If you are like most families, the last year has been spent at home and making a lot of meals! You might be wondering if you have to keep feeding everyone every day. The answer is yes. Meal planning is sometimes a tough task, but it really does help to make grocery shopping easier. It also will help you from making multiple trips to the grocery store every week. Meal planning saves money, lets everyone know what is for dinner and keeps you from running to the drive through.
Other benefits for meal planning-time saving, healthy meals, and creating sanity! I also don’t throw out as much food when I meal plan, so I save money that way as well.
After years of trying to come up with different systems, this has really made my life simpler. While sometimes I get in a rut with being bored of food, this has made a huge difference for us. This is what I have done to make life around our house streamlined for grocery shopping, meal planning and of course, cooking!
It is pretty easy to follow along with this system. I recommend having an online calendar like Google Calendar on your phone or computer. There are some great apps (Tasty, Whisk, All Recipes, Yummly) that I use. I also check the weekly fliers for the grocery store that I frequent every week to base my shopping list. I have a notebook that I write down our grocery list. On the next page, I put recipes for the week. When I finalize my grocery list and the weekly menu, I put the weekly evening menu onto my calendar and link the recipe into my calendar.
Don’t be overwhelmed!
This may be a lot of steps for some people, and I realize that this may sound overwhelming. But, there is a strategy for this! For those weeks that I feel less than creative to come up with a meal plan for the week, I can go back to previous weeks and look for recipes that I have already used. I don’t have to go back to the recipe apps to look for new recipes, I can just go back in time and look through a different week and pick a few recipes and repeat. If I don’t like a recipe, I delete it from my calendar.
Pro Calendar tip-I share my calendar with my husband. We have it color coded and share many different things with each other on our calendar. We have different colors for different items-our menu is one color and it is shared with my husband. He can also tell what the meal of the day is and tell the kids what it is or make it if needbe.
I also have made a Pinterest board of our favorite recipes, so if you are looking for inspiration to start, I have you covered!
Do You Meal Plan?
What are your favorite recipes? How do you meal plan?