Menu Plan: THM Week 5

I have to admit- I have not been 100% on plan. I had a week of vacation that was around 80% on plan. I kept breakfast on plan, snacks on plan (though I didn’t snack much), and most dinners on plan. I did eat at my favorite Mexican restaurant and that was so off plan you’d have thought I’d never heard of THM. I also drank way too many diet sodas the entire time (Diet Dr Pepper Cherry is a major weakness). I noticed, I think from the diet sodas, that I had swelling going on after a couple days- so much so that I couldn’t wear my wedding bands. O_O The week after vacation was basically an entire week of “wing it” meals that included one night of brown rice followed by two nights of Dreamfield’s because I was too lazy to prep and didn’t menu plan during vacation. (Note to self: next time, plan a few weeks in advance and shopping will be a breeze)

Those 2 weeks did cause a stall which I expected, but I am happy to say that I have still had an 8 pound loss for my first four weeks on THM! *HAPPY DANCE* I know it could have been more if I had stayed on plan the entire time, but that is the beauty of this lifestyle- grace to forgive yourself and three-hour resets! Plus that is an average of 2 pounds per week which isn’t bad considering all of the above. The way see it, at the rate of 2 pounds per week, I could potentially lose 40 more pounds by Christmas! Now is that motivation or what?

So week 5 is upon me and it’s time for the menu plan. Again, no specific days for this menu plan- only meals to choose from. I am including breakfast, lunch, and snack choices as well.

My Menu Plan: THM Week 5

Breakfast
S breakfast: Cheddar Herb Biscuit (p.197 THM Cookbook) with 2 whole eggs
S breakfast: Cheddar Herb Biscuit (w/o the cheddar) with egg and cheese to make a breakfast sandwich

Lunch
E lunch: Smoked turkey sandwich on sprouted Life bread with LC White Cheddar, brown mustard, lots of lettuce and baby spinach
E lunch: Rotisserie chicken salad (made with 1 tsp mayo) on sprouted Life bread, green bell pepper, red onion, lots of lettuce and baby spinach

Dinner
S dinner: Grilled Greek Chicken with Caulirice and Green Beans
S dinner: Chicken Alfredo Spaghetti Squash
S dinner: Hamburger, Sausage, Broccoli Alfredo
S dinner: Taco Casserole with Sliced Avacado
S dinner: Lasagna in a Bowl with Ceasar side salad
*Note- I am only planning 5 dinner meals because we usually eat out one night per week and have a weekend ‘wing it’ or back yard grill day. For eating out and wing it day, we opt for bunless burgers, on plan salads, or anything that is on plan and tickles our fancy 😉

Snacks
E snack: Salted Caramel 000 with 1 sliced apple
E snack: Banana Cream 000 with 1 sliced banana
FP snack: Chocolate Cuffin
FP snack:- Cinnamon Spice Cuffin
FP snack: Vanilla 000

With this menu, my day will look like this:
Breakfast- S Meal
Mid morning snack- E Snack
Lunch- E meal
Mid afternoon snack- FP Snack
Dinner- S Meal

I prefer the S meals for dinner because I have found that they tend to keep me satisfied without the need of an after dinner snack. I don’t like eating past 8 PM so it works for my whole family. E lunches have worked for me as I have less tendency to want an afternoon nap 😉 Also, with my breakfast usually happening around 7:30-8 AM, an E snack at around 10:30-11 AM and then E lunch at around 12-1 PM fits within my work schedule without mixing fuels. Since I don’t have a set break/lunch schedule and fit it in based on what I am doing, this works really well for keeping me on plan and preventing accidental crossovers.

That’s it for week 5. Time to make that shopping list now. Happy THMing! <3

Menu Plan: THM Week 1

Menu planning is not my strong suit. In fact, I seem to have a hard time actually planning and sticking to it week after week. I’ll start off strong, then fall off for several weeks. One thing that will help me with menu planning is time management- yet another area where I fall short. I’m definitely a work in progress. Ha ha

So menu planning and time management (so I can plan)- my goals for the next 6 months.

I am not planning for specific days, I’m planning the number of meals needed for a full week and will decide what meal for each day as we go. A little spontaneity makes me happy! I’m only planning dinner meals because the left-overs (and there are always left-overs) will serve as lunch for the following day for both hubby and myself. Saving time and money- a double win! Also, I am not including breakfast or snacks because those will basically be the same every day (eggs, protein packs, meat/cheese snacks, etc).

My Menu Plan: THM Week 1
Dinner 1: S- Bacon Chicken Caesar Casserole
Dinner 2: E- Chicken & Brown Rice Soup
Dinner 3: S- Sour Cream Beef Enchiladas
Dinner 4: E- Spanish Chicken & Rice
Dinner 5: S- Chicken Philly Cheese Steak Bowl
Dinner 6: E- Beef Stroganoff
Dinner 7: S- White Lasagna

Week one at my fingertips! Now it’s time to go shopping.

Ciao!

Hands Down, the BEST Casserole!

Being southern born and bred means having a deep-rooted love of all things casserole. It’s a southern tradition whether for a family gathering at Thanksgiving or the church potluck on Easter Sunday. And let’s face it, it’s comfort food at it’s finest! I love a good casserole not only because it’s typically easier, but because sitting down to a nice warm casserole with the familiar fragrance of all my favorite foods reminds me of childhood visits with my grandparents when life was simpler and carefree. It’s like a little piece of home no matter what’s in the dish!

This love of casseroles has carried right into my new way of low-carb living where it’s taken up permanent residence even if it means spending countless hours scouring through every recipe Pinterest has to offer. This casserole, however, didn’t come from Pinterest. I actually didn’t find it at all. It was sent to me by a friend who is also living the low-carb life (she is actually the one who turned me onto this way of life). She guaranteed we would LOVE it so much we’d want it twice a week, and she wasn’t wrong! It’s not only easy, it’s absolutely delicious! The original recipe can be found at Just a Pinch or you can use my slightly edited version below.

Meaty Broccoli Casserole

1 lb ground beef
1 lb mild pork sausage
1 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp minced onion
1 tsp minced garlic
1 bag (16 oz) broccoli florets, fresh or frozen
1(8 oz) block cream cheese
1/2 cup heavy cream
1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese
4 oz mozzarella cheese, shredded (not prepackaged)
salt and pepper to tasteBrown beef and pork together. Drain excess fat. Steam broccoli until tender. Whisk together softened cream cheese, oregano, onion, garlic, heavy cream and parmesan cheese until smooth. Add meat, broccoli, and stir until well mixed. Transfer to a casserole dish, top with mozzarella. Bake at 350ºF for 30-40 minutes or until bubbly all the way through.

One variation we love is to substitute chicken in the place of the beef and sausage. I use my Garlic Butter Chicken for a quick fix of left-overs! I don’t do real meal prep so when I have time on Sundays, I cook up all the chicken at once and store it in an air-tight container in the fridge for quick making of weekday lunch and dinner meals. It’s also nice to make up a jar of the sauce from this recipe to have on hand for a quick fix. (This busy working mom doesn’t have much time for the kitchen!) Grilled chicken works well also! Really this casserole is so versatile, you can do just about anything- even no meat at all! Can you say yummmmmmmy!

Nutritional info based on the recipe above, per serving: 424 calories, 34g fat, 5g carbs, 23g protein