Stay Connected

Monday, February 12, 2024

Menu Plan for Valentine's Week 2024

blackberry crisp, bubbling hot out of the oven

As I said about last week's menu plan, "if all goes according to plans." We all know that weeks where things do go to plan are rare. Mine are no exception. So, here's the plan from last week in brief, and where things changed:

Monday- bean burgers, rice or instant mashed potatoes, steamed carrots, sliced tomato, mixed fruit crisp

Tuesday- beef stew, banana muffins, cabbage slaw

Wednesday-leftovers from Monday

Thursday- plan: Shepherd's Pie. This is where I discovered we were accumulating too many leftovers. So the plan shifted at this point. Reality: I reworked the leftovers so we had bean burgers, skillet baked beans, instant grits, cabbage/sprout slaw, tomato and avocado slices.

Friday- plan: pepperoni pizza, spiced fig applesauce, Reality: Shepherd's Pie, using leftover grits mixed with leftover mashed potatoes as topping, with cheese on top of that, plus chocolate-covered raisin clusters.

This coming week, here's our menu (again if all goes according to plan):

Monday (one daughter's night)

Green vegetable frittata, using frozen garden greens and onions in the egg dish

Brown rice

Apple wedges

Blackberry crisp


Roasted whole chicken

Mashed potatoes and gravy

Steamed carrots, make double

Leftover blackberry crisp

Wednesday (other daughter's night, but the two of them have been working together on parts of this dinner)

Homemade stuffed-crust pepperoni pizza (you use string cheese to stuff the crust)

Sautéed green beans

Tossed salad

Valentine’s cake (already baked and in the freezer)


Leftover chicken/gravy over slices of bread 

Leftover carrots

Creamed spinach


Chicken, noodles and gravy

Steamed broccoli

Weekend dinners: one night chicken noodle soup and slaw. Another of cooked pinto beans done Mexi-style, with rice, tomatoes, avocado, cheese, and apple wedges.

Wednesday brunch (Valentine's Day)

waffles, raspberry silken tofu, ham, sausage, strawberries, scones, apple slices, and chocolate in some form

The rest of the week's breakfasts will include homemade bread, either steel cut oats or cream of wheat, homemade muffins, eggs, peanut butter, milk, and fruit.

Lunches will include homemade tomato soup, smoothies, cheese sandwiches, deviled eggs, peanut butter, apples, Cole slaw, bananas, and various leftovers.

We don't go out to eat on Valentine's Day simply because we don't feel we receive very good service when restaurants are so crowded as they are on some holidays (Mother's Day is another such holiday). Instead we cook at home, or occasionally pick up something from the deli at the grocery store. In addition, we like our own cooking. If what I wanted was to avoid washing dishes after the meal, I'd have us use paper plates and grill our dinner. As it is, while we're not thrilled to be hand-washing all of our dishes these days (broken dishwasher), it's not something we complain about (at least not much). And this year, I'm in luck. One of my daughters is really into cooking these days and wanted to prepare dinner on Valentine's Day. So I'll get my night off from cooking without eating out.

So what's on your menu for the week? Do you like to go out to eat on holidays like Valentine's Day, or do you prefer to eat at home?


  1. Hi, Lili. We never go out for lunch/dinner on any holiday. Like you, we feel it's not a very enjoyable experience. We actually generally enjoy eating at home most, because it's quieter, more comfortable, and more leisurely. I also like to cook, and find it festive, even if I had to make it myself.

    However, we do usually eat Chinese out or bring it home for our anniversary. Our one big restaurant event. We moved away from our favorite, very quiet, fabulous food Chinese restaurant, which we often visited for lunch, rather than dinner, and often had the place to ourselves. The nearest one now is less romantic, so we usually just do take-out. Sara

    1. Hi Sara,
      I agree on restaurant Chinese food. For one thing, it's hard to cook at home the variety that you can have in one meal in a restaurant, if you're the only one cooking. But also, they have the spices, ingredients and equipment, plus the know how to make foods that I simply don't. That's too bad the nearest Chinese place doesn't have the same vibe that you found in the one near your previous home. That's a great tip, though, to try the lunch hour instead of dinnertime, for a quieter meal experience.

  2. We would much rather eat at home for special occasions. We do, however, meet my dad for breakfast every other Saturday (every Saturday is too much for me) and we go to the same place where "everyone knows your name". We do this because time with an elderly parent may come to a screeching halt one of these days so when he asks us to go, we jump with a "yes".

    1. Amen, Alice, on humoring the elderly parents, when possible. We're doing the same. Sara

    2. Hi Alice,
      That is so lovely that you get to have breakfast with your father a couple of times per month. I totally understand not wanting to miss a chance to spend time with him, now. And I bet it makes his day to show off his daughter and son-in-law on the weeks you meet up with him.

  3. We don't go out to eat on holidays because places are just too crowded. My husband loves to go out to eat, but me, not as much. However, we have agreed that at least once a month we will go to a sit-down restaurant. And we usually go at lunchtime when it's less crowded and often cheaper.

    1. Hi Live and Learn,
      I think my husband would enjoy eating out more than I do. Once a month sounds like a good plan, especially during the lunch hours.

  4. Add me to the list of people who avoid eating out on holidays. Too crowded and the wait staff are rushed. Nope, not fun.

    Early in our marriage, we ate out a couple of times a week, but after we had kids, we discovered that it wasn't all that pleasurable to eat out with squirmy small children. Add to that the cost as well as the lack of control over ingredients, and it was a no-brainer to eat at home. As I'm looking ahead to being empty nesters, I like L&L's idea of eating out at least once a month--it sounds manageable, budget-wise, and maybe we can locate new-to-us favorites.

    1. Hi Kris,
      It's hard to take young kids out to restaurants. Even the most well-behaved child has inopportune moments right when you need them not to. You have a good plan for eating out a little as empty nesters. Finding new places together could add to the fun of restaurant dining with your hubby.


Thank you for joining the discussion today. Here at creative savv, we strive to maintain a respectful community centered around frugal living. Creative savv would like to continue to be a welcoming and safe place for discussion, and as such reserves the right to remove comments that are inappropriate for the conversation.


Be a voice that helps someone else on their frugal living journey

Are you interested in writing for creative savv?
What's your frugal story?

Do you have a favorite frugal recipe, special insight, DIY project, or tips that could make frugal living more do-able for someone else?

Creative savv is seeking new voices.


share this post