This week on Sunday Night Live with Ruth Ann, over on my Facebook Page, we are prepping 3 vegetarian freezer meals.
Lentil soup, Twice Baked Potatoes and Easy Mac N Cheese are on the prep menu for Sunday night! (more…)
Tip of the day- how to dice onions.
It sounds simple enough, right? Just cut it up... I used to always dice up my onions by cutting the in half and placing the flat side down, then cut one way and then the other. When I would get to the end I was holding, the chunks would get bigger and uneven as there was less to hold onto. (more…)
Our Weekly Meal Plan - March 12th
Getting back into a regular routine with school back in and my Sculpt menu plan in place. This week's menu is mostly from our freezer with a few fresh food purchases.
This week I chose to cheat a little and also have much of my meal prep done ahead in the freezer.
My meal prep is done for all of our meals, so there are some breakfast, lunch, supper and snack preparations happening in this post each week.
The cheating part was to pick up 2 rotisserie chicken for $15. This will give us 3 supper time meals, 2-3 lunches and a big pot of chicken and veggies soup.
Being on a fairly strict eating plan at the moment, getting my body back to cleaner eating and building muscle, my meals are pretty focused on Chicken and Fish. That being said, I also purchased a large bag of frozen white fish for $9, this will be for a couple supper time meals for the family and some for future lunches for myself. You can see details in Our Weekly Meal Plan.
As I get back on track and continue to tweak the family meals to become healthier, I will also switch our buying to more local and fresh food. So much to figure out and try to budget for. One step at a time....I keep repeating that at every turn in this process.
When there are prepped options in the fridge and freezer, I find it much easier to stay on track and make healthier decisions when it comes to food.
Do you meal prep? What are some items you prep every week?
Okay, a little late to the party this week. We spent the weekend away in PEI (blog post coming about our Weekend Wanders) and we have been eating out of the freezer for the past 2 days. So today is Meal Prep Wednesday!
By eating what we have had on hand for the past few weeks, we have not only saved money at the grocery store, but also cleaned out our freezer quite a bit. I am going to completely clean out the fridge freezer today, so only prepped meals are in there. We have a deep freeze with other meals and frozen items in our basement. Boy, does it feel good to get organized!!
Meal prep is the key for us to stay on track. Always having something healthy to grab when needing a little snack is so helpful, and even half prepped meals make a huge difference when running for kids sports 4 nights a week and weekends.
Here's the list of what I am planning on doing today. Some of this is for just me, or the rest of the family, some is for everyone. (4 year old in the house may mean this gets done over 2 days , craft bags to the rescue!)
Here are some pics of what I have done so far... (Noon on Wednesday)
Homemade hash browns, seasoned and cooked.
Potatoes soaking in cold water, prep for Homemade Freezer French Fries.
Almonds in 1 oz. portions.
And this is what Clayton was up to while I did all this 🙂
Off to have a little dance party break and then back to prepping.
Have a great week and I will be back on Sunday next week, with our meal plan and prep.
I usually use this format to plan. Not assigning a day to the meal, but rather having everything prepped to make whichever I feel like doing that day. Here is my plan for this week. Recipes will be added as well, as I get them photographed and posted.
There are some alterations included for my meals, as I am starting a new meal plan for me in my weight loss journey. Minor adjustments to keep me on track.
Our lunches are usually salad or wrap with some kind of protein (Chicken, Tuna, Egg, etc), or leftovers from supper. School lunches are usually NOT sandwiches, as my oldest does not like them.
So I get creative with what we have on hand. Meat chunks, grape tomatoes, cheese cubes, cut up veggies, etc...
We have options ready and available.
Once again this week, I didn't purchase much. Most of our meals were planned around what I had on hand in the freezer and pantry.
Here is the list of what I did for prep this week.
When I go to my pantry and find half empty boxes, where I thought there were full boxes, it makes me so frustrated. When you have children who are independent, they will often leave a mess of empty or unsealed bags in their wake.
By creating a location in a pantry for single serving snacks, it helps to eliminate the frustration of the empty boxes. Create a cupboard or basket in your fridge that is the "Snack Station". Tell household members, including adults, that this is where you find your snacks. Only take from these location unless you ask for something else.
The Snack Station will also help with packing lunches, either making it easier for you to grab or for your children to pack up their lunches.
Depending on your children's ages, you may require them to ask before going into the cupboard, or simply allow them a certain number of snacks after school or after supper, on the weekends, etc...
You can go as far as having bins labeled with "Healthy" and "Junk" options.
Consider creating a rule similar to:" you can have 2 healthy snacks and before you pick a junk snack".
With cookies, chips and crackers, I purchase in bulk sizes and portion them out in plastic baggies or containers. Then when they grab a snack, I know they are eating a serving and not the whole package.
Prep healthy snack ahead as well. If they need to be peeled (orange or clementine) or cut up (Carrots, cauliflower, etc) then have them ready to grab an go. It may surprise you how often a child, or even an adult, will select a healthy snack option if it is ready to eat.
Remove outside packaging and break apart so individual servings are easy to select quickly.
I find that by taking the time to portion out our snacks, we are more aware of what we are eating and there are no partially empty boxes in my cupboards.
Once portioned in bags or containers, use a basket our larger container to hold each type of snack. Label the bins with healthy or junk.
With a younger child, labeling with numbers works best, (1,2&3). Then put the junkier snacks in bin 3.
Do you have a cupboard of half empty boxes? Please share your ideas and tips for organizing your snacks.
Basic Meal Planning Template Download
Meal planning is a great money saver and waste reducer. If you have a hard time sticking to a meal plan, then this style planner may work for you.
DOWNLOAD Meal Planner
Go through your freezer, pantry and fridge each week and write down meal options in each of the blocks.
As you make each meal cross it off the list. At the end of the week, carry over any options to the following week, that you did not use this week.
Here is an example of how I started this type of meal plan.
The above download is a printable version you can personalize weekly.