Menu Planning Monday: My menu for the week of 1/23 (WW pts included!)

Welcome!  One of my New Year’s “goals” was to eat healthier, and so I’m trying to incorporate healthier recipes all around into our menu plan. My husband was gung ho at first, but last night informed me that we’ve been eating a LOT of chicken and asked could we please add some beef to the menu this week!

The plan listed here just includes our dinner menu and recipes. I have calculated Weight Watchers points values using the e-tools Recipe Builder, and points values this week are based on the new Points Plus program! Both kids eat breakfast at home, but my son eats lunch at daycare, my daughter eats lunch at

If you’ve been reading my blog for awhile, then you know that for the past two years, I have done a $40 weekly budget.  With the changes to our eating habits, I’m going to increase our budget to $50 per week and I’m really going to try to stick to that, but I’m not even sure that will be enough.  This will be a trial and error experience, so stay tuned!

If you’re new to menu planning or would like tips for getting started, check out this post here.

SUNDAY:  Turkey meatballs with whole wheat pasta and marinara sauce – I was looking for a good turkey meatballs recipe and Brittany (Frugal in Fargo) suggested this one from Taste of Home.  I’ve never had a bad experience with a Taste of Home recipe, so I figured it was worth checking out!  I loved it, but my six year old daughter said she liked the “old, not so healthy meatballs” better 🙂

* 1 package (10 ounces) frozen chopped spinach, thawed and squeezed dry
* 1 egg, beaten
* 1 cup soft bread crumbs
* 2 tablespoons grated onion
* 1 teaspoon seasoned salt
* 1 pound ground turkey
* Tomato wedges, optional

* In a bowl, combine spinach, egg, bread crumbs, onion and seasoned salt. Add turkey and mix well. Shape into 2-in. balls. Place meatballs on a greased rack in a shallow baking pan. Bake, uncovered, at 400° for 20 minutes or until the meat is no longer pink. Drain on paper towels. Garnish with tomato wedges if desired. Yield: 4 servings. (it lists the serving size as 3 each and this made 20 meatballs for us, so it would actually be almost 7 servings)

WW points = 4 points per serving (add 4 pts per cup of whole wheat pasta or 2 pts for 1/2 cup plus 3 points per cup of marinara sauce)
Sides = green beans and green salad

MONDAY:  French dip sandwiches (slow cooker) – This is a family favorite and I love it because it is SOOO easy to make!

beef roast
2 cans beef broth
1 tsp dried rosemary
1 tsp dried thyme
1 tsp garlic powder
4-6 hoagie buns
(we also add some swiss or provolone cheese)

Place roast in a greased slow cooker. Pour broth over the top of the roast. Add spices. Cover and cook on low heat 8-10 hours (or high heat 5-7 hours). Remove roast and save extra juice. With a fork, break the meat apart and serve on hoagies. Use excess juice for dipping sandwiches.

WW points = 7 points per serving (this does not include the cheese or the buns, add 2 points for the cheese and 4 points for the whole wheat bun – I think I’m going to try mine without a bun or on pita bread)

TUESDAY:  Melt in your mouth meatloaf (slow cooker) – I’ve made this several times now for our family.  It’s easy to make and yummy!

2 eggs
3/4 c. milk (we use skim)
2/3 c. seasoned bread crumbs
2 tsp dried, minced onion
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp rubbed sage
1 1/2 pounds ground beef (we always make this with ground turkey instead and it’s yummy!)
1/4 c. ketchup
2 T brown sugar
1 tsp ground mustard
1/2 tsp Worcestershire sauce

1. In a large bowl, combine the first six ingredients. Crumble beef over mixture and mix well (mixture will be moist.) Shape into a round loaf; place in a 5-qt. slow cooker. Cover and cook on low for 5-6 hours or until a meat thermometer reads 160 degrees F.

2. In a small bowl, whisk the ketchup, brown sugar, mustard and Worcestershire sauce. Spoon over the meat loaf. Cook 15 minutes longer or until heated through. Let stand for 10-15 minutes before cutting.

WW points = 5 per serving with the ground turkey, ground beef may be more (makes 6 servings)

Sides – Sour cream mashed potatoes (4 pts) and green beans (0 pts)

WEDNESDAY:   Country Ham and Macaroni Casserole – My entire family has been BEGGING for this!

Thanks to Sandy~Bettyinthekitchen ( Cooking for Your Family Board)

1 lb country ham slices or regular smoked ham in one piece (I just use whatever leftover ham we have on hand)
1 large onion, diced
1 lb elbow macaroni (whole wheat)
2 cups shredded extra sharp cheddar cheese (8 oz) – I use reduced fat
1 cup sour cream (I use reduced fat)
1 can cream of chicken soup (I use 98% fat free)
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) margarine, melted (I don’t use this when I make it)
1 cup dry plain bread crumbs

1. Heat oven to 400º.
2. Bring 4 quarts water and ham to boiling in large pot. Once water begins to boil,
remove ham to a plate. Add onion and macaroni to pot. Return water to boiling; cook 8 minutes, stirring occasionally.
3. Coarsely chop ham, discarding any fat and bones.
4. Drain macaroni and onion and return to pot. Add ham, cheese, sour cream and soup. Scrape into a 13x9x2 baking dish. Pour melted margarine over top. Sprinkle with bread crumbs.
5. Bake in heated 400º oven 30 minutes or until heated through and top is golden brown.
Let stand 5 minutes before serving.

Note: Prepare in two 8×8 casserole dishes, bake one and freeze one (unbaked) for another day. If freezing, top with crumbs and margarine right before baking.

WW points = 9 points per serving (with modifications above), makes 6 servings
Sides:  sliced cantaloupe and green salad

THURSDAY:  Creamy chicken enchiladas – It’s my husband’s birthday and this was his pick!.

1 can cream of chicken soup (I use the 98% FF kind)
1 can cream of mushroom soup (I use the 98% FF kind)
2 cans green enchilada sauce
1 8 oz-16 oz. tub of sour cream (depends how spicy you want the enchiladas)
2-3 chicken breasts, shredded (if I’m in a hurry, I use canned chicken)
8 oz cheese, shredded
1 dozen flour tortillas (you could use corn also) – we are using whole wheat!

Add cream of chicken soup, cream of mushroom soup, and enchilada sauce to a pan. Cook on medium low heat, stirring occasionally. When sauce is will mixed and starts to thin, add sour cream. Continue stirring occasionally until the sauce is well mixed and thinned out. Place a layer of the sauce along the bottom of a 9X13 baking dish. Fill each tortilla with the shredded chicken, sauce, and cheese. Roll and place in the baking dish. When you have filled all of the tortillas (this should make 1 dozen), pour the remain sauce over the top of the enchiladas and then cover with cheese. Bake at 350 degrees for 25-30 minutes until the cheese is well melted.

WW points = 6 points per enchilada
Sides:  green beans and green salad

FRIDAY:  Chili (slow cooker) – this was another request from my husband

1 lb ground beef (brown in skillet and then place in crockpot)
1 can dark kidney beans (drained and rinsed)
1 can Ranch style beans
1 can diced tomatoes
1 can crushed tomatoes
1 packet chili spices

Mix all ingredients in crockpot and cook on high for 5 hours or low for 8 hours. Sprinkle cheese on top.

WW points = 7 points per serving (6-8 servings) – cheese and any additional toppings are “extra”

SATURDAY:  Beef tips (slow cooker) – I found this recipe in Taste of Home Magazine. We have eaten it a few times now and my whole family (even my picky eater kids) loves it!

1 beef top sirloin steak (1 pound), cut into 1-inch cubes
2 to 3 medium carrots, chopped
1 to 1-1/2 cups chopped celery
1 cup chopped onion
1 can (10-3/4 ounces) condensed golden mushroom soup, undiluted
1/2 to 1 cup white wine or beef broth
2 teaspoons cornstarch
1/4 cup cold water
Hot cooked egg noodles

In a 3-qt. slow cooker, combine the beef, carrots, celery, onion, soup and wine or broth. Cover and cook on low for 6-7 hours or until meat is tender.

Combine cornstarch and water until smooth; gradually stir into cooking juices. Cover and cook on high for 15 minutes or until thickened. Serve with noodles. Yield: 4 servings.

WW points = 6 per serving (add 3 points for 1/2 cup pasta/rice or 5 points for 1 cup pasta/rice)

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