Meal Planning 101

Good morning,

Wow that was a busy week and weekend! I had people over last night for a open house.

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In our small community shopping is limited and so we host in home shopping parties! Home based businesses sell everything from Epicure (spices and kitchen gadgets) to Thirty – One bags (love them!!!) to leggings and the sort.

Last night I had an Epicure and Legging party and I displayed my Beachbody Product. We had lots of great food and company. I finally got myself a cute pair of coloured leggings!! Be sure to check them out later on Instagram!!

Today’s Task for my BeachBody Challengers  is to meal plan an it occurred to me that they may not have had any experience with meal planning an not know where to start. So how do I solve this problem??

WITH A BLOG POST OF COURSE!!

I am linking up with Jill Conyers and her gang for their weekly Meal Planning Link up!

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Meal Planning 101!!

1.  Check your schedule – sit down with a sheet of paper or journal and look at your week ahead.  What nights are busy?? What nights do you have time to cook?? Take that into consideration. You don’t want to plan an elaborate meal when you have to be at the pool or arena by 4:30 pm.

2. Check your pantry and/ freezer – Use what you have on hand. This is a great way to save money and use the food that is currently sitting in your home. I for instance have plenty or veggies left over from last night’s party. So tonight I will most likely be making a stirfry and tomorrow a stew!

3. Consult your family – While I like to push the limits with my kids, I certainly want to make them happy as well. Meal time is important to us and I love it when we all enjoy our meal.

4. Great Creative – One of the major benefits to meal planning is that you have time to look at cook books, check out blogs for awesome recipes and you can be creative with your cooking. Creative doesn’t have to mean a 3 hour meal. Creative may mean that you try a new food or new spice combo!

5. Make your list – As you write out and organize what meal you are eating when, make the list of the things you need at the store.

6. BUY IT – don’t wait until Tuesday after work to head to the store go on Saturday or Sunday and buy as much as you can for the week ahead. I usually can make it the entire week if I plan right and that saves me time and money!

7. Prep It – Now that you know what you want and when you want it, what can you do today (Sunday) to make the rest of the week go smoother?? Pre cutting veggies?? Pre cooking some chicken for lunches? Pre making oatmeal or eggs or waffles for breakfast??

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Meal Plan Week of January 11 – 17

Sunday – Beef Stir Fry  – with rice from Jamie Oliver 

Monday -Chicken Mango Fajitas from the Runner’s World Cookbook

Tuesday – I am out for dinner, but left overs for the family. 

Wednesday – Homemade chicken soup in the slow cooker

Thursday – Left over soup

Friday – Pizza and Salad

Saturday – Pork Tenderloin, and roasted vegetables. (broccoli, carrots and sweet potatoes)

Breakfasts – Baked oatmeal and green smoothies

Lunches – Eggs, and left overs, cut up veggies

Snacks – Black bean brownies, Home made protein bars, berry muffins yogurt and cut up fruit.

Last but not least I was asked to share my Black Bean Brownie Recipe that I made for last nights party. It is not my own of course, because I don’t create recipes but I did tweak it!

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Black Bean Brownies

1 ½ cup canned black beans, drained and rinsed

¾ cup of whole wheat flour

½ cup unsweetened cocoa

1 tsp baking powder

½ tsp salt

3 eggs

¾ cup sugar

¼ cup unsweetened apple sauce

3 TBSP oil

2 tsp vanilla

¼ cup mini chocolate chips

¼ cup chopped pecans

 

1. preheat oven to 350 F. Line a 8×8 baking pan with foil ( leaving an over hang for day removal) and spray with cooking oil. Set aside

In a food processor puree back beans with a small amount of water until very smooth. Combine bean and  dry ingredients in the bowl of a mixer. Mix gently. Add 1 egg at a time until mixed. Add oil, apple sauce, and vanilla. Mix well, scraping sides of bowl often. Stir in chocolate chips and nuts.

Pour batter into prepared pan and bake for 30-35 minutes. Brownies will be spongy and tooth pick will come out clean!

Let cool in pan and then lift out using foil over hang. Cut into squares. Be amazed how everyone even your kids love them!!!

 

Do you meal plan? What’s on your menu for the week?? Ever tweak recipes??

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6 thoughts on “Meal Planning 101

    1. They are super yummy and I don’t feel guilty about eating them. I can’t speak on gluten free flours as I haven’t had to go that route yet. Thanks for commenting 🙂

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  1. Those brownies look great! I love sweets and to have one as a snack and some protein in it is perfect! Thanks for sharing!
    I also find it amazing how the weeks I plan my meals and spend an hour doing a little prep that my husband and I eat so much better than the weeks I try to do everything at the last minute! Last week i was able to get in an hour workout on two nights when I normally would have only had time for 30 minutes!

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    1. I so agree!!! We prepped tonight for tomorrows soup and now we both have time to sit down and relax before heading to bed. I cannot imagine the stress of not having dinner planned. I have had nights that we didn’t have leftovers or something and i always resort to BREAKFAST for Dinner, that is always a nice treat.

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