Throwing together this week’s menu was the easiest yet. I tried using categories as a guide. From there, I picked a recipe fitting a category, based on items I already had.
For example, for the “pizza” category, I knew I had sauce, cheese, veggies and dough ingredients already on hand. Bam. On the menu it goes.
Next, I knew I already had ingredients for the refried bean tostadas. I found the recipe earlier in the week and considered making it part of an upcoming menu. I already had the tortillas, beans, and salsa. I will add a side serving of rice, and then let this count in the “sandwich and side” category, since it’s pretty close to that.
I love using my Crockpot, and I wanted to pick a recipe that would fit that category and use items I already had in my cupboards. I found the strogonoff recipe, and realized I already had the beef, mushrooms and noodles for it. That fulfilled my category, and then I wrote down the remaining ingredients on my shopping list.
“Breakfast for dinner”is a fun and easy category. I simply pick a dish or two that sounds good, and put it on the menu. Usually, we already have these items.
As time goes on and I become a more well-rounded cook, I think I’ll add more categories from which to choose.
This is the first week I used this method to plan my menu and grocery list, and I’m going to try it again. I didn’t have to spend an hour combing through cookbooks or my recipe file.