Menu Plan Monday ~ August 11th

Hi all! I don’t know how many of you watch Jon & Kate Plus 8 but I was watching it the other day and she made the comment that if you have to use a recipe you aren’t a real cook. I had to laugh at that because as most of you know I use a recipe for almost every meal and in my case dinner would be pretty tasteless if I didn’t use a recipe. If you ask me I’d say that makes me a pretty smart cook, so there Miss Kate!

Have you ladies ever heard of Hungry Girl? I just bought her cookbook and it looks pretty good! It’s full of recipes and survival strategies for guilt-free eating in the real world. You can also find many of her recipes on her website as well as in the newsletter if you sign up for it. I’m not affiliated in any way, I just like a good low-fat recipe when I see it. In fact I’ll be trying one of these recipes this week on Saturday. I LOVE breakfast for dinner….yum yum!

Just a quick note to ask you to please remember to put in spaces when you write your name into Mr. Linky. No spaces causes me the columns to go all wonky. More details here, thanks!

Monday: Fajitas

Tuesday: Bruschetta Chicken served with new potatoes and broccoli

Wednesday: Southwest Lasagna Rolls (missed from last week)

Thursday: Leftover buffet

Friday: Greek Spaghetti (I’m on the fence on this one…that’s a lot of ingredients, what do you think?)

Saturday: Flap-tastic! (from Hungry Girl)

Sunday: If you can find it, you can eat it


MPM banners and guidelines can be found here.

Filed under: Menu Plan Monday


105 Responses to Menu Plan Monday ~ August 11th

  1. 1
    Mom24 says

    The greek spaghetti would not be a hit around here, so I’m not a good one to ask. Thanks for hosting. I’ll have to check out hungry girl. Thanks for the tip.

  2. 2
    Wild Squirrel says

    You usually can’t go wrong with TOH, but that IS a long list of ingredients for one recipe (Greek Spaghetti)! Do let us know about the opportunity cost if you decide to tackle it!

  3. 3
    Michelle says

    Hi Laura 🙂 thanks for hosting sounds like a yummy week..Kate is um interesting shall we say.

  4. 4
    Jill says

    That is a lot of ingredients but it sure sounds good. I have a few “special” meals that are a lot more work than the average ones, but I keep them around and make them every now and then because they are just so good. Try it once and decide if it is worth the trouble.

    The flap-tastic sure sounds yummy!


  5. 5
    mjpuzzlemom says

    Looks like a good week. Thanks for hosting!


  6. 6
    kiy says

    I’m with you on recipes. Seriously, it just makes life easier. I ‘can’ cook without recipes, but why eat the same things over and over and over? Using recipes allows you to try new, fun and exciting things. I vote yes for recipes!

    For the Greek Spag, it looks great. It does look like a lot of ingredients but if you get them all out before (I do this every time I make something) and line them up in order (or rather, in the order you will need them) and group them by steps, it won’t seem like so much. Also, you probably do this but just in case, I always put away the ingredient as I use it. Less clean up after it goes into the oven, skillet, crock pot, etc.

    Have a great week, Kiy

  7. 7
    PlanningQueen says

    It is a lot of ingredients and I am so busy at the moment that I couldn’t contemplate cooking it! Also if I cook something that takes a bit of preparation and then the kids don’t eat it, I always end up a bit frustrated 🙂 .

  8. 8
    Renee' says

    Your menu looks great! Thansk for hosting.

  9. 9
    Teresa says

    I’m with you on needing the recipe. I can ad lib later if I need to but I definitely don’t have the creativity to just “make” something out of the blue. Thank heavens for recipes!

  10. 10
    Kamaile says

    The bruschetta chicken sounds fabulous. The Greek spaghetti sounds interesting, but I would probably modify it myself. And it woould probably end up being a completely different dish than what the recipe intended.

  11. 11
    Heather says

    I didn’t see that episode, but it is my belief that even seasoned chefs have at least a basic recipe for most of what they cook. They may not follow it exactly, but it is there as a reminder for ingredients. Personally, I love looking at recipes for inspiration, but I almost always change something. Plus, I am not one to measure, just eyeball things.

    The Bruschetta Chicken looks delicious. Can’t wait to add it to one of my future menus.

  12. 12
    Kate says

    Thanks for hosting this – it is really a helpful way to get ideas for our weekly menu! 🙂

  13. 13
    Kathryn Wells says

    My 11 1/2-year-old daughter LOVES Jon and Kate Plus 8! Apparently, she saw an episode in which the family “went organic”. So, now, of course, she wants to eat only organic foods… because that’s what Jon and Kate (and the 8!) eat. :-Z

  14. 14
    Katy says

    Yum, everything sounds delicious!!! I have to go check out Hungry Girl now, too…

  15. 15
    [email protected] says

    Hi, I like the Hungry Girl Website but haven’t seen the book! I am so sorry I didn’t put spaces in; it’s my ‘signature’ everywhere (no spaces) and I just do it without thinking. Next time – I promise.

  16. 16
    Casey says

    Bruschetta Chicken sounds yummy.

    Have a great week!

  17. 17
    Jennifer, Snapshot says

    That Greek Spaghetti recipe does have a lot of ingredients, but it’s a perfect way to let your kids help. Your daughter can measure the mayo, your little guy can dump the sour cream, etc. In fact, while I’m chopping, Amanda likes gathering the ingredients, and since your kitchen is organized (unlike mine most of the time!) your kids will know right to go to get everything!

  18. 18
    Katrina says

    Oh dear, I suppose I’m not a real cook. I make grilled cheese without a recipe. And hot dogs. And chili. But pretty much everything else? Recipe.

  19. 19
    Sherry says

    Great meal plan! I love reading the Hungry Girl emails everyday. 😀 I haven’t gotten the book yet though.

  20. 21
    Clara says

    The Southwest Lasagna Rolls look really good! I’ll have to try them.

  21. 22
    Vanessa says

    First time participating!

  22. 23
    Sharon says

    Hi Laura,
    I became familiar w/ Hungry Girl when I started Weight Watchers. I love her site, and so far her recipes are great, too. 🙂 I hope you enjoy them!

    I’m finally back to MPM after not doing most of the summer. Thank you for continuing to be a wonderful host!

    Have a great week. 🙂

  23. 24
    jen says

    I made the Brushetta Chicken last week and yum yum….thanks for hosting this…I love it.

  24. 25
    Vanderbilt Wife says

    There are a lot of recipes I have memorized so I don’t use a recipe…but really, I’m still using one, aren’t I? Smart women use recipes! Sure, we all like to get creative every once in awhile but most recipes are tested by someone else, which saves us that “what if it’s gross” dilemma.

  25. 26
    LisaJanelle says

    I so enjoy your menu monday’s and get so inspired to cook in my kitchen!..Thanks!

  26. 27
    Traci says

    OH, I like the “if you can find it, you can eat”…..I’m going to add that to my menu soon…..this is so fun, thanks.

  27. 28
    Chel says

    I just put the Hungry Girl book on my BookMooch list!! I’ll have to sign up for the newsletter.

    And as for breakfast for dinner, that’s our Monday night regular meal. It’s quick and easy for a Monday night when everyone’s tired from the first day back at work and school, and everyone loves it. Mondays are BRINNER nights in our house. 🙂

  28. 29
    tracee says

    Not sure about the Greek Spaghetti but like others have said TOH is usually pretty good for delicious recipes. Can’t wait to find out what you think of it!

  29. 30
    Chele' says

    Don’t watch tv much (have even been accused of “abusing” my child for not having any sort of cable!) so no clue who Kate is. Even so, I think someone who makes such a statement is arrogant. Even the greatest cooks/chefs in the world use recipes. Sure, they can cook without a written recipe in front of them (great memories those folks have) but they DO use recipes. And I hate to tell her this, but every time she duplicates one of her own dishes, she’s using a recipe. Her own recipe, stored in her head. Silly woman…

    And thanks for pointing to Hungry Girl! New recipes to distract me!


  30. 31
    Colleen says

    Looking forward to reading through some more meal plans. I love Hungry Girl! Good luck with your meals this week!

  31. 32
    casey says

    going to check out Hungry Girl! I need to start participating in this. and Kate always says some pretty stupid things on that show, she seems like a bit of a dumbass, I still like the show though, keeps my kids quiet

  32. 33
    Stacy says

    I make Greek spaghetti and it is not as complicated (but it does have a lot of ingredients)and it is Weight Watcher friendly.
    2 green peppers, chopped
    1 cup onions, chopped
    1 4 oz. can mushrooms, drained
    1 8 oz. can water chestnuts, chopped
    2 15 oz. cans diced tomatoes
    1 4 oz. can sliced black olives
    2 T Cavender’s Greek seasoning
    12 oz spaghetti noodles (I use the whole wheat kind)
    2 lbs. boneless, skinless chicken breast (I do not use this much chicken)
    1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
    1 cup shredded colby cheese
    (I just use 2 cups mozzarella and not the colby)

    Boil the chicken and shred/chop. Cook the spaghetti in the noodle water. Reserve 1 cup of chicken/noodle water.

    Saute all vegetables and seasoning together.

    Add everything together and put in oblong pan (I use a 10 x 15) and top with cheese.

    Bake for 30 minutes on 350.

    I figured the points were ~6.5 points for a 1/12 serving. ENJOY!

    I always use a recipe, unless it is something that I definately know how to prepare.

  33. 34
    Stacy says

    I forgot to add that we top it off with some grated parmesan cheese. Sorry for the long post.

  34. 35
    AbFabGeek says

    Sometimes I cook without a recipe, sometimes I follow a recipe exactly and sometimes I use a recipe for inspiration! Am I a real cook? I guess I will have to ask Kate if I meet her.

  35. 36
    Kate says

    I’ve never seen that TV show, but the comment about using recipes sounds extremely arrogant. Every cook uses recipes, whether they’re written down or memorized. Even if a cook is trying something totally new, they might still use basic recipes for, say, a white sauce. To create something new, a cook would build off what she knows.

    Which Proverbs 14:1 Woman?

  36. 37
    Jen says

    The greek spaghetti sounds good to me…of course, I probably would not bother given that I have picky eaters here. I say, try it and let us know if it was worth the effort!

  37. 38
    Carolina Momma says

    I saw that episode too! I love the show but have to say that wasn’t one of Kate’s finest moments. Especially when she had the meltdown in the kitchen. I would love it if my husband was taking his time to make an elaborate dinner even if it meant sharing kitchen space with him.

  38. 39
    Steph says

    I think the spaghetti recipe looks delicious, but I’m with the first commenter on the taste of home site, I would likely add fat free feta and some sliced olives. Lots of ingredients, but it seems like the sauce with the veggies would freeze well, so if (when) I try it, I’ll likely double or triple the sauce, add the veggies to the sauce instead of the pasta and freeze some for future meals. I always use a recipe when trying something the first time (even though I may alter it like I said above) but once I make it I tend to cook from memory or intuition. I love Jon & Kate plus 8 but sometimes she does make some interesting comments 😉

  39. 40
    Yolanda says

    Every great cook I know uses recipes! They may alter and make it there own, but they definitely use them for inspiration and a good basis.

  40. 41
    Sonshine says

    Thanks for hosting! You have a yummy week planned!

    Oh and for the record, I am with you about using recipes and cooking! Very rarely do I cook or bake without using/following some kind of recipe!

    As for the greek spaghetti, it is alot of ingredients. However, I see it as someone using what they have on hand to make something from scratch rather than using all premade ingredients(cream of soup, etc.) to put the dish together. Yes I know there is a can of cream of chicken soup in the recipe but I see it as them using it as a base and adding to it rather than using just that. Does that make sense?!

    IF my family would eat it I would make the dish and just divide up the ingredients into steps like what another commenter said to do.

  41. 42
    Briana says

    SW lasagna sounds yummy!!! Thanks for hosting!!!

  42. 43
    Katy says

    The Chicken Bruschetta looks yummy!

  43. 44
    Review Lady says

    Thanks for hosting this event – it helped us make a plan for the week!

  44. 45
    Krista says

    No recipes! Seriously! Most of the time I wouldn’t even know where to start! We’d be eating Hamburgers, Hot Dogs, and Baked Chicken all the time. How boring! I may change up a recipe if I don’t have a certain ingredient, but I usually always start with some kind of recipe. To me it is just like starting with a good plan.

  45. 46
    Courtney says

    gotta love kate sometimes. funny thing is i have seen her look at recipes before. I love looking at recipes, I get new ideas and well at least i know the food wont come out tasty nasty if i try to estimate it all myself.

  46. 47
    Mandy says

    Thanks for doing this!

  47. 48
    kat says

    I almost always use recipes too, really its taken me a very long time to get comfortable making things without one.

  48. 49
    Laurie says

    I think the greek spaghetti sounds awesome but my family would not eat it!

    Cooking without a recipe is fine if you make the same old things week after week…but if you want some variety in your life, you need some recipes. Take that Kate….:P

  49. 50
    Kirstin says

    The greek spaghetti sounds good. I’d personally leave out the pimientos and green peppers and maybe even the celery. I might substitute carrots as those are more liked by my family. But give it a try, then you’ll know what to keep in and what to leave out.

  50. 51
    Cathy | GF says

    Thanks for hosting again!

    My blog is getting lots of hits thanks to getting the word out!

  51. 52
    Angie says

    I think hubby would say the same thing about recipes. He rarely uses one and tells me it’s too expensive to use them most of the time. I personally can’t cook without a recipe LOL

  52. 53
    Shelley says

    I love that you have a hungry girl recipe! I totally love that website and get regular emails from them with fabulous recipes and ideas.

  53. 54
    Amy says

    We’ve got a new focus on vegetarian recipes, for those who are interested.

  54. 55
    Lorrilou says

    Thanks for continuing to inspire me to plan my menus!

  55. 56
    Suz says

    Those lasagna rolls sound really good! I cook all the time without recipes, that’s the way my mom taught me. She’d often make something so delicious, we’d demand that she write it down so she could duplicate it, or else she’d forget. Some of my most delicious and creative meals are made when I am forced to scrounge the freezer and pantry!

    That said, I LOVE recipes! I spend far too much time finding new ones. I never feel chained to them though.

  56. 57
    brandy says

    Thanks for fixing my link! I didn’t mean to me you wonky!

  57. 58
    Amber says

    I don’t think the Greek spaghetti would go over at our house at all.
    If you use a recipe you’re not a real cook? That’s like saying if you have to use a map you’re not a real driver!!

  58. 59
    Courtney says

    I bet my boys would love to eat dinner at your house on Saturday night! lol

  59. 60
    Susanne says

    That greek spaghetti actually sounds wonderful from reading through the ingrediants. I think I’ll give it a try. Sometimes it’s not as complicated as it sounds. I have a recipe like that but once you do it once it’s a snap the next time.

  60. 61
    Jessica Snell says

    I’m sorry – I posted the right link, and the wrong title!

  61. 62
    Sherida says

    I totally agree about the recipe. I thought the same thing when she said that. When I try cooking without a recipe … well, let’s just say we end up at a restaurant that night.

  62. 63
    Vittoria says

    Wow! Who knew there were so many menus out there?! I’m just getting started, and we have an unconventional eating schedule, but I’ll try to get recipes up along with the menu soon.

  63. 64
    Debbie says

    I depend on recipes and I’m brilliant! Thanks for hosting.

  64. 65
    Jennifer says

    Thanks for hosting and inspiring me to participate. I feel great for having a plan! Jennifer

  65. 66
    Michele says

    This is such fin, thanks for a chance to participate!

  66. 67
    Angela says

    Thanks for hosting this every week. I am using a lot of recipes from other Menu Plan Monday plans this week. I am excited!

  67. 68
    Bobbi Jo says

    Love your blog! And all the wonderful infomation you share with us and inspire us daily. Keep up the great work.
    Hugs, Bobbi Jo

  68. 71
    Tamiel says

    I watch Jon & Kate sometimes, everytime I do my hubby shudders! He hates that show. In response to her comment about recipes I think it’s a talent to follow a recipe and have dinner turn out excellent! I do have to say everything I have seen her cook on the show looked pretty BORING. Hmmm maybe she should use recipes. Keep up the awesome ideas I love it!

  69. 72
    Cindy says

    Love your site! I posted my menu the first time, but I’ve been doing Menu Planning Monday for a few weeks…trying to gear up for a new school year (I teach) and starting this new habit. Thanks for the inspiration!

  70. 73
    Princess Powerless says

    I’m about to begin 4+ months of unemployment and I know being organized is key. I haven’t come up with a plan yet, but I will and I will post the mutha! 🙂 PP

  71. 74
    Martine says

    Wow, over 300 menu plans! That is alot of great dinners.

  72. 75
    Deborah Napoleon says

    That Hungry Girl has some good stuff, but she seems a bit crazy with the Fiber One.

  73. 76
    Tamra Hansen says

    I am all for using a recipe!! I am OK to play around with the spices but so uncreative with the main ingredients.

  74. 77
    Shawnee H says

    Glad I could do my part to push you past 300! I got out of the menu habit but it’s time to get back INTO the habit!

    PS – Everyone who likes to sew, cook or wear aprons is invited to join my apron swap at — sign ups end Friday 8/15 and the theme is your partner’s fantasy vacation, What I Wish I Did Over Summer Vacation!

  75. 78
    JJ - Lady Di says

    Congrats on the over 300! Sorry I’m late, we were in NYC and ended up having to stay a day later because our return flight got canceled due to weather! Even though the weather there was fine, apparently the weather back home had hail and tornado watches. That put me off on my menu planning. I’m cheating and using Leanne Ely’s “Saving Dinner the Low Carb Way”. But that’s ok. It’s a tasty way to do it.

    Anyway, I’m glad your own trip’s weather turned out nice. I know that a lot of people on the WW boards love the Bruschetta Chicken. And the Greek Spaghetti looks good, but it does look like a lot of ingredients. As to the recipe comment. I must admit, I use a recipe as a shopping list. Hubby is always commenting, “This is good, how did you change it from the original?” 😉

  76. 79
    Melissa says

    I posted my menu for next week in the Mr. Linky – or at least I think that I did. Hope I did it correctly. Congratulations on all the participants. You’ll probably be over the 300 now that you posted that more people were probably inspired to post, I know I was.

  77. 80
    Melissa says

    I didn’t understand the system when I posted my menu. So I posted next weeks on this weeks anyway I tried to change it but inadvertently posted twice on this week. OOPS.

  78. 81
    alicia says

    Hey this is my first post

    I love to use my crockpots all year too.

    Due to some recent medical issues we are now eating a lowfat/low sodium/ sometimes glutten free, organic diet

    I will try to post my menu here early on Monday

  79. 82
    Tiana says

    I can see where Kate is coming from. Maybe she meant a recipe for EVERY meal?

    I never measure anything while cooking. baking is another thing, you have to be exact in baking. Cooking you go by taste. I wonder if people really only add 1/4 tsp of salt or whatever, come on. It’s a few shakes of the salt shaker.

    I’ve learned to just throw things together to make a salad dressing or whatever. I’ve learned to be creative. A recipe could be just a list of ingredients, no one really goes by how much of that.

  80. 83
    The Happy Housewife says

    That layer salad looks great! I might need to add that to my menu rotation!

  81. 84
    Kim says

    How have I not found your website before???

    I’m the most disorganized character ever. I spend WAY too many hours working and everything at home is always … in need of help.

    I plan to spend a great deal of time getting the necessary tips PLUS recruiting my family to assist in our huge task ahead.




Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.