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How to Menu Plan

November 5, 2012 1 comment

How to Menu Plan

Last week I shared some great websites that have gluten free menu plans, I thought this week I would share how to menu plan. I actually thought I had done this ages ago but when I went looking for it I couldn’t find anything! Whoops silly me, I shall rectify that now.

How I Menu Plan

I actually like doing weekly menu plans. I have tried monthly before but it just didn’t work for me. That’s half the battle and fun is finding what works for you.

I love recipe books, cook books, recipe magazines, recipe websites, blogs and cooking shows. I draw inspiration from all of these and often have recipes pinned, bookmarked, clipped in evernote and torn from magazines and popped into a file.

Then every week when it’s time to menu plan, I pop onto one of these sites or delve into one of the books and find inspiration for the week. If I find more inspiration than days I will list them in my diary for the next week to try them then.

I pop the meals into my diary and then write a shopping list. Most if not all of my meals have to be easily prepared as during the week is always busy for us.

Here are some other tips:

  • always have one night spare for leftovers, or get your own, or take away
  • consider slow cooker meals all year round. They are soo simple to put on and during summer they can let you avoid the heat of the oven being on
  • if you are struggling for ideas, consider letting the kids pick a meal. My eldest loves picking one meal a week and the added bonus is he’ll eat it as it was his choice

Gluten Free Menu Planning

Of course I have the added bonus of figuring out gluten free meals for me. I think it is quite easy making meals gluten free. Often it is swapping out ingredients to make sure I have me friendly ones.

Examples of easily swapped ingredients

  • Stock – I use massell stock powder to make up my own.
  • Tortilla’s – I use corn tortillas
  • Pasta – gluten free pasta is easily found in the health food section, I like pretty much any of them
  • Pasta Sauce – either I make my own or use a gluten free friendly one – check labels
  • Flour – quite simple, I use a gluten free flour
  • Oats – ah I have yet to find an actual swap for this so I tend to avoid recipes that have oats in them
  • Breadcrumbs – I use a variety of things here, depending on what I have on hand, I’ll use gluten free breadcrumbs, or rice crumbs or even crushed up gluten free chips. I have used polenta and quniona.

As I usually blog my menu plans I can easily look back on what we have had, I also mark them in my diary but there are many many free printables around that you can use and keep them in a folder. You’ll notice that many of these have space for Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner which some people do. I don’t but it’s all what works for you.

Here are some of my favourites:

Do you menu plan? Does it help you?

Image courtesy of winnond / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

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My Weekly Meal Plan with Gluten Free Meal Ideas

March 5, 2012 1 comment

Autumn time here in Melbourne town. Which means it’s March. Which means it’s Easter next month. Crazy!

Weekly Menu Plan

Monday – Pumpkin Soup and Toasted Gluten Free Sandwiches  – school meeting tonight so early and simple dinner required

Tuesday –  Chicken Noodle Nests – a request from Little Man – I’ll use rice noodles instead of hokkien noodles for me though (as well as just vegies) to make it gluten free

Wednesday – Taco’s – request from Tiniest Man (he bought the shells out to me when I was cooking dinner tonight, very cute)

ThursdayRachael Ray’s Vegetable Curry – ensure stock, mango chutney and curry paste are gluten free and son’t serve with naan bread

FridayZucchini and Pasta Slice - this is a lunch idea from Planning with Kids but I am so making this a dinner by adding gluten free garlic bread and a salad. I am using gluten free pasta in the slice to make it gluten free.

SaturdayGluten Free Vegetarian Bean Burgers

Sunday – Simple Supper Night

Linking up to Org Junkie for Menu Plan Monday

Have a great week!

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Weekly Menu Plan with Gluten Free Meal Ideas

February 27, 2012 1 comment

Hello friends, I hope the weekend treated you kindly. Here is was stinking hot but thankfully that has eased and now we are dealing with thunderstorms and rain.

Weekly Menu Plan

Monday – Red Bean Pasta Sauce with Gluten Free Pasta

TuesdayGluten Free Tuna and Potato Bake with steamed veg

Wednesday – Gluten Free Crumbed Chicken Breast with chips and salad

Thursday – Gluten Free Roasted Vegetable Lasagne

FridayMexibake

SaturdayGluten Free Tuna Rice Based Quiche

Sunday – Simple Supper Night

Linking up with Org Junkie and Menu Plan Monday

Have a great week

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Weekly Meal Plan – with Gluten Free Ideas

February 14, 2012 Comments off

It is birthday week in our house this week. My gorgeous Little Man turns 7 on Friday.

Weekly Menu Plan

Monday – Burritos – use corn tortillas to make gluten free

TuesdayGluten Free Tuna and Potato Bake

Wednesday – ‘Chicken on a Stick’ – pieces of chicken marinated in BBQ sauce and grilled. Serve with rice and stirfry veg.

ThursdayGluten Free Pan Fried Fish

Friday – its a special Little Man’s birthday! He gets to choose dinner of his choice

Saturday – its celebration time at a special Little Man’s party

Sunday – Simple Supper Night

Linking up to Org Junkie for Menu Plan Monday

Have a wonderful week

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Menu Plan Monday – with Gluten Free Meal Ideas

February 6, 2012 1 comment

Happy Monday everyone, I hope all are well.

I have almost got my cooking mojo back and will hopefully be sharing some new recipes with you soon. In the meantime, here is our weekly menu plan.

MondayRissoles with Sweet Potato Mash – easily made gluten free by using gluten free breadcrumbs

Tuesday – Bean and Rice Tortillas – using gluten free corn tortillas

WednesdaySalmon and Ricotta Pasta – using gluten free pasta

ThursdayGluten Free Slow Cooker Salsa Chicken with rice

FridayGluten Free Tuna Rice Based Quiche with salad

Saturday – Omelettes with home made wedges

Sunday – Simple Supper Night

I am linking with Org Junkie and Menu Plan Monday.

Have a wonderful week!

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My Weekly Meal Plan with Gluten Free Meal Ideas

January 30, 2012 4 comments

Only 4 more days until the end of school holidays! Am I ready? Um not quite but I will be by then. Little Man will start Grade 1, which is the 2nd year of school here.

Weekly Menu Plan

Monday – Sausages with Gluten Free Vegetable Bake 

Tuesday – Gluten Free Baked Chicken with Tomato Sauce with Steamed Vegies

Wednesday – Gluten Free Vegie version of Mexibake – using red kidney beans and gluten free pasta sauce

ThursdayTuna Patties – easily gluten free with a big yummy crunchy salad

Friday – First day back at school so Little Man’s favourite tonight – Homemade Ham and Cheese Pizza

Saturday – Omelette with salad

Sunday – Simple Supper Night

Linking up with Org Junkie and Menu Plan Monday.

Have a great week

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Weekly Menu Plan with Gluten Free Ideas

January 23, 2012 4 comments

How is 2012 treating you so far? It doesn’t look that much different than 2011 for me as yet but as they say, the year is only young.

My Weekly Menu Plan

Monday – Yummy Fried Rice – made with gluten free tamari sauce

Tuesday – Spaghetti Bolognese for the boys and Red Lentil Bolognese for me and yes why it is gluten free – how did you know?

WednesdayTuna Loaf – made with gluten free breadcrumbs with salad

ThursdayVegetable Curry – Rachael Ray’s recipe with rice – made gluten free with the right stock and curry paste.

Friday – Taco’s

Saturday – BBQ time again! I will make Mexican Layered Dip and Spicy Potato and Chickpea Salad

Sunday – Simple Supper Night

Linking up to Org Junkie for Menu Plan Monday

Have a great week!

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My Weekly Menu Plan with Gluten Free Meal Ideas

January 16, 2012 1 comment

I hate starting off the week on a negative vibe but urgh, I got glutened last week and it is taking ages for me to get over it so my meal plan is not very imaginative this week.

Weekly Menu Plan

Monday – Pasta Bake – using gluten free pasta

Tuesday – Baked Potatoes

Wednesday - Gluten Free Roasted Pumpkin and Vegetable Risotto

ThursdaySlow Cooker Salsa Chicken and Stir fry Vegetables

FridayGluten Free Curried Tuna Slice

Saturday – BBQ night, I’ll be providing Curried Egg and Potato Salad and Roasted Vegetable Salad – both gluten free.

Sunday – Simple Supper Night

Linking up with Org Junkie and Menu Plan Monday

Have a great week!

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Weekly Menu Plan with Gluten Free Meal Ideas

January 3, 2012 1 comment

Happy New Year!! I hope that you had a great Christmas and fabulous New Years. All the best for 2012. :)

Now onto my usual on a Monday post for a menu plan. A day late but lets just keep that between us?

Weekly Menu Plan

MondayRed Lentil Spaghetti Bolognese. This is easily made gluten free using gluten free spaghetti, everything else you should be able to get gluten free.

Tuesday – Baked Potatoes – super yummy with the leftover Red Lentil Bolognese, sour cream and grated cheese on top.

WednesdayGluten Free Tuna and Potato Bake with salad

Thursday – Gluten Free Baked Chicken with Tomato Sauce and Potato, Leek and Corn Frittata (yes its gluten free!)

Friday – Beef Burgers for the boys, Gluten Free Bean Burgers for me with sweet potato fries and salad

Saturday – Homemade Gluten Free Fish and Chips

Sunday – Simple Supper Night

As usual I am linking up to Org Junkie and Menu Plan Monday.

Have a great week!

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My Weekly Menu Plan with Gluten Free Ideas

December 19, 2011 Comments off

So, less than a week until Christmas. Hmmm… the tired mummy in me wishes the end of the year would hurry up and get here as I am a little sick of being cranky as well as looking after tired and cranky kids. The sentimentalist in me is enjoying the lead up and really am enjoying the choosing of gifts and menu for the big day.

I do know that the school year has draaagggeeeeddd out for sure and the school year finishing 3 days before Christmas is crazy and not the best for all concerned including the poor teachers! 2012 is no better, the school ends 4 days before Christmas. Why oh why?

Anyway, please excuse the side rant and let me get on with my menu plan for the week

Weekly Menu Plan

MondayGluten Free Tuna and Potato Bake

TuesdaySlow Cooker Risotto – use a gluten free stock and you are good to go. I also pop some pumpkin in and it is super delicious

Wednesday – Herb Chicken Drumsticks and noodles

ThursdayGluten Free Risotto Cakes – please check that link out, amazing gluten free blog

Friday – Homemade Fish and Wedges

Saturday – Simple Supper Night

SundayChristmas Day! Merry Christmas!

Linking up with Org Junkie and Menu Plan Monday. I’m not doing a meal plan now until the New Year for obvious reasons!

Have a fantastic week.

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