Whoa nelly… is it REALLY 2016?!
I mean, the CALENDAR says it is, but what authority does the calendar have anyway?
It can’t hang itself up. It can’t turn its own pages. Why can’t we just toss it aside and hide under our covers and pretend we didn’t just blink the past 45 days away via brown boxes and “are we there yet’s” and “this home just needs a little bit of TLC (NOT!)”…
Because it’s January, that’s why.
And while I SO WISH we could just keep the calendar at a stand still, we still gotta eat. And unless you like eating the same thing over and over and over (and over), you need a new meal plan (which just so happens to be on sale now through January 7!)
So here it is!
As always, feel free to take/leave the meals you like, or re-arrange as you need to fit your schedule. Remember that while this is a plan, it’s not written in stone – that’s the beauty of meal planning. There’s a method to fit everyone!
Whole Foods Meal Planner: January 2016
Notes on this Whole Foods Meal Planner:
- 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, 1 beef roast, 1 steak, Italian sausage, ground turkey and bacon.
- 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.
Whole Foods Meal Planner: Week 1
(S) White Chicken Chili
(M) Deconstructed Cabbage Rolls
(T) Fall Cornbread Salad
(W) White Chicken Chili Mac
(T) Minestrone & Barley Soup with Soaked Whole Wheat Bread
(F) Taco Grilled Cheese Sandwiches
(S) Chili Steak Fries
Whole Foods Meal Planner: Week 2
(S) Slow Cooker Zuppa Toscana with Artisan Bread
(M) Pineapple Black Bean Salad
(T) Thanksgiving Salad with Barley & Man Bread
(W) Spinach & Ricotta Pasta
(T) Garlic White Bean Soup with Kale with Artisan Bread
(F) Chicken Jalapeno Popper Casserole
(S) Mini Black Bean & Turkey Burgers with Crash Hot Sweet Potatoes
Whole Foods Meal Planner: Week 3
(S) Slow Cooker Italian Chicken & Peppers
(M) Sausage & Pepper Stuffed Spaghetti Squash
(T) Squash Spinach Salad with Little Bother Oat Bread
(W) Roasted Cauliflower Pasta
(T) Hot & Sour Soup with Fluffy Dinner Rolls
(F) Lawnmower Tacos
(S) Stuffed Butternut Squash with Bacon & Rice
Whole Foods Meal Planner: Week 4
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.
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.
Since the goal is to not consume too much sugar, let’s keep the options minimal. Still, you’ll be able to enjoy either one of these treats.
Looking for more delicious and frugal inspiration? Get more real food meal plans here.