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EBowen 10-08-2002 09:26 AM

I have to share how I menu plan!
I have seen a lot of messages about people making master lists and somehow getting it to turn into a menu plan, and well, I tried it. It just really didn't work for me.

So I got rid of the side dish part and made a list of main dishes that I make well and that my family eats. Then I cut it apart and sorted it by type: chicken, fast&greasy, beef, non-meat, asian, etc. I put each little pile into a different box.

I made my own sheets for menu planners so that I had 3 weeks figured out at once.

Then I drew a sheet, wrote it down, drew another sheet from another box, wrote it down, etc. until I was done. (after i wrote what i drew from the box, I put it on a separate pile) When I was all done with little pieces of paper, I put them into different categories and did it again. Then my DH, DD, and I looked at the menus and talked through them. We crossed a few things off and added others. DD suggested a pancake night, so we got rid of a hamburger helper square.

I just struggled with the whole menu planning thing way too long, and I thought I should share and maybe make someone else's life a little easier.


Juliecc913 10-08-2002 10:08 AM

Re: I have to share how I menu plan!
When I was all done with little pieces of paper, I put them into different categories and did it again. Elizabeth::: [/B][/QUOTE]

This sounds like a good idea and similar to what I'm trying to do. I don't exactly understand the above sentence though. Do you mean that you didn't have three weeks worth of ideas so you redrew again or what?


EBowen 10-08-2002 10:44 AM

I re-read what I wrote, and I see that I wasn't very clear. (It made sense as I typed, but re-reading it, it didn't quite flow! I am SO not a writer!!:. :. )

The first time I had these categories of meals: chicken, beef, non-meat/fish, pork. I rotated between these.

Actually, by the time I had used up my little sheets once, I had 12 weeks done. (4 sheets of 3 weeks each) However, I am Catholic, so I made 2 of the sheets (6 weeks) so that there was no meat on Fridays for lent, as well as the first wednesday had no meat (ash wednesday) Also, I should note that I only had enough non-meat choices to get those 6 weeks done.

After I had 12 weeks planned, I was out of little papers and I re-sorted them as : spicy, mild, soup/stew, fast&greasy. Then I did another 12 weeks rotating between them.

After we sat and tweaked a we always have leftover roast beef, so I moved up a casserole to use that up, and adding special requests and removing not-so-popular choices, we ended up with 8 sheets holding 24 weeks. The Lent weeks will be just Lent, the other 6 sheets (18 weeks) can be rotated between and I may never have to decide what I should make again. 8-)

I think how many weeks you do depends on how long you want to pull out little slips, how many different things you want to make and how picky your crew is. (also, I did this while I had a sprained ankle, so it might also depend on how bored you are!!)

Juliecc913 10-08-2002 02:14 PM


Loved your post. I'm Catholic too ,so your non-meat Lent idea is great (no more winging it that way). You've got a lot of meal ideas (I've nowhere near that many yet, but you've inspired me!) ^^ 8-)

CAFE 10-09-2002 02:13 PM

:rolleyes: Meal planning can be a real challenge in our home. we have so much going on and such a crazy schedule, so I can really only plan 1 week at a time. :( Plus I plan our meals around what is on sale at the store. :rolleyes: So far it is working pretty good. We also tend to eat out on "hectic" nights. I just number 1-7 on a piece of paper, then plan a meal for each night. Hope this makes sense.:daisy:

CAFE 10-09-2002 02:19 PM

:rolleyes: Meal planning can be a real challenge in our home. we have so much going on and such a crazy schedule, so I can really only plan 1 week at a time. :( Plus I plan our meals around what is on sale at the store. :rolleyes: So far it is working pretty good. We also tend to eat out on "hectic" nights. I just number 1-7 on a piece of paper, then plan a meal for each night. Hope this makes sense.:daisy:

barbszy 10-29-2002 10:06 AM

I'm wishing I could plan menus more than a week ahead! As it is, with the different schedule changes I end up changing the menu I plan for the week. Usually that means switching Tuesday's dinner to Wednesday, and cooking Friday's meal on Tuesday, so at least the grocery list doesn't change.
What I probably could do is come up with a list of 30 for a month--and organize it in order of how long it takes to prepare that meal, have the groceries I need to make those meals and then choose the meal for the day depending on how much time I'll get to cook.
I'm going to have some free time tomorrow, so I think I will try doing that and see if I get anywhere with it. Does this idea seem like it makes any sense?

Juliecc913 10-29-2002 11:21 AM

Yes, Barb, it does. Especially with a busy family--some times you have 15 minutes, sometimes an hour. I totally understand.

One thing I do for quick meals is precook a bunch of hamburger and chicken breasts and throw individual recipe portions in the freezer. If it is one of those gotta eat quick times I pop it into the microwave to defrost and make tacos, or sloppy joes or cheeseburger macacroni, or spaghetti or chicken noodles. You get the idea. This has saved me alot this past couple of weeks while we've been "freshening up" the house for reappraisal. As a matter of fact, I'm out of hamburger.:ugh:

dawny75 11-13-2002 10:50 AM

Oh I like this thread. It's great to see how other people make this work. I plan out a month at a time, but of course we end up with some changes.

I print out a calendar and in pencil I put all of our anticipated activities for the month: cheer practice, pta night, meetings, date night, order pizza night, etc. Also, on weekends and holidays, I mark how many kids might be here for dinner (we're a blended family, so kids may be with their other parents). For example, on Thursdays it's usually just me and DD11, so I fix stuff she likes that the others don't eat - usually involves spinach, her favorite!

After all the calendar info is filled in, I start penciling in entrees. Some nights are really crazy, and have to be crock pot dinners, or really quick recipes. I plan to use whatever we have in the pantry or freezer. Then I add the side dishes, also based on what we have in the house. I try to plan for fresh produce in the beginning of the week, and more canned stuff toward the end of the week. I post the calendar on the fridge, and I mark the changes if we make any.

I'm the really uptight, organized type, so after I have it all arranged, I sit down at the computer and type it in on the calendar! I usually do all this planning during a movie one night. I use previous month's calendars for ideas.

Our breakfast menu is basically the same every month (trying to change that), so I just leave it on the calendar, and make changes if needed. Nobody eats lunch at home on a regular basis, so I don't plan for that except on weekends we have all three kids here.

This allows me to buy ahead, and plan menus based on what we have in the house rather than what's on sale this week. When I shop, the produce and dairy stuff is for the current week, but the pantry and nonfood stuff is usually for the next month.


LuvMyFF 12-01-2002 05:34 AM

I have a hard time planning as well. I am just starting out. What I do right now is sit down with a calendar in front of me with all the work schedules on it(dh get's his schedule 1 month @ a time) and I write in ...chicken, pasta, beef, meatless, etc. The only thing that is a given is Friday night is pizza night. I am also going to start a soup and sandwich night. It is such a inexpensive meal...and comforting.

I like the idea of cards and pulling them out of the box. I read somewhere to write down what your family eats for an entire month and there you have a menu of sorts.


O-mama 03-03-2003 06:31 PM

Menus, or lack thereof
This last fall when I became a SAHM again I went through all of my miscellaneous recipe collections and pulled together a stellar 10 week meal plan. DH does leftovers for lunch so I had even planned it down to the leftovers being eaten not the next day, but the day after and we didn't have something similar that night. We kind of gimped through it the first month, and the next month ends didn't meet because I had my second and third round of strep in five months (tonsils were removed eons ago) and uninsured hubby got it once, plus a trip to g-grandma's 80th birthday in CA. Hubby cashed out an IRA from a previous employer and ended up having a little leftover from paying everything for that month so I went and got a good portion of the groceries. It was after that when I finally made the connection that while I had a wonderfully planned out was so out of our budget we would never eat again!! :-O

I think that's about the time I got really gung-ho about frugality. Been struggling with menu planning ever since. Right now I've decided to take it down to basics. Sunday is some type of roast, Monday is soup/stew, Tuesday is casserole, Wednesday is Sandwiches, Thursday another casserole, Friday is pasta (or at 'auntie's'), Saturday is 'other.' I'm working on a small collection of recipes for each of these categories so we can round it out a little better, but it has helped a little to at least have a genre set for the day. :rolleyes: I have a pricelist that I have become quite fanatical about (I even email updates to area acquaintances so they can make good use of my obsession as well) and am tracking when good sales come back around so I can budget for them and stock pile till the next go-round.

The thing that has helped me the most the last month or so though is a tip I got from the Tightwad Gazette to freeze leftovers instead of letting them waste away to science projects in my fridge. This has cut my wasted food to a miniscule amount! (I am fortunate to have a stand-alone freezer to store them in). DH picks what he wants from teh leftovers for his lunches that day, sometimes for several days, so he gets to eat something he feels like eating rather than something he has to eat. Struggling with having breakfast type things ready for him though. Baby steps...right?

Lee 03-04-2003 07:33 AM

I just bought a small deep freezer, and am trying to fill up. The Tightwad gazzette idea is a good one thats what I started doing. Have had my deep freeze for less than 2 weeks already have chili, wings, couple of casseroles, not large portions but enough if dh has nothing to take for lunch or for ds and I as were pretty much always home for breakfast,lunch and dinner! Made a big batch of pancakes the other day. Bought a ton of hamburger on sale last week, made lots of hamburger patties and spagetti meat. we usually have some sort of pasta at least once a week. Every other Friday is usually pizza or hamburger and fries night! Anyway I am trying but so far have not planned any menus more than 7 days! Besides my thought is if I buy on sale take advantage of the freezer it shouldnt take me long to decide a dinner to make quick or otherwise!

3msmom 03-04-2003 08:31 AM

Sounds like everyone is on the right track. I need to get there too. I do okay but nowhere near any type of organized system yet. I like the idea of penciling in a menu on the calendar, I think that might help me. I'll look through my things and see if I can plan a week first, I'll see how that goes and then plan for 2 weeks, if that goes well then I'll do a month at a time. :)

Usually once I set my mind to something and get the wheels rolling, the rest flows fairly smoothly. Just getting started is my hangup! :angel:

dawny75 03-04-2003 05:02 PM

O-mama - sounds like you're right on track. My favorite make ahead breakfast is french toast that I toast in the morning! Some weeks I make egg mcmufins and freeze them too. YUMMY!

O-mama 03-05-2003 04:52 AM

Meal Planning:
I'm going to try writing down what we eat for a month, and then next month I pretty much already have a meal plan. I tried to do it once when I was trying to keep track of what DS had for snack, etc the day before but didn't keep with it. I think this time I'll just log dinner and let the chips fall for the rest of it for now.

Breakfast Foods:
I revised a buttermilk pancake recipe to make it into buttermilk-applesauce pancakes that worked great for DS's snacks (doesn't work with pumpkin tho). Also, I found an interesting little recipe called Buttermilk Cookies on when I was looking to fix a botched round of biscuits (I was making 4 batches, but had accidentally put in 16 batches worth of baking soda...didn't realize it until after I had cut in the shortening :rolleyes: ). I glopped too much batter into my jelly roll pan to make bar cookies so it ended up more like a cake (they're cakey cookies) and DH announced he loved it that way and they made great on-the-go breakfast munchies that don't need to be reheated! He also likes sausage biscuits, but those don't get made regularly, same with cinnamon rolls.

LadyLynn 03-05-2003 05:39 PM

Hi everyone,

I don't really have any set way that I menu plan. I usually plan out two weeks worth of meals. I usually plan it around what I already have on hand first, and go from there. This makes it a little easier to shop. I usually shop for groceries every two weeks as that is when I get paid. We usually eat pasta two times a month, so I always make sure I have pasta on hand and all of the fixing to go with it. It has made it a little easier on me to plan out two weeks worth of meals vs. a monthly meal plan.

LadyLynn Mom to 4 wife to Donny::-)::

dawny75 03-06-2003 03:40 AM

I find my monthly menus gravitating toward the same recipes each time. I always PLAN to try some new main dishes, but reality gets in the way. Now I'm trying to plan for one new EXPERIMENT night when I try something new. I plan extra time for it, and I serve it with something the kids already like, just in case! dawny

tree3branches 07-14-2003 07:25 PM

::-):: Planning Menu's

In planning a menu I make a check of what I have on hand. Then I consider whats on sale. I have themes to work these togather. Plus I consider our sedule for the week.

Themes I have are.
Beef night--- Roast, steak, stewed beef,any recipe using beef as the main ingredent
chicken night--- Fried chicken. baked chicken, grilled any recipe using this meat
fish night, --- perch, shrimp etc
Vegetable night-- pinto etc. I serve 3 vegetables
Sandwich night--- club sandwiches etc with raw vegetables
Salad night--- Chicken salad, tuna salad , cheif salad
Mexican night--- taco's etc
Itay night--- pizza, spittiggi etc
Soup night--- Chowders, pot luck soup
Appertizer night--- finger sandwich, pickle of sorts, etc

I wacth for good sales and soon I get home start the prep work. I cook batch of pasta sauce, and chile put them in the freezer for later use. I got a good deal on sqush made squash casserole. We ate one I froze one.

This is what works on saving us money and time on our budget.

This be Tree

ajrsmom 07-26-2003 07:47 PM

Do you follow a menu plan for the week, month or ???
Im working on becoming better organized so that we can have some more free time around here.

What do you do for menus? Is it something new everyday or do you have certain days that you have certain items--like Mon. is pasta, Tues casseroles.....etc. Or do you have a better plan?

Would you please share your tips with me? Im having a hard time coming up with an idea for this.


Abear 07-26-2003 08:42 PM

I've sort of "fallen off the wagon" since school ended. But this is what I do........

I sit down and make up about 15 days of menus with a corresponding grocery list of things I need in order to cook all of those meals. I print out a copy of the menus and post on the refrigerator door. As I make the meals, I "X" them off the menus.

This way, I don't feel "closed in" to fix a certain meal on a certain day but I have menus to choose from and have everything on hand to make any meal that I choose from the menu selection.

Most of the time, I ask for input from the family when making up my menus. I find if they have input, there is less complaining about what is placed on the table at meal time!

We discussed this once on the What's for Dinner thread. I don't remember who it was but I remember that there was one person who had certain days for certain foods.....for example Monday was chicken, Tuesday was pasta....etc... which I thought was a terrific idea but I would have a mutiny on my hands if I tried that!

I need to get back to doing menus!! It really eases up the stress some of trying to plan supper every day!

sharona 07-27-2003 04:16 AM

I make a weeks worth of menus at a time. I write down the days of the week, but I'm not bound by what to serve on that given day. I make my menus based on the food ads and what I have in the freezer and pantry. I also keep track of what I need for lunches and breakfast, but they are not on my menu list. I really take advantage of sale items and especially buy 1 get 1 offers.
I do my shopping early on Sat morning, when the stores are stocked, the markdowns have happened and it's not too crowded.

Here is this weeks menu

Sat - Sausage, corn and Potato Casserole
Sun - Steak on the Grill, potato salad and corn and bean salad
Mon - Stir fried veggies over rice with garlic bread
Tues - Salad with all the fixing's
Wed - Rosemary and Feta Chicken roll ups with tomato sauce, rice and steamed broccoli
Thurs - Smoked Sausage, sauerkraut and potatos in the crockpot
Fri - Loaded baked potatoes and leftovers

I always have salad available, especially good for starving people before I get dinner on the table.

Hope this helps!

ajrsmom 07-27-2003 05:41 AM

Thanks to both of you for sharing your plans. I usually make a weekly menu while making my store list......I just have to get hard on myself and stick to it!!

Jenna 07-29-2003 11:10 AM

Hi Tami,

I plan my menus once a week, when the sale flyers come. I try to use things that are on sale. I don't have the same type of meal on a particular day either. I don't even plan what I am going to have for each day in the week. What I do is plan 7 days and then decide in the morning what I am going to make that day. Some of my recipes are more complicated than others and sometimes I just don't have time for anything that takes too much time. It all depends on what else is going on that day. Usually, I plan at least one dish that will make more than one meal. Then on a really busy day, I can have leftovers of that meal.

I just go through my many recipes and try to choose a nice selection of dishes using different meat. So maybe I will have two chicken dishes, one with hamburger, one with pork, etc.

Hope this made sense, sometimes it doesn't relate well in the written word.:)

Good luck to you with getting organized!

MomsZoo 07-30-2003 04:45 AM

I'm not quite as organized as the other ladies here, but I do plan to a certain extent. Before I go grocery shopping, I plan dinners for at least a week, knowing some nights will be leftovers, one night order a pizza, and maybe one night everyone fends for themselves (or as I like to call it, mom's night off!). So when I go shopping, I know I'll have dinner for a week and a half at the very least. I make a list of everything I'm going to make and write down what ingredients I need from that list and take it to the store. That way I don't forget anything and I find that I spend much less money than when I used to go to the grocery store and just wing it.

bobbiegirl 08-03-2003 06:38 AM

You gals are awesome!
Since it is just my hubby and I, except for when the grandkids are visiting, I have become a very poor planner.

One of the nice things I like about my hubby of only 3 years is that he does not expect a prepared meal everyday, he will eat when he is hungry. I get up at 4:30 a.m. to be at work by 6 a.m. and when I get home around 2:30 p.m. I am tired and my job is taking care of Mentally Disabled Adults in a foster care setting, which means I am cleaning, cooking and doing laundry ALL day, so needless to say, when I get home, it is everyone for themselves. I do have to stop myself from having feelings of guilt for my lack of energy when I get home, I am 55 y.o. and my hubby has been unemployed for almost a year and he does NOTHING around the house all day, so I guess it is a little bit of a self defense mechanism I have going on here too!

You gals sound so organized and on top of things, I just wanted you to know how terrific I think it is. 8-)

barbszy 12-28-2003 11:41 AM

I do a menu by the week. This way I can shop for what's on sale each week in the supermarket :-D and get the meat at the best price. We eat around what's on sale or what's in the fridge unless there is a special occasion.

ajrsmom 01-22-2004 01:30 PM

I have been making out a weekly menu for us every Fri. to use the following week. Our sales ads come on Fri. so I pair those with any coupons that I have from the previous week and the Sunday coupons and shop either on Sunday or Monday.

This seems to work for us right now. ::-)::

Jora 05-12-2004 08:26 AM

I also plan my dinners around activities.

For us, Mondays were hectic -- bring kids home from reliegious ed at 5; DH & DD leave for scouts at 5:50 -- so those were crockpot nights.

At the beginning of the month, I block out a meal plan. Then I make up my Sam's Club list, since we only go to Sam's about once a month. I also make up a Super Wal Mart list -- Wal Mart is 20 miles in the OTHER direction. Again, a trip I make once a month.

Having covered the basics, I pick up loss leaders locally.

Occasionally, I'll have to buy something local at full price, when an urgent need comes up -- for example, DH was to bring snack to scouts. He decided that Milk Chugs would be healthier than the drink pouches they usually have. Ouch! I think I paid $3.50 a 6-pk. And then, most the girls drank a sip or two and dumped the rest. (Next time, I think DH will take drink pouches).

Anyway, still working to get the meals streamlined and the budget under control.

paintingnut 11-05-2004 08:09 PM

To make life easier for me, I made up 5 weeks worth of menus , I dont have them specificly for any day of the week, but 7 breakfasts, lunches, snacks, and dinners which i can fix any day of the week. I then made out a grocery list for each of those 5 menu sheets for every ingredient I would need to make all of the meals. I keep these sheets in a day planner in my purse and they are numbered.. the menu sheets are 1-5 with coresponding grocery lists also numbered 1-5. when I go shopping, i open up my day planner, flip to the menu section, and shop with the premade list of my choice. It really has cut down on planning, and when I made up these lists, I asked each family member to think of their favorite meal, and each person has one meal that the have picked on each sheet, so at least one person is happy one day per week!( there are 7 of us how handy.:clapp: )
If I do my shopping at say, Aldis.. a discount grocery store in our area, I breeze right through, spend as little as I can possibly spend and end up with exactly what I need and no impulse buys.. just whats on the list.

tree3branches 11-08-2004 03:55 PM

::-):: My menu this week.

Tonight we had Beef Burritos , served with baked sweetpotatoes and a green salad

Tues. Ginger Chicken with butter herbed potatos, and steamed broccoli and carrots.

Wed. Baked Fish baked potato and greens

Thurs. Vegetable soup (crockpot) grilled cheese and spinach salad.

Fri. Shepred Pie steamed Broccole and caulflower with butter and a salad

Sat. Pork Chops, butter noodles, applesauce sourdough rolls

Sunday Pot Luck night clear out frig.

trainlady 12-08-2004 12:42 PM

Do you prefer following a planned menu or just fixing something for dinner that sounds good that day?


barbszy 12-08-2004 12:56 PM

Train, I always make a menu. Don't always follow it but I always start out with one. This way I am guaranteed to have the ingredients for at least 7 dinners in my house for the week.
Things come up, schedules change and sometimes I improvise or change stuff, but usually I like the feeling of knowing what I'll serve for dinner. I can do some prep work when time allows during the day--like today....I assembled the main dish earlier and it is ready for me to turn on the oven in 5 minutes. All I have to do now is fill and turn on the rice cooker and heat up some frozen vegetables and dinner is ready!! It was a busy afternoon so this was perfect.

I make my menu for a week at a time and base the meats on what's in my freezer or what's on sale. I have a spot in my menu planner for "last week's dinner" for each day to avoid reruns--and also a spot for "school hot lunch" so the kids don't get spaghetti twice in a day. It has worked out well.

Kimmer 01-24-2005 06:29 PM

I started with writing out 62 dinners that we will eat, then I took an extra calender and went from there. Now I have more meals that we will eat then those. I make my monthly menus out from there and there is occanionally that we try a new thing. Since I am a picky eater with 2 picky eaters for kids we do not try new things to often. When DH (now me) goes to get groceries we try to shop for a month except for soda, milk, fruits and vegs (these are a weekly stop at the store). We do not follow the menu plan to the tee. I just cross out what dinners we have made for the month. There are nights that we order pizza or other take out so then i have extra meals but thats ok. I have decided that for now on leftovers will be made into tv dinners for lunchs one night of dinners or when ever. I have had the seperated plates with covers for awhile but have never done it yet. But am going to start as for since this is my first month of handling all the grocery shopping and cooking it will be much easier on me. My 6 year old ds has decided that he loves Lupias and could eat them everynight thanks to my mom making them on Christmas eve. I have a container full in the freezer so when he decides he doesn't like something that I know he likes I can just cook some of them up for him. I always try to have easy stuff in the freezer for everyone that they like so that if I don't feel like cooking a meal they can just get out what ever they feel like for that night.

RobertaD 02-02-2005 05:45 PM

Before the holidays I was doing real well with keeping a running inventory of what was in my freezer but now I have no idea what is in there LOL. I need to make a new list this week so I know how many packs of smoked sausage, BE sausage, hamburger, pork, chicken, etc. I have as well as the veggies & pies.

We eat lunch & dinner most days at home so a lot of the leftovers are eaten in the next day or two. I haven't really planned menus out just alternate the meat that I'm cooking so we would have a chicken night, pork night, leftover night, beef night, sausage night, leftover night, etc.

I have canned pasta & soup on hand for the kids when I'm not up to fixing a meal for them which they love to eat.


tree3branches 02-06-2005 02:28 AM

:sausa: Hi diving in the freezer we are here. So menus had been made around that. I've been pulling 3 meats at a time out. The one that thaws out in the frigerator gets eaten first.. Making a big dent in the freezer. Hard times make you appreate what you have.. Last night we had stewed deer over rice. Had a little left so I'm making it into vegetable soup tonight.

I did a freezer dive a while ago pulled out a turkey (13 pounder) Lots of meals off that baby. Cooked pork ( I'll make BBQ out of it) and Ring bologna. Make a stirfry or bean type soup with it maybe.

Hope you all a good day.

This be Tree:)

lworth 02-08-2005 02:09 PM

I have thoroughly enjoyed reading all of your tried and true methods and also the suggestions. I really like the idea of a "theme" for each night.
My problem is this: we are vegetarian so that nixes the beef, chicken, etc... night. Also my DH works at a boarding school (he's the treasurer) and we live on campus, so he comes home for lunch every day. I try to have the bigger meal at lunch, but I totally run out of ideas for supper. Our breakfast is almost always cereal (not junk sugar stuff) with fruit, so sometimes I cook "breakfast" for supper.
Any thoughts.........I've been trying to keep track of all I cook for the past month and then going through and tweaking it a bit.
I also like the one night a week making something new. I am a cookbook junkie and love cooking a new recipe..........but whoever said reality kicks in was right on target. Even being a SAHM the week always ends up being more hectic than you thought it would be!!
Thanks for your ideas

Lee 02-09-2005 11:29 AM

I see that you wrote your family are vegetarians. Question for you I babysit for an almost 2 yr old vegetarian. Do you have any suggestions what to feed for lunch? Today his lunch was a bit of cheese, creamed peas and a tiny amount of pear that he would not eat....I really dont think his diet has any balance. Any ideas would be apprciated.

tree3branches 02-09-2005 04:44 PM

Iworth have you ever changed meat recipes in to vegetrian. Like useing veggie burgers instead of pork in casserole Like for Baked Sweet Potatoes and Pork Chops. Useing TVP instead of ground beef. We run a small bulk store I have costomer come in that are vegetarian. They use alot of TVP. I use TVP to strech my beef out. I put 1/2 hamberger called for the put the rest tvp.

Hope this was a little help.

This be Tree:):hearts:

randb 02-09-2005 06:43 PM

Hello all!
I enjoyed reading all your ideas for menues.
What I try to do is make up menues for 2 or 3 months. I shop once a month but I go thru my cook books & write down the book & page of a recipe that I think we will like, then have a calendar made up & put the recipe on certain days.
During the winter I try to have some kind of soup once a week which always has leftovers but the next night have something else & then the next night have the leftover soup, that way you don't get tired of having leftovers! The same goes for any meats or casseroles.
Some of the menues are old standbys & alot are new recipes that I call dishes. My husband says 'oh no not another dish' but usually goes back for 2nds. This way I can try new recipes, I get tired of fixing the same old things! Sometimes they are very similar to the old recipes but like with pasta it calls for a different noodle.
I also got some index cards ( this took awile to do) & went thru the cook books & wrote down the name of the recipe on the front of the card & numbered them 1-2-3 etc with the name of the cookbook & page number & on the back beside that number wrote the ingredients, mostly what I may not have on hand. This way I can take the card to the store & I have the list of ingredients I need. Or when I search for a recipe I can see if I have the ingredients on hand & can fix that recipe, or substitute an ingredient.

lworth 02-09-2005 07:02 PM

I do use TVP or veggie substitutes, but it tends to be a little more expensive than my budget can handle on a regular basis. We are lucky because we live on school campus, our cafeteria director lets us buy from her at cost. Keeps the cost down some.
Thanks for your suggestions.

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