Anyone interested in a meal planning thread? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 17 Old 12-11-2008, 03:19 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Well,

This thread was intended for working and student mothers but someone moved us over here. So I guess I'll just start a nex exclusive thread for working/student parents to make sure the needs of the original thread are met.


I was in the shower this morning and was thinking about how horrible I feel about DS's diet. I have fallen into the mac n cheese, chicken nugget and hot dog trap. You know the trap I'm talking about, it allows you to actually feed your child when they're hungry if dinner isn't ready yet. It also alows for easy lunch packing...... I mean, that's not all he eats but I would like it if all of his meals were prepared by me.

I don't know about you guys but I don't get home until 5:45 on a good day and after picking up DS at daycare, unpacking, changing and settling in I just don't have time to cook a meal by the time DS is hungry at 6:30.

I was thinking about casseroles that I could prepare and freeze to pop in the oven when I get home or some recipes that could be easily prepared with items purchased pre-prepped from the store.

So, I thought maybe we could start a monthly thread and everyone could submit one recipe that freezes nicely or has a quick prep time. Let me know your thoughts, I'd be happy to start a new thread each month!

Julie, proud graduate of the AOW 3 year program in the study of boobology . Me : + DH : = Super Bubba !
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#2 of 17 Old 12-12-2008, 11:08 AM
 
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Might get more responses doing this in the nutrition and good eating forum. My idea is one-pot type meals, where you can get all necessary food groups into a meal but they all go in the same "pot". So you have one dish to serve out, which is all ready at the same time, less pots to wash up, and if you feel like it you can do a side dish of something, or two. If you don't want to it doesn't matter because as I said, you get all the food groups in that one pot anyway.

That got long winded, sorry! You get the point though. What do you think?

ETA-these can be made in batches and frozen too, then you can put them in the microwave to heat through when needed.
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#3 of 17 Old 12-12-2008, 12:14 PM
 
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I just wanted to post my recent life lesson: if you make lasagna, and make another one for the freezer at the same time, do not use the no-boil type noodles. Seriously. That is all.
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#4 of 17 Old 12-15-2008, 01:45 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nina_yyc View Post
I just wanted to post my recent life lesson: if you make lasagna, and make another one for the freezer at the same time, do not use the no-boil type noodles. Seriously. That is all.
I love your advice!

We have decided to start cooking meals on Saturdays to be frozen for the week. We have done better not eating out so much but we haven't done the cooking thing yet. What I have done though is to go to the grocery store at the beginning of the week and purchased some meals I can quickly warm up. I get salads together and vegetables cleaned and cut up (when I have the chance :0)) and it makes things so much easier.

But I like this idea. Have you thought about doing a Meal Makers? We looked into it and it would cost us about $165 for 12 meals serving 3. So that would last us probably about 3 weeks.
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#5 of 17 Old 12-15-2008, 10:18 AM
 
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I've started the most simple possible meal plan, I just use Google calendar and on Saturdays write in meals for each day of the week.

They aren't great, ambitious meals and I am not doing it with saving $ as the goal yet. They do help save time and help me from falling into the Annie's mac-and-cheese trap. When I get home (or DH if it's his turn) I don't have to think or look through cabinets, I just start prepping. For example, tonight I'll just chop up some spinach and throw some rice in the rice cooker when I get home.

Our plan this week (we are veg):
Monday - spinach rice casserole
Tuesday - pizza on polenta crust
Wednesday - veggie stew, slow cooker meal
Thursday - thai peanut pasta from a box with roasted sweet potato
Friday -broccoli frittata with salad
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#6 of 17 Old 12-20-2008, 06:05 PM
 
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I wanted to start something like this here! I think it's a good spot for this thread, because your concerns if you work are different than if you don't (TIME TIME TIME!!!). I also tend to not cook but rely on mac n cheese, chicken nuggets, pizza, etc. Blech! I am gaining weight and don't feel great, but I'm usually too tired to cook, as well!

Any quick ideas would help me so much!

Making meals ahead isn't the best thing for me, since my ds won't eat most "mixed" foods (like casseroles, stews, and one pot meals). Sometimes he does, but he has gotten really picky. Part of that is definitely due to the fact that hungry kid + tired mom = what will get you to eat with the least amount of fuss?
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#7 of 17 Old 12-20-2008, 09:52 PM
 
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I think I've posted this before on this form, but here are my go-to weeknight meals.

1. Tofu and noodles
Cube some tofu or tempeh, throw it in the steamer, then fill the steamer with fresh or frozen veg. Make up some soba or other whole-grain 10 minute noodles. Toss with a prepared terriyaki sauce or nuke equal parts tamrari and honey and sprinkle with sesame seeds. I most often use Diana brand sauce which has fewer additives than the usual stuff at Safeway.

2. Bean Wraps
Open a can of black beans and toss them with chili powder, black pepper, and sea salt. Put together with lettuce, tomatoes, salsa, and cheddar cheese on a whole grain wrap and nuke or grill for 5 minutes.

3. Lipton's Onion Soup Chicken Thighs
Open a packet or two of Lipton's over chicken thighs and bake at 400 for 30 mins. Sometimes I will also roast potatoes with the skin left on at the same time. All I do with the potatoes is chop and toss with olive oil and sea salt and leave them on a baking sheet. While the chicken is cooking I steam some veggies.

4. Veggie Pasta

Boil two cups of whole wheat dry pasta. While the pasta is boiling, speed-chop 4 cups of veggies (the original recipe is 2 c. kale, 2 c. broc.) When there is 3 mins left in the pasta, throw in the veggies. Toss with ricotta, olive oil, balsamic vinegar, salt, and half a can of tomatoes.
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#8 of 17 Old 12-20-2008, 09:56 PM
 
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feel free to come over to nutrition and good eating mamas! We have lots of meal planning threads!

the : in my siggy is a link if you would like a short cut!

I'm crunchy... Like a Dorito.
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#9 of 17 Old 12-20-2008, 11:34 PM
 
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Sounds like you need a crockpot! Seriously you can put the weirdest combo of ingredients in there and it comes out delicious.

easy - frozen chicken and cream of chicken soup

cheap - pork shoulder, broth, cumin, onion, carrot

etc
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#10 of 17 Old 12-21-2008, 10:41 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Petersmamma View Post
I wanted to start something like this here! I think it's a good spot for this thread, because your concerns if you work are different than if you don't (TIME TIME TIME!!!). I also tend to not cook but rely on mac n cheese, chicken nuggets, pizza, etc. Blech! I am gaining weight and don't feel great, but I'm usually too tired to cook, as well!

Any quick ideas would help me so much!

Making meals ahead isn't the best thing for me, since my ds won't eat most "mixed" foods (like casseroles, stews, and one pot meals). Sometimes he does, but he has gotten really picky. Part of that is definitely due to the fact that hungry kid + tired mom = what will get you to eat with the least amount of fuss?
See, that is exactly why I thought this would be a good place for a thread like this. I have looked over in Health and Nutrition but the majority of the mommas there have a little more time to shop and cook without time constraints (i.e. MOOOOMMMMAAA, I HUNGRY!!!!) I thought the ladies here understand the time constraints of working/studying and still trying to put wholesome meals on the table.

Julie, proud graduate of the AOW 3 year program in the study of boobology . Me : + DH : = Super Bubba !
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#11 of 17 Old 12-21-2008, 12:54 PM
 
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Moving this over to the meal-planning forum.

I'm a morning person.  We actually do exist.
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#12 of 17 Old 12-21-2008, 12:57 PM
 
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I list my menu at my blog each week and through this carnival. So many great ideas!!

Jen - Mama to V (b. 2-18-09) and AJ (b. 10-9-11) Wife to DH

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#13 of 17 Old 12-23-2008, 05:00 PM
 
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I would like kid friendly, fast, vegetarian ideas. I'm certain that's WAY too much to ask for, but what's the worst that can happen?
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#14 of 17 Old 01-06-2009, 06:05 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Petersmamma View Post
I would like kid friendly, fast, vegetarian ideas. I'm certain that's WAY too much to ask for, but what's the worst that can happen?
HAHA! That is what I am looking for too! I really need some help meal planning! I also am trying to figure out how to shop once a month for the bulk of my shopping (I know I will need a mid-month veggie and fruit trip) I am so tired of being disorganized! I went from being a SAHM to being a working and student Mama, Meal planning is my down fall!

"If we are to heal the planet, we must begin by healing birthing."
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#15 of 17 Old 01-13-2009, 08:05 PM
 
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I agree with all you ladies!!! After a LONG 9 hour day at work I dont want to have to worry about dinner.... Any ideas, suggestions, menus would be great Maybe next Christmas Santa would bring us all a personal chef to do all of our cooking and shoping for us =) (whishfull thinking)
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#16 of 17 Old 01-14-2009, 06:50 PM
 
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Originally Posted by nina_yyc View Post
I just wanted to post my recent life lesson: if you make lasagna, and make another one for the freezer at the same time, do not use the no-boil type noodles. Seriously. That is all.
hahaha well written and succinct. good to know.
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#17 of 17 Old 01-14-2009, 06:56 PM
 
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Great idea! Count me in.

Subbing.
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