1/17/2022 Weekly Meal Plan

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I did absolutely no meal prep over the weekend. The big kid has Covid-19, and little sister spent the week at home also, as she is in close contact and needed to quarantine. I’m vaxxed and boosted (and I tested negative on Tuesday), so I’ve been going to work and the usual. BUT- Every winter, after Christmas without fail I lose my voice. It’s been an “annual tradition” (honestly one I could live without) for at least…15 years. No other symptoms- just no voice. Or I sound like I’ve been a lifelong smoker.

Taking care of sick and bored kids is not fun, and it takes up every waking hour.

Luckily, we are back on the CSA train- We need some fresh produce in our lives and I hate carrying more groceries upstairs!

Veggies and fruit are delivered by Yasukochi Family Farms CSA. For $25, it’s a great deal. I don’t have to pick anything, go to the store, or carry it upstairs. I can’t go to the store and get the same amount we get weekly for $25. Seriously. It’s a deal. They email a preview of what will be in the boxes over the weekend, so I can start thinking about what I’d like to make.

We’ve been trying a lot of new foods lately, thanks to the really great freebies from Social Nature lately too. It’s fun to try new foods.

For those of you that are new to meal planning, I’ve got an easy 101 style post here with super easy tips and steps. After you get that down, here is info about batch or freezer cooking.

I’ve gotten a pretty good inventory of the pantry, freezer, and fridge done (I try to update it after every shopping trip), so I’m able to plan meals and use up what we’ve got with little waste.

I only post our dinner plans for the week, because our other meals are usually the same each day.

Breakfast: Coffee with 1/2 and 1/2  for me, and pancakes or something along those lines for the kids. They are also into fruit and bagels for breakfast. Lately the big kid has been digging protein shakes in the morning. This is his favorite kind. 

Lunch: I have a plastic tote in the cupboard full of self-serve snacks. I buy treats and snacks in bulk and fill up snack-sized zip-top bags. I’m back to packing lunches again. However, school lunches are free this year- Little Bit has been buying her lunch and expanding her palate.

Dinner: This week we’ll start enjoying some Dream Dinners, and I’ll be posting pics and deets all over my social media!

  • Monday: Roasted Veggies, Soup and Grilled Cheese sandwiches
  • Tuesday: Nug night- I’ve got 3 different types, krinkle fries, apple slices & orange wedges
  • Wednesday: Tortellini and Vegetable Medley Soup, Garlic Bread
  • Thursday:   Quesadillas, roasted corn salsa, beans & rice
  • Friday: Takeout night!
  • Saturday:  Leftovers
  • Sunday:  Wings, Salad, cheesy mashed potatoes

Please stay safe you guys!

1/10/22 Weekly Meal Plan

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I spent some time yesterday cooking. I made broccoli rice casserole (recipe later this week), soup, brownies, and mac n’ cheese.  I also prepped the last of the veggies. I’ve got grown-up lunches covered for the week, and some of our sides for the week too.

Last week was busy and while we didn’t stick to our meal plan, we came pretty close… and that’s ok. I always have extra food on hand to make quick/easy meals for nights when.. stuff goes sideways.  Canned soup, stuff for grilled cheese, quesadillas, beans and rice, frozen entrees, leftovers.

We are back on the CSA train- We need some fresh produce in our lives and I hate carrying more groceries upstairs!

Veggies and fruit are delivered by Yasukochi Family Farms CSA. For $25, it’s a great deal. I don’t have to pick anything, go to the store, or carry it upstairs. I can’t go to the store and get the same amount we get weekly for $25. Seriously. It’s a deal.

We’ve been trying a lot of new foods lately, thanks to the really great freebies from Social Nature lately too. It’s fun to try new foods.

For those of you that are new to meal planning, I’ve got an easy 101 style post here with super easy tips and steps. After you get that down, here is info about batch or freezer cooking.

I’ve gotten a pretty good inventory of the pantry, freezer, and fridge done (I try to update it after every shopping trip), so I’m able to plan meals and use up what we’ve got with little waste.

I only post our dinner plans for the week, because our other meals are usually the same each day.

Breakfast: Coffee with 1/2 and 1/2  for me, and pancakes or something along those lines for the kids. They are also into fruit and bagels for breakfast. The Ancient Grain bagels from Einstein Bros. are the current family favorite. I pick them up on Mondays when a dozen is only $7. I slice them and freeze them to keep them from going bad too quickly.

Lunch: I have a plastic tote in the cupboard full of self-serve snacks. I buy treats and snacks in bulk and fill up snack-sized zip-top bags. I’m back to packing lunches again. However, school lunches are free this year- Little Bit has been buying her lunch and expanding her palate.

Dinner: This week we don’t have a lot planned after school/work, so I should be able to get some yummy dinners on the tables.

  • Monday: Nuggets (both chicken and veggie), fresh fruit, noodles, cheese, and crackers
  • Tuesday: Oven Roasted chicken, roasted veg, Salad
  • Wednesday: Brocolli rice casserole, salad, garlic bread
  • Thursday:  Soup, Grilled Cheese, fruit
  • Friday: Takeout night!
  • Saturday:  Leftovers
  • Sunday: Baked pasta/veg casserole

Please stay safe you guys!

1/3/2022 Weekly Meal Plan!

0a5e9dab796cea8a07eabe4eb4795b9e.jpgI did a big year-end fridge/freezer/pantry cleanout (did you know White Claw expires?) last week and we were in need of a lot of groceries.

I had a big shopping week, including a trip to Costco to pick up some staples, and of course… a rotisserie chicken.

We finished up the week yesterday consuming leftovers. And I prepared a pot of chicken stock to make chicken soup today.

We are back on the CSA train- We need some fresh produce in our lives and I hate carrying more groceries upstairs!

Veggies and fruit are delivered by Yasukochi Family Farms CSA. For $25, it’s a great deal. I don’t have to pick anything, go to the store, or carry it upstairs. I can’t go to the store and get the same amount we get weekly for $25. Seriously. It’s a deal.

We’ve been trying a lot of new foods lately, thanks to the really great freebies from Social Nature lately too. It’s fun to try new foods.

For those of you that are new to meal planning, I’ve got an easy 101 style post here with super easy tips and steps. After you get that down, here is info about batch or freezer cooking.

I’ve gotten a pretty good inventory of the pantry, freezer, and fridge done (I try to update it after every shopping trip), so I’m able to plan meals and use up what we’ve got with little waste.

I only post our dinner plans for the week, because our other meals are usually the same each day.

Breakfast: Coffee with 1/2 and 1/2  for me, and pancakes or something along those lines for the kids. They are also into fruit and bagels for breakfast. The Ancient Grain bagels from Einstein Bros. are the current family favorite. I pick them up on Mondays when a dozen is only $7. I slice them and freeze them to keep them from going bad too quickly.

Lunch: I have a plastic tote in the cupboard full of self-serve snacks. I buy treats and snacks in bulk and fill up snack-sized zip-top bags. I’m back to packing lunches again. However, school lunches are free this year- Little Bit has been buying her lunch and expanding her palate.

Dinner: I’ve got some tasty (and quick) meals planned for this week! It’s going to be cold this next week, so Soup will be on the menu a few times. I’ll make big batches and freeze the extra.

Please stay safe you guys!

12/20/2021 Weekly Meal Plan (Holiday Edition)

0a5e9dab796cea8a07eabe4eb4795b9e.jpgIt’s the First day of Winter Break! WOO! We’re making cookies and relaxing, but this week will be packed with adventures, including play dates and zoo trips!

I did some cooking (and cleaning) yesterday. I’ve got some tasty treats coming up this week, including Christmas Eve Pizza!

We’ve been trying a lot of new foods lately, thanks to the really great freebies from Social Nature lately too. It’s fun to try new foods.

For those of you that are new to meal planning, I’ve got an easy 101 style post here with super easy tips and steps. After you get that down, here is info about batch or freezer cooking.

I’ve gotten a pretty good inventory of the pantry, freezer, and fridge done (I try to update it after every shopping trip), so I’m able to plan meals and use up what we’ve got with little waste. If you are looking for a kitchen inventory printable, I have made my own and you can find them for sale here on my Etsy Store.

I only post our dinner plans for the week, because our other meals are usually the same each day.

Breakfast: Coffee with 1/2 and 1/2  for me, and pancakes or something along those lines for the kids. They are also into fruit and bagels for breakfast. The Ancient Grain bagels from Einstein Bros. are the current family favorite. I pick them up on Mondays when a dozen is only $7. I slice them and freeze them to keep them from going bad too quickly.

Lunch: I have a plastic tote in the cupboard full of self-serve snacks. I buy treats and snacks in bulk and fill up snack-sized zip-top bags. I’m back to packing lunches again. However, school lunches are free this year- Little Bit has been buying her lunch and expanding her palate.

Dinner: I’ve got some tasty (and quick) meals planned for this week!

  • Monday: Nuggets, fresh fruit, noodles, or cheese toast 
  • Tuesday: Chicken enchilada casserole
  • Wednesday: Roasted Veggie Soup, popovers with butter
  • Thursday:  breakfast burritos, hashbrowns, fruit salad
  • Friday: Christmas Eve Pizza!
  • Saturday:  Early dinner with my mom (dad is still in the hospital, prayers are welcome)
  • Sunday: Leftover Fiesta

Please stay safe you guys!

Looking for a Holiday Gift? Give the Gift of a Stress-Free Meal!

There are some people who are impossible to shop for. They either have everything, or they don’t need/want stuff.  Well, I’ve got a great solution!

Everyone has to eat! Gift your family and friends near and far with easy, delicious meals from Dream Dinners. There is nothing better than filling their freezer with meals and giving them a break from the kitchen.

You have a couple options:

  • Have Dream Dinners Delivered: Ship four delicious dinners directly to their home. *Available in select states and zip codes.
  • Dinner for the Night: Add an extra meal or two to your monthly order to gift to friends and family.
  • Gift Card: Not sure what meals they would enjoy? A Dream Dinners gift card is the perfect solution.

And if you’ve never tried Dream Dinners, now is a great time! January time slots are filling up fast and there are a lot of great options in January’s menu (including lower-calorie options if part of your 2022 plans includes losing weight/eating less).

I’ll be writing more about Dream Dinners later this Month and into January. I’m really excited that they have more vegetarian options! If you are a San Diego, CA area local, keep your eyes peeled on my Facebook page for more information about a Dream Dinners event in January at the location in La Mesa, CA. 

12/13/2021 Weekly Meal Plan

0a5e9dab796cea8a07eabe4eb4795b9e.jpgThis past weekend was BUSY! I haven’t had a chance to go to the store, but I think we’ll be able to stretch it for a few more days until I have some free time. This week is looking busy too. Little Bit gets her casts off Wednesday after school- Hooray!

I did some cooking yesterday- I made some side dishes, including Roasted veggies, Rice a Roni. I made lunches for the adults, and re-organized the lunch/snack basket for the kids in the pantry. I also used up some of the wilting fruit to make some zipsicle style popsicles (strawberry and banana, and pineapple). And I made cookies!

Since this week is so busy, we’ll be having a lot of quick-prep dinners, or we’ll be relying on the foods I prepped yesterday.

We’ve been trying a lot of new foods lately, thanks to the really great freebies from Social Nature lately too. It’s fun to try new foods.

For those of you that are new to meal planning, I’ve got an easy 101 style post here with super easy tips and steps. After you get that down, here is info about batch or freezer cooking.

I’ve gotten a pretty good inventory of the pantry, freezer, and fridge done (I try to update it after every shopping trip), so I’m able to plan meals and use up what we’ve got with little waste. If you are looking for a kitchen inventory printable, I have made my own and you can find them for sale here on my Etsy Store.

I only post our dinner plans for the week, because our other meals are usually the same each day.

Breakfast: Coffee with 1/2 and 1/2  for me, and pancakes or something along those lines for the kids. They are also into fruit and bagels for breakfast. The Ancient Grain bagels from Einstein Bros. are the current family favorite. I pick them up on Mondays when a dozen is only $7. I slice them and freeze them to keep them from going bad too quickly.

Lunch: I have a plastic tote in the cupboard full of self-serve snacks. I buy treats and snacks in bulk and fill up snack-sized zip-top bags. I’m back to packing lunches again. However, school lunches are free this year, but so far, there is nothing on the menu that appeals to the kids.

Dinner: I am planning some great meals this week. I did some batch cooking yesterday and got the fridge organized.

  • Monday: Nuggets, fresh fruit (orange and apple slices are on tap), rice a roni
  • Tuesday: Soup and Cheese Toast, Fruit, Roasted Veggies
  • Wednesday:  Waffles or Pancakes (kids choice), Fruit, Eggs- And maybe Beyond Meat sausages
  • Thursday:   Bean, Rice, Cheese, and Roasted Veggie bowls
  • Friday: take out (Usually pizza and Chinese food)
  • Saturday:  Leftovers
  • Sunday: Fritatta, Salad

Please stay safe you guys!

12/6/2021 Weekly Meal Plan

0a5e9dab796cea8a07eabe4eb4795b9e.jpgLast week’s meal plan didn’t work out as I had planned. We got busy, stuff came up, and we ran out of eggs mid-week. I didn’t have time to run to the store, so…

We’re starting fresh this week. I did some meal prep yesterday, including some egg-free baking (banana bread and chocolate chip cookies). I hit the store for eggs, milk, and butter this morning. We’re ready to go!

With a reorganized pantry, I’ve got some great meals planned for the week.

And I’ve been getting a lot of really great freebies from Social Nature lately too. It’s fun to try new foods.

For those of you that are new to meal planning, I’ve got an easy 101 style post here with super easy tips and steps. After you get that down, here is info about batch or freezer cooking.

I’ve gotten a pretty good inventory of the pantry, freezer, and fridge done (I try to update it after every shopping trip), so I’m able to plan meals and use up what we’ve got with little waste. If you are looking for a kitchen inventory printable, I have made my own and you can find them for sale here on my Etsy Store.

I only post our dinner plans for the week, because our other meals are usually the same each day.

Breakfast: Coffee with 1/2 and 1/2  for me, and pancakes or something along those lines for the kids. They are also into fruit and bagels for breakfast. The Ancient Grain bagels from Einstein Bros. are the current family favorite. I pick them up on Mondays when a dozen is only $7. I slice them and freeze them to keep them from going bad too quickly.

Lunch: I have a plastic tote in the cupboard full of self-serve snacks. I buy treats and snacks in bulk and fill up snack-sized zip-top bags. I’m back to packing lunches again. However, school lunches are free this year, but so far, there is nothing on the menu that appeals to the kids.

Dinner: I am planning some great meals this week. I did some batch cooking yesterday, and got the fridge organized.

  • Monday: Nuggets, fresh fruit (orange and apple slices are on tap), cheese, and crackers
  • Tuesday: Grilled Meatloaf sandwiches (grilled cheese for the kids), fruit, Salad
  • Wednesday:  Vegetarian Enchilada casserole, salad
  • Thursday:   Breakfast burritos (eggs, cheese, potatoes, grilled veggies, bacon or sausage, salsa), fruit
  • Friday: take out (Usually pizza and Chinese food)
  • Saturday:  Leftovers
  • Sunday:  Shakshuka, garlic bread, salad (since we didn’t have it last week)

Please stay safe you guys!

11/29/2021 Weekly Meal Plan

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Kids are back to school and I am back to work this morning!

After a week without any trips to the store, last night I broke down and did a big shop. I found some really cool spice blends at Grocery Outlet and 99 Cents Only, so we’ve got some yummy stuff planned over the next few weeks.

Now that the fridge is working, I’ve been buying a few condiments every trip. This week it was Salsa and Chili/ketchup.

I am pulling everything out of the cupboard this week to do an end-of-year overhaul/purge. Anything that is not expired that we won’t eat I’ll be donating. There is a blessing box about a mile away, and I’d love to fill it up. And of course, anything expired will get pitched. We have a super narrow and deep cupboard, so sometimes stuff gets pushed towards the back and forgotten about.

And I’ve been getting a lot of really great freebies from Social Nature lately too. It’s fun to try new foods.

For those of you that are new to meal planning, I’ve got an easy 101 style post here with super easy tips and steps. After you get that down, here is info about batch or freezer cooking.

I’ve gotten a pretty good inventory of the pantry, freezer, and fridge done (I try to update it after every shopping trip), so I’m able to plan meals and use up what we’ve got with little waste. If you are looking for a kitchen inventory printable, I have made my own and you can find them for sale here on my Etsy Store.

I only post our dinner plans for the week, because our other meals are usually the same each day.

Breakfast: Coffee with 1/2 and 1/2  for me, and pancakes or something along those lines for the kids. They are also into fruit and bagels for breakfast. The Ancient Grain bagels from Einstein Bros. are the current family favorite. I pick them up on Mondays when a dozen is only $7. I slice them and freeze them to keep them from going bad too quickly.

Lunch: I have a plastic tote in the cupboard full of self-serve snacks. I buy treats and snacks in bulk and fill up snack-sized zip-top bags. I’m back to packing lunches again. However, school lunches are free this year, but so far, there is nothing on the menu that appeals to the kids.

Dinner: I am planning some great meals this week. I’ll try and batch cook tomorrow morning (sides, roast veggies, cookies) before work.

  • Monday: Nuggets, fresh fruit (orange and apple slices are on tap), cheese, and crackers
  • Tuesday: Meat loaf, mashed potatoes, garlic bread, veggies
  • Wednesday: Beans, Rice, quesadillas, fruit or salad
  • Thursday:   Vegetarian Enchilada casserole (I’ll post a recipe this week)
  • Friday: take out (Usually pizza and Chinese food)
  • Saturday:  Leftovers
  • Sunday:  Shakshuka, garlic bread, salad

Please stay safe you guys!

11/22/2021 Weekly Meal Plan

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This week is Thanksgiving break, so no school for the kids, and… Bitty Bird is in two below the knee casts, so it’s going to be an interesting week.

We’re taking a break from our CSA box for now- with everything going on, I’m trying to cut down costs for the time being.

We’ve borrowed a larger stroller, and we’ll be using it to get Bitty Bird around town this week. She’s still in pain from her surgery, so she’s not too keen on using her crutches all the time.

I reorganized the pantry and freezer the other day and we’ve got enough to last us at least through this week, excluding milk (which I’m going to go buy today).

And I’ve been getting a lot of really great freebies from Social Nature lately too. It’s fun to try new foods.

For those of you that are new to meal planning, I’ve got an easy 101 style post here with super easy tips and steps. After you get that down, here is info about batch or freezer cooking.

I’ve gotten a pretty good inventory of the pantry, freezer, and fridge done (I try to update it after every shopping trip), so I’m able to plan meals and use up what we’ve got with little waste. If you are looking for a kitchen inventory printable, I have made my own and you can find them for sale here on my Etsy Store.

I only post our dinner plans for the week, because our other meals are usually the same each day.

Breakfast: Coffee with 1/2 and 1/2  for me, and pancakes or something along those lines for the kids. They are also into fruit and bagels for breakfast. The Ancient Grain bagels from Einstein Bros. are the current family favorite. I pick them up on Mondays when a dozen is only $7. I slice them and freeze them to keep them from going bad too quickly.

Lunch: I have a plastic tote in the cupboard full of self-serve snacks. I buy treats and snacks in bulk and fill up snack-sized zip-top bags. I’m back to packing lunches again. However, school lunches are free this year, but so far, there is nothing on the menu that appeals to the kids.

Dinner: I did some batch cooking yesterday, so we’ve got all sorts of yummy stuff ready for this week. I even made brownies yesterday!

  • Monday: Nuggets, fresh fruit (green grapes and bananas are on tap), cheese, and crackers
  • Tuesday: Cheesy hashbrown casserole, poached eggs, garlic bread, melon
  • Wednesday: Pollo Asada Taco Salad with cilantro lime rice
  • Thursday:  The kids are having dinner with their dad, and my mom and I are visiting my dad in the hospital.
  • Friday: take out
  • Saturday: Turkey dinner with my mom
  • Sunday: Pancakes and fruit

Please stay safe you guys!

Recipe: Copycat Cracker Barrel Hashbrown Casserole

I don’t really like Cracker Barrel, and there isn’t one close to us, but these potatoes are delish. In some places, these are called Funeral Potatoes. While doing my weekly meal prep this morning, I realized I had all the ingredients and decided to make a pan. It’s a great side dish for any holiday event. I improved it a bit as well.

I’ve included substitutions to make it vegan below.

Cheesy Hashbrown Casserole

Serves 6-10

Ingredients:

  • 1 large bag frozen hashbrowns, defrosted
  • 1 can condensed cream of soup (I used cream of mushroom because I have a vegetarian in the house, other people use cream of chicken)
  • 8oz sour cream
  • 2 cups shredded cheese (I used cheddar, but Colby jack is good too), divided
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 1T. butter
  • Salt and pepper to taste
After being baked. It was..sampled.

Directions:

  1. Preheat over to 350 degrees, Spray a 9×11 baking dish with spray release.
  2. In a small pan, saute onions in butter until translucent- about 5-10 minutes.
  3. In a large mixing bowl, combine soup, sour cream, 1 cup cheese, hashbrowns, and sauteed onions.
  4. Pour mixture into a greased baking dish, top with remaining cheese.
  5. Bake for 60-70 minutes.
  6. Serves 6 as a main dish or up to 10 as a side dish.

This casserole is great reheated and is good for up to 3 days in the fridge, but it won’t last that long.

Vegan substitutions: In lieu of dairy sour cream and cheddar cheese, use your favorite vegan brand. In place of soup, use your favorite white sauce and 1/4 cup diced mushrooms. Saute onion in your favorite spread or oil. If you need a good white sauce recipe, there are directions in this recipe.