Stay Connected

Monday, March 4, 2024

Menu Plan for a Week With Appointments

Brussel sprouts leaves in the late winter
garden in my growing zone can be sliced
 thin and sautéed, then steamed as a side dish.

I have a couple of days this week with afternoon appointments. So I've had to think of meals I could make ahead or with less time. 

Tuesday afternoon I have a less-than-pleasant dental appointment. It's not the next "big" appointment, but I will likely feel wrung out by the time it's over. I'll still have to make dinner when I come home. Here's my plan. I made a soup today, Monday, that I can heat and serve along with garlic toast with minimal effort on Tuesday. 

Thursday, again I'll be out of the house for several hours in the afternoon and will need something quick to make. I have a tub of extra firm tofu in the fridge that I can work with. Tofu is great for quick meals, as it only needs heating through, no lengthy cooking. I'm thinking about how to prepare it. Rice takes a while to cook, so perhaps noodles, like a lo mein. I can add fresh and frozen vegetables at near the last minute. What would you fix using tofu as the base and if limited in preparation time?

Here's the meal plan for the week.

Monday (daughter's night)
Beef and vegetable stir fry over brown rice

Tuesday (my dental appt day)
Hummus soup
Garlic toast

Wednesday (other daughter's night)
Mashed potatoes
Canned green beans
Tomato and cucumber salad

Thursday (other busy afternoon)
Tofu-based meal, lo mein perhaps?

Pepperoni, olive, and green pepper pizza
Sautéed Brussel sprout greens, onion, and garlic
Spiced apple chunks

Weekend Dinners:
Vegetarian enchiladas with chunks of fresh tomatoes and avocados one night and a leftover meal the other

Other meals and snacks:
Later on the week I'll bake something for the family. Right now, we're working on a pumpkin snack cake that I baked yesterday afternoon. Hopefully that will last for snacking through most of tomorrow. They rest of the meals will be catch as catch can for everyone. I won't have time or energy to prepare stuff ahead for our household. Some weeks just have to be that way, I guess. But still I feel a little bit guilty not doing more for the bunch, simply because I have other stuff going on.


  1. I like to cut firm tofu in battons and pass them in a bowl of cornmeal,salt and pepper.Baked on a greased pan until golden and served with a side ( tomato,onion,cucumber salad?).
    I don't know how you feel about microwave cooking but a simple pilaf from grains such as rice, bulgur or barley takes less than 20 min depending on the brand's power. A stir fry too.

    1. Thank you for your suggestions. I really like the idea to "bread" tofu pieces in cornmeal and seasonings, then bake. That sounds yummy with a fresh salad.

  2. I dread dental visits too, especially when I have to insist on amalgam fillings for posterior teeth rather than resin composite fillings which dentists would rather do. The difference in price is five fold.
    Tofu is very versatile. We often eat it uncooked, just out of the carton topped with soy sauce and grated ginger or sliced green onions. We like it cubed in miso soup, mashed with ground pork in wonton, or broken in pieces and cooked with ground pork like mapo tofu. It soaks in the flavor of other ingredients, so we like it in one pot cooking with soy sauce/sugar and broth. It can be served in a salad, with can salmon, sweet onion and tomato.

    Wish you a very good week,

    1. Hi Laura,
      You know, part of my dread is trying to explain what I need. I also am very anxious about "unknowns". Unknown how long portions of a procedure will take, or how much longer overall, or if I will need to raise my hand to indicate I need more numbing, etc. All of that makes me very anxious and really dread these visits.

      I had to look up mayo tofu. That looks really, really delicious! Thank you for your suggestions.

  3. Good luck with your appointments. I don't cook with tofu, so no thoughts here on how to prepare it. I would probably go with something else I could prepare ahead or put in the crock pot.

    1. Hi Live and Learn,
      Thank you. This one is behind me now. The Lord got me through it, and that is something for which I am so grateful.

  4. I also don't cook with tofu. As for a side grain, do you have any couscous? I only use it occasionally, but I try to keep some on hand because I can cook it in less than 5 minutes in my microwave, so it's great for those days when you need a quick eating option.

    I'd like to gently say that while I understand your guilt, I think it's misplaced. Caring for yourself is part and parcel of caring for your family. None of us will get through life without having to, at least occasionally, be on the receiving rather than the giving end (I'm preaching to myself here, too) and it's okay to take shortcuts where you need to. Your family may be feeling grateful for the opportunity to return the love that you regulary show to them. And now I will step down from my pulpit and wish you well in this stressful week ahead. :)

    1. Hi Kris,
      I really should pick up some couscous. I'm sure WinCo has it in their bulk bins and it wouldn't be costly at all. Thank you for this suggestion.

      And also, thank you for your words of encouragement. My daughters heated the soup and made the garlic toast for me last night, so I just had to show up at the table. That helped me a lot.

  5. I really like tofu and especially a scrambled tofu - with nutritional yeast and some spices.

    1. Thank you for the suggestion, Ruthie. As it turns out, I actually have 2 tubs of tofu to use up. We wound up eating leftovers last Thursday and I found a second tub of tofu at the back of the fridge. Looks like I'll be trying a couple of ways to prepare it.


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