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This Week’s Menu Plan

Blueberry Banana Smoothie

We made it through our busy week last week and are looking forward to a bit more of a relaxed week this week. We are hosting another smaller baby shower tomorrow for my sister, but I’m just providing the home to have it at and my sister-in-law and sisters are doing all the prep work. So it should be pretty simple for me to pull off — especially since my house is already clean from last week’s shower!

Oh and did anyone notice I completely skipped posting about last week’s Freezer Cooking session? Um, that would be because I didn’t get it done. When my to-do list started becoming a little overwhelming on Thursday, I decided that was something that just get skipped since we still had some meals in the freezer. But I promise I’ll do my best to actually follow through with freezer cooking and posting about it this week!

My sister and her husband and children are in town this week, so that means there will be a lot of family get-togethers and meals shared together. Which means we probably won’t follow this plan, but we at least have a plan:

Granola bars, fruit
Peanut butter & homemade jam sandwiches, Orange Cream Smoothies
Chocolate Peanut Butter Banana Smoothies
Scrambled eggs and toast, fruit
Oatmeal, Blueberry Ginger Smoothie
Fried egg sandwiches, Pick-Me-Up Smoothies
Blueberry Yogurt Pancakes, scrambled eggs

Homemade biscuits, fruit, scrambled eggs
Salad with hard boiled eggs, fruit
Peanut butter & homemade jam sandwiches, fruit, carrots
Macaroni & Cheese, peas
Refried beans with cheese & salad, fruit
Tuna salad sandwiches, fruit, carrots

Banana Almond Smoothie
Frozen Banana Bites
Banana Cocoa Peanut Butter Ice Cream

Dinner with family (we brought Au Gratin Potatoes and leftover cheesecake from Saturday’s shower)
Dinner with family
Sloppy Joes, steamed vegetables, fruit, Au Gratin Potatoes
Crockpot Barbecue Chicken, Bread Machine Bread Sticks, green salad, fruit
Lasagna Casserole, fruit, Bread Machine Bread Sticks, green salad
Hamburgers, Oven Baked Parmesan Seasoned Fries, steamed veggies, fruit
Dinner at extended family’s house

Freezer-Cooking-In-An-Hour Plan (I’ll share pictures/details on how this goes on Thursday!)
Homemade Pancake Mix
Honey Pizza Dough
Frozen Banana Bites
Crockpot Barbecue Chicken

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  • Belinda says:

    Recipe looks yummy! I can’t handle yogurt, what would you suggest that I could use instead?

  • Shelby says:

    Your menus always make me smile. Who wouldn’t smile at the prospect of drinking a Pick-Me-Up Smoothie?

  • Angela says:

    I know *exactly* what you mean about having a plan…. at least it’s there so you have some idea 🙂

  • Cara Ivey says:

    We have similar menus this week!

    Amish Oatmeal
    Blueberry pancakes
    Strawberry Muffins
    eggs and toast w/ Homemade cherry jam
    Breakfast burritos
    Blueberry Ginger Smoothies (can’t wait to try this one w/ my leftover fresh ginger!)

    BBQ Chicken pizza
    Lasagna casserole (using up the ends of 4 boxes of pasta!) w/ salad
    Honey Mustard Crock Pot Cicken w/ Broccoli
    Beans and Honey Cornbread
    Chicken Quesadillas w/ Mexi Corn
    Green Chicken Chili
    Dinner at my Parents house

    Freezer cooking:
    Banana Bread
    Strawberry Muffins
    Blueberry Buttermilk Pancakes
    Watermelon Cubes (for frosties)
    Cooking Kidney and black beans
    Making Refried beans
    Brown Bag Burritos (First time… I could have eaten the filling in one sitting! I used 1 lb Ground turkey and 2 1/2 C refried beans.)
    Monkey Munch (had to find a way to use all those cheerios we got for cheap w/ coupons. We don’t do cereal for breakfat, so monkey munch it is!!)

    • jen says:

      What is monkey munch?

      • Cara Ivey says:

        Oh Jen…. It is the BEST!! Here I am, making a stink about feeding my kids cereal for breakfast… (mostly because they are STARVING 30 min. after eating it…) BUT, I find it on sale, plus I have coupons, PLUS the store gives me 2 FREE gallons of milk for buying 4 boxes. So I buy ALOT of it. Now what to do with my 3 month supply of cereal? I have 4 kids under 5 so it works great for snacks! OK, now that I’ve stated my case here is the recipe for Monkey Munch.
        9 Cups cereal (1 box of cheerios, chex, life whatever you got!)
        1 C chocolate chips
        1/2C peanut Butter
        1/4C Butter
        1 1/2C Powder Sugar

        Melt choc chips, peanut butter and butter in a microwavable bowl, stirring evry 30 sec. It took mine about 1min 30 sec to melt. Pour over cereal in a large bowl. Mix until cereal is evenly coated.
        Place powdersugar in a 2 gallon ziplock (I used 2 one gallons and just split my batch among the two). Pour cereal mixture into bags. Close em up and shake shake shake!!! Once your powder is evenly distributed, pour a little into a bowl and hide the rest from your kids and hubby as they will attempt to eat it all in one sitting!! Walk out and present your odd lokking yet oh so delish treat to your family, sit back, and enjoy the praise!!
        WARNING: This is NOT a healthy treat!!! It is so good and so addicting. Weight gain is a serious threat once this recipe is introduced! If you find you are actually hiding it from family so that you may have it all to yourself, please seek treatment.

        ENJOY!! 🙂

        • jen says:

          Thank you!!!

          • jen says:

            It’s part of your freezing cooking, you can free this yummy treat?

          • jen says:

            Sorry I meant to say, you can freeze this yummy treat.

          • Cara Ivey says:

            Sorry Jen… Probably not a good idea to freeze this one! I work 5 days a week so I add the weeks snacks into my freezer cooking to make days easier on the hubby!!
            I just store this in the same ziplock I shook it in in my pantry! Stays good for like a week or longer… We’ve never had this last very long!!

  • Jessica says:

    I had wondered about the freezer cooking session. lol

    I had never prepared things for the freezer before checking out your blog and now I’ve made pancakes, french toast, cookie dough, zucchini patties, nanaimo bars, 2 apple pies and peach pie filling for my freezer. (It’s really hard to make those sweets and put them straight in the freezer! LOL)

    Thanks for the inspiration. 🙂

  • Christina says:

    I just made those frozen banana bites this weekend. They are DELISH!

  • Diane says:

    I always love looking at your menu to get more good ideas. My family loves the Amish baked oatmeal and the breakfast burritos that you make!

    • Amanda says:

      Are you talking about the breakfast burrito posted in her freezer section? I made those and my husband said after he reheated them in the microwave they were watery. Any suggestions on why this happens?

      • Cara Ivey says:

        That happened the first time I made them… I normally use milk or water to “fluff” my scrambled eggs. The second batch, I left out the added liquid and they are not watery at all!!! Hope this helps!! Good luck!

  • I’m really excited about our menu this week! Tonight we’re having Strawberry Balsamic Salad with Feta Cheese, Toasted Walnuts, and Chicken. We’re also having Grilled Fish Tacos with Cilantro Cream Sauce, as well as Black Bean Enchiladas. I plan to spend $60 for all my groceries. The entire menu is here:

    • Cara Ivey says:

      I love your menu!! I made Black Bean Enchaladas recently. My enchalada sauce didn’t work out so I used BBQ thinned with water. It was so good, a new family favorite!
      We are a “leftovers” for lunch kind of family too! Saves all kinds of money on lunchmeat, bread, condiments, ect.
      Way to go! $60?! That’s incredible! I can’t seem to get below $100 per week for a family of 6. Maybe adding some meatless meals every week will help!

      • Thanks Cara! I’m really picky about enchilada sauces. I’ve decided I’m less of a red sauce, and more of a green sauce fan! (Although I like Trader Joes red sauce).

        As for your budget, you’re actually doing better than us–I’m only feeding 3 mouths right now. So, you are doing great!

  • christa says:

    what is lasagna cassarol???

  • august says:

    Just wondering if you ever came up with any other uses for the baking mix. I can’t remember which one I saw, but from what I remember there was only one recipe to use it for.

  • Emily says:

    The next two weeks are busy-busy-busy for us! we are trying pizza sloppy joes this week for the first time, and I have several other great simple gluten free meals planned.

  • We’ve got cabbage coming out of our ears so my menu plan this week focuses on cabbage! Who knew there were so many yummy entrees you could make with cabbage! You can read here:

    • Cara Ivey says:

      I make a cabbage salad that my family LOVES!! I’ll find the kids sneaking into the fridge and eating it with their bare hands!!

      1 sm. head cabbage, thinly shredded
      4 scallion, thinly sliced
      3 Tbls sesame seeds
      1 Pkg, Ramen noodles crushed, seasoning packet discarded
      1/4 C sliced Almonds
      1/4 C Seasoned Rice Vinegar (unseasoned works as well)
      1/4 C oil
      3 Tbl sugar
      Toast the seeds, nuts, and noodles in pan over low heat.
      in bottom of lg bowl whisk together oil, vinegar, sugar, slat/pepper to taste. Add all ingrediants mix well. Let sit 30 minutes in fridge. YUMMO!!!
      I like to add sliced grilled chicken or tofu on top if serving as a main meal!
      My husband gets “cravings” for this one almost every week!!

  • Emily says:

    Just made the Frozen Bananas!!!! They are sooooo easy!! Can’t wait until they are in my tummy..yum!! 🙂 Thanks as always for sharing your great ideas.

  • charity crawford says:

    Love the color of the smoothie! Great combination of flavors.

  • That blueberry yogurt pancake recipe looks yummy! We’re having lots of smoothies too.

    Here’s our $100 Budget Weekly Menu:

    and my daughter’s Gluten Free Menu:

  • Meredith says:

    I really want to make menu planning a habit. I have to get my husband involved because he’s so picky!! Any advice for mom/wife of picky eaters??:)

  • Beth says:

    You’ve probably answered this before, but do you freeze your breadsticks? How? I’m thinking that recipe, while it looks delicious, might be too much for our little family. I’d like to freeze half of it. Should I freeze after baking or just as dough?

  • I have to get back in the habit of planning our meals! I think I would feel a lot less overwhelmed each night if I just took the 15 minutes to plan the week out ahead of time.
    I have also put freezer-cooking on my to-do list. I want to get into this habit before I go on maternity leave in January, that way my freezer is stocked!!

  • Love your menu plan. Looks fantastic!

    Last week I tried a 90 minute freezer cooking session and it was a flop. I posted my lessons learned for next time on my blog. Just when I think I got it down…oops somethings goes wrong 🙂

    I am looking forward to your next session. I am sure it will go great. They have inspired me for sure 🙂

  • Katy says:

    Can’t wait to hear about the freezer cooking! I want to try more of that.
    My 2 week menu plan is here:

  • Connie says:

    Just wanted you to know I noticed you didn’t post your freezer cooking plan! I need to put up meals in the freezer before school starts (I’m a teacher and have three teenage boys in school!), so I GREATLY appreciate the ideas and how-to’s that you give!!! Especially since I really haven’t ever done this before! It seems that freezer-cooking is the way to go when you want to cook homemade, be healthier, and not eat out as much!
    Looking forward to hearing more! 🙂

  • flutemom says:

    so i have to ask, because i keep wondering about this every time you post your menus for the week. for breakfasts, do you really only have a smoothie, or some muffins, or some cereal? that would not be enough food to fill my tummy for more than 2 hours tops!

  • Maggie says:

    YUM! I’m having a baby next month and desperately need to start having a freezer cooking/baking day at least once a week. I’ll have to go through your archives and get ideas. I’ve been doing something a little different with my menu plans–I’m trying to only serve meat once or twice a week. This week, I’ve only got two meals with meat this week. This week, I’m doing cheese tortillini with spinach salad, asian veggie stir fry (with onions, green peppers, carrots, edamame, peas) with whole wheat noodles, oven bbq bacon cheeseburgers with oven fries–i’m serving these burgers on whole wheat buns, which makes me feel alot better about wrapping the burgers in bacon :), bean and cheese nachos with homemade pico de gallo and guacamole, whole wheat pasta with green beans, grilled pork chops with garlic mashed potatoes and cucumber & tomato salad. Using less meat has forced me to be more creative and serve lots more veggies and figure out ways to make sure my family gets their protein from other sources. Plus, I am able to purchase high quality meat for my family since I’m not purchasing as much. It’s also brought my grocery bill way down without compromising the quality of food that I feed my family. I highly suggest challenging yourself to cooking one meatless meal a week–you’ll be surprised how easy it is (and how you can even find meals that meat-loving husbands will love).

    • Cara Ivey says:

      That baby must be so happy gettin such a great start in life with those healthy meals!! I highly recommend getting some freezer cooking in before he/she arrives! Even if it is just staples like cooking off TONS of beans, portioning and freezing. Anything to give you a one up on those “OMG I’m so friggin tired” evenings.
      I have found that since I started freezer “prep cooking”, actually putting together my planned meals on those rough nights is a sinch! I used to give up and drive through Sonics, but now, my family can still have a healthy meal because I planned ahead!!

  • Christine says:

    What a great menu plan! You inspire me to branch out and try new recipes. The banana bites are a favorite in my house; they taste so much like ice cream treats. Blessings!

  • Crystal says:

    Are you still doing the 31 weeks video series or has it concluded? I’m thinking it could just be on hold since you’ve been so busy, but thought I’d ask since I’ve been wondering. Your blog is such a blessing to me and my family!!!

  • Gretchen says:

    I love your menus! I need to try those breadsticks. Wonder if they would be okay with half wheat?
    I am doing freezer cooking this week too and I am already done with tonight’s and it was really easy. I love that you post the freezer cooking in an hour sessions because it lets people know it is doable!

  • Toni says:

    Hi Crystal,
    Would love you to do a post (if you haven’t already) about why you love Smoothies for breakfast, including whether you always serve them alongside another breakfast item, how expensive it is to make them, etc. My children would LOVE daily smoothies. I’m not sure we could serve them more than once/week based on cost, however.

    • Crystal says:

      I buy fruit when it is in season, on sale, and/or marked down and freeze it — that’s how we afford to make them. Otherwise, they’d be very expensive and cost-prohibitive.

      I base our menu plan mostly around what we already have on hand, and that is definitely the case when it comes to smoothies. We have frozen blueberries ($0.99 at Aldi two weeks ago), frozen strawberries ($0.88 to $0.99 at Aldi the past few weeks) and frozen organic bananas (got these for $0.39/lb. at the health food store a few weeks ago) in our freezer right now. I also did a fruit tray for the shower last Saturday and had leftover oranges that I stuck in the freezer. So those are what I based this week’s smoothie recipe choices off of.

  • Laura says:

    I am SO glad you brought this feature back a few months ago! I am one that struggles with menu planning, so it’s nice to see someone else’s that I can glean some inspiration from and sometimes use as a starting point. Thank you!

  • cathy says:


  • Tina says:

    For the honey pizza dough is there a huge difference in taste?

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