Do you dread the late afternoon? You know, the time of day when you need to start thinking about what to make for dinner….when you find yourself blankly gazing into your pantry, hoping that ingredients will call out to you…Incidentally, this time usually coincides with the time your kids decide it is a perfect time to start painting in a carpeted room, the phone keeps ringing, the dog wants out, the baby needs to be fed, etc….How can we expect to ever throw together a decent meal amidst all that stress? That is where menu planning comes in. If you just take a little time once a week, every two weeks, or every month, you won’t need that nightly date with your pantry, and will be able to handle all of the things that come up, as you have already so smartly planned your dinner. Enter my weekly menu. Hope that one or two of the ideas will make their way onto YOUR table in the near future.

Monday: French Bread Pizza – Quite possibly my favorite way to eat pizza…good crusty bread with all of my favorite toppings…Another thing I love about this meal is that it is easy to give everyone the type of pizza they love. For more information on French Bread Pizza, as well as 4 other non-traditional pizza recipes, check out my previous post, Not Your Mama’s Pizza! 5 New Ways to Make an Old Favorite!

Tuesday: Pizza Casserole – Cook up your favorite small noodles (or choose a fun shape.) Stir in a jar of pizza or pasta sauce. Add in your favorite pizza toppings. I’ve made this with a combination of Italian sausage and chopped pepperoni. You can also add in things like onions, peppers, mushrooms, and olives if these are things your family enjoys. Top with a generous handful or two (or three….or six…I like cheese..) of mozzarella cheese. Bake at 350 for 25 minutes. The first time I made this, my little girl gave me rave reviews. This recipe definitely falls into the Supermom Trifecta of Cooking (Cheap, Easy, and the Kids will Eat it!)

Wednesday: Chili Cheese Roll-ups – Yup, just like at Sonic. Fill a tortilla with your favorite chili (Sonic uses a beanless chili), grated cheese, and Fritos! This may sound a little questionable, but it is so good! If I were allowed to keep onions in the house, I think chopped onion would also be fabulous in these.

Thursday: Asian Chicken and Rice Bake – This gives a new twist on  a classic chicken and rice dish. (And on a completely personal and sentimental note, this was the first meal my daughter ever helped me prepare. She was not quite 2, and she’s been helping me ever since!)

Friday: Ranch Pork Chops – A fun new take on an old favorite ! 4-6 pork chops (I purchase the center cut and not the assorted variety), 1/4 cup flour , 1/2 cup Ranch Dressing , 1 teaspoon dried Italian Seasoning , 1/2 cup Parmesan Cheese

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. In one shallow container, mix together the flour and Italian seasonings. In another shallow container, pour in the Ranch dressing. Trim all fat from the pork chops and then dredge in the flour. Dip the pork chop into the dressing on both sides. Place pork chops on a greased baking dish and sprinkle the tops with a little Parmesan cheese. Bake for 35 minutes.

Saturday: Nacho Night! (Quite possibly my very favorite food!) Do this buffet style, and let everyone choose their own toppings. I like to have taco meat, cheese sauce AND grated cheese, refried beans, tomatoes, onions, olives, sour cream, salsa…the list could go on!

Sunday: Crockpot Salsa Chicken – Place frozen chicken breasts, 1 cup salsa and  1 can of diced green chiles into the crockpot. Cook on high for 4 hours. Shred the chicken and serve over rice or in a tortilla. (Or on top of the leftover nachos!) You can also choose to add in a can of black beans and/or a can of corn. If you put this in the crockpot in the morning, you can have lunch ready and waiting when you get home from church!

Happy meal planning ladies! You can find all of my past Weekly Menu Planners here: Weekly Menu Planners