Tuesday, July 30, 2013

I'm trying a new dinner menu planning approach

I struggle with planning dinner menus and tend to just shop and then pull it together day by day. That works out but I'd like to try a bit more structured approach and further minimize the I'm burnt out on cooking so let's go out to eat nights.

I've decided to pick a type of main dish for each day and plan from there.
- Sunday: chicken or turkey
- Monday: fish
- Tuesday: vegetarian
- Wednesday: chicken or turkey
- Thursday: fish
- Friday: pork or eggs

I've started a list of dishes we like in each main dish category and that will make it easier to make a specific menu plan. The fish we tend to eat are frozen salmon or tilapia and canned tuna.

There are also vegetables that I want to make sure we eat each week at dinnertime:
- sweet potato or butternut squash
- spinach, kale or chard
- broccoli
- carrots
- red pepper
- tomatoes

And fruits that make it to dinner are cantaloupe, watermelon, mango, pears or oranges depending on season and canned peaches, pears, and pineapple.

Generally leftovers either are eaten at lunch or used for another meal. For example, since its Tuesday we are having leftover barley and vegetable soup plus garlic bread, a large salad that includes spinach and red pepper, and mango or cantaloupe for dessert.

I'm not sure how this is going to work out, but it feels like it may be a good approach for me. How do you approach dinner planning?

1 comment:

  1. I tend to work with what's on sale, so I usually scan the ads when they come on Tuesday, and do my meal planning on Thursday, then shop on Friday.

    I like to try at least two new meals a week, so I grab a couple of cookbooks too, looking for recipes that use the ingredients on sale that week.

    Possibly more planning than some would be interested in, but I enjoy it, so it doesn't feel like work to me.