What We Ate {Last} Week

I don’t know about you, but I always get a bit intimidated when other real food bloggers post their week’s menu plans. It all sounds so good on paper, and I wonder how they have the time to make all those lovely, well rounded meals, and how they can afford fish and organic veggies and stuff. It leaves me feeling guilty and inadequate.

Not a pretty thing.

So, I usually avoid those type of posts, and just go on my merry way, planning my menus with what I do have time to make and what I can afford. And I never thought to put my week’s menu plan out there, ’cause I didn’t’ want to make anyone else feel inadequate or guilty.

Not a pretty thing.

But then one of you went and asked. ๐Ÿ™‚ And then I had an idea (ok, let’s give credit where credit is due – I think this one came from my Father). What about posting a log of what we ATE the previous week? Then you could really see how this whole real food thing pans out with a tight budget and 3 kids in the mix!

And, it would be an opportunity for me to embrace humility, ’cause the truth is, not everything we eat is pure, organic, and WAPF-approved, and telling you what we actually ate rather than what I wish we were going to – that just might be a little humbling.

And humility is good.

I keep reminding myself.

So, without further excuses and grasping for what remaining dignity I have, here’s a list of what we ate (and a few preparation details) in the past 7 days.

steaming swiss chard to put in the freezer for smoothies

Breakfast: Kefir smoothie with raw egg yolks, steamed swish chard, frozen fruit, and flax seed. I hadn’t made kefir in weeks. Maybe months. Finally, with cooler weather,  and more time indoors, I’m getting back into our healthier routines. The kids could not be happier – even Seth drinks the smoothies now. We paired this with scrambled eggs with a little raw cheddar cheese thrown in.
Lunch: Leftover Crockpot Rotisserie Chicken with veggies and rice. Oh, man – you’ve got to try the spice rub in this recipe!

the chicken dinner lunch’s leftovers were from

Dinner: Beef and Spinach Quiche* with some lentil sprouts thrown in ’cause they were going to go bad soon and I thought this would be a safe place to hide them. It worked. Neither the kids nor the Man noticed. Score! The crust was made with white flour ’cause I haven’t had time to make sprouted wheat flour this month, and I’m learning that white flour, though not ideal, is easier to digest than un-soaked or un-sprouted whole wheat. I paired this with local, as-good-as-organic sweet potatoes – peeled, chunked and baked with a bit of butter, cinnamon, and honey. Again, the kids adore this!

Seth with his smoothie – oh, how he loves it!

B: Kefir smoothies as above and omelets
L: PBandJ’s and Sloppy Joes over at my MIL’s
D: White Lasagna* and applesauce from our own apples (yeah!)

B: Kefir smoothies and scrambled eggs (by this time Jesse is begging me to buy oats ’cause we’ve been out for days and we’re all missing oatmeal
L: Leftover Quiche and sweet potatoes, as well as some Homemade Mac and Cheese I threw together for filler. White, storebought pasta ’cause I haven’t had time to make noodles and I’m out of rice pasta. ๐Ÿ™‚ I did throw in some fresh, homemade cream cheese (cream cheese:: the secret to awesome homemade mac and cheese!)
D: We ate out with friends ’cause Jeremy had a meeting in Syracuse.

B: Omelets (still forgot to pick up oats!)
L: Leftovers – mac and cheese, taco salad*, some cheese melted over corn chips for filler
D: Chicken Divan* (Including Mayonnaise* and Cream of Chicken Soup* from scratch)

B: Oatmeal*!!!
L: Leftover Chicken Divan*
D: Homemade Pizza with the best whole wheat pizza dough ever*. Our favorite toppings – Pineapple tidbits and Pepperoni.

B: Leftover Oatmeal (I always make a big enough batch to eat for two days – it’s better the second day, anyway!)
L: Leftover Pizza
D: Pot Roast (Thank You, Lord, for Pioneer Woman! She’s taught me everything I know about red meat, an area of insecurity because I grew up on a chicken farm. ๐Ÿ™‚ I highly recommend every recipe I’ve tried from her. Who better to teach me how to grill steak or make a savory pot roast than the wife of a cattle rancher?

pot roast ready to go in the oven

B: Oven Pancake*, which I forgot to soak. ๐Ÿ™‚ It was scrumptious anyway.
L: Potluck at church. I brought Caesar Salad*
D: Leftover Pot Roast and Popcorn

Further Notes…
*Indicates a recipe found in my book. Compiling your own cookbook is seriously one of the coolest things every. All YOUR favorite recipes in one place, with your tweaks in print so you don’t have to adjust the recipe again each time you make it. And yes, I use cookbooks all the time – I’m simply too scatterbrained to trust myself to remember the salt or the baking soda without following a recipe. About the only thing I don’t use a recipe for is Chicken Pot Pie*, so it turns out a little different each time, which bothers my husband AND me. So, I really should use the recipe I nailed down in my book.

 Leftovers are my secret weapon. I talk more about using leftovers to give yourself freedom from the kitchen in my book.

These photos are from the Real {Fast} Food facebook page, where I often post photos of what we’re eating that day. My camera is broke, so taking photos with my phone and emailing them to facebook is the only way I have to give photographic updates.

For more on how we manage real food on a real budget, check out “How Eating Better {Didn’t} Break the Bank”

P.S.This was not meant to be a post promoting my book – it just turned out that way ’cause everything we eat is in the book! ๐Ÿ™‚ So, go there if you have further questions.

That is all. ๐Ÿ™‚

10 responses to “What We Ate {Last} Week”

  1. jessicatelian Avatar

    Late commenting, but GREAT post! I too am intimidated by the menu plan posts in part because they're planned (which always makes me feel like I “should” menu plan…but I just need to accept that menu planning does not work with our lifestyle and how I cook :)) and in part because we don't always eat that healthily ALL THE TIME either. ๐Ÿ™‚ So thanks for your dose of reality, it was very encouraging! ๐Ÿ™‚

  2. Trina Avatar

    Kateri – yes, I left the skin on!!! I love chicken skin and do the exact same thing – eat it right off the breasts when the chicken comes out of the oven! The skin doesn't come out crispy in the crockpot, but it is really flavorful!

    Anne – I love brown rice pudding! But I can't get my kids to enjoy it with me. ๐Ÿ™‚

    Judy – you're so right – thanks for chiming in!

  3. Judy@SavoringToday Avatar

    I love it–I don't cook on Sundays, so sometimes popcorn is what's on the menu! Above all, you have to be who you are–learning from others, but being authentic, it is the only way to last. (I have to remind myself of that too!) You've got a good thing going here. ๐Ÿ™‚

  4. Anne @ Quick and Easy Cheap and Healthy Avatar

    Too funny – this week, WE are the ones with no oatmeal in the house! And I rely on it heavily for breakfasts, and we can't have eggs b/c of allergies…. so I'm having to get really creative. Brown rice pudding, anyone?!

  5. Kateri Avatar

    I took a peek at the crockpot chicken recipe and am tempted to try it today. Did you leave the skin on? (I'm one of those weird people who loves the skin. If it is just me and husband around I will eat all the skin off the chicken as soon as I take it out of the oven. I know most poeple think that is so gross, so I don't do it in front of other people!)

  6. Anonymous Avatar

    Thanks for posting. Your menu looks delicious. I'm actually making your pizza for dinner tonight. It's nice to see what someone else eats on a budget with 3 little kids.

    Pioneer woman rocks! I use your cookbook and her site a lot for my menus.


  7. Miki Avatar

    What a good idea to post what you've already eaten! I actually stopped posting my menus because we ended up eating about 2/3 of what I planned and 1/3 unexpected leftovers or whatevers…. ๐Ÿ˜‰

    It looks like you guys eat very healthy to me!

  8. Trina Avatar

    Natalie – love the mustard and garlic tip! Now I can't wait to get my hands on another roast. LOL

    Oy – reusable glass straws? That sounds right up my alley! off to go google them… ๐Ÿ™‚

    Renae – thanks. don't know how often I can do this (the post took days to write!) but I'm glad you enjoyed it.

  9. Renae Avatar

    I love that you posted this and I hope that you keep it up! (I have your book also and love it:))

  10. Natalie_S Avatar

    For sure, what we want to do and what we actually do (Papa John's pizza vs. homemade soup with fresh veg anyone?) are often quite different ๐Ÿ™‚ That all looks pretty darn good to me though!

    Two comments: First, have you heard of reusable glass straws? I felt like a bourgeois eco-hippy when I first bought some, but they're really nice when you're drinking smoothies a lot. Rinse them, pop them in the dishwasher, and use them again next morning. They're remarkably sturdy too.

    Secondly, I just wanted to share my own take on pot roast. It's mostly the same, but instead of doing the veg first I'll sear off the meat and cook it for an hour or two in a mix of beef stock, T brown mustard, T minced garlic, red wine, and herbs. Then I'll cook the veg in the leftover oil (and necessary dark yummy bits) and add them to the roast about an hour out. I prefer cooking the veg this way because in the past my carrots have gone to mush before the meat finishes. At one hour the carrots still have a little firmness to them. But either way, try a little mustard in the cooking liquid sometime. I really like it.

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