As a cook, when I plan a meal I first select the protein source and then figure out what I want to do with it. It can be what I found on sale that day or what I have in the freezer. The protein is the star of the show but there are many more actors on stage; lots of vegetables and whole grains. Here is how I took one roasted chicken and made meals for 3 days plus I had a gallon of chicken broth on hand to use in future recipes and to make soup. When I did the math I saved more on having to buy the chicken broth ($12.00) than I did when I bought the chicken ($8.00); I guess you could say I made money:)
Day one, roast a chicken (or if you are stressed for time buy a roasted bird at the grocery store). Serve with two types of vegetables and a grain (roasted veggies and rice). For a family of four, you only need to serve ½ of the chicken because even though protein is the star, the focus of a healthy plate is the vegetables (1/2 the plate). A deck of cards is about 3 ounces and that is the serving size for adults, depending on the age of your child you would serve less [ go here for serving sizes http://www.buildhealthykids.com/servingsizes.html
Day two, cut the meat off of the bone leaving a small amount on the bone for making stock. The meat you get off the bone should be enough for making quesadillas, creamed chicken, home made pizza or great sandwiches. Here is half the creamed chicken I was able to make. The trick is I add so many vegetables that the dish is now enough for 2 more meals. I added steamed sweet potatoes, carrots, asparagus and peas to a white cream sauce with mushroom and onions. I served it over toasted whole grain bread.
Day 3 (or the night of day 2 if you are not too tired) take the chicken and put in a large pot with enough water to just about cover it; bring to a boil and simmer for 1 hour; cool and pick off the meat. I have over 1 gallon of rich chicken broth that I am going to use to make soup. If I am stressed for time or my family is sick of chicken, I will just freeze the stock and make the soup on another day. By day 3 my family is sick of chicken so I saved the rest of my creamed chicken for the next day and served pasta tonight for dinner.
The formula for making meat last longer is to add 4 times the amount of vegetables every day you serve it.