included a curry in there. It's a great way to mix things up, and I cannot tell you how much this family LOVES curry!

    Tempted to make the Chicken pot pie....might end up on the table tomorrow night!