My No-Spend January Meal Plan: Freezer & Pantry Challenge

Cassandra Smet
by Cassandra Smet

I'm sitting down with you to share my January meal plan, including a pantry and freezer challenge. I meal plan for an entire month at a time for my family. I do once-a-month grocery shopping too, then I don't have to think about food for the rest of the month because everything's in my house.

In my last video, I talked about how to do a no-spend January challenge. So, I took a deep dive into my freezers and pantry and decided to make my meal plan based on everything I had.

January pantry and freezer challenge

January 1

I have my son's birthday party this month, so one day this month, we're going to have special birthday food for him. We're going to make baked tacos.

I take taco filling that I cook in our crock pot, add rice, corn, cheese, and a block of cream cheese, and then we put that mixture into either hard or soft taco shells, and we bake them in the oven. That's the first meal on our list, birthday food.

January 2

We're also going to make a chicken salad. We like adding hard-boiled eggs, cheese, a little lime juice, cayenne pepper, cajun seasoning, and lots of mayo, celery, and onions.

January 3

We're also going to have spaghetti and meatballs because I have a bag of meatballs in my freezer that I'm looking to get rid of.

January 4

We're going to make homemade pizzas. This is something we're going to do at least twice for dinners. Every Friday night, we'll do some homemade pizza, whether a deep dish, calzones, or Stromboli.


January 5

I'm going to make lasagna because I still have a prepped lasagna in the freezer from our pre-baby meal prepping.

January 6

I also have broccoli and cheddar soup that I prepped in the freezer, so we're going to do that. I figured with the broccoli and cheddar soup; I could make a loaf of crusty bread and then use it to make grilled cheeses to go with our cheddar broccoli soup sounds good.

January 7

I also have some pot pies left in the freezer from our postpartum meal prep, so we'll have those.

I wanted to make a couple of sheet pan dinners this month because they're super easy, and I had everything I needed. I have a ton of vegetables in my freezer from the garden this year, and I still have lots of potatoes.

January 8 through 10

We're going to have a kielbasa sheet pan dinner, a chicken sheet pan dinner, and some sort of fried steak like a Salisbury steak with some pan gravy, and then do some roasted veggies in the oven, like carrots and potatoes.

Pasta Alfredo

January 11 and 12

I have so much heavy cream left over from the holidays, so we're going to make an Alfredo. I have enough heavy cream to make Alfredo a couple of times this month.

January 13

We're going to have pizza burgers. I have a beautiful little burger press, so I figured we could make some pizza burgers. I've got lots of pepperonis, so that'll be delicious.

January 14 through 15

I have some roasts in the freezer, so we'll make a roast and have a couple of days' worth of leftovers. Of course, we will use the roast vegetables, potatoes, onions, carrots, and celery in the freezer from the garden in the summer.

January 16

While looking on my pantry shelf, I realized I'd had some enchilada sauces, so I figured, let's make some enchiladas and get that sauce off the shelf.

January 17

We'll have sloppy joes because I've got some sloppy joe mix.

Meat pasties

January 18

We're going to make pasties. The last time I made pasties, I wrapped them in pie crust and made little hand pies. For pasties, I take ground beef, add it to my Dutch oven with onions, garlic, carrots, and potatoes, and we stuff them and make little hand pies.

January 19

We're going to have some ground beef Phillies because I have lots of green peppers in the garden or from the garden in the freezer and lots of ground beef. Ground beef Phillies are great for when you want a Philly steak but don’t have steak on hand.

January 20

We'll have the Marry Me Chicken from Pinterest because we have so much heavy cream. I figured we could serve that over some pasta.

January 21

I think I'll make beef and broccoli. We got some steaks for Christmas from my father-in-law, and my husband likes to make a couple of steaks at a time. Whatever we have leftover, I'll make it into beef and broccoli and use our leftovers that way.

January 22 through 23

My husband does so much fishing, so we're stocked up on fish. I figured we could have a few fish fries with fresh fish that he's bringing home and homemade mac and cheese.

Spanish rice

January 24

I want to make some Spanish rice. I canned some chili base this summer for the first time, and I haven't used it yet. I figured Spanish rice or stuffed peppers would be an excellent way to do that.

January 25

I found a biscuit recipe that only uses self-rising flour and heavy cream. Mix the heavy cream and the self-rising flour, and bake it in the oven. We could have biscuits and gravy, like breakfast for dinner with fried eggs or something from the chickens.

January 26 and 27

I saw that we have some egg noodles left. I figured we could have chicken noodle soup this month. It is January, and hot soup is perfect.

January 28

We will have rigatoni bolognese. It's a one-pot meal, which I love right now with a newborn. Just having one pot to clean is so nice, and it creates so many leftovers.

January 29 through 31

The last three days of the month, we're just going to focus on leftovers. We'll have leftovers from Colt's birthday party that we'll eat for a few days.

January meal plan

That is my meal plan for January. This month, I am using my pantry and freezer stock to make things easy. Do you have a monthly meal plan? Share your method for meal planning in the comments.

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