October Recipes Needed!

Hi, everyone –

Here is your friendly reminder to please submit your recipe to the blog by tomorrow (Friday) evening.  Sara has an especially busy weekend and really needs all recipes submitted by Friday evening in order to get the master recipe list created before we meet for the swap on Monday.   Thanks in advance for your help with that!

We have 11 swappers this month,  so prep 11 and bring 10 to the swap,  unless you are gifting a meal to the friends of Emily who she told us about at the last swap, in which case you’d prep 12 and bring 11 to the swap.  Any meals gifted – whether one you’ve prepped this month or still have in your freezer from a prior month – would be greatly appreciated. Also be thinking of anyone you know who we might want to do meals for in the coming months….

That’s all for now!  See you next Monday at 8 pm at my house!




Pre-Swap Recipe Reminder

Hi there!

Here is your friendly reminder to please submit your recipe to the blog by this Friday evening so that Sara can compile our master PDF recipe document.  Thanks for your timeliness in getting those in!

This month there will be 9 swappers, so please plan to prep 9 and bring 8 to the swap with you.  We are gifting meals this month to Maria’s cousin and her family – Maria’s cousin is battling breast cancer and would be grateful for the gift of any meals we’d like to send.  If this is right for you this month, you’ll prep 10 and bring 9 with you to the swap.

A couple of other things to highlight – we talked at last month’s swap about trying to make some shifts away from carb-y sides (i.e. noodles and rice, in particular) to more vegetable-y sides.  This, of course, is when it’s reasonable – for example, it makes sense to send noodles with a Beef Stroganoff entrée!  So when there is option and it seems like a natural substitution, we’d like to move more toward veggies and away from carbs.

We also wanted to review the recommended serving amounts for meats.  In that there are several families in the swap who regularly feed 6 with each entrée, it’s important that portion sizes be adequate to feed 6.  As a rule of thumb, if the entrée is primarily just meat, for both chicken and pork, 3 pounds of meat should be included.  For beef, because the price is generally higher, aim for 2 pounds.  If the recipe includes other components that are costly, the amounts of meat will decrease.  When making burgers, please prepare 8.

We continue to use a general rule of thumb that each entrée should cost around $10 to prepare.  There will be some months that it might be a little more, depending on your category or the recipe you’ve selected, but know and trust that the other swap members will also have months where they will spend a bit more than the budgeted $10.  If your entrée is coming in at less than $10, consider either adding more protein, or supplementing with a side or two.

Fall is also a good time to put out a reminder that all entrée components that go in the freezer should be double-bagged in good quality freezer bags.  Using good quality freezer bags is important in maintaining food integrity and safety. For any entrée components that just need to be refrigerated, double bagging is not as important.  When using disposable aluminum pans, please also use a matching fitted top, or be sure to use several layers of aluminum foil so that the entrée stays well protected and free from punctures while in the freezer.  Numbering each of the components of the meal (not items in the Ziploc bags, but each Ziploc bag and any accompanying free-standing items) is also so helpful in ensuring that all parts of the meal can be located when it’s time to prepare it.

Thanks for sticking with this lengthy post, and for your work in planning and preparing such tasty meals!  Please let either Sara or me know if you have any particular questions… happy prepping to those of you (like me!) who have yet to do that, and we’ll see many of you next Monday at 8 pm at my house!


September Recipes + October & November Categories

September Recipes

Sara – Sticky Garlic Chicken
Polly – Chicken Pot Pie

Amber – Mexican Meatloaf
Chrystine – Mexican Stuffed Shells

Maria – Sausage and veggie sheet pan

Pan Ready
Heather S – Chicken miso lettuce wraps

Emily – Mexican Street Corn Pasta Salad

Your Choice
Natalie – Sweet Potato Burritos
Kelly – Mississippi Pot Roast

September Swap will be on September 10; Recipes will be due on September 7!

Gifting meals: If it is right for you, Maria’s cousin is undergoing treatment for breast cancer. Her family, including two kids, would  be blessed by receiving a meal.

October Categories
Heather S.
Heather L.


Karna – Italian Beef Sandwiches
Holly – Slow Cooker Mongolian Beef

Pan Ready

Your Choice
Lisa – Pulled Pork

Michelle – Sour Cream Coffee Cake and Fruit

November Categories
Chicken – Amber,
Pork – Heather, Emily
Beef – Sara, Polly
Pan Ready – Karna
Breakfast – Maria
Your Choice – Natalie

I Forgot!

I completely forgot to send out the reminder to submit your recipes to the blog!  I’m either exemplifying what summer is supposed to be, or packing lots into these fleeting summer days… or maybe a combo of both!  Either way, if you haven’t yet submitted your recipe to the blog, please do so ASAP on Saturday to give Sara time to pull the master recipe document together.  Thanks!

Plan to prep 11 entrees and bring 10 to the swap, keeping one at home for your family.  While the swap is nicely full at 11 for our August/October/December months, the September/November swap number is low (8, I think). We’d love to see that up around 10 swappers, so if you know of anyone who would be interested and a good fit, now is the perfect time to reach out and check with them. We’d also be willing to use subs during those months, so that’s an option too.  Thanks for giving some thought to this to help keep our numbers strong!

I look forward to seeing many of you this Monday at 8 pm at my house for our August swap.  Happy weekend!


New member for August

Hi everyone,

Want to let you know that we have a new member, Maria, who will be joining the swap this month. She will be preparing sheet pan fajitas (chicken)! If you are getting an early start on meal prep, want to let you know to plan accordingly. It looks like we will prepare 11 meals to swap! Yay!

August Recipes + September & October Categories

August Categories
Karna – Cilantro Lime Chicken
Lisa – Crockpot Chicken Marsala
Maria – Sheet pan fajitas

Chrystine – Pizza subs
Heather L – Hawaiian Pineapple Pork Chops

Heather S – Korean BBQ Strip Steak
Emily – Cranberry Walnut Burgers

Pan Ready
Sara – Chicken Tater Tot hotdish

Polly – Cheddar Bacon Quiche

Holly – Strawberry Avocado Spinach Salad with poppyseed dressing

Your Choice
Michelle – D’Amico Pasta Salad

Swap will be on August 13; Recipes will be due August 10

September Categories
Chicken – Sara, Polly
Pork – Maria
Beef – Amber – Mexican Meatloaf, Chrystine
Pan Ready – Heather S
Salad – Emily

October Categories
Chicken – Heather S., Emily
Pork – Sara, Polly, Heather L.
Beef – Karna, Holly, Maria
Pan Ready – Chrystine
Your Choice – Lisa
Breakfast – Michelle

Time for Recipes!

Hi, Everyone!

I hope you had a festive and relaxing 4th of July!  Just a quick reminder to please submit your recipe to the blog by Friday evening so that Sara has ample time over the weekend to create the master recipe document for the July recipes.  A big shout out to Sara, by the way, for her cheerful and capable help with preparing that each month – it is really appreciated!

We have 9 families swapping this month,  so please prep 9 and bring 8 to the swap with you.  Looking ahead to the fall, do you have friends who might be interested in being part of the meal swap?  If so, now would be a great time to mention it to them, as we’d like to have our numbers be around 10 swappers each month as we head back into the school year.  Thanks for your help with that!

Enjoy the upcoming weekend, and I’ll see many of you next Monday evening at 8 PM at my house!