This month brings us Thanksgiving, one of the few times a year where I don’t feel too bad for eating marshmallows or pumpkin fudge. Since eating them with vegetables technically cancels out the bad stuff, I call it good enough. We have the 80/20 rule for a reason, right?
We also get some of the most AMAZING stock you’ll ever have in your entire life. Promise. If you’ve never had homemade turkey stock before (use this tutorial only swap turkey for chicken and YES add the optional vegetables!), you’re in for a treat. Make a double or triple batch my friends, because come March when you’re SO tired of Winter, but Spring seems still SO far away, turkey stock will make all your troubles disappear.
Oh yes, it’s that good.
November also means pumpkin. Pumpkin everything. We’ve got pies, pancakes, donuts, lattes, cakes, french toast, soup, seeds, smoothies and even granola. Using homemade pumpkin puree of course. It’s hog day heaven for pumpkin lovers like me.
For those who don’t, take refuge that December and cranberries will be here soon enough.
Simple Dinner Eating Plan: November 2014
Notes on this Simple Dinner Eating Plan:
- This meal plan is for the average family of four, costing approximately $330. You might need to change portion sizes according to your own family size and budget.
- Meals are based around 2 whole chickens, 2 1/2 lbs beef roast, and a turkey.
- The meals within this plan were designed to build off of each other, using leftovers when possible and allowing opportunities for batch cooking (i.e. making one big batch of tortillas instead of making “just enough” on two separate days. Take advantage of this to really lower your budget and reduce time spent in the kitchen.
Simple Dinner Eating Plan: Week 1
(S) Five Spice Slow Cooker Chicken
(M) Southwestern Salad
(T) One Pan Buffalo Chicken Potatoes
(W) Pasta Primavera with Creamy Cauliflower Sauce
(T) Tortilla Soup with Jalapeno Focaccia
(F) BLT’s on Leftover Focaccia with Roasted Potato Wedges
(S) Homemade Pizza
Simple Dinner Eating Plan: Week 2
(S) Beef and Broccoli Stir Fry
(M) Acorn Squash Stuffed with Autumn Rice Pilaf
(T) Fajita-Style Quesadillas
(W) Creamy Tomato & Spinach Pasta
(T) Beef Stew
(F) Butternut Squash Risotto
(S) Greek Beef Pita Pockets with Hummus and Couscous
Simple Dinner Eating Plan: Week 3
(S) Slow Cooker Northern Beans with Ham
(M) Black Bean Burgers with Roasted Potato Wedges
(T) Winter Wedge Salad and Dinner Biscuits
(W) Healthy Baked Ziti
(T) Vegetable & Barley Soup with Soaked Whole Wheat Bread
(F) Grilled Apple & Brie Sandwiches
(S) Chicken & Spinach Enchiladas
Simple Dinner Eating Plan: Week 4
(S) Mexican Corn & Potato Chowder
(M) Slow Cooker Salsa Chicken
(T) Creamy Pumpkin Soup with Bacon
(W) Spaghetti with Hearty Spaghetti Sauce
(T) Roasted Turkey with Crash Hot Sweet Potatoes, Balsamic Green Beans with Mushrooms, Fluffy Dinner Rolls
(S) Turkey Noodle Soup
Breakfasts are usually a variety of meals, based largely on what we have in the kitchen and almost always served with fresh fruit. These are a few basic meal ideas, plus some recommended recipes that should align with the ingredients being purchased for the dinners above. Simple meals like breakfast porridge and baked oatmeal can be flavored based on what you have in your own kitchen.
- Eggs (scrambled, fried, baked)
- Breakfast Porridge (with mix-ins based on what you have available)
- Pumpkin Pancakes
- Yogurt Parfaits with Pumpkin Maple Pecan Granola
- Overnight Baked Pumpkin Cream Cheese French Toast
- Protein Smoothies & Toast
Similar to breakfast, lunches are usually a variety of meals based on what’s in the fridge and pantry and come with a side of fresh fruit. My first suggestion for lunch is always leftovers (unless the leftovers are already slated for another meal), but here are a few additional lunch ideas that are simple and easy to prepare. As a bonus, all of them can be tailored according to what you currently have on hand, and packed either for school or a picnic lunch on the go.
- Healthy Homemade Lunchables
- Protein Bars with Homemade Applesauce
- Homemade Hot Pockets
- Bean Burritos
- Egg Salad Sandwiches
Since the goal is to not consume too much sugar, let’s keep the options minimal. Still, you’ll be able to enjoy delicious fall flavors in either one of these treats.
Looking for more delicious and frugal inspiration? Get more real food meal plans here.