A slow cooking meal plan that will take the stress out of the after-work hour, and provide leftovers to keep you going for a few extra days!
Do you say crockpot or slow cooker? That age-old debate will not be solved here! What WILL be solved by this post is the perpetual dinner time struggle, especially on busy weeknights. There is nothing nicer than spending just a few minutes with ingredient preparation the morning of or even the night before, and then having a hearty dinner ready and waiting for you at the end of a long day! Isn’t it so nice to come into the house and smell dinner cooking? This week, I hope you enjoy your break from the frantic dinner time rush and find some inspiration in these slow cooker (crockpot?) menu offerings.
THIS WEEK’S SLOW COOKING MEAL PLAN INCLUDES:
- A variety of meals to put together at the beginning of the day. Then at dinnertime, you don’t have much to do except set the table and serve it up!
- Most of these meals are large enough to give you leftovers for lunch the next day.
- A yummy dessert for each day, some of which can double as lunch kit treats for kids at school!
MAKE MEAL PLANNING A SUCCESS
Of course, there are a few things you need to remember to make this kind of thing work for you and your schedule. Sometimes I hear people say that meal planning doesn’t work for their lifestyle, and usually, it’s because they don’t do at least one of the following:
- Make sure you have all the groceries! It is crucial to go through the plan the weekend before, to make sure you have all the ingredients and are ready to go when the work week starts and life gets crazy. I have tried to make sure ingredients are simple and on-hand in most pantries, but there’s always going to be a few things missing!
- Review and change the order you prepare the suggested recipes to suit your needs. For days you know you will be running errands or taking kids to activities, plan the meals with the lowest prep and shortest cook times. Save the slightly more involved recipes for evenings when you can breathe.
- Plan ahead. Look at the recipe for the next day the night before, and see if there’s anything you can do to get ready. Even chopping vegetables the day before will make you feel in control and give you that precious extra few minutes to get out the door on time.
- Take meal planning seriously! If you know what’s in your pantry and what your plans are for feeding your family at least a few days in a row, you will find that dinner will become far less stressful. I’m including the link for my FREE printable meal planning toolkit to help you really get organized and set up for success.
Now, let’s get planning! I’m so excited to present this week’s meal plan full of slow cooking recipes. These meals are sure to get you and your family through the week well-fed and stress-free.
This menu offering is fun for kids and adults alike! Slow Cooker Sloppy Joes served over soft buns (you can make homemade buns if you feel like it!) with tasty, make-ahead Broccoli Salad and rich, peanut buttery Chewy Peanut Butter Blondies make for an easy and delicious weekday meal.
Main Dish: Slow Cooker / Crockpot Sloppy Joes
Salad: Broccoli Mandarin Salad
Dessert: Chewy Peanut Butter Blondies
There’s nothing cozier than a good slow cooker soup! Try this Slow Cooker Cheddar and Ale Chicken Chowder paired with classic Caesar Salad and Jalapeno Cheddar Quick Bread (can anyone tell I love cheese?), and finish with delicious chocolatey Puffed Wheat Squares for dessert.
Main Dish: Slow Cooker Cheddar & Ale Chicken Chowder
Bread: Jalapeno Cheddar Quick Bread
Dessert: Puffed Wheat Squares
No slow cooking round-up would be complete without a great pulled pork recipe! Serve this tender and flavourful pork as a sandwich with homemade coleslaw, and this Easy Lemon Loaf as a tasty after-dinner treat.
Main Dish: Slow Cooker Pulled Pork
Salad: Classic Creamy Coleslaw
Dessert: Easy Lemon Loaf
Roast beef cooked in the slow cooker comes out so tender and moist! And the gravy…oh, the gravy. Try complementing this Slow Cooker Roast Beef and Gravy recipe with Champ Mashed Potatoes (why are they called Champ? No one knows) and simple, classic Chocolate Chip Cookies for dessert.
Main Dish: Slow Cooker Roast Beef and Gravy
Side Dish: Champ Mashed Potatoes
Dessert: Chocolate Chip Cookies
This Crockpot Mango Chicken with Mango Salsa is a delicious weeknight dinner idea! Serve this tender and sweet chicken with steamed rice or quinoa, and top with fresh mango salsa. Try a simple 3 Ingredient Strawberry Fluff Fruit Dip for dessert as a subtle companion to this loud and busy chicken dish!
Main Dish: Crockpot Mango Chicken with Mango Salsa
Side Dish: Quinoa
There you go! A five-day slow cooking meal plan that will take the stress out of the after-work hour, as well as provide leftovers and lunch box goodies to keep you going for a few extra days! Let me know in the comments or tag me @aprettylife which one of these slow cooking meals was your favourite.
Have a delicious day!