I’ve never written meal plans. Whenever I write about how to save money or time, either for my blog or for others, I include meal planning. I believe in them. I just don’t do it. Then a few weeks ago I realised I was “popping to the shop” at least three times a week.
Anyone with a toddler knows that shopping can be tough. Bobsy is actually very good, but even with the car, I’ve somehow got to get the shopping out of the car, up the road to our house, while ushering Bobsy. It’s not easy.
So, I decided to start online shopping again. I’m still driving to Aldi for treats and you know, booze and special buys. But, for the main shop, I’m ordering from Asda and getting it delivered. It’s just so much easier.
My plan wasn’t really financially motivated. But, I’m saving a fortune. I’m only buying what we need, I’m wasting much less, and sitting down and writing a plan at the start of the week (I tend to do it on Saturday, but you get my point) means we eat much more new and exciting meals. Which is good for us, and for my blog.
So, I decided to share my meal plans with the world. Each one will include a shopping list and some tips. As well as links to recipes if I’ve published them. Generally, I’m only going to include five meals. This is just because we near enough always have a Sunday roast, and I leave one night for leftovers/takeaway/meal out…there’s never a meal out, but the other two are more than likely!
Monday – Cottage Pie
Cottage pie is one of our absolute favourites. It’s warming, comforting, easy to make and incredibly filling. My recipe has got loads of flavours and is packed with veggies. But, it’s still straightforward. It also makes that much that I tend to split it into two dishes and freeze one for another day.
Monday’s are usually quite a busy day for me. So, I prepare my cottage pie early and leave it simmering away while I work. After the school run, I top it with cheese and put it in the oven when Hunky Husband is on his way home from work.
Tuesday – Lamb Rogan Josh
I’ve really fallen in love with making my own curries lately and Lamb Rogan Josh is the best yet! It’s got a 4-hour total cooking time. But, most of that is marinating or simmering so you can get a lot done around it. Letting the lamb cook for so long means its super tender and melts in your mouth.
This is another recipe that freezes well. So, make extras and save some for another day. Mine isn’t very spicy because Bobsy is tiny. But, you could easily add some chilli flakes or cayenne pepper for an extra kick!
Wednesday – Chilli
Wednesday’s can be a funny one for us. I work bits and its husband’s day off. But we always seem to have loads to do. We also have Hunky Husband’s two kids for tea, but not The Boy. Half brother and Sister aren’t the best eaters in the world. They eat lots if it’s something they like. But, they don’t like loads. To be fair to them, my two eat anything though, so they might be the norm!
Chilli is one of the few things that all of us absolutely love. This recipe is easy, still, works if you miss bits out or change bits, and the cinnamon just gives it that little spice that’s so warming and lovely.
Thursday – Cheesy Chicken and Chorizo Pasta Bake
This was a new one. Thursday’s The Boy is still at his Dads, so me and Bobsy tend to do something fun, then Hunky Husband puts her to bed and I play in the kitchen, or Husband cooks for a change!
I really love trying new things, but I tend to base them around things that I know I love. Pasta, cheese, chicken and chorizo! Some of my favourites all mixed together. This is a really filling, comforting meal. Comfort food at its absolute best!
Friday – Homemade Pizza
We didn’t actually have homemade Pizza. I went off plan as Husband wanted me to try a pie he was working on for work. But, we had planned pizza, then leftovers on Saturday.
The Boy is just starting to get into cooking a little, so pizza is something he enjoys helping with. The kids tend to go for pepperoni, but we throw everything on ours. If you want to make it easier, buy ready-made bases and just let the kids spread the toppings!