Here’s your Healthy Winter Meal Plan for December! Feed your family real food on a budget AND eat seasonal produce with this complete four week meal plan. Enjoy meals for the holidays, and healthier holiday treats!
It’s holiday time, and while we are busy decorating and planning for our holiday festivities, I’ve also got my mind on what to feed the family this December!
Quick & easy meals that are frugal and healthy, like Instant Pot Honey Garlic Chicken, are exactly what I’m thinking of to make up for the crazy busy days (AND the holiday treats like Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies)!
This healthy December winter meal plan is full of delicious meals that will comfort and satisfy you while helping to save time and money. You’ll also find ideas for holiday foods that fit right into the meal plan!
ABOUT THIS Real Food MEAL PLAN FOR December
- Based on an average family of 4, this meal plan costs less than $400 for the month. You may need to tailor the portion sizes to suit the needs of your family size and budget. The goal of this meal plan is to feed our family well while wasting as little as possible. You’ll notice that we’re often re-using one part of a meal (like Instant Pot beef brisket) in another part of a meal (like beef tacos) in order to meet both of these goals. Keep this in mind if you rearrange the meals.
- This healthy winter meal plan is mostly plants, with some meat. Viewing meat as a “side dish” is one way we’re able to afford grass-fed and organic meat every month! You can easily add more meat though, if you have meat and potatoes people at your table. Having all purpose chicken on hand is a great way to please the meat eaters and keep the budget down!
- This healthy winter meal plan is made of the same recipes that I feed my own family, although I might add a few extra vegetables on the side. If you want a detailed “action plan” of what this looks like in real life – what I batch cook, what I double, what I freeze for later, how I get the most out of each meal, and when I get it all done – come join the Meal Planning Made Easy Challenge!
MEAL Prep Tips
Included after each week are some extra ideas on how I would make the most of my time in the kitchen. While making food from scratch does take more time, I don’t need it to take ALL of my time!
Use these tips to help you get ahead each month and have food stashed away for the busy nights or even if you just need a night off.
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Real Food Meal Plan for December
- (S) Slow Cooker Chicken // Steamed Vegetables // Mashed Potatoes (then chicken stock)
- (M) Instant Pot Chicken Noodle Soup
- (T) Greek Pasta Salad // Homemade Pita Bread
- (W) Blackened Salmon // Sauteed Green Beans // Instant Pot Baked Potatoes
- (T) Instant Pot Beef and Broccoli // White Rice
- (F) Skillet Pizza Veggie Pasta
- (S) Sweet Potato & Black Bean Enchiladas // Lime Crema
Meal Prep Tips:
- (S) After you serve your slow cooker chicken, remove leftover meat and save for tomorrow’s chicken noodle soup. Place the carcass back into the slow cooker to make broth for Monday’s soup.
- (M) Used reserved meat, broth, and any leftover veggies, from the slow cooker chicken meal for a quick and easy chicken noodle soup.
- (W) Use any leftover green beans for Friday’s Skillet Pizza Veggie Pasta.
- (S) Dice extra sweet potatoes for an upcoming breakfast, and cook extra black beans to reserve for a quick black bean soup lunch.
- (S) Instant Pot Beef Brisket // Homemade Buns (for sandwiches) // Crispy Potato Wedges
- (M) Beef Brisket Tacos // Homemade Tortillas // Cilantro Lime Coleslaw
- (T) Roasted Vegetable Kale Salad // Sourdough Crackers
- (W) Savory Pasta w/ Onions, Bacon & Greens
- (T) Garlic White Bean Soup // Homemade Dinner Rolls
- (F) Perfect Homemade Cast Iron Skillet Pizza // Kale Caesar Salad
- (S) Slow Cooker Mexican Potato Soup // Simple Guacamole // Lime Crema (optional garnishes)
Meal Prep Tips:
- (S) Reserve half of the beef brisket for beef tacos.
- (M) Make Beef Tacos with Sunday’s beef brisket.
- (W) Save the bacon grease for Saturday’s Mexican Potato Soup.
- (T) Make your dinner roll dough and pizza dough at the same time, and use for Friday’s cast iron skillet pizza.
- (S) Slow Cooker Quinoa Chicken Cacciatore // Kale Caesar Salad
- (M) Chicken Creole w/ Sausage // Instant Pot White Rice
- (T) Greek Quinoa Salad // Homemade Pita
- (W) Instant Pot Honey Garlic Chicken // White Rice
- (T) Zuppa Toscana // Easy Dinner Rolls
- (F) Instant Pot Honey Baked Ham // Green Bean Casserole // Sweet Potato Casserole // Dinner Rolls
- (S) Ham Sandwiches (with leftover ham) // No Knead Sourdough
Meal Prep Tips:
- (S) Make extra quinoa and save it for Tuesday’s Greek Quinoa Salad.
- (M) Save extra sausage for Thursday’s soup, and make a double batch of white rice for Wednesday.
- (T) Make a double batch of dinner rolls for Friday’s meal.
- (S) Save extra sourdough bread for Sunday’s veggie soup.
- (S) Cozy at Home Spicy Any Veggie Soup // Sourdough Bread
- (M) Vegetable Fried Rice
- (T) Instant Pot BBQ Chicken // Homemade Buns (for sandwiches) // Skillet Corn
- (W) Vegetable Pasta Primavera
- (T) Buffalo Chicken Bacon Ranch Salad
- (F) Maple Glazed Pork Chops // Swiss Chard Greens & Caramelized Onions // Marinated Lentils // Skillet Cornbread
- (S) Leftover Pork and Potato Soup
Meal Prep Tips:
- (S) Enjoy the sourdough from last week’s menu; chop extra veggies for Monday’s Vegetable Fried Rice.
- (T) Make extra Instant Pot Chicken for Thursday’s Buffalo Chicken Salad; reserve leftover corn for Vegetable Pasta Primavera.
- (F) Reserve extra pork for Saturday’s Leftover Pork Soup.
- Sweet Potato Apple Bake
- Instant Pot Breakfast Casserole
- Fried Sweet Potatoes and Runny Eggs + Oven Baked bacon
- Homemade Einkorn Biscotti
- Easy Homemade Cinnamon Rolls
- Stovetop Mac and Cheese
- Kale Salad with Blueberries, Walnuts & Feta
- Ridiculously Easy Potato Skins
- Homemade Lunchmeat Sandwiches on Maple Oatmeal Bread
- 30 Minute Black Bean Soup (use reserved black beans from dinner meal plan)