Usually I make a weekly menu plan on Sunday evenings. I’ve noticed by planning out our family’s meals, not only am I better organized throughout the week, I also save money and get a variety of foods in our diets. The foods that end up in my menu plans come a variety of sources. Usually I’ll include 1-2 “proven” family favorites, 2-3 new recipes that we haven’t tried before and at least once a week I try to create my own spin on something whether it’s spicing up a turkey burger or seeing what else can be made in a muffin tin. I subscribe to several food blogs and find tons of inspiration from them. Sometimes its too much inspiration and I end up with too many of a certain ingredient and don’t know what to do with it!
This week I didn’t create a meal plan because both my husband and I had various travel plans. I had a conference on Tuesday which meant leaving my family Monday evening and not getting back until late on Tuesday. Because I’m a nice wife (and didn’t want my daughter to eat out for lunch & dinner the next day), I made them a meal I knew would last a couple of days so they could eat leftovers.
I wanted to do something a little different but easy so I went to one of my favorite resources, Allrecipes.com. I’ve been using this site for years. I have a 3-ring binder full of recipes that I began collecting when I first started cooking. I even found a baked ziti recipe from Allrecipes.com that I printed in 2003! I still make that recipe and it’s fallen into the family favorite category. There are several things I like about this site but one of my favorites is the ability to search recipes by ingredients. For this meal I had been challenged to use a Campbell’s product and my husband instantly suggested I use Campbell’s Cream of Mushroom soup. Interesting fact, my husband’s great-uncle owned a mushroom farm in Jackson, Ohio. That farm supplied the mushrooms to Campbell’s. In 1987 Campbell’s bought the farm from The Stockmeister’s and the rest is history. Small world, isn’t it?
I do most of my grocery shopping at Kroger. I try to buy as much organic produce and meat as possible and have found the selection is the best at Kroger. I’ve noticed Kroger brands have put more emphasis in organic products as they’ve expanded their selection and even started distributing coupons for their Simple Truth brand. I buy their organic chicken breasts on a weekly basis and because the cost of organic meat is so much higher, every coupon counts. You can see my full shopping experience at Kroger in my Google+ album.
After searching for recipes that used cream of mushroom soup, I decided on Chicken Spaghetti. Now my family has fallen in love with Baked Spaghetti so I knew I was taking a risk by making something different. This recipe is really easy to make and you can take shortcuts to make it even more time efficient. My husband and I enjoyed this but my daughter…not so much. She still prefers my baked spaghetti but she’s two, her palate is still developing.
Chicken Spaghetti courtesy of Allrecipes.com - I did change this up a little bit to reduce some fat!
- 2.5 cups cooked chicken breast cut in bite-sized pieces
- 8 oz uncooked whole wheat spaghetti
- 1 medium onion, choppped
- 1/2 cup green pepper, chopped
- 3 ribs celery, chopped
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 tbsp butter
- 2 cans Healthy Request Cream of Mushroom soup
- 4 oz can of mushroom pieces, drained
- 1/2 cup dry bread crumbs
- 2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
- 5 bacon strips, cooked & crumbled (optional – I didn’t use)
Let it stand for 5 minutes before serving and enjoy!
Because when you sit down to talk and listen to one another you’ll learn some fun things. You’ll learn that the neighbors have “blue pools” and that you two-year old “NEEDS” to go swimming in them. You might also learn that Babes (her name for her favorite baby) needs to go to the park and swing. And then you’ll realize you need to quit eating so your family will have leftovers for the next day!
This shop has been compensated as part of a social shopper insights study for Collective Bias. Regardless, all statements and that messy-haired little girl are all mine and yours may differ. #CBias