Menu Planning

In an effort to cut down on our grocery bill I have been making menus and doing a pretty good job about sticking to them.

This has not only helped keep our grocery bill under control, it has helped me keep my cool when it comes time to think about dinner. I love to cook, but HATE deciding what to cook. Since it takes almost an hour each week to create a menu because I like variety, quick meals, dairy free, vegetarian, etc it takes a while. So I figure I’ll share a sample of my menu the week before with you, in case you feel the same way.

Last week we had this vegetarian pot pie. I loved it! It took the feel of good ole country chicken pot pie and added some new flavors. Plus it took less time because I didn’t have to cook chicken. I couldn’t help but make pumpkin pie too… We love pumpkin pie in this family!

We had oriental chicken salad, which is my go to quick meal. However I’m looking for a new dressing mix, so please share!

Fish tacos, basic with cabbage, lime juice, tomatoes, and guacamole… except this time I decided after eating at Rubio’s that it is that creamy fish sauce that makes fish taco’s good, I’d would try one out… This one was delicious, I don’t think I need to try another, unless you can swear by it. (FYI for dairy free, I used unsweetened soy yogurt for the sour cream)

Homemade thin crust pizza with olive oil and Italian herbs for sauce, spinach, chicken, sundried tomatoes, and artichokes. If you go cheese-less like us extra oil and spinach/greens are necessary. It is delicious and we always eat our pizza with a homemade ranch dressing. I mimicked a Papa Murphy’s pizza on this one.

Chicken almond cream with rice. It was super quick (unless you count cooking time, but on this day the cooking time worked out perfect for us) and one of my all time favorites. Recipe coming later this week.

Sushi Salad and fish (which we decided to just do fish taco’s again since we liked them so much) Sushi salad is a light and wonderful dish. After using it as a main dish once or twice we decided as a side dish would be better. I don’t know where my mom got the recipe, so here it is out of the Merkley Family cookbook on Pasplore.

Sushi Salad


  • 2 cups cooked brown rice
  • 1 TB brown rice vinegar
  • Nori seaweed strips
  • 1  avocado peeled and cubed
  • ½ cucumber ½” cubes
  • 1 carrot, shredded
  • 1-2 TB sesame seeds
  • 3 scallions, sliced thinly
  • 1 cup tofu, ½ “ cubes  or salmon
  • 1 TB olive oil
  • Pickled ginger


Cook rice and transfer into a large bowl. Drizzle brown rice vinegar over the rice as it cools. After it cools add vegetables and mix. Top with Nori seaweed.


Simple and easy!


We are going camping this weekend and I’m in charge of lunch. I’ll have access to a camp stove. Any suggestions?? I’d prefer if it didn’t include bread, seeing that one of the people I’ll be cooking for is my brother who can’t have gluten.

I thought of chicken kabobs but I’ve only seen those grilled… cooking suggestions?

2 thoughts on “Menu Planning

  1. This is by far my favorite Chinese Chicken Salad Recipe:

    Dressing: (I usually double the recipe)

    2 T sesame seeds
    1 tsp salt
    ½ tsp pepper
    1/3 cup olive oil
    2 cloves garlic minced
    3 T white wine or cider vinegar
    2 T chopped peanuts
    2 T sugar


    Grilled Chicken
    Green Onions
    Mandarin Oranges
    crispy chow mein noodles

  2. YEAH! Thanks for sharing. I am excited to see how you alter chicken almond cream to be dairy free. You are awesome!

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