Cuisine Themes

I've been married for almost 25 years (our anniversary is in March) and when I add up all the dinners I've prepared over that time, I can easily understand why I've gotten really burned out on meal planning and cooking over the past few years. Blah! Bored out of my mind! I know a lot of you feel me on this one. It's so hard to come up with something every single night. Plus, my son and I hang out at home all day so that means I have to think about lunches as well. He's great about getting his own breakfast, but we eat lunch together. We keep it simple, but you still have to plan for and prepare the meal.

I've been somewhat desperate for some fresh motivation in the meal planning/prep department so I got kind of excited when I saw a friend on Facebook post about how they were going to follow a different theme each night of the week for their meals. She talked about "Soup Sunday" and "Meatless Monday". I brought it up with the guys one night at dinner (it's just me, hubby, and our son these days) and I thought they would think I was crazy. They were all for the idea though (probably because it means I will be making food for them - lol!) and we proceeded to brainstorm our own themes. This is what we came up with:

  • Slow-cooker Sunday
  • Mix it Up Monday
  • Taco Tuesday
  • Worldwide Wednesday
  • Takeout Thursday
  • Fit Friday
  • Stir Fry Saturday

We actually spent a few days refining our list because we wanted the themes to be doable with our lifestyle. I do already use my crockpot (slow-cooker) most Sundays so that was easy. We are always quite busy on Thursday nights so takeout or eating out made sense there. I think the LEGO movie must be responsible for thousands of people eating tacos on Tuesdays now. LOL!

Fit Friday was our hardest theme to come up with. I usually don't feel like eating super healthy on the weekends so maybe that will help? I thought about Fast Friday but we worried it would just lead to fast food and we already have a night of takeout scheduled in. Stir Fry Saturday won't only be about stir-fry dishes like cashew chicken. We are using that term to refer to a lot of dishes that we serve where you mix a lot of ingredients together like pasta with vegetables as well.

We've been going strong with this new plan for about two weeks now and it's been pretty easy overall. It does help me to have to choose within a narrower field for each night. Instead of thinking "what on earth can I make for dinner?" I've been focusing on "what can I make with a taco theme?" It has led me to search for new recipes and try new approaches. I even rearranged some of my Pinterest boards to go with these themes. If you want to take a look at some of the recipes we've been enjoying, here are links:

cuisine themes.JPG

I'll keep adding more to these boards as we rotate through meals so be sure to follow them or just follow me on Pinterest. Also, be sure to let me know if you have any other great tips or thoughts for making meals more fun!