May Menu Plan

by Erin, The $5 Dinner Mom on April 30, 2009

Monthly meal planning is not what I have always done.  I started out as a weekly meal planner…basing the meals around each week’s sale prices.  (I recommend starting out this way!  Bargain Meal of the Week can help you with that!)

After a month or two of buying my favorite cuts of meat when they were at their lowest prices, and freezing them, I noticed that my freezer space kept shrinking and shrinking.  It was then I realized that I needed to “shop out of my freezer,” as I knew the meats in there were as cheap as they could be!  So one month, I took inventory of what was in the freezer and made a plan based on the items in the freezer.  Then throughout that month I’d “restock” the freezer as my favorite cuts went on sale again.  Over the months I have found a balance of shopping from the freezer and using fresh meats.  (Remember, if you do freeze meats, it is important to use them within 3 months if in a regular freezer, or 6-12 months if in a deep freezer!)

Here is my “plan”…I can’t guarantee that I will post every single recipe listed here.  I will post weekly plans and then post recipes as I make the meal.  For a complete list of recipes that I have made in the past, check out the Recipe Index

(Many items on this month’s menus are coming from last month…with all the travels and morning sickness, I never got around to making many of the meals!)

4 – Spaghetti Broccoli Bake
5 – Tuna Quesadillas
6 – Baked Oatmeal and Scrambled Eggs
7 – My 2 year old’s Birthday Party…menu undecided!
8 – Costa Rican Rice and Beans
9 – Church Picnic
10 – Grilled Pork Chops

11 – Cinnamon Chicken
12 – Pasta Salad
13 – Meatloaf and Potatoes
14 – Homemade Chicken Nuggets
15 – Lentils Dinner
16 – Spaghetti
17 – Burgers

18 – Shrimp Scampi
19 – BBQ Pork Roast
20 – Bean and Cheese Tacos
21 – Honey Dijon Salmon
22 – North Carolina Pulled Pork Sandwiches
23 – Salad and Homemade Breadsticks
24 – Grill – Memorial Day Party!

25 – Grilled Honey Mustard Chicken
26 – Homemade Veggie Pizza
27 – Greek Pasta Salad
28 – Steaks
29 – Date Night!
30 – Breakfast for Dinner
31 – Burgers

(Notice the Sunday night burger tradition…that will run through the summer months!)

Monthly meal planning works well for our family and our budget! If you are new to meal planning, I’d just start with a weekly plan of 5 or 6 meals. A few weeks later make the plan based on the grocery store ads and sale items. This will help cut your budget down significantly! Helps you pay closer attention to how much you are spending!!!

{ 9 comments… read them below or add one }

Barb April 30, 2009 at 12:36 pm

Your meal plan sounds great! I’m lucky to know what I’m cooking for dinner one day ahead. I need to get motivated and make myself a meal plan….at least a weeks worth.

Reply

OldNuffToKnoBtr April 30, 2009 at 2:25 pm

Enjoying your web site. Iam a single 67 year old female. In preparation for recovery from surgery I made and froze a number of meals. Your recipe for Cranberry Pork Chops paired with Sweet Potato has been my favorite. I still have one portion in the freezer.
When I was raising my family I planned meals for a month and did one big grocery shop per month. It is really liberating to know what is on the menu and to know that I can switch around. I doubt that I ever needed an entire of month’s recipes in any one month; but, it was nice to know I had a plan.

Reply

Rebecca April 30, 2009 at 5:41 pm

Cinnamon chicken? May I have the recipe? That one intrigues me! Thank you!

Reply

Mirandia Berthold April 30, 2009 at 6:26 pm

I love the meal plan for the month! There are several things on your plan that I am going to add to mine. With us having small family and opposite schedules I am just doing the weekly meal plan for now. Thanks for another great meal plan!!

Reply

Danielle Esbenshade May 1, 2009 at 6:13 am

I’ve been doing the menu planning for years. I love that I don’t have wonder “what’s for dinner tonight?”.
Really curious about the honey dijon salmon. I just purchased salmon yesterday (on sale $4.99/lb) and now wondering what to do with it.
Thanks for such a great site!!;)

Reply

Danielle Esbenshade May 1, 2009 at 8:42 am

I’ve been doing the menu planning for years. I love that I don’t have wonder “what’s for dinner tonight?”.
Really curious about the honey dijon salmon. I just purchased salmon yesterday (on sale $4.99/lb) and now wondering what to do with it.
Thanks for such a great site!!;)
OH! You’re my new favorite blogger fyi

Reply

Sally Rutkowski May 2, 2009 at 11:33 am

I’ve been doing the menu planning on and off for a couple of months now. I recently went back to it and love knowing what is for dinner all week. I never posted the menu of the frigde until I saw you on the RR Show! My family enjoys that much more! Thanks for all your recipe suggestions! Your website is great!

Reply

Tasha May 3, 2009 at 8:32 am

I’m looking forward to your beans recipes! I look forward to all of them but I’m really trying to incorporate more beans and lentils.

Reply

Andrea May 5, 2009 at 7:23 am

When I do manage to meal plan for the week (so much less stress for the rest of the week!), I post the menu on the fridge too. Everyone likes to know what will be coming up.

Reply

Leave a Comment

Previous post:

Next post: