Once a girlfriend who has twice as many kids as I wondered how often I cooked fresh meals, and was really relieved when I said I try cook less often but make bigger meals to have leftovers for the week. As a SAHM, sometimes people think (or we pressure ourselves) that we as moms ought to be making every meal fresh. That seems wasteful to me not only of food but also of time. Have you SEEN my to-do list? Or my goals list? Yeah, that’s not happening. So we eat leftovers at my house. While I often enjoy and want to cook for my family (hence the recipe posts) There’s definitely a meal option called “Fridge Contents Assessment Day”.
Some ladies have told me, “my husband will NOT eat leftovers!” Mmk…but I sure couldn’t deal with that. I understand if you’re on a low histamine diet (and the solution for that would be freezing the food right after it’s cooled.) But this frugal, not-inclined to be in the kitchen every moment of the day gal is not putting up with that no-leftovers stuff. I even eat that Instant Pot Ham and Bean Soup for breakfast whenever I make it because protein for breakfast helps me with blood sugar issues (and I can’t have eggs anymore. Boo.)
So meal planning is kind of a chill event for me. I don’t know if you should actually call what I do “meal planning.” “Whatever’s happening last minute” is more like what it is most of the time. Sometimes it’s a day of double-leftovers…or on an activity day like Tue. (babysitter day) or Wednesday (kids’ club day), I cheat a little and get out a frozen GF cheese pizza from Costco for the kids and a regular meat pizza for my husband from Aldi. (I’ll do a salad with avocado and some protein for myself because I can’t have the cheese or yeast and egg in the pizza crust.)
I generally take a fridge-contents assessment after a couple freshly-made meals because it’s super easy to forget what’s in there. I like glass containers for leftovers for a few reasons. If I can see what’s in my fridge, it’s more likely to get used up and not forgotten. The other reason for glass instead of plastic food containers is that I am avoiding the xeno-estrogens (as I struggle with hormone imbalance) that are emitted when a container is frozen or heated in the microwave (like when your plastic gets those bubbles and pits in them.)
So anyhow, lunches for me, the kids and hubs are any combo of what I made the previous days dished out in individual servings, and possibly put into a preheated thermos on a school morning for my child who does not have school heat-up options. (I have some freezer sandwiches made for my crew which adds variety, too.)
It works for us, and I have no guilt about it, and neither should you if you’re new to this SAHM gig. Love, don’t dread your kitchen, ok?!