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Old 11-25-2009, 07:43 AM   #1
onajourney
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If you stay offsite and cook, what menu items do you make?

We are staying offsite to cut costs (and to avoid eating too much junk - tender tummys here) and I don't mind cooking at all. For those of you that stay in condos/townhouses, what do you cook? I want to go down with a menu/grocery list in hand.

I already have the standard spaghetti, tacos, pizza, but what else? We aren't picky eaters at all.
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Old 11-25-2009, 08:45 AM   #2
BuzznBelle'smom
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You might want to try the DVC boards--lots of people there cook and share ideas and recipes.

I tend to use more convenience type foods on vacation. I don't mind cooking, but it's my vacation, too, right? We do subs, chicken caeser salad, steaks on the grill, that sort of thing.

Another good choice is taco salad--we love the Dole salad mixes, the southwest one with taco meat is great. They also make great, easy sides. I buy fruit, too, for snacking, and we make the break and bake cookies.

Don't be afraid to check the "fresh" section of the grocery store--a rotisserie chicken and sides would be delicious. There are usually lots of options(meatloaf, lasagna) and much cheaper than eating out. And easy on the cook.

In frozens, there would be lasagna, chicken tenders, desserts, ravioli, etc.

Enjoy your vacation!
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Old 11-25-2009, 09:09 AM   #3
MyDizneyBoyz
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Breakfast - cereal, biscuits or cinnamon rolls (Pillsbury in a can ones), pancakes (on vacation we put mini chocolate chips in our pancakes... a guilty pleasure!), cheese omelettes, peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, french toast, breakfast sausages, etc.

Lunch - sandwiches, wraps (make your own with whatever filling you like), grilled cheese, hot dogs, mac and cheese, chicken nuggets, popcorn, lots of cut up fresh fruit (my kids can eat an entire apple orchard ), etc.

Dinner - Chicken parmigiana (I'm Italian - need my chicken parm!), rotisserie chicken like a PP suggested with veggies, pasta and meatballs, burgers or steaks, baked pork chops with stove top stuffing on the side, salads, we go through several bags of Steam Fresh veggies, fajitas or tacos, sloppy joes made with ground turkey, etc.

We either do a grocery run on our first day or plan ahead and have Garden Grocer deliver the basics. All our meals are single course, fairly simple ones and while we try to eat healthy, we do get more processed things while on vacation for the convenience. I figure so long as we've got lots of fruit and veggies for snacks and sides, it balances out.
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Old 11-25-2009, 09:37 AM   #4
pyman
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On the topic of offsite

I am just wondering if it is preferable to stay outside... if so how do you decide whether a rental is genuine or not? Most on the vacationrental websites ask for a money order in advance... My family likes home cooked meals and hence we would prefer to stay offsite - that being said is it feasible during a busy time like Christmas to stay otuside what with the crowds in the parks etc?

Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated as this is our first ever trip to Disney..

Thanks
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Old 11-25-2009, 09:44 AM   #5
trustknoone
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Bfast Definitely cereal, granola bars or oatmeal simple and fast

Lunch don't really do lunch but I suppose whatever works for Bfast or dinner

Dinner, We love the bertolli pasta bags and bag salad sooo easy. Grilled cheese and tomato soup, baked potatoes. I make a freeze spaghetti sauce so sometimes we take one of those.


I like to plan out what ingredients are needed and make as many meals as possible with same set so it's less to bring or buy. Like eggs, baked potatoes, Grilled cheese and tomato soup and tacos, salsa or pico butter onion cheese peppers can be on all 4, bacon bread lettuce can go with 3. That just leaves the eggs for eggs, potatoes, taco shells and meat and can of soup. Just an off the cuff list but you get the idea.

Hope this helps
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Old 11-25-2009, 11:29 AM   #6
dyna
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If driving it is easy to take frozen meals down that are already cooked thaw an reheat individual plates in microwave OR freeze browned hamburger an chicken individual meal sized baggies about a pound easy to make tacos, sloppy joes etc with that an so quick!The chicken you got chicken salads chicken tacos, top a salad off with chicken, alfredo sauce etc.

I always cook sausuage patties an freeze have that along with eggs, either homemade biscuits or waffles for breakfast every morning.
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Old 11-25-2009, 11:47 AM   #7
BuzznBelle'smom
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Pyman--Try the "Orlando Attractions" section for lots of information on staying off-site. There are many rental companies and websites All Star Resorts is good, but a little pricey, there's also Florida Sun Vacation Homes, cyberrentals.com, homeaway.com, windsorhillsrent.com, etc.

We stayed off-site last summer for the first time, and we loved it! The house was so much room, loved the private pool, we really relaxed. Windsor Hills is literally 2 minutes away from WDW. There are other communities a little further out, probably cheaper, too. You can rent anything form a 2BR condo to an 8BR house with pool, game room, and several master suites.
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Old 11-25-2009, 11:59 AM   #8
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Simple, convenient foods...

We're staying in a condo next summer for two weeks. We are early birds, so I'm planning to have a sit-down breakfast most days. (eggs, ham, hash browns, waffles, pancakes, biscuits and gravy, changing it up day to day) And we'll probably still make it to the parks early...
We're eating one meal a day at the parks/resorts. For the other meal each day, I'm planning things with simple ingredients and which do not take a lot of time... like spaghetti; taco salad; tomato soup and grilled cheese; hamburgers and fries; chicken and steamable veggies; a couple of the crock pot meals from the freezer section; fresh fruit and veggies with dip; sandwich fixins; and a possibly a frozen casserole or two. Oh, and we may have a picnic on our two water park days, but I haven't settled on that yet...
I do not LOVE cooking so I'm keeping it pretty basic and simple. I'm also going to try to stick to the menu so I don't have to keep running to WalMart on my vacation time.
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Old 11-25-2009, 12:59 PM   #9
traveljunkie2
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I am planning to have breakfast at the house every morning, lunch at the parks, and dinner at home o(or out if we have coupons!).

My dinner menu is focused on simple meals that don't need alot of ingredients, can be prepared in 30 minutes, and cost elss than $3 per person. I am planning:

Baked ravioli: buy a big bag of frozen ravioli, spread into l9x11 baking dish, empty a jar/can of pasta sauce over the top, add about a cup of shredded cheese on top. Cover with foil, bake 30 minutes at 350. Easier than boiling pasta. Add garlic bread and a bagged salad and you can feed at least 4 adults for less than $8.

Burgers, baked fries & fruit

Hot dogs, chips and salad

Rotisserie chicken tacos : basically no cooking required, but I'll probably make a big pot of spanish rice at the beginning of the week to go with the tacos, and with eggs at breakfast

Baked eggs: 12 eggs, 1 (5oz) can evaporated milk, 1 tsp dry mustard, salt & pepper to taste, 1 cup shredded cheese, misc chopped veggies to taste(green peppers, onion, mushrooms, etc). Grease a 9x11 baking dish, sprinkle cheese in bottom. In large bowl beat eggs, milk, mustard, salt & pepper. Stir in chopped veggies (you can add cooked sausage also). Pour on top of cheese. Bake @ 325 for 40 min or until firm. We usually prepare it the night before and refrigerate, then bake in the morning for breakfast.
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Old 11-26-2009, 03:40 AM   #10
happymommy
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I don't know if this applies to Orlando, but when we go to our condo in Hawaii we shop at Costco the first or second day. We get salad, a big veggie tray, frozen hamburgers, breads, etc... I find Costco is convenient for lots of foods, also their rotisserie chickens are great! We used almost the whole package of frozen hamburgers in 11 days - grilled them twice, plus I thawed a couple of them out and cooked the meat to mix with mac and cheese (it's heavy but really hit the spot one night). You could also use it in chili.

I don't know where the closest Costco is, but we loved using it in Hawaii.

We did spend a lot on groceries, but ate well, and for Hawaii would have spent ten times that eating out every day.

Many condos have grills, and it's nice to use for steak, chicken, fish, shrimp, etc... Just make a nice salad, maybe some rice or frozen fries, or bake potatoes is easy. It is much easier on your stomach than restaurant foods as well.

Oh - one thing I do think is smart - I put together a box of some seasonings, a small amount of rice, other side dishes - I honestly forget right now, but anyway then ship it ahead of time. That way, you don't have to buy those things, like a jar of seasoning that you may only need 2 teaspoons of. Also, maybe cake mix?

I've also heard of folks on the DVC board who love to pick up some premade cookie dough at the store - then when they get back in the evening, pop a pan of cookies into the oven. I can imagine the wonderful smell! And so much cheaper than probably ONE cookie at the bakery! My kids would love such a treat (but my son is allergic to eggs, so I have to make from scratch a different cookie recipe).

Happy planning!

Oh, also, if you have some folks with any dietary needs, WDW is the best place for it!
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Previous WDW vacations include:
CR as a child with parents 1992 offsite twice 1993 Honeymoon GF 1995 BC 1996 SOG 2000 GF 2001 BWV 2003 (spring break) CR 2003 (summer) AKL 2003 (Christmas break including NYE) AKL concierge 2005 summer BWV 2006 April Swan 2006 August Dolphin 2007 March AKL 2007 August Dolphin 2008 March 7 Night Western on the Magic
2008 August (The Dark Side) PBH 2008 Dec BWI 2009 March Swan 2010 March Offsite (Grande Vista) 2010 December BWV plus 2 nights Marriott's Harbour Lake and 3 bonus nights snowed in at the Aiport Renaissance 2011 March Offsite (Marriott's Harbour Lake) 2012 August Offsite (Marriott's Grande Vista and Sabal Palms) March 2014 BWV
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Old 11-26-2009, 03:51 AM   #11
happymommy
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pyman View Post
I am just wondering if it is preferable to stay outside... if so how do you decide whether a rental is genuine or not? Most on the vacationrental websites ask for a money order in advance... My family likes home cooked meals and hence we would prefer to stay offsite - that being said is it feasible during a busy time like Christmas to stay otuside what with the crowds in the parks etc?

Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated as this is our first ever trip to Disney..

Thanks
You've come to the right place!

Those are many questions, so maybe visit the other sections here.

Many folks prefer onsite for the convenience and the theming. It is so magical! You cannot really describe how wonderful it is to step outside the resort and be whisked away by the monorail, or stroll right over to Epcot (depending on the resort, there are so many).

That comes with a high price sometimes, even the value resorts can be out of many folks' budgets. Staying nearby at a non-Disney hotel is a great option for many folks.

The week of Christmas to New Years is the busiest one of the year at Disneyworld. I've done it once. Every day while we were there, each theme park closed as they were filled to capacity (they close in stages, but really just imagine wall to wall people). If it were my first visit, I would not have liked it that crowded. Difficult to see and do much, but we had a great time at the resort as well.

Just start doing your research! And good luck!
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me dh dd15 ds17


Previous WDW vacations include:
CR as a child with parents 1992 offsite twice 1993 Honeymoon GF 1995 BC 1996 SOG 2000 GF 2001 BWV 2003 (spring break) CR 2003 (summer) AKL 2003 (Christmas break including NYE) AKL concierge 2005 summer BWV 2006 April Swan 2006 August Dolphin 2007 March AKL 2007 August Dolphin 2008 March 7 Night Western on the Magic
2008 August (The Dark Side) PBH 2008 Dec BWI 2009 March Swan 2010 March Offsite (Grande Vista) 2010 December BWV plus 2 nights Marriott's Harbour Lake and 3 bonus nights snowed in at the Aiport Renaissance 2011 March Offsite (Marriott's Harbour Lake) 2012 August Offsite (Marriott's Grande Vista and Sabal Palms) March 2014 BWV
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