Meal Planning 101

Meal planning with guests, a holiday, and a carnival

I haven’t done a post in quite a while on meal planning, partly because I often didn’t have mine ready on Monday in time to post. But with having a few people over, and a Fourth of July party this week, I realized I had better plan ahead! There are so many exciting things to plan meals for!

To top it all off, I will be experimenting with some “frugal and nourishing” meals and side dishes this week for the carnival that Stephanie and I are hosting on the 11th and 18th. So some of my main dishes won’t have names yet, just a basic idea for the night. 🙂 Please join us if you can! Read more about it here.

I also am going to be playing around with some dairy and cane sugar free dessert recipes for the Fourth of July. I have considered many things and I have too many ideas. I don’t do desserts that often, so it can be hard to decide what to do when I get the chance. But raspberry cream pie (made with coconut milk) or a sourdough banana cake have been floating around as ideas. We will see what I come up with!

Menu Planning Tip

My meal planning tip for this week is an obvious one, but sometimes overlooked. When you have a busy week with more “special” meals to prepare, don’t feel bad planning cheaper and easier dinners on the other “family” nights. This isn’t giving your family second best, it’s just honoring your guests by serving your best. If I do a few more frugal meals on the off nights, it leaves more of my weekly budget to work with for blessing our guest with. If I plan more simple meals on the other nights, I have more time and energy to make special meals. It can be helpful to keep a list of your more frugal meals that you can refer to. This makes it easy to plan ahead.

If you look at my menu plan below, Monday and Sunday are hospitality nights, and Friday is the Fourth of July. So Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, and Saturday are easier meals that are also frugal.

So here’s my tentative plan.

Monday (guest night)- Main Course Salad (with chicken), Quinoa Salad (I have a recipe brewing in my head, it may involve nuts, grapes and cheese and a lemon dressing), Blackberry Sourdough Muffins, Iced tea

Tuesday-Italian Rice Salad, Green salad
Make chicken broth overnight

Wednesday-Soup (to be decided)

Thursday-Indian lentil and rice dish (with eggs), side salad with lemon/sesame dressing

Friday-Fourth of July! Dilled Cucumber Salad, meat to grill, and a dessert (still day dreaming ideas for this one!)

Saturday-Leftovers for lunch, Soup (to be decided) salad, and muffins or bread for dinner

Sunday (guests)- tentative plan-Sourdough pancakes (or waffles) with toppings, bacon and eggs

If you especially want any of these recipes, let me know and I will try to make it a priority!

This post is part of Menu Planning Monday.

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I love beautiful and simple food that is nourishing to the body and the soul. I wrote Fresh: Nourishing Salads for All Seasons and Ladled: Nourishing Soups for All Seasons as another outlet of sharing this love of mine. I also love sharing practical tips on how to make a real food diet work on a real life budget. Find me online elsewhere by clicking on the icons below!

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  1. Carrie T says

    I totally agree about wiggle room! I like the way you encorporate that into your plan!

    Very nice blog; we seem to share the same philosophy of feeding our families and same inspirations (Sally Fallon, Donna Gates, as well as a passion for local and seasonal foods).



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