Meal Planning

Meal planning sounds scary but with a little time and a lot of grace it can become one of the best things you can do for your family.  Meal planning promotes healthier eating, is budget friendly and eliminates the “What’s for dinner?” stress.  The video below is how we got started and our recommendations for you as you start on your meal planning journey.

Beef Barley Soup

Around our house this dinner is affectionately called Barf Beetley Soup thanks to a very confused two year-old nearly four years ago.  I promise you as gross as the nickname sounds the soup truly is a delicious family favorite.  Bonus to the deliciousness is the fact that the crock pot does all the work for you!


Beef Barley Soup

  1. Into a crock pot place 1 1/2 pounds of beef roast pieces (also known as stew meat), 1 teaspoon salt, 2 teaspoons pepper, 2 teaspoons garlic powder, 1 teaspoon thyme, 1 carton (30 oz) beef stock, 1 carton (30 oz) chicken stock, 6 stalks for chopped celery, 6 chopped carrots, 1/2 onion diced, 1/2 cup dried parsley, 1 cup barley and 1 bay leaf.
  2. Cook on low for 7-8 hours.

Beef Barley Soup. Photo Credit to the 1 year-old Freeform Foodie.

“Baked Potato” Cauliflower Soup

Apparently ’tis the season for cauliflower around our house.  Please don’t let this white underutilized vegetable scare you away from this recipe.  We have served this soup with rave reviews to picky eaters who wouldn’t touch a cauliflower with a 10 foot pole.

Baked Potato” Soup

  1. Thinly slice two large potatoes.
  2. Add potatoes to a pot with 2 cups of milk and 1 teaspoon of salt.
  3. Bring to a boil.
  4. While waiting for the pot to boil, chop 1/2 head of cauliflower into bite sized pieces and slice one bunch of green onions – separating the whites and the greens.
  5. Once boiling, add cauliflower and onion whites to the pot.
  6. Boil approximately 12 minutes until cauliflower and potatoes are soft.
  7. Add additional 1 cup of milk or add 1 cup heavy cream if you prefer a richer soup.
  8. Move the soup off of the heat.
  9. Use an immersion blender to puree the soup.
  10. Serve with onion greens as a garnish.*

*Additional toppings we sometimes use include shredded cheese, sour cream and the very occasional crumbled bacon.

Baked Potato Soup. Photo credit to the one year-old Freeform Foodie.