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Monday, November 30, 2009

Holiday meal planning

This time of year I find it more important than ever to have a good plan. This goes for menu planning as well as holiday activities - stop back in tomorrow for this year's holiday activity garland! There is so much going on that I don't want to have to think too much during the week, and I want to make sure we make time for the important things.

Today let's talk about menu planning - I will be using my slow cooker at least once a week, and I'll be doing quite a bit of freezer cooking, both meals and cookies! When you have an especially hectic week ahead, it helps to create a menu plan that uses many of the same ingredients across meals - that way you can prep several meals at once and then just finish them throughout the week. For example, this week I defrosted a large amount of lean ground beef for our meals. I cooked it all up with some onion and seasoning and then removed a third of it. The larger portion got taco seasoning for taco salads and a Mexican casserole. The smaller portion became sloppy joe.

For a day when you're planning cookie or candy making, it helps to schedule something from the freezer or a crockpot meal, both for lunch and dinner! My favorite crock pot pulled pork is a good choice because it's so versatile - serve it on sandwiches for lunch and then with mashed potatoes and green beans for dinner. It's also quick and easy to make into burritos, tetrazzini, or moo shoo pork.

For breakfast this week we'll be having oatmeal cake bars. I'll share the recipe later this week, it's based off of the delicious baked oatmeal recipe from $5 dinners. For lunches we'll be having soup, sandwiches and apples with peanut butter. Here's what's on the menu for dinner:

Monday: beef burgundy with noodles and stuffing
Tuesday: sloppy joes with baked beans and potato chips
Wednesday: cinnamon pancakes, eggs and candied bananas
Thursday:enchilada casserole with corn cakes
Friday: taco salads with chips and salsa
Saturday: steak mole with rice and guacamole
Sunday: lentil soup with grilled ham sandwiches

What's on your menu this week? For more inspiration, visit OrgJunkie's Menu Plan Monday.

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