Category Archives: Menu

A Recent Menu Plan (THM style)

As many of you may know, we follow the Trim Healthy Mama way of eating here. It’s a family thing. :)

This week I thought I’d share my menu with you. I try to include a good number of E meals (those are healthy carb meals) because some of us do a bit better eating more of those.

  • Black Bean Spaghetti (E) – we were using the brown rice spaghetti from Aldi but they discontinued it. :( So we are trying some different healthy carb pastas out. This week we tried a black bean pasta. I cooked some chicken breast and a bit of turkey bacon with it and added some almond milk and gluccie (glucomannan) to thicken it up a bit. With the brown rice noodles we’d used before, the noodles made it creamy enough. I’ll definitely be looking for some more brown rice spaghetti because I wasn’t thrilled with the black bean spaghetti.  Any way, we had a salad with it that I just massaged a bit of MCT oil on the leaves and added nutritional yeast.
  • Impromptu Chocolate Chip Pancakes from Trim Healthy Table page 341 (S)– This is one of our favorite pancakes and Tiffany wanted them for dinner one night. She added some Turkey Bacon and Michael fixed some fried eggs. Lovely breakfast for dinner. :)
  • Pizza Skillet Salad (S) – We love pizza, generally once a week here. It’s been so crazy hot that we’ve been having pizza-ish foods this summer. This week I took the Pizza Skillet recipe I created and we put it on top of a bed of lettuce. :)
  • Salmon Patties, Mashed Cauliflower, and Creamed Early Peas (S) – Okay, I’m going to have to check this one out a bit more because the way I made it this time (after sooo long of not having it) I might have made it an accidental crossover. But I enjoyed it with a heavy dose of pleasure and will hope it doesn’t mess up my weight reduction. ;) I used Wasa light rye crackers and almond milk in my usual recipe. BUT that coupled with the peas is where I miscalculated. 8)
  • Cowboy Grub from Trim Healthy Mama Cookbook page 59 (E) – This we also serve with a salad like described above or with canned green beans.
  • Creamy Chicken Gravy from Briana Thomas’ Convenient Food page 107 (FP) – we served this with broccoli and I put a bag salad on the table too. This was a new recipe for us and I was surprised that we enjoyed it. I don’t generally like dill weed and curry isn’t a spice we use much of at all. This was nice and creamy and went on that steamed broccoli very nicely.
  • Turkey Hot Dogs, Turkey Burgers (all no bun for me), coleslaw, and baked beans (S) – I’ll only have a couple bites of the beans because I’m not a huge fan but Michael loves this meal. Sometimes I make the psyllium husk bread into rolls for both buns and Michael loves that too. :)

There you have it. These were not eaten in this order though. ;) I generally try to mix up the fuel source for dinners so we don’t have 3 or 4 of one type in a row.  On days we have S meals (which is the healthy fats/low carb meal) I try to make sure that I eat at least one E meal earlier in the day and an E or FP snack.

I hope this menu plan is helpful to you and gives you some ideas for your next menu. :)

Until next time,

Michele ºÜº

Thighs, Thighs, and More Thighs

Thighs were on sale for 79¢ a pound here and I bought around ten pounds of them. I bagged them in freezer bags in about six per bag, which is usually more than enough for this family of four adults. These are rather large thighs and, believe it or not, one is enough for me at dinner, with a couple sides.

Today I thought I’d share some menu ideas for thighs. I have a freezer full of other meats that I’ve bought on sale, so I’m not stuck with just the thighs but thought I’d go ahead and share some different ideas, in case you find yourself needing to focus on one meat.

  1. The first one is super easy. Soup. Chicken soup is inexpensive and the bone and skin add a great flavor to it.Chicken added ~ Granny's Chicken Soup ~ Lifeofjoy.me
  2. Baked. I place the thawed thighs on rimmed baking sheet, preferably on a silpat for easier cleaning, season, and cook. Serve with a couple side dishes: our go-to side dishes are green beans and salad.Baked Chicken Thighs ~ Lifeofjoy.me
  3. Baked but with a barbeque flavor instead of the one in the previous link. We just sprinkle some onion powder, garlic powder, salt, pepper, a dash (cap full) of liquid smoke, a couple dashes worcestershire sauce, and some brown sugar substitute. (We use Sukrin Gold but I believe Swerve makes one too.)
  4. San Francisco Chicken. Normally this is made with chicken breast or pork chops but browning the thighs and then adding the sauce, covering and letting it cook about 20 minutes or until the thighs are done, should work nicely. (The original recipe used this procedure with the thicker cut pork chops.) Serve with noodles (we use either Dreamfields or konjac root noodles) or thinly sliced cabbage and broccoli.San Fran Chicken on Noodles ~ Lifeofjoy.me
  5. Breaded and either fried on the stove top or in the oven. We just coat with a mixture of baking blend and Parmesan cheese after dipping in a beaten egg.
  6. Alfredo. For this one I’d bake extra thighs earlier in the week and get the meat off the bone saving it for this day. When I make plannedovers, I have to hide the extra or my gang will eat it. :D  At any rate, this sauce can be a bit pricey and caloric, so you can just use a cream of chicken or cream of mushroom soup for the sauce. It’s good with cauliflower and or broccoli. You could just thicken some almond milk up with some xanthan gum and add some onion powder and garlic powder to it for flavor or you could use the water from a can of mushrooms for part of the liquid and add the mushrooms if your family will eat them. I’ve chopped them up finely to hide them from my kids when they were young. As they got older, I just tell them to pick them out and give them to me. :)
  7. For the last one, I’d make some like for number six but put it as a topping on pizza. If that isn’t an option, make Chicken Parmesan baking breaded chicken and when nearly done, add some tomato sauce (or spaghetti sauce or pizza sauce) and a little cheese to the top.Chicken Alfredo Pizza ~ lifeofjoy.me

Well, that’s my week long menu for using chicken thighs. These links are all mine but have been taken from my many different ways of cooking throughout the years. If you have a particular one you would like me to make suggestions on how to conform it to a particular fuel source (fats or carbs or light on both counts), let me know and I’ll see what I can do.

Until next time, God bless,

Michele ºÜº

 

A Menu Plan for Leftover Turkey

Roasted Turkey ~ Lifeofjoy.meWe will go to my sister’s home to celebrate Thanksgiving with my family this Thursday. I love Thanksgiving leftovers but since I don’t make the dinner, I don’t have leftovers. Hence, I buy a turkey and bake it the day after Thanksgiving. :) And I buy a large one, because remember, I said I love leftovers. :)

So this year I was thrilled to get my turkey for 87¢ a pound. That’s a great price for Oklahoma but I saw a friend of mine in Virginia got one for 27¢ a pound! Wow!!! Oh well, I’m still thrilled with my deal.

I thought I’d share my menu plan for using some of those plannedovers. :)

Of course it starts by cooking the bird and having it as the main course with lots of side dishes so that there is lots and lots of turkey leftover. After dinner, I will remove all of the meat off the carcass and bag in portions for the remaining meals and any remainder for sandwiches, as desired. (Hubby loves fresh turkey sandwiches.)

One night I will make Turkey Noodle Casserole, where I just substitute turkey in for the tune of Tuna Noodle Casserole. (Of course, I’m using a THM version and it will be an E meal, as we will use some quinoa and brown rice pasta from Aldi or some red lentil pasta.)

Another night we will have another E meal (that’s one low in fat with some moderate healthy carbs) of the sliced turkey breast, sweet potatoes, rolls, and we’ll probably add in a salad.

Then we’l have a healthy fats meal of Creamed Turkey, fried green beans, and some caulitaters. There may be some kind of “noodles” thrown in for good measure. ;)

We will have turkey sandwiches for lunch after church Sunday and round out our menu with Turkey Soup complete with daikon radish, carrots, and some kind of “noodle”.

We’ll round out our week with this nice Italian Style Hamburger Helper with either some roasted green beans or roasted okra and a salad.

So there you have my after Thanksgiving menu. Of course, you’d need to add one more meal in there if you actually have your main turkey meal on Thanksgiving. One of the things I have done in the past was to make turkey nachos but that would take some thinking to keep it from being a crossover because the way I used to make it was with tortilla chips (or nacho flavored ones), turkey, refried beans, cheese, lettuce, and tomato. If breast is used, you could use baked Tostitos chips, and go very light on the cheese, all the rest would work. If I wanted to make it a healthy fats (S) meal, I’d use the dark meat too, skip the beans and I’d have to use pork rinds or Joseph’s Lavash or Pita cut pre-crisped into chips. With this version I could add some avocado.

Well, that’s it, our turkey menu. I hope you have a great Thanksgiving!

Until next time, God bless,

Michele ºÜº

Weekly Menu Planning

Menu ~ Lifeofjoy.meI don’t know about you but when it comes time to make a menu I frequently have the same meals pop into my mind. I find that every so often I need to remind myself of other things I have previously made and enjoyed or ones I saw and wanted to try. I currently have no schedule for this but am thinking I should do this at least once each season.

Usually when the weather changes I know which recipes I am eager to have once again but after the first couple of weeks, it is a good idea to go through my recipes for menu inspiration.

Fall is approaching and we’ve already had a few cooler weathered days. I never used to be one that cared much for soup but in the past couple of years I have found some soups that I really like. I look forward to sharing those with you over the next several months.

Occasionally I go through my cookbooks and my Pinterest pins to find new recipes to try. It is always fun to make something new but it usually takes longer to make a recipe the first time I make it, I make sure to plan accordingly.

Each week, usually the day before I head to the grocery store, I make a list of what I will make over the next week. From this list or menu if you will, I create my grocery list checking the recipes against what is in my refrigerator/freezer and cabinets. I also keep a small dry erase board on my refrigerator to write down things as we run out of them.

I usually just write down either things I am hungry for or a favorite of a family member. I have read that others make their menu planning easier by having a certain type of food on certain days of the week like Mondays is Chinese food, Tuesdays is Italian and so on; others put a certain type of meat on specific days. I just find it easier to go with what I’m hungry for. Have I mentioned that I love food? I can usually come up with 4 or 5 meals without much struggle. It is usually the last two or three I struggle with. That is when I rely on either something I know a family member likes or browse through my recipes.

Here is the menu I created for this week:
Pizza
Meatloaf and Scalloped Potatoes
Hamburgers and Baked Beans
San Francisco Chicken and Noodles
Chicken Parmesan, Noodles, and Brussel Sprouts
Chicken Enchiladas

I had planned for us to eat out on Sunday but I wasn’t feeling good so we didn’t leave the house. I had a back-up plan of Waffles, Turkey Bacon, and Sausage. I always keep some breakfast meat in the freezer for either a special Saturday breakfast or breakfast for dinner, like we had Sunday.

I hope this gives you an idea of how to plan a menu and make your weekly grocery list.

Until next time, God bless,

Michele ºÜº

Save