The Nadel family- Enjoy reading our everyday adventures!

Monday, November 15, 2010

Menu planning

Do you do any type of menu planning at your house? I've tried lots of different ways to menu plan, and still haven't found the "perfect" one for me. I don't like to totally fly by the seat of my pants when it comes to dinner. But I don't like to plan each dinner a month in advance either. SO I have a way that I plan that is in-between those extremes. I have a list that I typed on my computer that has all of the meals I make for dinner. I went through my cookbooks and typed just the name into my list. (and sometimes the cookbook reference abbreviation & page #, if I didn't make it often). This helps when I need something different, and not necessarily new, one that I haven't made in a while. I have a very picky eater in my house, so I don't try new recipes tooo often. Plus I know my kids like mostly the same dinners. Not to say I make the same dinners all the time, because I change what I make for the seasons. In summer time, I make more sandwiches and grill more for dinners, so I don't need to heat up the house. In winter, I use the crock-pot and make casseroles more.

One friend of mine took her list of dinners and divided them into weeks. She mixed up the dinners so there were not too many like dinners together, i.e., Spaghetti and Lasagna in the same week; or tacos and burritos in the same week. Then she printed her list and rotates her menus so they don't always eat the same ten meals. Then she makes her shopping lists, so she can just grab her week 1 shopping list and go to the store. I have done this to some extent, but have a hard time sticking to the weekly list. So what I have done is make check boxes on my monthly menu list, so I can check off what we've had recently. It also gives me lots of ideas for different meals to make for my family. Maybe I'll remember that Southwest Stroganoff, pull out the recipe and make it again because I saw it on my meals list.

SO here is my copy of my monthly menu list. If you see anything on it that you want the recipe for, please let me know. My sister-in-law Morgan has lots of great recipes on her blog- some of which I've made. You can get to her blog here. She has even featured a few of my recipes! I hope to post some of our family favorites casseroles soon to give you some ideas.

Until then, enjoy the list! Let me know your thoughts on menu planning and what works for you (if anything)!

  • Monthly Menu—Colder weather
  • Week 1
  • Stuffed Shells
  • Wild Rice & Turkey Casserole
  • Ham Slice, baked potatoes and corn
  • Tacos/ Burritos
  • Pork Chops (w/ onion soup mix) noodles and veggie
  • Chicken/ Veggie Stir-fry w/ rice
  • Week 2
  • Chicken Enchiladas
  • Spaghetti/ pasta w/ salad – It. Sausage, red/ white sauce
  • Quiche w/ eggs, swiss cheese, ham, spinach?
  • Kilbasa, mac & cheese (or potatoes), carrots
  • Pizza (chicken or It. Sausage w/ veggies)
  • Week 3
  • Chicken Tortilla soup
  • Apple pancake
  • Meatballs & noodles (cream of chicken soup)
  • Chicken Scampi w/ tomatoes & rice
  • Tamale pie- corn, corn meal, salsa, ketchup
  • NEW______________________
  • Week 4
  • Mostacholi
  • Crockpot chicken Fettucine
  • Best Ever Meatloaf (MOPS), noodles, veggie
  • Green Chile Burritos—Rice, Gr. Turkey, gr. Chile sauce, tortillas,
  • Tator tot casserole
  • Ham stir-fry w/ raisins, celery, rice (RCC ckbk)
  • Week 5
  • Chicken rice casserole
  • Taco salad w/ chips, meat, beans, cheese, veggies
  • Pasta w/ peas & tuna
  • Breakfast – Fr. Toast, pancakes, crepes, 
  • Popover Pizza
  • Chicken Parmesan w/ chicken, red sauce, pasta
  • Week 6
  • Salsa chicken w/ rice, tomatoes
  • Egg burritos
  • Pasto sauce & pasta/ salad
  • French bread pizza/  mini-pizzas
  • BBQ Pork chops, mac & cheese, corn                  
  • Spaghetti carbonara (Colo Cache, p 219)
  • Week 7
  • Texas Tater Casserole
  • Tim’s chicken pot pie
  • Southwest Stroganoff
  • Shrimp  & pasta
  • Chicken fajitas
  • Porcupine meatballs? (w/ rice) OR
  • NEW______________________
  • Week 8
  • Apricot chicken and rice (MOPS)
  • Chili & corn bread
  • Pulled pork sandwiches w/ BBQ sauce (crockpot)
  • Shake & bake chicken, rice mix
  • Vegetable soup (homemade), rolls or biscuits
  • Crockpot chicken & dumplings w/ cream soup, celery, chicken & tortillas
  • Monthly Menu- warmer weather
  • Week 1
  • Steak on grill-oven potato fries- corn on cob
  • Perkins chicken salad (w/ chicken patties)
  • Tuna macaroni salad w/ onion, green pepper, celery, peas
  • Sloppy joes- meat, tomato soup, BBQ sauce, ketchup, onion soup mix, buns- baby carrots
  • K-bobs on grill—meat, veggies
  • Falafel w/ pitas, veggies
  • Week 2
  • Chili Dogs w/ buns, hot dogs, chili & cheese, carrots
  • Hamburgers/ hot dogs w/ buns, canned baked beans, OR Brats
  • Tomato Soup & Grilled cheese
  • BLT’s w/ chips, fruit
  • Couscous or Tabouli w/ Ham slice, veggie
  • Veggie pizza- crescent rolls, ranch, chopped veggies
  • Week 3
  • Soup & biscuits
  • Chicken salad w/ grapes, almonds, croissants, chips, fruit
  • 15 minute chicken chili w/ corn, salsa, chips
  • Egg salad sandwiches, chips, carrots
  • Chicken fajitas- tortillas, chicken, veggies, cheese, sour cream
  • Fish stix & rice mix
  • Week 4
  • Chicken club brunch ring w/ canned chicken, tomatoes, onions, crescent rolls
  • Frito pie- fritos, chili, hot dogs, buns
  • Potato stir-fry w/ corn, onions, green pepper
  • Taco salad
  • Breakfast—eggs, French toast, pancakes, crepes
  • Open face sandwiches- olives, mayo, bread, cheese
  • OTHER:
  • Pigs in blanket w/ broccoli salad
  • Corn quesadillas

I've actually got this in columns on my list, two columns on each side of the paper and I laminated it. Then I can check off, erase and reuse it!  I just copied and pasted it here for you! :-D


  1. Would you email me your original? I love this idea!

  2. Sure, then you can put it in your word processing program and add check boxes. Hope it helps! :-D


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