Free Weekly Meal Planner: March 31, 2014

monday meal plan 300x153 Free Weekly Meal Planner: March 31, 2014Here is my free weekly meal planner for the week of March 31, 2014.

I just returned from #TypeAWDW late last night and am already jumping back into the Monday morning routine.

Although I didn’t spend any time in the Disney Parks on this trip to Orlando, I ended up getting sick during in the overnight hours on Saturday, so I haven’t actually eaten any solid food in about 36 hours.

In honor of my unexpectedly imposed broth/tea fast, I thought I’d share a Soup Menu with you this week.

I was actually inspired by this time last year when I shared a Soup Swap on my Talk of the Town TV segment last year (click the link to watch the actual video from the segment).

For those of you who don’t recall, I got together with about five other ladies in my small group and we each made 5 portions of the same soup (large enough to feed a family of four) and then shared them with each other. It took quite a large stock pot to pull off, but it ended up providing meals for about two weeks (and beyond!)

I also had a great Beer Cheese Soup at the Big River Brewery while at Disney’s Boardwalk and found a great copycat recipe that I’m sharing below, along with some of my other soup favorites.

Remember, if you also want some help on breakfast & lunch, check out my meal plan archives or eMeals for help in that category).


 Free Weekly Meal Planner: March 31, 2014

As always, I hope you take what’s helpful for you and just leave what’s not. Here you go:

Free Weekly Meal Planner: March 24, 2014

Monday: Chinese Chicken Rice Soup

Tuesday: Chef Jack’s Corn Chowder from Paula Deen

Wednesday: Meghan’s Chicken Tortilla Soup from a Farmgirl Dabbles

Thursday: Big River Grille’s Beer Cheese Soup from The Recipes of Disney

Friday: my Easy Lentil Soup Recipe

Saturday: Miso Soup

Sunday: Beef Vegetable Soup

What are you eating in your home this week?

30 meals for 30 Free Weekly Meal Planner: March 31, 2014


 Free Weekly Meal Planner: March 31, 2014

Pin It
pin it button Free Weekly Meal Planner: March 31, 2014

Free Weekly Meal Planner: March 24, 2014

monday meal plan 300x153 Free Weekly Meal Planner: March 24, 2014My free weekly meal planner is back for the week of March 24, 2014.

 I took last week off since it was Spring Break and I felt like our family was all over the place, literally! (You can check out our kids’ Dollywood FireChaser Express review, as well as our adventure to the Five Below Grand Opening this weekend).

But after days of eating on the road, we’re all together back at home, so we’re focusing on some simple, family favorites this week.

So with that in mind, I’ll share what my family will be eating this week. If you want some help on breakfast & lunch, check out my meal plan archives or eMeals for help in that category).


 Free Weekly Meal Planner: March 24, 2014

As always, I hope you take what’s helpful for you and just leave what’s not. Here you go:

Free Weekly Meal Planner: March 24, 2014

Monday: Scrambled Hamburgers

Tuesday: Homemade Chili with Fritos Scoops

Wednesday: Pita Tacos with Refried Beans

Thursday: Sesame Chicken with Jasmine Rice and Gyoza

Friday: Pizza night with salad

Saturday: Lo Mein & Miso Soup

Sunday: Grilled Cheese with Soup

What are you eating in your home this week?

30 meals for 30 Free Weekly Meal Planner: March 24, 2014


 Free Weekly Meal Planner: March 24, 2014

Pin It
pin it button Free Weekly Meal Planner: March 24, 2014

30 Meals for $30

30 meals for 30 30 Meals for $30

Didn’t think it was possible to make 30 meals for $30? What about 30 meals for under $30? Well I’ve done it!

And if you watched my TV segment on Talk of the Town, you’ve already seen it done…


 30 Meals for $30

That’s right, I’m talking breakfast, lunch, dinner, and 2 snacks per day for 6 days (not to mention the leftovers…)

So here’s your plan:

30 Meals for $30

    BREAKFAST                        SNACK                        LUNCH                        SNACK                            DINNER

Mon        Smoothie                    Applesauce              PB & banana roll up           Carrots & PB                   Chicken & Rice

Tues         Cereal             Sugar-Free Oatmeal cookies      Fried Rice                Cucumber Rounds         Spaghetti with garlic & olive oil

Wed        Oatmeal                   PB Crispy Rice balls     Black Beans & Rice          Celery & PB                Chicken Noodle Soup & Crackers

Thur       Smoothie                  PB & Crackers                Mac & Cheese           Sugar-Free Oatmeal cookies                  Chopped Salad

 Fri          Cereal                        Pineapple                        Soup & Salad                  Applesauce                 Black Bean Chicken Chimichangas

Sat          Oatmeal                   Hard Boiled Eggs       Black Bean Quesadillas        Smoothie pops               Sweet & Savory Crepes

Watch the full TV segment on 30 meals for $30 from Talk of the Town:
NewsChannel5.com | Nashville News, Weather I did 99% of my shopping at ALDI because they have such great prices everyday and I wanted to prove that you don’t have to be able to coupon to drastically cut back on your weekly grocery bill! Here’s the breakdown:

30 Meals for $30 Shopping List

Whole fryer chicken (.89/lb = 4.45)

bananas = .44/lb
lettuce = .99
carrots = .99
cucumber = .25
bagged salad = .49
Frozen berry mix = 2.29
canned pineapple = .89
applesauce = 1.29
garlic = .99
rice = 1.59
egg noodles = 1.29
spaghetti = .89
oatmeal = 2.29
rice cereal = 1.89
tortillas = 1.29
saltines = .99
black beans (canned -2 ) = 1.18
peanut butter = 1.89
block cheddar cheese = 1.79
Mac & Cheese = .39
milk = 2.89
OJ = 1.79
eggs = 1.79
__________
$28.55
Keep in mind, some of these items, like the rice & oatmeal, will last long beyond this meal plan. Also, I played with adding a roast in for $3.99 ad taking out items like the saltines & applesauce, which would still keep you at that $30 mark and add more protein in to your week.
Are you up for the $30 for 30 challenge??

 30 Meals for $30

pin it button 30 Meals for $30

Free Weekly Meal Planner: March 10, 2014

monday meal plan 300x153 Free Weekly Meal Planner: March 10, 2014My free weekly meal planner is back for the week of March 10, 2014.

I’ve been slacking in posting my meal plans for you since my triumphant 30 meals for $30 post…I guess it took more out of me than I realized icon wink Free Weekly Meal Planner: March 10, 2014

But in all seriousness, I jumped back on the horse this weekend and cooked up a storm Saturday night.

While Ricky has been out of town every weekend working on the Winter Jam Tour, it’s left me a little more freedom to experiment with just me & the kids at home.

So on Fridays after I pick the kids up from school, we head over to the library to pick a movie for family fun night. While they look for books, I’ve also been thumbing through the cookbook section.

So far, I’ve not only found an old favorite from my friend Erin from 5 Dollar Dinners (only $6 on Amazon right now!):
 Free Weekly Meal Planner: March 10, 2014 Free Weekly Meal Planner: March 10, 2014

I’ve also fallen in love with Homemade Pantry:
 Free Weekly Meal Planner: March 10, 2014

The first night I got it, I started in on homemade jam & pie crust to make homemade pop tarts. There is no comparison between the store bought (40+ ingredients, most of which I cannot pronounce) and the homemade version (5 basic ingredients most people already keep in their fridge/pantry).

 Free Weekly Meal Planner: March 10, 2014

 Free Weekly Meal Planner: March 10, 2014So on Saturday, not only did we make tacos & salsa from 5 Dollar Dinners, but I also made meatballs & sauce, roasted broccoli cheese soup & banana bread (technically Kariss made that…all by herself even!).

 Free Weekly Meal Planner: March 10, 2014

So with that in mind, I’ll share what my family will be eating this week. If you want some help on breakfast & lunch, check out my meal plan archives or eMeals for help in that category).


 Free Weekly Meal Planner: March 10, 2014

As always, I hope you take what’s helpful for you and just leave what’s not. Here you go:

Free Weekly Meal Planner: March 10, 2014

Monday: Pot Roast with Roasted Brussel Sprouts

Tuesday: Sesame Chicken with rice

Wednesday: Corned Beef & Cabbage

Thursday: Spaghetti & Meatballs with salad

Friday: Pizza night with salad

Saturday: Roasted Broccoli Soup with cornbread

Sunday: Tacos with Salsa Fresca

What are you eating in your home this week?


 Free Weekly Meal Planner: March 10, 2014

Pin It
pin it button Free Weekly Meal Planner: March 10, 2014

Sugar-Free Oatmeal Banana Applesauce Cookie Recipe

One of the biggest hits from my 30 meals for $30 Talk of the Town TV appearance were my Sugar-Free Oatmeal Banana Applesauce Cookies.

Sugar free oatmeal banana applesauce cookie recipe Sugar Free Oatmeal Banana Applesauce Cookie Recipe

Even Drs. Rodan and Fields, who happened to be appearing with me that day, loved them!

 Sugar Free Oatmeal Banana Applesauce Cookie Recipe

Here is my Sugar-Free Oatmeal Banana Applesauce Cookie Recipe:

recipeseo placeholder Sugar Free Oatmeal Banana Applesauce Cookie Recipe

sugar free oatmeal banana cookie recipe Sugar Free Oatmeal Banana Applesauce Cookie Recipe

You could also add raisins or dried cranberries (make sure they don’t have extra sugar added in them already!) for a more traditional oatmeal cookie taste.


 Sugar Free Oatmeal Banana Applesauce Cookie Recipe

When I made these cookies for Talk of the Town, I added chocolate chips to them and everyone seemed to love that touch!

If you wanted to make this sugar-free cookie recipe gluten-free as well, just exchange the quick cooking oats for gluten-free oats.

To make this sugar-free oatmeal banana applesauce cookie recipe dairy free, exchange the milk for almond milk (tastes just as good!).

pin it button Sugar Free Oatmeal Banana Applesauce Cookie Recipe

Free Christmas Breakfast Meal Plan

Christmas Breakfast Meal Plan 693x1024 Free Christmas Breakfast Meal Plan

My free weekly meal planner is taking a break for the week of December 23, 2013 and instead I’m sharing our Christmas Breakfast Meal Plan!

I thought it a little absurd to try to share a meal plan for the week of Christmas since not only are so many of you traveling and in homes other than your own, but I’m assuming you probably have things pretty well mapped out by this point. (Although we still don’t know what we’re doing for Christmas dinner! Anyone have an extra seat at their table? icon wink Free Christmas Breakfast Meal Plan

But I did think it would be fun to share our family’s Christmas breakfast meal plan that has become a tradition in the Cone home.

This is especially great because I can assemble the majority of the menu the night before and then pull it out of the fridge to put in the oven first thing in the morning so that it’s ready to eat while we watch the Disney Very Merry Christmas Parade and dream of being at Disney World for Christmas one year!

Our Christmas Breakfast Meal Plan

*Mexican Breakfast Casserole
Instead of the typical bread you use for casseroles like these, we take flour tortillas and layer them with eggs (spiked with hot sauce), sausage (cooked with onions) and Mexican cheese. I adapted this from an Emeril Lagasse recipe.

*Cheesy Hashbrown Casserole
My daughter loves Cracker Barrel’s hash brown casserole, so this cheesy hash brown copycat recipe is the closest we could find to match theirs!

*Mint Citrus Salad
Just like it sounds, I take orange and grapefruit wedges and let them sit in a bit of fresh mint and sugar overnight. It’s that simple!

*Florida Sunrise
This drink comes from my husband’s family where they basically mix fruit juice and a lemon-lime soda, usually OJ & sprite (sometimes with a splash of grenadine to make the ‘sunrise’ extra bright!).

I already hear what you’re saying, “Sami, you don’t even like saying the word casserole, much less eating TWO of them!”

These are different, not only because I make them myself, but they also contain very few ingredients.

And my family loves them!

So what about you…do you have any Christmas breakfast traditions?

Don’t forget to check out my meal plan archives or eMeals for help in that category).

 


 Free Christmas Breakfast Meal Plan

Pin It
pin it button Free Christmas Breakfast Meal Plan

Free Weekly Meal Planner: November 18, 2013

monday meal plan 300x153 Free Weekly Meal Planner: November 18, 2013My free weekly meal planner is back for the week of December 16, 2013.

If you didn’t know already, I’m in Ecuador!

That’s right, I’ll be in Ecuador through Wednesday with Operation Christmas Child hand-delivering shoeboxes we’ve packed for the children there. I’d love for you to follow my journey on Twitter & Instagram with the hashtag #OCCEcuador.

I’ve also set up a special hashtag on both called #FollowTheBox so you can follow the journey from start to finish of how a shoebox comes together, travels and eventually ends up in the hands of a child. The experience has already changed my perspective of packing the shoeboxes and I hope it inspires & educates your family too!

So while I won’t be cooking for the first half of this week, I did make some things last week to plan ahead for my family. This is a great time of year to batch cook, not only because I love having the oven on during the winter, but also because you just never know what might come up or who might drop by during the month of December, so it’s always helpful to have extra on hand.

Keep in mind, I’m just posting dinners now. If you want some help on breakfast & lunch, check out my meal plan archives or eMeals for help in that category).


 Free Weekly Meal Planner: November 18, 2013

As always, I hope you take what’s helpful for you and just leave what’s not. Here you go:

Free Weekly Meal Planner: December 16, 2013

Monday: Spaghetti Squash & Meatballs

Tuesday: Chimichangas with Yellow Rice & Black Beans

Wednesday: Turkey Chili

Thursday: Chicken Rollatini with mashed potatoes & asparagus

Friday: Pizza night with salad

Saturday: BBQ Brisket with Baked Beans & Mac and Cheese

Sunday: Use leftovers for Chopped Salad

What are you eating in your home this week?


 Free Weekly Meal Planner: November 18, 2013

Pin It
pin it button Free Weekly Meal Planner: November 18, 2013

Free Weekly Meal Planner: November 18, 2013

monday meal plan 300x153 Free Weekly Meal Planner: November 18, 2013My free weekly meal planner is back for the week of December 9, 2013.

I hope you all had an AMAZING Thanksgiving and haven’t been hit too badly by these December storms so far.

I took a couple weeks off because:
1. I knew we’d all be eating a lot of Turkey and
2. I’ve been in 4 cities in 2 weeks, so I haven’t been home much to cook!

That’s right, we’ve been in Memphis, Gatlinburg/Pigeon Forge/Sevierville, Wheelwright, KY and of course, Nashville (with an overnight to the Opryland Hotel in there too!). Needless to say, we have a TON of laundry to do!

And even more exciting news – I get to go to Ecuador on Sunday with Operation Christmas Child! (More on that to come…)

Remember, I’m just posting dinners now. If you want some help on breakfast & lunch, check out my meal plan archives or eMeals for help in that category).


 Free Weekly Meal Planner: November 18, 2013

As always, I hope you take what’s helpful for you and just leave what’s not. Here you go:

TEXT HERE 682x1024 Free Weekly Meal Planner: November 18, 2013

Free Weekly Meal Planner: December 9, 2013

Monday: Slow Cooker White Chili

Tuesday: Honey Chicken and Pea Pod Rice (from Rachael Ray)

Wednesday: Spaghetti & Broccoli Aglio e Olio (from Jeff Morrow)

Thursday: Flank Steak with Chimmichurri

Friday: Pizza night

Saturday: Leftovers

Sunday: I’ll be on my way to Ecuador eating airplane food icon wink Free Weekly Meal Planner: November 18, 2013

What are you eating in your home this week?


 Free Weekly Meal Planner: November 18, 2013

Pin It
pin it button Free Weekly Meal Planner: November 18, 2013

Free Weekly Meal Planner: November 18, 2013

monday meal plan 300x153 Free Weekly Meal Planner: November 18, 2013My free weekly meal planner is back for the week of November 18, 2013.

I’m coming at you from St. Jude and so obviously I’m not doing much cooking at home this week (another reason why I decided to start posting my meal plans a week behind).

Even though I’m out of town most of this week with the kids at St. Jude and then moderating the National Bible Bee competition later this week, I still wanted to be sure I was helping you with your meal planning! I know, I know, I’ve taken a bit of a hiatus from my weekly meal plans.

Remember, I’m just posting dinners now. If you want some help on breakfast & lunch, check out my meal plan archives or eMeals for help in that category).


 Free Weekly Meal Planner: November 18, 2013

Also, if you’re really looking to keep things simple, why not consider setting a theme for each day of the week and then simply altering the meals each week. For example, Monday = Mexican, Tuesday = Vegetarian, Wednesday = Slow cooker Meal, and so on and so forth. For an example of how I’ve done this in the past, watch this video from my Whole Foods Budget Meal Planning series:

As always, I hope you take what’s helpful for you and just leave what’s not.

Free Weekly Meal Planner: November 18, 2013

Monday: Cobb salad

Tuesday: Lentil Soup

Wednesday: Pecan Crusted Chicken & Scalloped potatoes

Thursday: Beef in Garlic Sauce over Rice

Friday: Pizza night

Saturday: Taco Night!

Sunday: Beef & Black Bean Nachos (we used leftovers from Moe’s Taco Night icon wink Free Weekly Meal Planner: November 18, 2013

What are you eating in your home this week?


 Free Weekly Meal Planner: November 18, 2013

pin it button Free Weekly Meal Planner: November 18, 2013

Free Weekly Meal Planner: November 11, 2013

monday meal plan 300x153 Free Weekly Meal Planner: November 11, 2013My free weekly meal planner is back for the week of November 11, 2013.

I know, I know, I’ve taken a bit of a hiatus from my weekly meal plans.

To be honest, I wasn’t sure if I was going to bring back my weekly meal plans at all. After all, it’s been a rough year and I’ve gone through weeks where I haven’t eaten much at all and was existing on Dr. Pepper and then there have been periods of time where we’ve just lived on whatever was in our pantry and freezer.

However, our family is back on a good path. So instead of waiting until the New Year to revamp, we’re starting now.

I did however see the need to make a few changes in order to make this work for my family AND yours.

First off, I’m going to cut out the breakfast & lunch components of my free weekly meal plan.
-We’re still keeping things pretty simple when it comes to those things (a lot of smoothies, Greek yogurt, turkey, chicken & cheese), so I don’t want to share something with you that we’re not actually doing ourselves. If you want some help on breakfast & lunch, check out my meal plan archives or eMeals for help in that category).


 Free Weekly Meal Planner: November 11, 2013

Second, I’m going to be sharing our menus from the previous week.
- Honestly, as much as I try to blog in real time, I realized that by waiting until I came up with my family’s meal plan for the coming week, I was hindering you from being able to make use of my meal plan! Now you can take advantage of the planning with enough time to actually plan for your family.

Third, if you’re really looking to keep things simple, why not consider setting a theme for each day of the week and then simply altering the meals each week. For example, Monday = Mexican, Tuesday = Vegetarian, Wednesday = Slow cooker Meal, and so on and so forth. For an example of how I’ve done this in the past, watch this video from my Whole Foods Budget Meal Planning series:

As always, I hope you take what’s helpful for you and just leave what’s not.

Free Weekly Meal Planner: November 11, 2013

Monday: Fajita Quesadillas with Refried Beans

Tuesday: Chili and Cornbread

Wednesday: Pot Roast with Carrots & Potatoes

Thursday: Chinese Chicken Stir Fry & Rice

Friday: Pizza night

Saturday: Bacon Wrapped Filet with Mashed Potatoes & Asparagus

Sunday: Spaghetti & Meatballs

What is the key when it comes to weekly meal planning in your house?


 Free Weekly Meal Planner: November 11, 2013

pin it button Free Weekly Meal Planner: November 11, 2013