I have taken a look at the freezer and pantry and I think I have come up with a good looking menu! Remember, we are eating healthy so my menu may look a little different from yours. We are also eating 4 small meals a day. We started this on January 4th and we are having great results. This does create a little more work for me but it is so worth it!
I am thawing a HUGE (20 lbs) turkey* that I had in the freezer. He was a great deal! I paid $.37 per pound! I found some hamburgers that I have already seasoned and formed into patties. We are having those for dinner tonight. Last week I bought some of the chicken breasts that Kroger had on sale. I threw them in the freezer when I got home so they will be on the menu this week. We are eating a lot of dried beans and brown or wild rice. In my "canning" pantry, I have lots of greens beans and peaches that I want to incorporate into the menu. So, here we go -
1. Scrambled eggs with spinach & garlic
2. Fruit & almonds
3. Southwest chicken salad
4. Turkey, wild rice, green beans, glazed carrots
1. Oatmeal + peaches
2. Turkey wrap
3. 1/2 c. rice & 1/2 c. beans
4. Black bean burgers (one of my favorites!), lemon broccoli, baked apples
1. Yogurt + fruit
2. Protein shake
3. Tuna and cobb salad
4. Turkey soup
1. Egg sandwich + banana
2. Turkey wrap
3. Soup from previous day
4. Blackened cod, cole slaw, sugar-free chocolate pudding
2. Protein Shake + banana and strawberries
3. Ham sandwich with lettuce, tomato and onion
4. Red beans and rice
1. Whole wheat blueberry waffles
2. Yogurt + fruit
3. Red beans & rice from the day before
4. Fried Rice
Today I am getting all of my meats out of the freezer and putting them in the fridge to thaw. I am going to throw the wild rice in the rice cooker so it will be ready for the week. (If you don't have a rice cooker, I highly recommend them. It's one appliance I use all of the time!) I am going to make whole wheat flour tortillas today for the turkey wraps and cook up the blueberry waffles. The waffles are easy to freeze and then just pop in the toaster.
Helpful Hint #1 - A little hint on freezing things like waffles - lay them out on a cookie sheet covered with parchment paper, not touching, and freeze for an hour or two. Once frozen, place in a ziplock container and they will not be stuck together when you need to get them out. This works well on all fruits, waffles, pancakes, bread crumbs, etc.
Helpful Hint #2 - Always keep the skin and ends from onions, celery and carrots. As you cut them up just throw the normal discards into a bag in the freezer. Use these to make chicken or turkey stock. Just throw them into a pot with your chicken or turkey bones, cover with water, add a little salt and pepper, and cook at medium low for several hours. The onion skin gives it a beautiful color and adds flavor to the stock. When finished, strain out all of the pieces and refrigerate. Once the stock is cool, any fat will congeal on the top. You will be able to just scoop it off and you will have a healthy, home cooked stock!
*I really get my money's worth from a turkey. I paid a little under $7 for this 20lb turkey. I will roast it in the oven and we will eat our first meal from it. After we eat, I debone the turkey and place all of the meat in a ziplock. This can be used in many ways. I then cook the bones (along with my frozen veggie peels) to make turkey broth. The broth can be used in anything where chicken broth is called for. It will be the base of my soup this week. I plan on having at least 5 meals for 4 people off of this turkey. That makes it about $.35 per person, per meal!