Early Autumn Menus

The temperatures are dropping here, and the trees are beginning to offer beautiful and rich colors…and, not directly related to the natural season, but a welcome harbinger of autumn for us…football season is here!
I thought this weekend would be the perfect time to transform my menus, which I consider and set in place seasonally. I must confess that I’m so tired of cooking by the end of the summer that I relish the cooler temperatures and the richer, deeper flavors that seem to come with autumnal cooking – rich, hearty stews, chilis, soups, steak and rice and gravy, homemade deep dish pan pizzas. There’s just something so satisfying about a rich, warm, hearty meal on a cool evening! I thought it might be fun to post my early autumn menu and share it with you. I so enjoy tending the home during the autumnal months – all the stocking and cooking and preparing and tucking away! Tending to a menu is part of that homemaking, so I thought I’d share it!

A couple of you have asked how I work on my menus – I do so on a seasonal basis. What I’m posting today is my early autumn menu plan, and sometime in November I may change it up a bit with a late autumn plan that takes me into early wintertide and so on. I enjoy cooking with the changing seasons because we enjoy eating seasonally – much to my husband’s chagrin, there is no chili in the summer – I simply cannot do it! I list several meal choices on my seasonal plan, and then weekly, I choose the meals from that plan that I will prepare for the week. I always, always keep a few panic meals in mind as I build a seasonal plan – something that everyone seems to like and something that can be prepared with the staples I keep stocked in my pantry. What I don’t list on my seasonal menus are breakfast and lunch choices. Maybe I should include those on the big plan??? I do list them on my weekly menu plan, but not on the seasonal one.

Here’s my Seasonal Menu…
And my early autumn menu looks like this:
Puffed Pancakes
Oatmeal Bake
Homemade bread/Skillet Toast and Jam
Homemade bread/Skillet Toast and Cheese
Breakfast Casserole
Pita Pockets
Pita Pizzas (homemade)
Tortilla Roll Ups
Macaroni and Cheese with Broccoli
Sandwiches – PB & J or otherwise
Pasta Salad
Main Meal
Chicago Style Pan Pizza
Beef Stroganoff Casserole (used to be a sandwich – now I make it in a casserole dish with pizza dough on the bottom! YUM – SUPER EASY)
Beef Stew and Mixed Veggies over rice
Roasted Chicken (make chicken stock after roasting)
White Bean and Chicken soup (very rich and sooooo hearty on a cold evening!)
Caesar Club Sandwich (as long as I can get arugula I’m making this chicken sandwich!!!!)
Spinach and Cheese stuffed shells
Penne with 5 cheeses
Mom’s vegetable soup
Homemade Cream of Tomato Soup with
French Onion Soup (confession…I haven’t made this yet! But I want to! It’s a recipe from Cook’s Illustrated)
Panic Meals
Taco Salad
Meatloaf, Roasted Potatoes, Green Beans
Roasted veggies (butternut squash, carrots, potatoes, onions, leeks, acorn squash…so many yummy veggies to roast now!)
Parmesan roasted cauliflower
Baked sweet potato fries
Zesty Broccoli Casserole
Hash Brown Casserole (which I have a recipe for but also haven’t tried yet)
Teatime Treats
Spiced Tea
Cinnamon and Spice Tea
Apple slices
Apple Crisp
Oatmeal Cookies
Edited to add links to two follow-up posts with recipes!
Hope you enjoyed the peek at my menus! What’s on your menu during these early days of Autumn?
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  1. I've just started menu's, and they do make life a lot easier for the rest of the family when I have a meeting at night. I'd do the seasonal plan for all meals – if you are not there, the rest of the family will still eat!

  2. O.K….so the puffed pancakes intrigued me. I googled the image, found the recipe and all I can say is YIPEE! These look awesome! And so do the rest of of your menu items. Looks like I need to expand my culinary repertoire. Thanks for sharing!

  3. I love your menu…mine is so boring! Ugh! So can I be so greedy as to ask for a couple of recipes, or sites/books that you found them on? The Oatmeal Bake, Breakfast Casserole, Beef Stroganoff Casserole and Penne w/ 5 Cheeses are calling my name!!!


  4. This is wonderful! I'm trying to sit and figure out various meals I want to make…get on a schedule but couldn't think of where to start! I need to set aside some time to work on this. Thank you for sharing your Autumn menu with us! 🙂

  5. Wonderful menus! I always like seeing what others are baking/cooking. It inspires me! I posted my fall menus a few weeks ago … It is so helpful to do this, I think!

  6. OK – it's been on the cards for a while but now I'm definitely coming to live with you. No? Ah, go on…

    Thanks for the inspiration as ever. I do weekly menu plans, but I think making a selection of seasonal recipes would make this so much quicker and with much better results. Great ideas!

  7. Ooooh, I love your menu!! I've started doing a monthly menu recently, and it's so nice to see what others add to a fuller menu, too. Thanks for sharing!

  8. Ok…I need recipes now…really! I am drooling into this keyboard and trying to google the Beef Stroganoff Casserole…. do you have a set recipe for that one? I make homemade pizza dough all of the time and the kids now have a new request ;o)
    Thanks for the inspiration, Jennifer! I needed it!

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