Category Archives: Meal Planning

Food challenge!

In March, we are going to try and actually stick to our food budget. I found some great tips online and a few good websites to help pull together these random pantry items and leftovers into something amazing at the end if the month.

Figuring out how to eat for less and the best way to do it in our world of excess can be hard to do. Here are a few sites I found very useful and wanted to share:

* Budget 101– buy these 20 items and make 20 meals

* Good Cheap Eats – How to build a FrugL Pantry

* Great Recipes on a Budget – Eating well dying pantry and refrigerator items

These sites also cut out a lot if processed food at times. On others it is easy to substitute when needed.

I’m looking forward to trying these new tips and recipes out!

Pantry Challenge

We have all done it. You don’t want to go to the store, and all of the stuff in the pantry is leftover from other meals throughout the week/month. What do you do? – PANTRY CHALLENGE.

I know not every cares about what we eat, but this is a good way to keep myself accountable to not buy any groceries until next week. Here are some of the creations I’ve come up with for the week.

Breakfast – Cereal, Egg-free/dairy-free breakfast cookies, bagels

Lunch – YOYO {You’re on your own}

Dinners – Sausage Pizza, Stuffed Zucchini, Navy Bean Soup, Corn & Cheddar Waffles {sounds odd, but so good}

I’m sure there will be more “creativity” throughout the week. If anyone hasย good “go-to” meals that are staples in your house, feel free to pass them along!

Freezer Cooking

(i.e.a long day of cooking…)

Freezer Cooking

I’ve read about how convenient it is to cook all your meals in a day and freeze them. Then, you have home cooked meals all month-long in the freezer.

It looked like a lot of work, but I found a website that calculated the savings and made it look easy. Honestly, I don’t know if I could do it without the step-by-step instructions since it takes so much multi-tasking in the kitchen.

The first month wasn’t terrible, but this last month was just a nightmare. After 8 hours, I still had three meals left and two very tired legs/feet. I’m hoping it’s just because I chose a later year than the first time. She obviously got better with time…and hopefully, so do I.

Meal Plan Monday

This week, we are starting a new food planning method at the Roark house. Since we did so well last month with creative meals from our pantry, I wanted to try to do the shopping/cooking/meal prep all at once and freeze them to reheat and eat throughout the month.

It took me 5 hours of chopping, mixing, baking and measuring yesterday, but our freezer if stocked and we have a little bit left over. If this lasts us all month, then we might just have a new {more economical} way to do our dinners. Here is what I plan to reheat/prepare this week from our freezer ๐Ÿ™‚

Monday –ย Spinach Salad {Small Group}

Tuesday – African Sweet Potato Soupย with crackers

Wednesday – Chicken and Biscuitsย with side salad

Thursday – Leftovers

Friday – Cranberry Chicken with mashed potatoes and veggies

Saturday breakfast – Sweet Potato Spice Muffins

Saturday lunch – Chicken Broccoli Rollupsย with side of fruit

Saturdayย dinner – Date night

Sundayย  breakfast – Red Beet Pancakes

Sunday lunch – YOYO {You’re on your own}

Sunday dinner – YOYO

Meal Plan Monday

While this gives me something to post about each week, I need to do a better job on updates in general. We did a few fun things this weekend, so I’ll be sure to add those to the blog soon!

Monday – Green Beans & Ham (Small Group)

Tuesday – Meatloaf with green beans and mashed potatoes

Wednesday – Slow Cooker Beef Stew

Thursday – Sandwiches with Ham Pasta Salad

Fridayย – Butternut Squash Rissoto (adapted from OAMM)

ย Saturday lunch – Leftovers

Saturday dinner – Feta & Shrimp with Rice

Sunday lunch – Sonic (last Groupon)

Sunday dinner – Meatloaf Sandwiches with chips & veggies

Meal Plan Monday

Last week, I cooked extra food to freeze and reheat throughout the month. We have some canned food from Eric’s parents. They were so nice to share the bounty of their garden with us. This will also make it nice to not have to come home and cook every night…woohoo!

Monday – Easy Crockin’ Chili (Small Group)

Tuesday – Meatloaf sandwiches

Wednesday – Creamy Pasta & Squash with tossed salad {eMeals}

Thursday – Ham & Cheesy Scalloped Potatoes

Friday – Leftovers

Saturday brunch – Stuffedย French Toast with fruitย 

Saturday dinner – Date night

Sunday lunch –ย Meatloaf with veggies and mashed potatoes

Sunday dinnerย –ย Chicken Soup with fall vegetables and beans – similar to this recipe

Meal Plan Monday

With Fall here, we’re finally settled into our house and it’s so much easier to cook dinner during the week. This week has its own set of challenges, but I think we’re going to have a good time if the weather stays nice.

Monday – Life Group

Tuesday –ย Cheeze-It Chicken, creamy pasta and broccoli

Wednesday –ย Mexi-Beefย  Stew {Crockpot} with cornbread

Thursday – Ham and Cheesy Scalloped Potatoes with tossed salad and cinnamon raisin toast

Friday – YOYO

Saturday – YOYOย 

Sunday – Meatloaf with mashed potatoes and mixed veggies


Breakfasts –ย Egg McMuffin copycats & Baked Oatmeal

Monday Meal Planning

Monday – Small group

Tuesday – Dinner out with friends

Wednesday –ย Spinach Orzo Soup with crackers

Thursday – Pantry/fridge challenge

Friday – Dinner out

Saturday lunch – Leftovers

Saturday dinner – Cilantro Pesto Pasta with Chicken and Green Beans

Sunday lunch – try a new Mexican place

Sunday dinner – Leftovers

Meal Plan Monday

It’s another short week for us, and then we will stay put for a while. It was great to see Baby Tucker and everyone in Ohio. With a little sleep and downtime, I think we’ll be recouped and ready for the next adventure by Thursday morning.

We are getting more settled so this week’s menu is going to be much easier to prepare. I was unpacking boxes each night to find storage containers and cooking utensils. Hopefully, we have found most of it by now! Just a few more boxes to go…

Monday – Grilled Garlic Burgers with Rosemary Roasted Potatoes {eMeals}

Tuesday – Lemon Risotto with Summer Vegetable Salad {eMeals}

Wednesday – Pan Fried Fish, Herbed Polenta and Sliced Tomatoes {eMeals}

Thursday – Kitchen Closed

Friday – Kitchen Closed

Saturday – Kitchen Closed

Sunday – Sonic Groupon for dinner