Menu Plan Money ~ Sept 5, 2011

by Shawanda Greene

Menu Plan MondayAs you may well know, I set a goal for myself this month. A single solitary goal to eat the food that’s hanging out in my freezer.

So, why would a hip, cosmopolitan woman like myself do such a thing?

Why not let the food I have now meet the same end as the food before it?

Because I have aggressive savings goals for 2011, and mama’s way off track.

As much as I want to give you a fancy pants menu plan reserved for those who’re hitting Whole Foods this week, I can’t. Not only am I cleaning out the fridge, I’m cleaning out my closet – the kitchen closet. Or as you know it, the pantry.

Brace yourself for the unsexiest meal plan you’ve ever seen.

Monday/Tuesday: Spaghetti with Meat Sauce – Now, I haven’t cooked spaghetti in years. But I’ve got hamburger, pasta (of some kind), onions, garlic, carrots, red pepper flakes, and a can of pasta sauce. I’ve never tried this, but I might sprinkle a little feta cheese on my spaghetti. Looks like it’s on the verge of mold growth, and I don’t want it to go bad.

Wednesday: Baked Chicken Wings with Broccoli – These have almost become a household staple. I sprinkle the chicken wings with a mix of cayenne pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, and seasoning salt. Brown ‘em in a skillet real quick, transfer to a pan, and then pop ‘em in the oven. Last time I made this dish, it was a little chewy, so I’ll make sure I don’t overcook it this time.

Thursday/Friday: Slow Cooker Chicken Thighs, Yellow Rice and Black Beans – I’m not sure how I’ll flavor the chicken thighs yet. Whatever I decide, I want the recipe to be simple.

Saturday: Salmon on the George Foreman Grill and Mixed Veggies – This is super easy. The salmon fillets are ready for grilling after a few sprinkles of Old Bay and cayenne pepper. For some reason, they taste so much better when you spray the Foreman with a little buttery cooking spray. As for my vegetables, I’ll throw in some bell peppers, onions, black pepper, and soy sauce to liven things up. Fortunately, I don’t have to chop, slice, or dice anything because I purchased the mixed vegetables, bell peppers, and onions pre-cut.

Sunday: If I don’t go out to eat during the week, I’ll probably do so on Sunday. I have a $60 voucher for one of my favorite DC restaurants, Kushi, that I’ve been itching to use for a while.

For the last week, I’ve done a  good job of eating what’s available. I’m getting to a place where I can whip up a delicious meal pretty quickly. My biggest challenge is that I really like the dining out experience. Let’s see how this week goes. I’m feeling pretty good about it.

Check out other menu plans on Menu Plan Monday at I’m an Organizing Junkie.

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{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Matt Wegner September 5, 2011 at 9:47 AM

We did a "clean out the pantry" event a few months ago where we made meals for a whole week without buying any groceries. It got a lot of food out of the freezer and saved us money for that month on groceries. It was a little challenging too.


Shawanda September 5, 2011 at 4:06 PM

That's a really good idea. I haven't mastered cooking for an entire week yet. I want to try it, but I'll probably need to carve out a few hours on a Sunday afternoon in order to make it happen.


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