My Meal Planning in 2015

I’ve written several times on NHM about how I meal plan:
It’s more of an art than a science these days! 😀
I still use the recipe menu planning tool, MealBoard, but what I’ve done now is structure our meals into the following categories:
  • Monday: “Meat free” Monday
  • Tuesday: chicken (often a slow cooker dish)
  • Wednesday: fish
  • Thursday: red meat (often a slow cooker dish)
  • Friday: Fun!
  • Saturday: more complex dishes/Leftovers (depending on what is happening that day)
  • Sunday: Roast or Slow cooker

I’ve stored all of our recipes under each “Day” so anything vegetarian is now on a Monday.

It means, I don’t really have to think too much about what we are eating and whether we have variety in our diets.

It also means, when I’m feeling slovenly, that we can freezer dive and still have variety!

For example, on “fish Wednesday’s” we have fish cakes for emergency meals if I haven’t remembered to take the fish out of the freezer. But did you know, it’s actually safe to cook the majority of fish directly from the freezer? I found this out via Regal Fish, the fish delivery company that we use.

On Friday’s we have a “fun” meal. I’ve started something recently called “poor man’s chinese”. It’s something I’ve picked up from my Mum as she used to do something similar because my sister was an incredibly fussy eater and we hardly had any money, so Mum had to be creative.

I get a few extra bits, like some prawn crackers, spring rolls (the basic ones in Sainsburys are a bargain!) and I do some egg fried rice and a chinese dish like chicken in black bean sauce or sweet and sour sauce.

We put out a few dips like sweet chilli sauce or hoisin sauce, with some cucumber and put it all on the table and everyone helps themselves. I also have vegetarian chicken nuggets (oxymoron, I know) for dipping. Miss NHM really enjoys this as it gives her control over what she’s eating and she has to try a bit of all of it. It’s also not too expensive to do.

We have also had “poor man’s Indian”. I make a basic curry, get some cheap Naan breads, put out some dishes of dessicated coconut, mashed up bananas and some raisins and we help ourselves.

We’ve also been known to make our own pizza’s on a Friday night and do “poor man’s Nando’s”. I also love Mexican so will sometimes do fajitas or enchiladas.

Either way, Friday night is a family meal that we have at the table. We try to eat dinner at the table as much as possible but Friday night is “fun” night for dinner so we always eat at the table.

How do you meal plan and keep the variety and interest in meals for your family?

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