Meal Planning Made Easy


So I get to this time of year and lose all gusto for cooking dinner for my family. My heart longs for salads and grilled chicken but the weather keeps me at comfort food status. It’s grey and cold for days girls…days, and I really just want to skip all meals and hibernate until the tulips come up. But that’s not practical when you have to feed, what I like to call, my locker room. All of my boys are in extra curricular activities which somehow seems to make them more ravenous, so it’s not very often I can get by with toasted cheese and tomato soup (which I could live on in the winter months)!

Anyway, I thought I would make up a meal plan for one week and see what you think. I love to experiment in the kitchen…ok, wait…it’s not really experimenting as much as it is trying new recipes. I hate getting stuck in a rut. And I tend to stick to hamburger and chicken because other meats are so expensive.  I don’t know about your family but our kids come and go at all different times because of practices and that makes it very hard to have a sit down meal. So there are weeks where the crock pot is used frequently and other weeks I just try to make things simple and easy.

chicken pot pie

First up we have this amazing chicken pot pie! It is delicious. If you don’t follow Six Sister’s Stuff on Facebook or Pinterest you must go do it right now. I have used several of their recipes and they are amazing and relatively simple with most ingredients that you would have in your pantry. I don’t know about you but I despise a recipe that calls for some foreign ingredient you have to travel to China for. We live in rural Indiana and our closest shopping center is 15 min away so I like to stick to normal, inexpensive, and accessible. This recipe is one of my son’s favorites and it’s definitely in the comfort food category. It’s creamy and I like to substitute  frozen mixed veggies to simplify things. You can serve a simple toss salad to round out your meal.

red potatoes

Folks, red potatoes are it. They are small and tender and cook up so nicely in just about any dish I make. They are definitely my go to and I always have a bag on hand. Plus they are a good filler for my strapping young boys. These red potatoes are amazing and simple and you don’t even have to peel them. Just run them under water and give them a good scrub to prep them and then lay them on a cookie sheet with the rest of the ingredients. Toss to coat and BAM you have an easy peasy side dish. I also love these because you can use a couple potatoes or the whole bag. My kids love these with grilled hamburgers. And to be completely honest, in the winter we cheat and make hamburgers in the electric skillet and TBH sometimes they’re better.

pasta spinach salad

Ya know I don’t want to clog the arteries of my dear children or husband so I like to throw a lighter meal into the week. Now that my oldest son is away at college I have a little more leeway into being creative with my meals and mostly my other three boys are accepting. I haven’t tried this pasta spinach salad yet but it is on this weeks menu. I’m so excited to try it. It looks simple, easy, and right up my alley. To keep the locker room happy I would probably try and pair this with grilled chicken. And because it would be on the healthier side of the scale I would definitely have to throw in a homemade dessert like slow cooker lava cake

slow cooker lava cake

Oh my heart, I have made this and it is so good served with a scoop of ice cream. When I made it we had plenty leftover and I put it in the fridge and pulled it out the next day after my lunch (don’t judge) and it was amazing chilled.

chicken tortellini soup

So I almost always like in incorporate a soup into the weekly menu. Sometimes it’s chili and sometimes it’s a creamy soup (which is my fav). Soup is not my family’s favorite but it is one of mine so it’s kind of a trade off for having to live in the locker room…ya know what I mean. I thought this chicken tortellini soup looked really good. I love this recipe because it gives you the nutrition facts and also if you do Weight Watchers, it also gives you the point value of the meal. LOVE. And once again to make my family happy I would serve this with a salad and the French bread you get at Walmart in the baskets in the deli dept. I might even add butter, garlic salt, and provolone…which kind of defeats the purpose of a healthy meal but you have to keep them happy.

chicken casserole

And we must end the week with comfort food, to round things out;) This chicken casserole is so easy and actually would make a great make ahead meal for Sunday after church. It is called Company Chicken Casserole and is very hearty. It's also an open invitation to invite a young couple to your lunch table with the family after church. Serve with a warm veggie or salad and some rolls. It will be delicious.

If these recipes aren’t your jam, we have many more on our pinterest page along with cleaning tips, diy projects, and of course Primitive Star Quilt Shop home decorating products.

I'd love to hear from you! What's your favorite go-to meal? It's super fun to get ideas from our readers. 

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  • Maura Osborn
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