One of the habits that keeps me sane is menu planning. I’ve been thinking of ways to make our schedule a little easier once homeschool starts, and creating a month long menu sounded like a great way to save a little time.
We eat gluten free in this house all the time, so things that look like they might contain wheat (pasta, hamburger buns, etc) will always be gluten free versions. I linked to recipes where I have them. Others are from cookbooks I own or they’re recipes I made up.
Also, I usually don’t plan side dishes because they’re almost always the same things: a green salad with homemade dressing and a cooked veggie (typically, broccoli, squash, sweet potatoes, roasted fingerling potatoes or green beans). And the order these dishes appear in the list isn’t necessarily the order I’ll cook them in (it will more likely depend on when things are on sale), it’s just how we listed them.
Coming up with this wasn’t as hard as I thought, mostly because I got input from my family. I’ve thought about doing this for ages and now that I’ve done it, I might just use the menu over and over for a while until I’m ready to do more adventurous cooking instead of relying the tried-and-true dishes.
A Monthly Back to School Menu
- Slow Cooker Unstuffed Cabbage
- Kielbasa & Kraut with Potatoes
- Tacos with all the fixings
- Chorizo and Peppers with Rice
- Spaghetti with Meat Sauce
- Pioneer Woman’s Ranch-style Chicken
- Garlic-Lime Chicken
- Burgers & Sweet Potato Fries
- One Pot Cajun Fish (note: the cookbook this recipe comes from kinda changed my life. A review of Glorious One Pot Meals here.)
- Cheesy Lentil Rice Casserole (another recipe from one of my all-time favorite cookbooks, The One Armed Cook. Copycat recipes abound on Google, and here is an Indian-inspired version. This can be baked or made in the slow cooker.)
- Twice-Baked Stuffed Potatoes
- Breakfast for dinner (pancakes, bacon, eggs)
- Slow Cooker Cauliflower Cheese Soup with rolls
- Pioneer Woman’s Cheesy Chicken Spaghetti (I healthy this up by not using canned soup. It is easy to make in huge quantities and freezes and reheats well.)
- Pork Chops with Apples and Onions
- Quiche or Omelets (using whatever leftover meats, cheeses and veggies I have hanging around)
- Shepherd’s Pie
- Beef Stroganoff
- Chili or White Chicken Chili
- Cajun Red Beans and Rice
- Lemon-Butter Braised Salmon
- Slow Cooker Stuffed Peppers
- Chicken or Beef Enchiladas
- Zucchini Lasagna
- Vegetable Soup or Minestrone
- Slow Cooker Beef Stew
- Slow Cooker Pot Roast
- Caribbean Shrimp with Rice
- Pork Chops with Apples
- Endives au Jambon
- Slow Cooker Cacciatore Chicken
These aren’t the most adventurous of meals, but they’re things I can prepare in my sleep.
What kinds of things do you do to make the back-to-home-school reentry easier?