Meal Planning

Back to Basics: Meal Planning For Beginners

posted by Andrea | 02/2/2015 | 30 comments
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I fully understand how overwhelming meal planning can seem if you’ve never done it before, if you’re not a natural “planner”, if you don’t particularly love cooking, if you’ve tried before and failed, if you have allergies or other picky eaters, if your spouse isn’t appreciative of your efforts, if you are a perfectionist, etc.

With that said, I hope today’s post will simplify the process SO much that even YOU will be encouraged and motivated to try it… even if it’s just for one week!

Freezing Cooked Meat (my biggest time + money saver in the kitchen)

posted by Andrea | 11/10/2014 | 47 comments
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By now, most of you know that I’m a huge advocate for keeping our deep freezer fully stocked in an effort to save time in the kitchen and money at the grocery store. However, if I had to pick my #1 biggest time + money saver in the kitchen… today’s tip would be it!

Click through to read more!

World Wide Dinners: Menu Planning Giveaway

posted by Andrea | 09/18/2014 | 1 comment
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I know many of you have struggled with meal planning, grocery shopping, and nailing down your system — especially during this busy back-to-school time of year.

Thankfully, World Wide Dinners has come to our rescue, offering simple, healthy meal planning options (complete with grocery lists, pantry staples, and LOTS of amazing recipes). Come enter to win a FULL YEARS worth of free menu plans, shopping lists, and more!

Save Hundreds Each Month With a Few Brown Bags

posted by Andrea | 08/26/2014 | 34 comments
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Are you looking for ways to save money on back-to-school essentials?

Today, I’m sharing a way you could potentially save hundreds of dollars each month on something you’ll need every single days for each of your school-age children!

7 Steps to Super Simple Meal Planning

posted by Andrea | 08/7/2014 | 21 comments
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I’ve been thinking a lot about meal planning the past few days — and about how much time, energy, stress, money, and calories it saves me each week.

If you’re new to meal planning (or just got off schedule this summer) today’s post shares 7 steps to make the process as simple as possible!

Simple Meatless Meals… for people who love meat!

posted by Andrea | 06/17/2014 | 9 comments
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I’m sure that if anyone came up to Dave or to me and asked if we were vegetarians, we would chuckle a little while stating a resounding “no, definitely not”.

If you feel the same way, I’d like to encourage you to just consider how you might incorporate 1 or more meatless meals into your weekly meal plans. You might be surprised how easy it is to do — and how little you’ll actually miss the meat.

5 Tips for Giving the Gift of Food

posted by Andrea | 04/8/2014 | 27 comments
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Over the past 5 weeks since Simon’s birth, Dave and I have been blessed with numerous meals and other food gifts.

And since I’ve shared my love of giving and receiving food gifts before, I thought I’d do another post about little tips and tricks you might consider the next time you’re giving the gift of food — because I just don’t know anyone who wouldn’t appreciate the gift of food.

My Top 10 Favorite Food Posts

posted by Andrea | 04/3/2014 | comment
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As I planned ahead for the arrival of baby Simon, I thought it might be fun to resurrect some of MY favorite posts from the past 3.5 years of blogging.

Today, I’m sharing some of MY favorite food posts — all about freezer cooking, meal-planning, canning, baking in bulk, and more!

How I Avoid Meal-Planning Burnout

posted by Andrea | 02/18/2014 | 37 comments
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I get lots and lots of meal-planning questions — and more recently, I’ve gotten a handful of questions asking how I avoid meal-planning burnout.

At first, I wasn’t quite sure how to answer this question, but after thinking about it for a few weeks, I came up with 6 main factors that have really helped me to simplify my meal-planning and (for the most part) avoid meal-planning burnout.

Our “Normal” (and very simple) Weekly Meal Plan

posted by Andrea | 10/21/2013 | 26 comments
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Two years ago, I started posting our meal plans each week — but then I realized that since we eat really simple foods and we eat the same things on a regular basis, these posts would probably get old. FAST. So I quit.

But ever since then, I’ve gotten a fair number of emails asking me to post more about what meals we eat on a weekly basis — so today, I’m doing just that!

6 Tips to Simplify Meal Planning

posted by Andrea | 06/24/2013 | 16 comments
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Many people I know (myself included) often slack off on meal planning in the summer. I supposed it’s easy to put meal planning on the back burner {pun intended!}

However, these busy weeks of summer are some of the most important weeks to create and utilize a meal plan… because it will save you so much time and stress! If you are struggling to set up a meal-planning routine, here are 6 simple ideas that just might help.

Meal Planning, Shopping, and Cooking for 30!

posted by Andrea | 02/16/2013 | 21 comments
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Last weekend, Dave, Nora, and I went up north for a long weekend with friends. There were 30 people total — and for some reason, I offered to create a meal plan and make the majority of the food! It was quite a bit more work than I originally thought it would be, but everything turned out well, the food tasted great, and we had SO much fun!

Today, I’m sharing a few pictures from our trip as well as a bunch of tips and recipe ideas for feeding a crowd!

How I Manage to Only Cook 2-3 Meals a Week

posted by Andrea | 02/4/2013 | 23 comments
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Due to Dave and my overly ambitious work schedules, our growing list of home projects, and Nora’s unwillingness to take naps, I’ve decided that there are a bunch of things I absolutely must simplify in order to stay sane! One of those things is our meal planning.

Today I’m sharing how we eat home-cooked meals by only cooking 2-3 days a week!

Weekend Giveaway: eMeals 6-Month Meal Planning Bundle Pack

posted by Andrea | 12/14/2012 | 244 comments
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I’m a pretty firm believer in meal planning as a way to save time, money, and a whole lot of stress each week and each month. So today, I’m really excited to share a fabulous online meal-planning service that does pretty much ALL the work for you {besides actually making the food}.

If you’d like to revive your meal-planning efforts, a subscription to might be just what you need!

My “Free” Homemade TV Dinners

posted by Andrea | 07/3/2012 | 18 comments
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Dave and I LOVE leftovers. However, since a massive amount of leftovers can be a bit boring (think lasagna every night for a week!) I’ve started to create “homemade TV dinners” from our leftover meals.

It’s a delicious (and frugal) way to use up those leftovers… and it’s so nice to have a few microwavable meal in the freezer when I don’t feel like cooking.

Weekend Giveaway: Cheap Appétit Cookbook

posted by Andrea | 06/29/2012 | 216 comments
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If you’ve ever wished you can spend less on groceries bu still feed your family healthy, nutrutious meals, then today’s giveaway might be JUST what you’re looking for!

Cheap Appétit: The Complete Guide to Feeding Your Family for Less Than $400 a Month includes over 125 kid-tested recipes using basic, inexpensive ingredients. The strategies inside this book should help most families to decrease their grocery budget by 40-60% *without* using coupons!!

Three Kid-Friendly Foods… for Adults!

posted by Andrea | 05/24/2012 | 12 comments
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The other day, I was talking with some of my friends who have really picky eaters. Because of this, they choose to make multiple meals in order to please everyone.

So since I like to keep things simple (and I definitely don’t want to cook 2 meals if I don’t have to) here are three super popular kids meals that should also please the adults in your home!

ONE Ham – SEVEN Meals

posted by Andrea | 01/30/2012 | 12 comments
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Since meat is one of the most expensive things on our grocery list each week, I’m always looking for ways to stretch good cuts of meat in our weekly meal plans. So when I found a great deal on ham during the Christmas season, I bought a couple and used up the first one last week.

I created a meal plan that used ham every single night… and no one even noticed! Come see how I fed 4 people for an entire with with one $4.00 ham!

Slow Cooker Western Egg Casserole

posted by Andrea | 01/25/2012 | 19 comments
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Thanks to my new meal planning method, we have breakfast for dinner once each week. We do this partially because we really like breakfast foods, but also because breakfast foods are great way to get lots of protein without spending money on expensive cuts of meat.

However, the one thing I don’t always like about breakfast foods is the inability to prepare them ahead of time — so I’m really excited to share this delicious slow cooker breakfast recipe with you today!

Slow Cooker Recipes I Want to Try in 2012

posted by Andrea | 01/10/2012 | 17 comments
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I got a new slow cooker for Christmas and have already used it a couple of times. I actually have 3 different slow cookers — all different sizes — but to be honest, I haven’t used them as much as I should.
So this year, my goal is to use a slow cooker once a week — or at least a few times each month.

I’ve already made a few really delicious meals {recipes coming soon}… but here are a few more I definitely want to try this coming year.