Tips and Ideas for the Weekly Meal

Sharing a meal together regularly is an important  piece to missional community life in Redeemer. It is through the meal that we have an opportunity to bless one another ever week, and it is over the meal that we have the opportunity to encourage one another toward Jesus and his mission. In fact, Jesus himself did a large majority of his ministry, discipleship, and mission over meals. Meals are significant, and when they are done well they can significantly affect the ministry of a MC. We have found that MCs with great weekly meals are usually growing healthy.

After multiplying a new missional community this month one of our best cooks/meal planners put together a list of ideas and tips for our new MCs. Thanks, Kelsey, for sharing your gift of hospitality and for sharing your ideas! Hope these meal ideas help your MC without hurting your waistline!

MC Meal Tips

  • Depending on the group, it usually works best to have whoever is hosting provide drinks and still sign up for something. (Water & Country time lemonade mix is cheap and works great)
  • Try and get the meal sign up out to everyone 4-5 days prior to the event so they have time to plan, can get their supplies on their grocery store trip, and so you can fill in the gaps or ask for extra help if no one has signed up.
  • Bring your best stuff, and other people tend to follow suit! It makes the meal so much better when everyone puts effort into it!
  • Be aware of meetings that you will have new people, or guests who you don’t expect to bring a dish…make your people aware so everyone can pitch in a little extra! We would never want a guest to feel like there isn’t enough food for them!
  • Reminder: Each Expression has money in the budget to provide plates, plasticware, cups, napkins, etc, so let your leaders know when you are close to needing more!

MC Meal Ideas

These meals have been set up for MCs with 12-15 adults and 5-6 kids. Below are meal ideas and a list of the items people can sign up to bring. 

Mexican Night

This can be a general theme, I’ll list a few other more specific ways to do Mexican

  • Main Dish
  • Main Dish
  • Tortilla Chips
  • Queso
  • Guacamole
  • Rice & Beans
  • Dessert
  • Drinks

Taco Night

Build your own soft or crispy tacos

  • Seasoned ground beef (2 lbs)
  • Shredded Chicken (2 lbs)
  • Black Beans & Shredded Cheese
  • Small tortillas & Taco Shells (30 tortillas, 12 crispy tacos)
  • Shredded lettuce, diced tomatoes (1 head of lettuce, 2 tomatoes)
  • Queso & Salsa
  • Guacamole (2 pints)
  • Tortilla Chips (2-3 bags)
  • Dessert
  • Drinks

Mexican Stack Up

This is basically a Mexican salad!

  • Seasoned ground beef (2 lbs)
  • Seasoned ground beef (2lbs
  • Fritos and/or tortilla chips (4 bags total)
  • Shredded lettuce, diced tomatoes, sour cream (3 heads of lettuce, 2 tomatoes, 10-15 oz of sour cream)
  • Shredded cheese (2 lbs)
  • Guacamole (1-2 pints)
  • Queso
  • Rice & Black Beans(optional)
  • Dessert
  • Drinks

Sandwich Night

Sandwiches can be boring, but add a few extra toppings and a panini grill and it can be a favorite!

  • Sandwich bread (2 loaves of wheat bread, add in a loaf of white if you have lots of kids)
  • Turkey (1-1 1/2 lbs)
  • Ham (1- 1 1/2 lbs not usually as popular as turkey, so you may want to double turkey instead)
  • If you have lots of picky kids you might want to throw in a jar of peanut butter!
  • Sliced Cheese (20 slices)
  • Mayo, Mustard (sometimes the host has plenty to share, so check with them before you make it a sign up
  • Leaf lettuce, Sliced Tomatoes, Sliced onions(1 head of lettuce, 2 tomatoes, 1/2 onion)
  • Sliced Avocados (5 avocados sliced)
  • Assorted Chips(3 bags)
  • Fresh Fruit Salad (if you need something healthy)
  • Dessert
  • Drinks

Brinner

Everyone’s favorite! Breakfast for dinner!

  • Egg Main Dish (9X13 dish)
  • Egg Main Dish (9X13 dish)
  • Bread or Pastry Item (this allows for people to do muffins, cinnamon rolls, tea bread, donuts, etc.)
  • Bread or Pastry Item
  • Fresh Fruit (People usually just bring a big bowl and it works out great)
  • Bacon (1 lb)
  • Sliced Breakfast Sausage (1 lb)
  • Orange Juice & Apple Juice
  • Note* dessert isn’t needed for brinner because the pastries basically are!

Pancake Night

Have someone man the griddle and just start flipping! Kids looooove this night!

  • Pancake mix & corresponding ingredients( I usually bring 2-3 boxes and just mix it as we need it)
  • Syrup (1-2 bottles depending on size)
  • Butter( 1 tub is usually enough)
  • Bacon (1 lb)
  • Breakfast Sausage Slices (1 lb)
  • Fresh Fruit
  • Drinks
  • No dessert needed

Italian Night

This is just a broad category, we will do a few other specific themes as well

  • Main Dish (9X13 dish)
  • Main Dish ( 9×13 dish)
  • Green or Caesar Salad (Just list the number of people you think will have and most people can wing it)
  • French Bread/Italian Bread (1 loaf will generally feed 10-15 people)
  • Dessert
  • Drinks

Pizza Night

Mention that they can either pick up a pizza or bring a homemade one! This is a good theme when everyone has been busy and needs a break!

  • Large Pizza
  • Large Pizza
  • Large Pizza
  • Large Pizza
  • Large Pizza
  • Green Salad
  • Dessert
  • Drinks

Noodle Night

This can be a little tricky to keep the noodles in good shape, but it’s basically like a pasta bar!

  • Spaghetti noodles cooked with a little olive oil to keep from sticking(2 lbs)
  • Penne Noodles (2 lbs)
  • Any other noodle option you want (2 lbs)
  • Spaghetti/Meat Sauce
  • Alfredo Sauce
  • Green Salad
  • French Bread (1 loaf)
  • Dessert
  • Drinks

Grilled Cheese Night

Comfort food at it’s finest! You can also throw in a soup to switch it up!

  • Sliced Sandwich bread(3 loaves bread)
  • 20 Slices of a certain cheese (cheddar)
  • 20 slices of a different cheese (provolone or anything! they are good with several different cheeses)
  • Sliced Avocados (5 avocados)
  • Sliced tomatoes (2 tomatoes)
  • Bacon (1-2 pounds)
  • Dessert
  • Drinks

Cobb Salad Night

Build your own salad!

  • Head of romaine lettuce, washed and in salad sized bites (6-8 heads of romaine)
  • hard boiled eggs, diced, bacon pieces, diced tomatoes (10 eggs, 1 lb of bacon, crumbled, 2 tomatoes)
  • Sliced avocados (5-6 avocados)
  • Bleu cheese crumbles, feta cheese crumbles
  • Grilled chicken breast, diced, can be cold (4 breasts)
  • Thick sliced turkey deli turkey (1-2 lbs)
  • Bleu Cheese dressing, Ranch Dressing
  • Dessert
  • Drinks
  • Mac & Cheese or PBJ for kids

Appetizer Night

This is a great one for people to get creative! Just remember that people loove finger foods so have plenty of options and encourage people to make a decent amount. I usually just list off the number of appetizers we need and ask for them to reply with what they are bringing so not everyone shows up with a crockpot of queso.

  • Appetizer dish
  • Appetizer dish
  • Appetizer Dish
  • Appetizer dish
  • Appetizer Dish
  • Appetizer Dish
  • Appetizer Dish
  • Dessert
  • Drinks

BBQ Night

This can be an expensive one since meat is expensive, so don’t do it too often!

  • 2-3 lbs of BBQ chicken
  • 2 lbs of sausage
  • 1-2 lbs brisket or chopped beef
  • 1-2 lbs turkey breast
  • Potato Salad
  • Baked Beans
  • Corn or Creamed Corn
  • Dessert
  • Drinks

Favorites Night

Bring your favorite thing to cook!

  • Main Dish
  • Main Dish
  • Side Dish
  • Side Dish
  • Side Dish
  • Bread or Dinner Rolls
  • Dessert
  • Drinks

Soup/Stew Night

Great for the few cold nights we have!

  • Soup Option #1
  • Soup Option #2
  • Soup Option #3
  • Bakery Style Bread and Crackers
  • Dessert
  • Drinks

Frito Chili Pie Night

I mean who doesn’t love frito pie?!?

  • Batch of chili
  • Batch of chili
  • 3 bags of fritos, sour cream
  • 2-3 bags of shredded cheese
  • Mac N Cheese for kids
  • Dessert
  • Drinks

Baked Potato Bar

This is a easy one as long as you know someone(easiest for host) to bake all the potatoes

  • 18 baked potatoes(You can bake them and keep them in a cooler and they will stay hot!)
  • 2 lbs chopped BBQ beef
  • Sour cream, Shredded Cheese (16 oz sour cream, 2 lbs Cheese)
  • Bacon pieces & Chopped Green onions
  • Tub of Butter
  • Dessert
  • Drinks

Easter Dinner

Doesn’t have to be Easter!

  • Sliced Ham
  • Sliced Ham
  • Sliced Ham
  • Green Bean Casserole
  • Deviled Eggs
  • Mashed Potatoes
  • Dinner Rolls
  • Dessert
  • Drinks

Thanksgiving Dinner

Doesn’t have to be Thanksgiving!

  • Turkey
  • Turkey
  • Turkey
  • Green Bean Casserole
  • Sweet Potato Casserole
  • Mashed Potatoes
  • Cranberry Sauce
  • Dinner Rolls
  • Pumpkin Pie
  • Pecan Pie
  • Drinks

Asian Night

These dishes take some effort, but people can always do take out!

  • Main Dish
  • Main Dish
  • Fried Rice
  • Fried Rice
  • 10 egg rolls
  • 10 egg rolls
  • Dessert
  • Drinks

Comfort Food Night

Whatever you think is comfort food, bring it!

  • Main Dish
  • Main Dish
  • Side Dish
  • Side Dish
  • Bread
  • Drinks
  • Dessert

Burgers & Dogs

Great for a summer night with not much of an agenda because grilling does take more time!

  • 8-10 hamburger patties
  • 8-10 hamburger patties
  • 24 hot dogs
  • 24 hot dog buns & 24 hamburger buns
  • 20 slices of cheese, Mustard, Ketchup, Mayo
  • 1 head of lettuce, 2 sliced tomatoes, 1 sliced onion
  • 3-4 bags of chips
  • Dessert
  • Drinks
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