May 1, 2019

May 2019 Monthly Menu Plan


I always meal plan for the entire month using the bulk of ingredients we already have on-hand.  I grocery shop every couple weeks to buy any fresh ingredients we need, along with restocking our produce.  Shopping my pantry, freezers, and basement storage helps to keep our grocery budget low because I typically buy our staples when I see them at their lowest price point.

As recipes are published, they will be linked to in future menu plans. You can also find published recipes under Labels on the right side of this blog or by simply doing a Search.

Here is the menu plan for May 2019:

  1.  Mexican Fiesta, Cantaloupe
  2.  Country Fried Steak & White Gravy, Mashed Potatoes, Veggie
  3.  Shredded Beef Oven Tacos
  4.  BLT Sandwiches, Chips, Cantaloupe
  5.  Steak Quesadillas
  6.  Slow Cooker Olive Garden Broccoli Alfredo
  7.  Biscuit Breakfast Casserole, Oven Home Fries
  8.  Cheesy Pierogies and Sausage Casserole, Veggie
  9.  Baked Salmon, Scalloped Potatoes, Veggie
10.  Anniversary - Eat Out
11.  Salami Cream Cheese Bagels
12.  Mother's Day - Eat Out
13.  Slow Cooker Clam Chowder in Bread Bowls
14.  Chicken Shawarma, Basmati Rice, Veggie
15.  Penne Pasta with Vodka Sauce, Garlic Bread
16.  Slow Cooker BBQ Applesauce Ckn, Roasted Potatoes, Veggie
17.  My Birthday - Eat Out
18.  Pita Bread Pizza's 
19.  Grilled PB&J's
20.  Cheesy Brat Stew Casserole, Veggie
21.  Doritos Taco Salad
22.  Slow Cooker Chicken Lo Mein
23.  Chicken Patty Sandwiches, Chips, Fruit
24.  Last Day of School - Eat Out
25.  Bacon Egg Salad Sandwiches, Chips, Fruit
26.  Italian Pasta Salad
27.  Hot Dog Roller Hot Dogs, Coleslaw, Onion Rings
28.  Cheesy Ranch Southwest Chicken Wraps
29.  Slow Cooker Macaroni Grill's Penne Rustica
30.  Slow Cooker Sticky Chicken, Buttered Rice, Veggie
31.  Slow Cooker Jesse James' Meatloaf, Mashed Potatoes, Veggie

April 1, 2019

April 2019 Monthly Menu Plan


I always meal plan for the entire month using the bulk of ingredients we already have on-hand.  I grocery shop every couple weeks to buy any fresh ingredients we need, along with restocking our produce.  Shopping my pantry, freezers, and basement storage helps to keep our grocery budget low because I typically buy our staples when I see them at their lowest price point.

As recipes are published, they will be linked to in future menu plans. You can also find published recipes under Labels on the right side of this blog or by simply doing a Search.

Here is the menu plan for April 2019:

  1.  Slow Cooker Chili Cheese Baked Potatoes
  2.  Hawaiian Garlic Shrimp, White Rice, Veggie
  3.  BBQ Applesauce Chicken, Bourbon Rice, Veggie
  4.  Slow Cooker Mississippi Roast, Mashed Potatoes, Veggie
  5.  Eat Out  (Movies)
  6.  Texas Toast Pizzas
  7.  Loaded Potato Soup, Crescent Rolls
  8.  BBQ Meatballs, White Rice, Veggie
  9.  Slow Cooker Soft Chicken Tacos
10.  Slow Cooker Honey Baked Ham, Scalloped Potatoes, Veggie
11.  Slow Cooker Chili Mac
12.  Slow Cooker Tuscan Chicken, Noodles
13.  Bacon Egg Salad Sandwiches
14.  Chicken Corn Chowder, Honey Butter Biscuits
15.  Slow Cooker Chicken Shawarma
16.  Slow Cooker Olive Garden Alfredo, Pasta, Garlic Bread
17.  Slow Cooker Cheeseburger Helper
18.  Biscuit Breakfast Casserole 
19.  Steak Quesadillas
20.  Italian Pasta Salad
21.  Tortellini Soup, Toast
22.  Slow Cooker Swiss Chicken, Veggie
23.  Slow Cooker Pineapple Meatballs, White Rice, Veggie
24.  Nachos Doritos Casserole  (using chili cheese Fritos), Salad
25.  Ricotta Stuffed Manicotti, Garlic Bread
26.  Eat Out  (Movies)
27.  Eat Out  (Movies)
28.  Spaghetti & Meatsauce
29.  German Puff Pancakes, Oven Turkey Bacon
30.  Slow Cooker Teriyaki Pork Roast, Buttered Rice, Veggie

March 27, 2019

Homemade Uncrustable Sandwiches

Today's "recipe" is a very kid friendly, school lunch approved favorite.

I use the term "recipe" lightly because it is more of a method than a true recipe. I think almost everyone knows how to make a PB&J sandwich.

In the freezer section of any grocery store, you will find boxes of various flavors of Uncrustable sandwiches. But, they are expensive. They are essentially slices of sandwich bread with peanut butter and jelly nestled inside. The ends around the sandwich are pinched off so that the filling stays within the pocket, making for a much less messy PB&J alternative for toddlers and kids to enjoy.


In order to make these Uncrustable knock-off's, I have used a Pampered Chef sandwich maker.  Here is a link to the version I used  Pampered Chef Cut n Seal.  But, there are tons of other options on the market that can do the same thing. You can even just use a circle cookie cutter, or any shape for that matter. Think hearts for Valentine's, 4-leaf clover for St. Paddy's, or even a Christmas tree for Christmas. The possibilities are endless.


Making these sandwiches is super simple. And the flavor combinations can be whatever you have handy in your pantry or whatever your kids love best.  Any nut butter and jelly flavor combination you desire.

For each sandwich you will need 2 slices of bread.  Spread peanut butter on both slices of bread. This keeps the jelly from penetrating the bread and making the sandwich soggy.  Next, spread a small bit of jelly over one of the peanut butter sides. Place the bread slices together to form a sandwich.  


Then, you are going to take your sandwich cutter of choice and place it over the top of the sandwich.  Press down firmly to cut the shape out. It should crimp all of the edges shut at this point, making a nice PB&J sandwich pocket.


I usually make these in bulk, making 2-3 loaves of bread at one time.  Once I have all of the sandwiches made, I store each one in an individual sandwich sized Ziploc bag.  


Then I place all of the individual bags in a large gallon sized Ziploc which I store in our freezer.  When we need one for lunch, I remove it from the freezer and place it into my son's lunchbox. By lunchtime at school, it is defrosted and just perfect.  These are also quite delicious on a hot summer day straight out of the freezer too!


Over the years, this simple homemade hack has saved us so much money. I can buy a huge 40 oz jar of peanut butter and loaves of bread at my local Aldi very inexpensively.  Then we have many, many of these easy-to-grab PB&J's at the ready for cheap anytime we need them.






February 28, 2019

March 2019 Monthly Menu Plan


I always meal plan for the entire month using the bulk of ingredients we already have on-hand.  I grocery shop every couple weeks to buy any fresh ingredients we need, along with restocking our produce.  Shopping my pantry, freezers, and basement storage helps to keep our grocery budget low because I typically buy our staples when I see them at their lowest price point.

As recipes are published, they will be linked to in future menu plans. You can also find published recipes under Labels on the right side of this blog or by simply doing a Search.

Here is the menu plan for March 2019:

  1.  Southern Style Chicken Bites, Mashed Potatoes, Corn
  2.  Oven Cheeseburgers
  3.  Fish Sticks, Chicken Rice, Veggie
  4.  Baked Ritz Chicken, Restaurant Style Baked Potatoes, Veggie
  5.  Slow Cooker Beef Chili, Cornbread
  6.  Oven Tacos
  7.  Shake n Bake Chicken Parm, Spaghetti
  8.  Eat Out (Movies)
  9.  Chicken Nuggets, Mac n Cheese
10.  Quesadillas
11.  Baked Chili Cheese Dogs
12.  Erik's Concoction, Veggie
13.  Corned Beef Hash, Veggie, Toast
14.  Teriyaki Chicken, White Rice, Veggie
15.  Enchirito Casserole, Homemade Refried Beans
16.  Tuna Sandwiches
17.  Bean & Rice Bowls
18.  Tortellini Soup, Grilled Cheese 
19.  Baked Rigatoni with Meatsauce
20.  Baked BBQ Dry Rub Drumsticks, Mashed Potatoes, Veggie
21.  Olive Garden Alfredo Pasta, Veggie
22.  German Pancakes
23.  Mizithra Spaghetti
24.  Baked Meatballs Subs
25.  Slow Cooker Potato Soup
26.  Slow Cooker Honey Garlic Chicken, White Rice, Veggie
27.  Slow Cooker Chicken Tacos
28.  Ikea Swedish Meatballs, Mashed Potatoes, Veggie
29.  Slow Cooker Mississippi Pot Roast, Carrots & Potatoes
30.  Cajun Sausage, Peppers, Onions with Mashed Potatoes
31.  Egg Salad Sandwiches