Meal Planning

Meal Planning Adventures: Week 1

Life is an adventure.

School is an adventure.

Marriage is FULL of adventures.

The past few weeks I have experimented in the kitchen. With our busy schedules as newly-wed college students, meal planning has helped me the past few weeks relieve stress and save money when shopping for groceries. As I got ready for the week, I looked up posts with tips about meal planning (such as Faith’s post on the Kitchn, as well as Amanda’s post on Run to the Finish). I really like how they emphasized taking note of what you already have in your fridge/pantry and trying to plan meals around certain ingredients you want to use.

For the past couple weeks, that principle has helped us use our vegetables so they wouldn’t go bad in the fridge.

While creating my meal plan, I had fun pulling recipes from my pinterest board to try. We bought the ingredients from the grocery store to make sure we had everything on hand.

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One of the first meals we made was Liza’s Coconut Curry Chicken. It was DELICIOUS! I used 1/2 a can of regular coconut milk and added a little water (to use in place of buying a lite version of coconut milk). My husband and I DIED of delight. We are definitely going to keep this recipe on hand.

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Banana Soft Serve is one of our favorite treats! It is a lot cheaper to make than to buy the dairy-free ice creams they sell in the grocery store (not to mention a lot healthier as well without all the added sugar).

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I have also wanted to try Ashley’s Loaded Vegetarian Lentil Sloppy Joes for a long time. I added it to our plan and noted the couple ingredients we lacked at the moment. After buying the few ingredients we needed, we prepared it and ate it on top of my homemade bread. I didn’t grow up eating sloppy joes very often, so I didn’t know exactly what it should taste like, but I liked it. My husband said it tasted similar to sloppy joes, so I call it a winner.

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This is my absolutely FAVORITE breakfast: Reese’s Peanut Butter Chocolate Oatmeal. I will share this recipe soon. (It might be an obsession of mine….)QWLG1819

After trying that Coconut Chicken Curry, we were in the mood for more curry, so I made Hauke’s Vegetarian Chickpea Curry. I made the chickpeas in my crockpot and they were still a little crunchy, so I let the curry similar longer to finish softening the chickpeas. We loved it, especially as leftovers. (Leftovers really help us on those long days when we come home and don’t have energy to cook something big.)

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A friend gave us a HUGE yellow squash, so I added to our week meal plan to roast it with some other vegetables we had on hand, such as red potatoes and cauliflower. I chopped them all up and put them in a gallon Ziploc baggie. I added olive oil, salt and pepper, and italian seasonings, and after shaking it to coat, I placed it in the fridge for later. before dinner, I laid it out on two cookie sheets (I had made a lot so we could have leftovers), and I roasted it in the oven at 425 degrees F for about 25 minutes until the potatoes were soft. We enjoyed them with other leftovers. Leftovers are becoming my favorite friend.

I feel like meal planning has helped me branch out and try new things. I’m now finding myself creating my own recipes and using the spices with which I’m getting better acquainted, and I look forward to using these skills and experiences to bless my future children. What an amazing adventure still lies ahead of us.

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