Menu Planning Monday: My menu for the week of 8/23

It’s only Monday and it’s been a busy, busy week already! My oldest starts kindergarten today. I’m still trying to figure out how this happened since it seems like it was just yesterday that we were bringing her home from the hospital. Yesterday, I also got to be at the hospital for the birth of my newest niece, which was an amazing experience. Unfortunately, menu planning has been at the bottom of my list the past couple of days and I was lucky I was able to run in and out of the grocery store on Saturday night to pick up a few things as my husband and I ended our first date night in a VERY long time.

I’d love to say that I have a bunch of fantastic breakfasts planned but between work and everything else going on, I think we’ll probably alternate between the “quickie” things that we have on hand which include Eggos, Pop Tarts, cereal, and oatmeal.

Lunches will be a mixture of Smart Ones frozen meals and leftovers for me and sandwiches (cheese, peanut butter, etc.) for my daughter. My son will eat at daycare and my husband will eat things here and there along the way.

Here’s our dinner meal plan for the week:

SUNDAY ~ Macaroni and cheese (homemade) – my mother in law has been in town and made this for dinner last night – it is a favorite, but I don’t have the recipe!

MONDAYLasagne – This will be made this morning (HOPEFULLY) before I go off to work and then I’ll have my husband pop it in the oven when I’m on the way home from work. I use this recipe here from Barilla. If you haven’t tried their oven-ready noodles yet, they are a total lifesaver!

TUESDAYQuick beef skillet – I’m going to use “fresh” carrots and potatoes rather than canned and throw all of this in the crockpot in the morning. I originally found this recipe on the Babycenter Cooking for your Family board. It was posted by Amy (amlyz). I believe it is a Campbell’s recipe.

1 lb. ground beef
1 can Campbell’s(R) Beefy Mushroom Soup
1/4 cup water
1 tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
1/8 tsp. pepper
1 can (about 15 oz.) sliced potatoes, drained
1 can (about 8 oz.) sliced carrots, drained

COOK beef in skillet until browned. Pour off fat.
ADD soup, water, Worcestershire, pepper,
potatoes and carrots and heat through.

Serves 4

WEDNESDAYLemony chicken breasts with rice

This recipe came from All You Magazine (they now have a searchable recipe database with over 800 recipes, which is awesome!) We tried it once before and the family enjoyed it.

Cost per serving: $2.25

4 Servings

•4 tablespoons unsalted butter
•1 onion, finely chopped
•2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
•4 boneless chicken breast halves
•Salt and pepper
•4 cups canned low-sodium chicken broth
•1/4 cup lemon juice
•2 cups long-grain rice
•1/4 cup finely chopped fresh parsley

Melt 2 Tbsp. butter in a large skillet over medium high heat. Add onion and cook until softened, stirring occasionally, 4 to 5 minutes. Add garlic and cook 1 minute longer. Scrape into slow cooker.

Sprinkle chicken with salt. Melt remaining 2 Tbsp. butter in skillet over medium high heat until foaming. Add chicken breast halves and cook until browned, about 2 minutes per side. Transfer to slow cooker.

Add 1 cup broth and lemon juice to skillet and bring to a boil, scraping browned bits from bottom of pan. Add to the slow cooker, along with remaining broth, rice and 1 tsp. salt. Stir, cover and cook on low until chicken is cooked through and rice is tender, 2 to 3 hours. Remove chicken, stir parsley into rice and season with salt and pepper. Divide rice onto 4 plates and top each with a piece of chicken; serve immediately.

Nutritional Information
Calories: 534 Fat: 15g (sat 8g) Protein: 20g Carbohydrate: 80g Fiber: 2g Cholesterol: 54mg Sodium: 323mg
All You, MAY 2008

THURSDAYSlow cooker ravioli

1 (25 ounce) bag beef or cheese ravioli
1 (26 ounce) jar pasta sauce
1 (8 ounce) can tomato sauce
1 cup water
1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese

Pour about half of the pasta sauce in the bottom of slow cooker. Add frozen ravioli. Pour additional pasta sauce, tomato sauce, and water over ravioli. Sprinkle cheese on top. Turn slow cooker on low and cook for four to five hours (until ravioli are tender).

FRIDAYChicken and stuffing (slow cooker)

4 to 6 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1 can 98% fat free cream of chicken soup
1/3 cup milk
1 pkg (6 oz.) chicken-flavored stuffing mix
1 2/3 cups water

Directions: Place chicken in greased slow cooker. In a separate bowl, combine soup and milk, then pour over chicken. Combine stuffing mix and water. Spoon over chicken and soup mixture. Cover and cook on low heat 6-8 hours. Makes 4-6 servings.

SATURDAYPeppered Steak

this is a family recipe that came from my mother in law
3 cups hot cooked rice
1 lb lean beef round steak (cut into 1/2 inch thick strips)
1 T Paprika
2 T butter
2 cloves garlic, crusehd
1 1/2 c. beef broth
1 cup sliced green onions
2 green peppers, cut in strips
2T cornstarch
1/4 c. water
1/4 c. soy sauce
2 lg tomatoes (cut in eighths)

Pound steak to 1/4 inch thick. Cut into 1/4 inch wide strips. Sprinkle meat with paprika. Let stand. Brown meat in butter. Add garlic and brother. Cover and simmer for 30 minutes. Stir in onions and green peppers. Cover and cook 5 minutes. Blend cornstarch, water and soy sauce. Stir into meat mixture. Cook, stirring until clear and thickened, about 2 minutes. Add tomatoes and stir gently. Serve over beds of fluffy rice. Serves 6.


  1. Melissa,

    How long do you cook the Quick Beef Skillet? I assume it is cooked on low in the crockpot. I love your menu planning- very family friendly recipes


  2. I cook it on low when I put it in the crockpot and I'm gone all day, so it's in there for about 10 hours. I think when I make it tomorrow, I'm going to try it with round steak instead of hamburger meat and see how it turns out!