Once a Month Cooking- or How to be completely predictable in the kitchen

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Hubs is a vegetarian.  Can’t eat anything with a face.  NoOne and NoTwo are Pescatarian.  Meaning they eat fish but no red meat.  Their fave food is crab legs.  Me, I’m trying to be Paleo, and my favorite food is bacon.  Or as Hubs like to say, dead pig.  And no gluten comes into this house (unless I sneak it in- I’m the only non-celiac).  

 

What does this mean?  It means that without pre-planning, dinner can turn into a cluster f*ck of 3-4 different meals, one for each person.  So I have devised my once a month cooking plan.  Not only does it save my sanity, it saves money too!  To be honest, we don’t have the space for a whole month, so it’s really more like twice a month cooking, but that’s really not as catchy of a title…

So, what does twice a month cooking look like for me?

2 dinner casseroles- spaghetti pie and broccoli/rice/chick’n
2 breakfast casseroles- hashbrown pies
3 pancake breakfasts- good for heat and go or breakfast as dinner
7 bags of crockpot meals with meat- these are all for me! 
2 bags of veggie stir fry
1-2 bags of Chick’n fajita blend
2 bags of gf burritos- bean and cheese

 

Our meal plan looks like this…

M- Rice dish or casserole
T- Taco Tuesday (we go out for this one)
W- Pasta or Spaghetti Pie Casserole
R- Stir Fry
F- Pizza
Sa- Burgers and Fries
Su- Breakfast as Dinner
Breakfasts are usually pancakes, eggs or cereal
Lunches are usually left overs or Almond butter and jelly sammies (NoTwo)

Obviously, some of the OAMC meals are for lunches as well as dinner.  The day before cooking I go to Costco.  

Shopping list
bag of peppers
10 lb bag of sweet potatoes
10 lb bag of carrots
bag of broccoli
bag of sugar snap peas
box of apples
bag o’ avocados
bag of brussel sprouts
package of organic chicken breast
package of frozen organic shrimp
package of nitrite free sausage
package of grass fed beef or bison

If in need…
cans of refried beans
cheese
eggs
hashbrowns
cottage cheese
pasta sauce.

These are the crockpot bags I usually make for myself
Balsamic Mustard Chicken with veggies
Chicken or Shrimp Coconut Curry
Chicken Fajitas
Teriyaki Meatballs
Lemon Garlic chicken
Sausage and peppers
Chicken soup with veggies

Here are the casseroles I make.  They are all Gluten Free and Vegetarian.
Spaghetti Pie
Cream of Mushroom Broccoli/Rice/Chick’n Casserole
Hashbrown Pie

For the pancakes I use Pamelas All Purpose Baking and Pancake mix, I have found it to be the yummiest mix for pancakes.  Also good for blueberry muffin cobbler (which also freezes well).

For the veggie stir fry and the fajitas, I add Beyond Meat’s fake chicken strips.  For the GF burritos I use Udi’s gluten free tortillas. These tortillas are actually roll-able and won’t break or fall apart!

I will post links to the crock pot bags soon.

The Costco trip usually costs around $250.  I only do this once a month.  I do have to supplement with a trip to Sprouts, Lucky’s or Vitamin Cottage probably 3x a month.  Each trip usually costs $100.  I also buy some stuff at Vitacost on a 3 month automatic ship program.  Not all of it is organic, I try to buy it when I can and definitely for the dirty dozen and the meats.  All in all, we spend around $550-$600 on a good/average month.  As a GF family, I think we do a pretty good job being frugal while staying pretty healthy.  The kids usually grumble on Stir Fry Night, but whatever.  If I had to please everyone at dinner every night, then I would be in the kitchen 24/7.  No way. No how.

Let me know if you have any crockpot meals or meal planning tips.  I love learning new tips to stay sane in the kitchen!  I will post links to the crockpot recipes I use as well as follow up with what the prep/process looks like on cooking day.  They are easy, yummy and mostly paleo!

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(add teriyaki sauce and celery to the Costco list)

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3 thoughts on “Once a Month Cooking- or How to be completely predictable in the kitchen

  1. Love this post! So many great tips and a nice detailed look at all the preparation that goes into eating right.

    Glad we could be part of your meal plan and be sure to look out for Beyond Beef Crumbles hitting stores now!

    • We were SO excited to find chicken the whole family can and will eat. We used to eat Quorn products which we thought were great and until you guys came along, we thought the days of veggie chicken were behind us. Thanks for being gluten free and vegetarian!!!

  2. Pingback: “By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail.” My top 6 tips on planning as a Mompreneur | Marketing by the M.O.M.

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