Slow Cooker Balsamic Shredded Beef

Slow Cooker Balsamic Shredded Beef might be the easiest and very best slow cooker meal I've ever made for my family.

Slow Cooker Shredded Balsamic Beef might be the easiest and very best slow cooker meal I’ve ever made for my family.

Everyone, from ages 4 to 42, devoured this tender, flavorful meat dish. I served it with mashed potatoes (and of course veggies and fruit), which is perfect for all that extra sauce in the crock. Then, the next night we had this same Slow Cooker Shredded Balsamic Beef on mini wheat rolls as “french dip” sandwiches. Again, a huge win!

All I can say is MAKE THIS RECIPE!

“Real Food Meets Reality” Menu Plan: March 22-28

"Real Food Meets Reality" Menu Plan

A major key to eating healthier and saving money is meal planning. When I plan my meals, I feel less stress throughout the week, spend less time and money at the grocery store, and usually serve my family a fairly well-rounded diet throughout the week.My hope is that my mostly “real food” meal plans each Saturday will help you do the same!

P.S. Please don’t feel overwhelmed when you look at my plan. I certainly do NOT get to all of my plans each week. I do what I can with the time I have and then we eat a lot of leftovers.

Dinner

Sunday:

Pork Tenderloin with Seasoned Rub* (I might grill it, if the weather is nice)
Oven Fries
steamed green beans
cut up strawberries

*Make two and save extras for Tuesday night.

Monday: Meatless

whole grain pasta with marinara sauce and grated Parmesan
steamed broccoli (I cook it in a colander right over the pasta pot while it’s cooking)
sliced pears and apples

Tuesday: Leftovers

Pork Tenderloin Panini Sandwiches*
peas
grapes

*Directions for Pork Tenderloin Panini Sandwiches: Using leftovers from Friday night, add thin sliced pork, a cheese slice and a some barbeque sauce between two pieces of whole grain bread. Butter the outside of each piece. Grill in a pan over medium heat while pressing down on sandwich. Flip and press down again to flatten it, until golden brown on both sides. Serve with barbeque sauce.

Wednesday: Breakfast for Dinner

Easy Breakfast Casserole* (I’m going to add some chopped spinach and chopped fresh parsley)
Green Smoothie

*Double and freeze the second one before baking for a later freezer meal.

Thursday:

Taco Bar:  Taco seasoned cooked ground turkey*, black beans, shredded cheddar cheese, tomatoes, lettuce, avocado, salsa, sour cream or plain Greek yogurt, whole grain tortillas

*Double and freeze the extra batch of taco meat after it’s cooked and cooled for a later freezer meal.

Friday:

Grilled Asian Salmon
Asian Slaw
corn on the cob (here’s an easy no boil method)

Saturday:

leftovers or take out

Breakfast Ideas:

leftover Breakfast Casserole
Instant Oatmeal Packs
yogurt parfaits

Snacks:

Homemade Popcorn

Free Printable Menu Planner

Here’s an easy way to get started on saving money and eating healthier–download our free printable menu planner!

menu planner

What Should I Freeze My Meals In? (+ $200 MightyNest Giveaway!)

"What should I freeze my food in?" A collection of recommended, safe and durable freezer containers that you will use over and over again.

Is it possible to be a freezer cooking evangelist?

If so, I imagine Rachel and I would slide right into the role. We are constantly talking about how freezer cooking saves time and money, how to start a freezer club, giving freezing instructions on all of our recipes, sharing tips and tricks on how to freeze certain vegetables, cheese, cookies, etc.  Heck, we’ve even created our own freezer cooking quiz.

Without intentionally meaning to do so, we have carved ourselves out a little freezer cooking niche in the blogland and as a result get thousands of visitors each day in search of healthy freezer meal recipes. We love it!

As we try to educate readers about freezer cooking and share tips and tricks we’ve learned along the way, one of the most common questions we have run into is, “What should I freeze my meals in?”

Good question.

Here are the qualities I want in freezer containers:

  • Reusable: I don’t want to have to keep buying them over and over again (i.e. Ziplocks, Gladware).
  • Quality: I want something that will last.
  • Safe: Containers that are free from BPA, PVC and PHTHALATES.
  • Easy to Stack: My freezer isn’t huge so I need containers that can stack easily.
  • Can Cook AND Store: Less dishes, less mess.
  • Affordable: Duh.

To be honest, until now we’ve had a hard time finding a product that met all of these criteria. I personally used a lot of gallon Ziplock bags which isn’t ideal at all, because they can leach chemicals when hot food is put into them.. We both have also used disposable Gladware dishes from time to time but the lids tend to crack and they are still made of plastic.

So what is the best way to store freezer meals? Ask no more, my friends — we have an answer!

freezer container collectionI am so excited to share with you a company we are partnering with called MightyNest. Not only have they opened my freezer cooking world to a bounty of quality, safe storage items, but they are giving a set of them away to you! You can enter now or at the bottom of the post…

It’s worth noting that EVERYTHING at MightyNest is free from any known chemicals so you can shop for all things healthy and non toxic in one place. In addition to that, when you buy anything from MightyNest, 15% of your purchase will go to support your school of choice. Yes, seriously. Here is more about their school program if you’re interested on how it works.

Lets talk about some of these freezer containers, shall we? I thought it might be fun to give you ideas of what type of meals you could possibly make in each storage container.

Away we go!