Try It Thursday: Meal Planning Tips

by Kimberly Vanderpoel on October 6th, 2017

From personal experience, on the weeks that I have a meal plan (and follow it)…I save time and money. When I first started meal planning, I’d get lost. Every meal plan I saw was super detailed and frankly was just too difficult for me to attempt to implement into our family schedule. The method I found that works best is my family calendar. On Sunday afternoons, I sit down with our family calendar. I review the upcoming week’s events, paying special attention to days that are heavy with meetings and/or have evening activities. I then take a look at what’s in our freezer, refrigerator, and pantry. Based on the day activities, I start planning on meals. Nothing fancy…here’s an example of our meals for the last week:

Sunday: Grill Out Sirloin Stk and baby potatoes in the Instant Pot (Make extra potatoes)
Monday: Grilled Chicken Breast (Make extra for lunches)
Tuesday: BLT’s, add a chicken breast for extra protein.
Wednesday: Hamburgers on grill
Thursday: Dice Potatoes from Sunday, add to 7 eggs (scrambled), 3 slices of bacon (left from Tuesday evening), 1/2 cup almond milk (or real milk), 1/2 cup low fat shredded cheese, seasonings to taste. Mix all together and bake in oven at 35o for 30 min.
Friday: Pizza Night (Naan Bread, pizza sauce, toppings)
Saturday: Salmon on Grill

When time permits, I add a new recipe every other week.

Here are a few other tips for Meal Planning:

  1. Create a list of family favorite recipes
  2. Create a list of 15 minute or less recipes (Instant Pot is awesome for this.)
  3. Consider theme nights like Meatless Monday, Taco Tuesday, Fish Friday
  4. Choose a day to do your meal planning and a day to do your grocery shopping
  5. Ideally, it would be nice to plan your meals around what’s on sale
  6. Try to cook once, use twice. Prepare meals that have leftovers.
  7. When starting out, keep it simple.

How about you? Do you meal plan? If so, what are some of your tips?

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