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Weekly Menu Plan, Grocery List and Recipes:Cooking From The Pantry

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Weekly Menu Plan, Grocery List and Recipes:Cooking From The Pantry

Posted on 23 January 2012 by noelskitchen

The menu for the week shares easily prepared recipes made directly from the pantry. We all have experienced when our pantry is overstocked or there is meat in the freezer that you need to defrost and cook. Many times I’ve been tempted to try new recipes and go out for new ingredients, but I’ve learned to manage the kitchen to shop and cook from my pantry to use those ingredients before they expire or go bad.

Cooking from the pantry is an excellent way to get meals on the table when time is short and you can’t get to the store, when dinner ideas have dwindled or if an unexpected supper has to be whipped together.

Cook From The Pantry

Cooking from the pantry, leads you to lots of home cooking and creativity. You also control how much you spend on groceries. An organized, well-stocked pantry  is the first step, but once that’s established, creative, delicious dinners are just minutes away.

This week’s Noel’s Family Meals Members are creating:

What’s For Dinner

  • Leftovers Creation: Turkey and Corn Enchiladas (Crock Pot Recipe)
  • Garlic Lime Chicken
  • Taco Salad
  • Veggie Beef Burgers with Seasoned Homemade Potato Fries
Base Recipes
  • Homemade Enchilada Sauce
  • Homemade Mayonnaise
  • Homemade BBQ Sauce
  • Garlic Lime Sauce
  • Lemon Cream
  • To be announced later in the week
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Printable grocery list

Day Breakfast Lunch Dinner Other
Sun 1/22 Crumb Top Coffee Cake Crock Pot Turkey and Corn Enchiladas, Black Beans English Muffins
Mon 1/23 Sunny Breakfast Eggs Pigs In A Blanket, Carrots with Ranch dressing, Apple wedges Harvest Pumpkin and Black Bean Soup
Tue 1/24 Muffin-Tin Breakfast Classic Tuna Melt, Apple Garlic Lime Chicken, Salad
Wed 1/25 Sunrise Sandwich, Orange Juice Family Sub Sandwich, Fruit Salad Chicken Stir-Fry with Veggies, Rice Baked Apple Crisp
Thu 1/26 Quick and Easy Breakfast Casserole, Orange slices Grilled Cheese, Ham and Apple Sandwich Taco Salad Baked Tortilla Chips
Fri 1/27 Peanut Butter Honey Toast, Fruit Kids Macaroni Bake, Carrots, Apples Veggie Beef Burger, Potato Fries
Sat 1/28 Mini Eggsters, Fruit Leftovers Mom’s Favorite Chili in a Bread Bowl, Salad Sweet Dreams Lemon Pound Cake

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Weekly Menu Theme and Recipes for Family Dinners

Posted on 01 January 2012 by noelskitchen

Happy New Year! Are you ready to get organized this new year? Here’s to a brand new year full of wonderful family meal times together. Noel’s Family Meals is helping you and your family save money, time and eat better this year. In my house, life is shared in the kitchen and around the table over delicious homemade recipes that I grew up to love and ones I created and will hopefully be passed down to our children. The table is where we stay close to one another. It’s where we define ourselves by the food we eat and the wonderful stories we tell, as we pass around our plates around the table. A family meal is all about sharing. It’s not about getting dressed up, or serving fancy food. It’s a chance to step back in our busy everyday lives, everyday worries and focus on what really matters.

I love to plan our new dinners weekly and this year we’re starting off with a new creative way to meal plan. We’re starting off our week with Sunday Suppers (Dinner Around The Table). This is one night of the week you really shouldn’t miss gathering around the table for dinner. Sunday Suppers start the week off with a fresh new and positive look at the week ahead.

This year, I won’t be cooking without my new crock pot. We’re creating some new savory slow cooked meals on Slow Cooker Mondays.  We’re starting off the new year with a savory 5-Spice Beef slowly cooked and served over a fluffy bed of white rice.

If that’s not enough to get your mouth watering, then stick around for Italian Tuesdays where we’ll serve up dishes like Chicken in Lemon Creme with Penne; the theme meal ideas are endless with Italian night.

Mix It Up Wednesdays will feature meals from everyday family entrees such as Stuffed Zucchini and Red Bell Peppers, Garlic and Citrus Chicken, to easy carefree dishes like Tomato Soup with Pancetta, Sub Sandwiches, Scramblewiches, and many more entrees your family will love.

As we move to the end of the week, we’ll go back in time and remember those meals we grew up loving with Casserole/Comfort Food Thursdays. You’ll definitely remember growing up with these favorites – Baked Macaroni and Cheese,  Bacon-Wrapped Meatloaf Patties with Pan Gravy, Stuffing-Topped Pork Chops, Country-Fried Steak with Milk Gravy, and Beef Stroganoff.

Come Friday, you’ll be ready to kick off the weekend with Family Nights and have a Kid Food Night Friday. There’s a fun new twist on pizza with BBQ Sloppy Chicken Pan Pizza, have a taco bar with Turkey Tacos and a board game night and serve up Tuna with Everything-but-the-Kitchen-sink.

Grilling doesn’t have to be just in the summer. Relax, kick back and enjoy your weekend with Saturday Grill Night. Serving up dishes like Chili Dog Bacon Cheeseburgers, Brats and Peppers, Spiced Grilled Chicken and Veggie Pockets and Rosemary Garlic Grilled Pork Chops.

Of course we’ll make room for those leftover nights where we eat from the pantry (your pantry, fridge and freezer). The recipes are flexible and nearly foolproof, so you never have to worry about making everything perfect.

Hopefully the recipes I share with you’ll find yourselves remembering old family traditions of good food and family togetherness. And perhaps it will inspire your family to create new family traditions of your own.

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Noel’s Family Meals December Holiday Fun Special!

Posted on 17 December 2011 by noelskitchen

Noel’s Family Meals Premium Members Freebie

In the beginning of the year, I shared with my fellow busy moms, life can get a little chaotic. I created a Home Management Book to help me tackle all of the day-to-day challenges a busy mom has. It’s a great system to have and that’s why I’m offering this Bonus “Merry Christmas” Holiday Fun Package exclusively for Noel’s Family Meals Premium Members, I’m sharing with you:

Bonus “Merry Christmas” Holiday Fun Package Includes:

Holiday Stationery (4 styles)
Holiday Recipe Cards (4 styles)
Holiday Jar Labels (4 styles)
Holiday Gift Labels (4 styles)
Holiday Greeting Cards (4 styles)
Holiday Coloring Pages (5 pages)

These are great fun ideas to add to your Working Mom’s Home Management Book!

[private_Premium Family Meals]


Free Download Holiday Stationery

Free Download Holiday Recipe Cards

Free Download Holiday Gift Labels

Free Download Holiday Jar Labels

Free Download Holiday Cards

Free Download Holiday Coloring Pages


[/private_Premium Family Meals]

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Weekly Meal, Grocery List and Recipes: Easy Weeknight Dinners

Posted on 11 December 2011 by noelskitchen

This weekend, we were getting into the festive spirit with some last minute Christmas shopping, the annual toy run, decorating the tree and I spent a majority of my time with the kids in the kitchen baking different types of cookies, making fudge, peanut butter balls and trying a new recipe for Peppermint Bark.

This week is a great time to start baking and making those food gifts if you haven’t started already. Food gifts are great because they are simple, fun to make and can be done inexpensively.

Last week,  Noel’s Family Meals Members started a majority of our batch and freezer cooking in preparation for a less hectic second part of this month when our focus will be on Christmas. For this week’s menu plan, we still want to keep it simple as we move closer to the holiday. This avoids the feeling of being burnt out later in the month when we want to enjoy our time with family and friends. Remember, we are incorporating all of those useful meal planning tools.

Our December Plan Continues….

[private_Premium Family Meals]

Before we get started, How are you like this layout? There’s still some teaks to work out, but in the long run, I feel it will be much easier. I’ve also added the meal plan to Google Calendar. If you prefer to be included in receiving the Calendar, please send me an e-mail to: and I’ll add you to the list.

Monday December 12: Potato, Corn and Broccoli Chowder

  • task: double the recipe and freeze the second batch.
  • additional day: Monday December 26

Tuesday December 13: Chicken Pot Pie

  • task:use cubed cooked chicken (from previous week); double the recipe and freeze the second pot pie.
  • additional day: Tuesday December 27

Wednesday December 14: Crockpot Enchiladas, Beans, Rice 

  • task:task: double the enchiladas and freeze half; make the beans and freeze half
  • additional day: December 28
Thursday December 15: Pasta Bar: lots of noodles, two kinds of sauce: red sauce and alfredo, bread and salad
  • task: prepare red sauce first part of week and refrigerate. Make quick alfredo sauce, heat garlic bread, make salad

Friday December 16: Mom’s Favorite Chili in a Bread Bowl

  • task: make bread bowl dough in morning. refrigerate and make bread bowls while chili is heating.
Saturday December 17: Leftovers (Every once in a while it’s good to use up leftovers so no food goes to waste, especially when we have a big dinner coming up next week.)
The plan for lunches this month is leftovers, sandwiches, quesadillas, salads or finger foods. For breakfast, plan to rotate between oatmeal, cold cereals, scones or muffins with fruit, pancakes, waffles, cinnamon rolls and granola. Recipes can be found on the Recipe Index page.
**** Please be aware that the December Shopping List for Week 2 will be posted later due to site server issues beyond my control. I’m sorry for the inconvenience and thank you for your patience.
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Weekly Menu, Grocery List and Recipes:Batch and Freezer Cooking

Posted on 04 December 2011 by noelskitchen

We all know how busy our family life gets this time of year as we celebrate with holiday parties, school activities and managing our holiday shopping lists. Keeping up with the day to day home activities can tend to seem overwhelming for some busy families. Wouldn’t you rather have fun baking those homemade Christmas cookies with your kids than doing those tasks like cleaning the house or doing the laundry?

Sometimes even trying to cook a weeknight dinner during the holidays can be stressful.  Sometimes creating a meal plan can get overlooked. Too many families tend to rely on the convenience of pizza home delivery, fast food drive thrus or frozen unhealthy tv dinners.

Having a simple meal plan during the holidays can be a great timesaver for busy families! This month, I’m sharing with Noel’s Family Meals Premium Members how you can simply double your recipes for meals in the beginning of this month, so the second half of the month when your busy with familiy activities, all you have to do is thaw your meals, heat, and serve.

I’ve shared with you plenty about meal planning techniques and why you should meal plan- how I plan a month’s worth of meals by freezer cooking, how I write out my monthly meal plans, and how cooking in batches stocks my freezer by cutting my meal prepping in half. Plan now and you’ll be rewarded later by being able to spend that quality time with your family.

For the month of December, I’m incorporating all of these useful meal planning tools that I’ve been sharing with you.  Those cozy winter meals can easily be doubled and frozen, so with a basic  weekly meal plan, you can have your family’s dinners stocked for the fun-yet-hectic holiday season.

[private_Premium Family Meals]

This week’s task for our meal plan is to make a meal plan for December that incorporates batch and freezer cooking.  Plan to cook more in the first half of the month so that you’re free to enjoy the season in the second half.

Our December Plan

Here is the start of the December meal plan.  You’ll notice how the weekly meal plan has a different layout to it. I’m hoping this will make it a little easier for you. (Please feel free to leave feedback in the comments section below.)

**You’ll  also notice how you will roast two whole chickens this week for future meals. If you don’t have a full chicken or chicken leftovers for Monday night’s meal, you can substitute by using boneless, skinless chicken breasts. Or substitute wih leftover turkey meat you put away in the freezer for later.

Monday, December 5 – white chicken chili

  • task:use cooked cubed chicken; double the recipe and freeze the second
  • additional day: Monday, December 21

Tuesday, December 6tacos, beans, and rice

  • task:double the seasoned ground beef and freeze the second batch; make beans and freeze half
  • additional day: Tuesday, December 22

Wednesday, December 7 — stir fry ( top ramen)

  • task: roast a chicken, cube it, and freeze in one cup batches
  • additional day: each Wednesday — December 14, 21, and 28

Thursday, December 8French market soup 

  • task:double the recipe and freeze the second batch
  • additional day: Thursday, December 22 and 29

Friday, December 9homemade pizza and salad

  • task: triple my pizza dough and sauce batches, and use it each Friday
  • additional days: Friday, December 9, 16, 23 and 30

Saturday, December 10shepherd’s pie

  • task:double the recipe and freeze the second
  • additional day: Saturday, December 24

Sunday, December 11 – grilled cheese sandwiches and tomato soup

  • task: double the soup recipe and freeze the second; roast a chicken, cube it, and freeze in one cup batches
  • additional day: future day in January

I don’t want to overwhelm you this month so the plan for lunches this month is leftovers, sandwiches, quesadillas, salads or finger foods. For breakfast, plan to rotate between oatmeal, cold cereals, scones or muffins with fruit, pancakes, waffles, cinnamon rolls and granola. Recipes can be found on the Recipe Index page.

December Shopping List Week 1 and 3

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