If you haven't tried Menu Planning, I can't encourage you enough to give it a shot! Do you have to plan every single meal? Not if you don't want to! But if you start by just planning a week of dinners you might find that you enjoy the reduction of chaos…the lack of the 4:30pm “What in the world am I going to make for dinner?”.
Breakfasts & lunches tend to be pretty boring at our house. My kids very much like their routine. Additionally, we are not big red meat eaters in this house.
My menu for the week.
Breakfasts (all with coffee for me, milk for the kids) (3-5 Points)
cereal or oatmeal w/fruit, milk (2-3 days for all)
pancakes w/syrup for the kids (3-4 days)
Yogurt, fruit, toast
Yogurt and pumpkin muffins
eggs, toast, fruit (on this day, I will have 1 egg + 2 egg whites to keep my points down)
Lunches ( I tend to not eat that much for lunch because I usually eat a late breakfast) (4-6 points)
kids: peanut butter & jelly, chicken nuggets, hot dogs, mac & cheese, grilled cheese (served each day with applesauce, bananas or mandarin oranges)
Leftovers (2 days)
warm egg salad on a bed of lettuce (made with fat-free mayo), Progresso Zero-point soup (or homemade vegetable soup)
Broccoli & Cheese Potato (2 days): Entire package of Green Giant valley Steamers Broc & cheese (2.5 points) over a 3-4 point potato (this is my favorite lunch in the world!)
Boca Burger on whole wheat toast with wilted spinach, vegetable soup
whole wheat pasta tossed with a warmed can of fire-roasted diced tomatoes and fat-free mozzerella
Dinners: (5-8 points)
Sauteed chicken breast with warmed salsa over brown rice, steamed broccoli
Rotini with turkey meatballs and homemade pasta sauce, salad, bisuits
Pancakes 1 night when my husband is working late (I will make a triple batch to freeze for breakfasts for the kids)
Layered Mexican Chicken, salad
Lasagna Rolls, green beans, salad, homemade bread
Pot Roast, mashed potatoes, peas, homemade bread
Snacks (0-3 points)
Clementines, Bananas, Apples
Carrot sticks with homemade fat-free garlic dip
Zero Point Vegetable Soup (either homemade or Progresso)
kids: pumpkin muffins, sugar cookies, or fruit
It may not be the most exciting of menu plans, but it includes plenty of veggies, fruit and protein. It's a menu that is easy to stick with and contains plenty of “crossover ingredients” to prevent waste.
For more ideas on getting started with menu planning, click here!
Have you started menu planning? how has it helped you?