Printable Dinner Menu

I wrote a whole separate post on how I meal plan here, it might help you understand why I created the dinner menu board the way I did. 

When it comes to meal planning I would encourage you to do what works for you!  We all have our own way of doing things and so please tweak your board to fit your family. I have included a full sheet of blank meal cards in the printable for this very purpose. 

Alright enough talk...lets get going. Here is my Dinner Menu Board:
How to Assemble Your Board!
Dinner Menu Printables
Cookie Sheet (Mine measures 11" X 17")
Sticky Note Pad
2 Strips of Magnetic tape
7 Circular Magnets
7 Pop Bottle Lids (found in scrappin section of craft store)
Clothespin (optional)
Rings/clips (to categorize menu cards)
Picture Hanging Strips (bought mine at wal-mart)
Hole punch

1-Print off dinner menu, trim edges and place in cookie sheet.
2-Cut out menu item tag, pocket and menu cards. Fold pocket on dotted line as pictured below.

3-Glue ribbon and pocket onto Menu and magnets to pop bottle tops. Also, stick magnetic tape to the back of sticky note pad. (I used my glue gun!)

4-Categorize menu cards, hole punch and place on rings.

5-Hang menu on wall using picture hanging strips.

Don't feel like doing all the work?
I first created this as a two sheet spread that could be printed off and laminated. I used a dry erase marker to write on it. If you are interested in printing one for yourself, here it is!


Meal Planning

It seems like the hardest part of meal planning is getting started… deciding what’s for dinner.

How do I meal plan?
First, I have found that I do better when I plan one week at a time as opposed to two weeks or a full month. I think a big part of this is because I go grocery shopping weekly and I like to plan our meals around sales and what is in season. I also have a better idea of our families schedule, I know when we are going to be home, if the kids have games/lessons, what our work schedule is, etc.   

Second, I like to categorize our meals and then pick only one meal each week from each category.  I categorized our meals into 7 different categories, one for each day of the week. I don’t assign categories to specific days but pick what works best for that specific week.  

Third, I like to display our weekly menu.  Displaying the menu helps me stick with it and lets my family know what we are having for dinner.

How Do I Categorize Our Meals?
Below is an example of how I categorize our meals.  I used to categorize by meat/protein (one night we would have something with beef another night something with chicken, etc.) This worked great but many of our recipes can be used with different kinds of meat or don't have meat in them at all.  

I really like the way we categorize our meals now because they’re catered to what our family likes and are categorized in such a way that scheduling is easy.

Soup/Salad/ Sandwich
We have a lot of soup in the fall/winter and lots of salads and sandwiches in the spring/summer.  

Favorites Include: Chicken Noodle Soup, Tortilla Soup, White Chicken Chili, Taco Salad, BBQ Chicken Salad, BLT's, and Tuna Cheese Melts.

This is by far our families’ favorite so it’s categorized all on its own.

Favorites Include: Fettuccine Alfredo, Chicken Parmesan, Lasagne, Spaghetti, Pizza and Calzones.


We try to do one of each at least once within the month.

Favorites Include: Navajo Tacos, Fajitas, Enchiladas, Stuffed Peppers, Tiny Spicy, Sweet and Sour, Stir Fry, Kahoona Burger and Hawaiian Haystacks.

Meat as Main Menu Item/Crock-Pot
Once a week we have meat as our main dinner item with some kind of side like rice, potato or corn on the cob. Most of my favorite main dishes with meat are also crock-pot meals so that's why I categorized these together. 

Favorites Include: Pot Roast, BBQ Ribs/Chicken, Swedish Meatballs, Grilled 7-Up Chicken, Wingers Sticky Fingers, Italian Chicken and Steak.

Casserole/Freezer Meal
This meal is usually reserved for the night I need something fast! I can easily thaw out a prepared meal from the freezer or make a casserole and pop it in the oven.

This category also includes a From the Pantry or Garden Meal which helps me use ingredients I need to use before they go bad…like when I have an overload of Zucchini from the garden.  It also helps me use those ingredients that get pushed to the back of the pantry. 

Favorites Include: Shepherds Pie, Chicken Pot Pie and Chicken n' rice.

Try a New Recipe 
I have hundreds of recipes (bookmarked on my computer, saved to my pintrest boards, stashed in old cookbooks and piled up in my cupboard) this gives me a chance to try them!

Leftovers/Eat Out/Breakfast
We eat a lot of leftovers for lunch but still tend to have excess most weeks...when we do we eat them for dinner too. Other nights we go out to eat.  If we don't have leftovers and don't go out we have breakfast for dinner. I like to call this the no planning night. Whatever we decide to do it is easy!

Favorites Include: French Toast, Waffles, and of course eating out!

How do I Display Our Menu?
I originally displayed our menu on a piece of paper clipped to the fridge but quickly decided I wanted something more permanent so I designed a sheet in Photoshop, laminated it and used a dry erase marker to write on it. 
This worked great for a while but after a few months of fighting my kiddos to leave it on the fridge and getting mad at them for coloring on it I decided I wanted something even more permanent. I wanted a shopping list I could easily take with me when shopping and something more crafty. This is what I came up with:
We have used this for over 8 months now and I am loving it!!

How Do I Use the Dinner Menu?
 Their are 7 spots on the menu, one for each day of the week. Each spot has a magnet that holds the meal card in place. 
Their is a little pocket for menu items/meal cards. I keep all my meal cards in this pocket and keep them categorized on a clip so that they are easy to go through...this makes it so easy!!
Their is a shopping list...I love this because I can restock it with new sticky pads as I use it up. I also love that my shopping list is part of the menu...it's always there when I need to add to it.
 For a free printable and instructions to make your own Dinner Menu check back tomorrow!


Recipe Stand

This is a fun way to display and organize recipes.  It was a quick project and inexpensive. We put this together with the Young Women in my Ward and each shared a recipe. It was a fun activity!

Front View
Side View
We copied our favorite recipes onto these cute cards and added some blank pages so we could add our future favorite recipes. 

1 sheet of aluminum (folded at bottom)
2 rings
Scrapbook paper and stickers (to decorate cover and add tabs)
Recipe cards found here


Crockpot BBQ Chicken

I love anything with BBQ sauce on it. My kids like BBQ dishes too but have a hard time with meat unless it is fall apart soft and so this has become a favorite dish at our house.  I love the convenience of using a crockpot and how soft this chicken is.  
6 frozen boneless chicken breasts
1 (12 oz) bottle of BBQ sauce

Place chicken, and sauce in crockpot. Cover and cook 3-4 hours on high or 6-8 hours on low. Just before serving coat chicken in BBQ sauce.


Homemade Lemonade

1 Cup of fresh squeezed lemon juice (about 6 lemons)
1 Cup sugar
2 Cups ice cold water

Juice the lemons to make one cup juice. Mix juice, water and sugar in large pitcher. Adjust water to taste. Serve over ice.

**To make a specialty lemonade, blend about a pint of fruit and add to above recipe.



BBQ Pulled Pork Sandwich

These sandwiches are so good...we always make lots so we can have leftovers.
1 boneless pork shoulder roast (2-3 lbs)
1 bottle BBQ sauce, your favorite
3 Tbsp. honey

Add roast, sauce and honey to slow cooker, cover and cook on high for 3-4 hours or low for 6-8. Shred meat and serve on sandwich buns. 

 I like to use leftover roast from Sunday dinner to make these sandwiches too, it's not quite as soft and tender as the above recipe but it's a good way to use leftovers and it's super quick. I simply shred leftover roast and add our favorite BBQ sauce and warm meat up in microwave or crock-pot and serve with buns. 


Cheesy Chicken on Rice

I LOVE easy recipes.  For me the fewer the ingredients the better!  This one is super easy, fast, and delicious!

4-6 Chicken Breasts
1 can cream of chicken
1 can cream of celery
1 cup sour cream
1 cup cheddar cheese

Salt and pepper the chicken, mix the soups and sour cream together and pour over chicken.  Bake at 325 degrees for 2 hours.  During the last 15 minutes, sprinkle with cheese.



Chicken & Pepper Cabobs

1/2 cup veg oil
2/3 cup honey
2/3 cup soy sauce
1 clove garlic, chopped
3-4 boneless skinless chicken, cut into large cubes
1 red bell pepper, seeded and cut into cubes
1 orange bell pepper, seeded and cut into cubes
1 yellow bell pepper, seeded and cut into cubes

Add oil, honey, soy sauce and garlic to medium bag, mix. Add chicken to marinade and let sit at least 30 min. 

On metal or soaked wood skewers alternately thread chicken and peppers. Grill on medium heat until chicken is cooked through, rotating every 5 min. 


Bacon, Egg & Cheese Muffins

These are a fun way to enjoy a traditional breakfast all in one bite. The outside is a bit crunchy while the egg is still moist and creamy.
6 slices of bread
6 eggs
1 cup crumbled bacon
1/2 cup shredded cheese
salt and pepper

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Cut circles into bread using cookie cutter. Press bread into bottom of greased muffin tin. Top bread with egg and sprinkle with bacon and cheese. Bake for 15-20 minutes until egg is cooked. 


Tidy Tots Bib Review and Giveaway!

Tidy Tots Boutique makes these super cute baby bibs!  I have absolutely LOVED mine!  It is waterproof and cleans up so easily.  My 2 year old has worn it almost daily for the past 3 months and it still looks brand new.  I love the fun and colorful pattern and that it stays on even when he pulls on it!  Enter below for a chance to win yours today! ; )

Here are some of the other cute designs!  I love that you can choose the type of closure that you want.  You can choose from a button, Velcro, or snap closure!

This giveaway will end on October 17th at 12:00 a.m. MST.  The winner will be e-mailed on October 18th and will have 24 hours to respond before a new winner will be selected!  If you do not win you can still get a great deal on a bib!  During the week of  October 19-26 you can get 15% off at the Tidy Tots Boutique by using code GIVEAWAY15.  Good Luck to everyone!

a Rafflecopter giveaway


Creamy Chicken Stuffed Peppers

This is almost exactly the same filling I use when I make enchiladas only it's stuffed in a pepper.  This recipe is a great side for dinner or a fun appetizer.  
12-14 mini bell peppers, seeded and tops removed
2 boneless skinned chicken breasts, cooked and shredded (I use canned chicken to save on cooking time)
1 pkg. (8 oz) cream cheese
1 bottle enchilada sauce

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large bowl mix chicken, cream cheese and enchilada sauce. Spoon mixture into peppers. Bake for 30 min until peppers have softened. 


Santa Fe Crock-Pot Chicken

This is a very creamy chicken, perfect for topping rice or noodles.  

5-6 chicken breasts
1 (15 oz) can black beans
1 (15 oz) can corn
1 bottle salsa (the bigger the bottle the more spicy)
1 (8 oz) cream cheese
shredded cheese

In crock-pot mix chicken, black beans, corn, and salsa. Cover, cook on high for 3-4 hours or low for 6-8 hours.

Shred chicken, add cream cheese and cook 30 min. Serve over rice or noodles and top with cheese.


Preventing Stretch Marks

I thought that these were some great ideas!  After giving birth to my first son who was 9 lbs 3 oz and two weeks early I'm pretty sure I've got a few stretch marks, but it's worth a shot to prevent more later on right!?  Check out these great tips!
Stretch Marks Infographic



Brownie Cookies

What do you get when you combine a brownie with a cookie??? Brownie cookies and they are so good, especially with milk. These taste like a brownie but are in the shape of a cookie.

1 (21 oz) package of brownie mix
1/2 cup flour
6 Tbsp. oil
2 eggs
2 Tbsp. water
6 oz choc chips

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a medium bowl combine all ingredients, mix well. Spoon onto greased cookie sheet and bake 8-10 min.

**Don't over bake these cookies, you want the center to be slightly gooey.



We are back!

You have probably noticed a decrease in posts over the past couple months.  Holly has been trying to stay out of the hospital and keep herself healthy and hydrated as she prepares to have baby #3. I (Heather) have been busy helping my kids adjust to a new area/home while trying to figure out how to balance my time with 3 kids and support my husband as he returns to school. 

It is now October and we are ready to jump back into blogging!  We are really excited to share some posts we have been working on all year!! We plan to focus on our role as cook/chef this month and will be sharing a few menu planning ideas complete with printables. We also look forward to sharing some of our favorite recipes and some tips and tricks we have found helpful while working in the kitchen.

Back in January we started a series to help us focus on the many different roles we have as mothers, if you are interested we have included a little recap below:

In January our focus was on getting organized.  We shared some simple things that we have done to organize our homes and also some fun ideas we have organized like mommy and me field trip groups and busy bag swaps.

In February our focus was on ways that we can show love to those we care about.  We shared our basket of sunshine post, a few of our favorite Valentines' Recipes, and Valentines Printables and had a great Giveaway for a nights stay at Anniversary Inn. 

In March we focused on our roles as nurse and physical trainer.  Heather announced her pregnancy and shared some pregnancy posts including Gender Revel Ideas, Fun Ways to Document Pregnancy, and Announce Pregnancy along with some things to remember when Eating for Two, and some Pregnancy Stretches. We also shared some tips and tricks that have helped us in our journey as mothers including: Teething Tips, Ways to Drink More Water, and Hygiene Day.

In April we focused on party planning. We shared some Party Planning Tips,  Birthday Party Theme Ideas and some of our Birthday Traditions. We also shared a tutorial on how to make Cake Pops and one of our new favorite recipes Cake Batter Rice Krispie Treats.

In May our focus was on our role as entertainers.  We shared our theme day If you give a Moose a Muffin.  Some of our other favorite posts are: Fun with Play Dough, 10 home made play dough recipes, and Make a volcano!

In June our focus was on our roles as chauffeur. We shared 5 tips to minimize the scramble when trying to get out the door with children.

In July our focus was on our roles as maid...we focused on cleaning our homes and ways to help our children embrace household responsibilities.  We shared age appropriate jobs for children, a trick we do- how to refill used swifter wet jet bottles. We also shared a responsibility chart printable.

In August we shared some posts on ways to prepare ourselves and family for an emergency. We prepared our 72 Hour kits.

In September we focused on making our house a home.  We shared our rain gutter bookshelves.

We would love for you to Follow along with us via:


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