Spontaneous meal planning

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Spotaneous meal ingredientsI really do think I prefer to plan our meals last-minute. Some days are pretty busy or we are just having a bad day. There are also days I just plain don’t feel like cooking. On those days I tend to procrastinate the most about planning dinner. So picture this it’s 3:30pm and I have to start cooking dinner in half an hour. The first thing I do is take inventory. Maybe one day I will get around to having a list of items posted on doors of cabinets, etc. Meat being the main component it’s the first thing I nail down. (not literally of course) So in our house we normally have chicken, ground turkey, roast or steak. Then from the meat let’s just say ground turkey, I start to come up with ideas. First I think meatballs, no maybe, spaghetti, or maybe something kinda hamburger helper, but tacos sound good. Anyways, then I have to move onto Carbs aka potatoes, pasta or rice. My favorite being pasta. That’s what I normally choose but I try to change it up because my husband likes potatoes and the kids like rice.  Anyways, so I can choose between spaghetti noodles or cellentani. I still have many options for dinner. I could still do spaghetti, or buttered noodles and burgers, maybe even a yummy casserole. (my oldest is not the biggest fan of casseroles so I try to be sympathetic) I leave my options open between pastas until I find what sauce, gravy, or cheese I might decide to use. So for sauces I have Alfredo or four cheese. I have 1 packet each brown and turkey gravy. I only have shredded mozzarella cheese. So yes, at this point I still have a lot of options. So I start to consider what is quickest and sometimes I let the kids vote. So they would vote between Alfredo noodles with meatballs or Cheesy noodle casserole. My kids love meatballs so I already know the answer. So then I start looking for the ingredients to make the meatballs. The main two ingredients being milk and bread crumbs. Believe it or not I have started making meatballs without knowing that we didn’t have any breadcrumbs. That can easily be fixed by toasting some bread. Just chop and crumble it. Voila! you have homemade breadcrumbs. Back to my meal, I decide I am in the mood for a casserole. So I boil the pasta per the instructions on the box but only to al dente. I cook my meat in a pan with some salt, pepper and the four cheese sauce. Then I add both to a casserole dish and top with mozzarella and a little Parmesan. (Try adding some seasoned crotons or bacon suggested by my husband) Cook at 350 degrees for aboFisnished Yummy productut 20 minutes or until the cheese is melted on the top.  There was no talking during dinner that night 😉 I got 6 thumbs up for this meal. I will be adding this to my list to make again. Happy Cooking!

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2 responses »

  1. I guess you would call me a short term planner. I do come up with a loose idea for a weekly menu but I don’t always stick to it for the reasons you mentioned. (don’t feel like cooking, short on time etc). To be a spontaneous meal maker or a short term planner, it is key to have a well stocked pantry and freezer from which to put things together like you described. Without that, you would need to have a definite plan and a grocery list to match in order to pull off dinner (or lunch, breakfast and snacks).

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  2. I am kinda everywhere. Sometimes when I have time I will plan the meals for the week, other times I am just spontaneous and whatever meat I take out will be what is for dinner that night .

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