Menu Planning with Real, Whole Foods

I’ve mentioned before that the GNOWFGLINS website has provided significant help in our family’s move to (almost) all real, whole foods, prepared traditionally (we still enjoy the occasional batch of scrumptious homemade donuts). One of my favorite aspects of the GNOWFGLINS site is the weekly menu plans.

We routinely use GNOWFGLINS menu plans along with some of our family’s favorite meals for each of our menu plans. In addition I add sides of what came in our CSA shares for the week. (We pick up our shares on Saturday, so you’ll notice that there aren’t any veggies listed after Saturday.)

Our CSA shares for the week (plus an additional bushel of broccoli)

The GNOWFGLINS menu plans make cooking traditionally from scratch much easier because each recipe lists what you need to do when to prepare for that recipe.

For example, this Monday we’re having chicken and snow pea wraps. The GNOWFGLINS menu plan lays out our preparation for that meal:

  • on Sunday morning we will make the sour cream
  • on Sunday evening we will put the chicken in the crock pot, feed the sourdough starter for the wraps and refrigerate the sour cream
  • on Monday morning we will de-bone the chicken and make the crepes
  • just before dinner on Monday we’ll make the chicken mixture

Not every GNOWFGLINS recipe has this many steps, but many do and having all the steps listed allows this busy momma (and any kids who are helping/handling meal prep) to know what needs to be done when and saves lots of brain cells.

Here is what our menu plan looks like for the upcoming week.

Tuesday (23 for dinner):

  • Fettuccine Alfredo with sausage
  • Steamed kale
  • Green salad with radishes
  • Cauliflower roasted with garlic and olive oil

Wednesday: (23 for dinner):

  • Sourdough Pizzas (Bacon Spinach and Cheese Pizza with caramelized onions, additional pizzas with Pepperoni, Mushrooms, Sausage, Onions and Kale)
  • Homemade Sauerkraut – We add 1/4 cup whey (usually kefir whey) to this recipe.
  • Broccoli and Cauliflower sticks

Thursday:

  • Chicken Sausage bowls with Feta and Chard
  • Green Salad
  • Steamed Broccoli
  • Baked sweet potatoes
  • Bok Choy sauteed with garlic in olive oil

Friday:

  • Sourdough Hawaiian Pizza
  • Green Salad
  • Squash casserole (zucchini, summer squash, patty pan, ‘bomb’ (pretty sure my kids are the only ones who call it that) and any other squash varieties desired. Saute in butter or coconut oil with lots of fresh garlic, onions and mushrooms)
  • Steamed Kale

Saturday: Cook out with company!

Sunday:

  • ‘Normal’ food (TBD) for big potluck dinner at our home

Monday:

  • Chicken and Snow Pea wraps

Tuesday:

  • Chicken Pesto Pasta

Wednesday:

  • Bleu cheese burgers with sourdough batter onion rings

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7 Responses to Menu Planning with Real, Whole Foods
  1. Nicole
    June 12, 2012 | 2:06 pm

    Omigoodness! That menu plan looks amazing!! Thank you for recommending the site, I’m off to check it out now!

    I have a question: When do you get most of your cooking done? For us, I usually do meal prep after I clean up from lunch (but that’s also my most tiring time of the day so I have been dreading cooking lately)

    [Reply]

    Kimberly @ Raising Olives Reply:

    We do dinner meal prep in the morning, before diner and after dinner because of all the steps necessary to prepare the food for the table. However, I get a lot of help from the children.

    When I was the only one preparing all of the meals I cooked more simply and generally prepared dinner right after breakfast was over. I loved my crock pot in those days!

    [Reply]

  2. @GodGirlGail
    June 12, 2012 | 5:50 pm

    I don’t even cook but am interesting in trying several of these menus. What time is dinner? ;o)

    [Reply]

  3. Kirsten
    June 13, 2012 | 12:30 pm

    Wow…your CSA share is so bountiful! I recently joined GNOWFGLINS and have really been blessed by the quality and quantity of information. I was curious if your family has experienced any noticeable improvements in overall health since you’ve started eating mostly traditionally prepared whole foods?

    [Reply]

    Kimberly @ Raising Olives Reply:

    That’s a great question and one I don’t have much of an answer to.

    First, we were eating a lot of whole foods to begin with.

    Second, Mark and all of the children have no health problems other than an occasional virus. In the last two years I’ve struggled with low thyroid and tiredness, however, shortly after making the switch I found out I was pregnant, so it’s impossible to judge if that is improved.

    We’ve only passed around one virus since the switch (and not all of us got it), but it’s also not unusual for us to go several/many months without getting sick.

    So, I have to say we haven’t noticed a difference. I think it will be interesting to see how I feel after this pregnancy.

    [Reply]

  4. Autumn
    November 7, 2012 | 2:32 pm

    Kim,

    I read in one comment that when the kids were younger, you didn’t cook such complicated meals and used your crock pot often. By April, we will have 3 littles (3yo, 2 yo, newborn) and I am wrestling with whether or not I should try gnowfglins right now…we garden and can most of the food we eat, raise our own beef/pork, and most of the time have a milk cow, so we eat pretty “whole” as it is, but I thought gnowfglins would help me immensely with the meal planning part (I don’t think we eat as well as we could given our resources). We are so thankful for what the Lord has provided and want to make sure that we are being the best stewards we can be. Any thoughts? I don’t want to jump into to something that I will waste because of time and sweet little ones under foot :) Thanks!!

    [Reply]

    Kimberly @ Raising Olives Reply:

    Hi Autumn,

    GNOWFGLINS offers a sample menu plan that you could try for free and see what will work for you.

    As for me, when my kids were all little, I could not have kept up with the GNOWFGLINS menu plans. (But cooking and kitchen management have always been one of my weakest areas, so that may not be true for you.)

    That said, the classes are excellent if you want to get into making your own cheese, begin lacto-fermenting or move to sourdough. You could also try a one month membership to see if it would work for your family.

    Many blessings as you get busier. :)

    [Reply]

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