Let’s talk about how to make a weekly meal plan that works for you. After learning these simple steps we will have you raving about the benefits of meal planning. You will brag about your grocery budget to anyone with ears. Plus you can download my free meal plan for a weeks worth of healthy meals, recipes, and a grocery list.
How Do You Plan A Menu For The Week?
Meal planning has been an absolute life saver for me in my homemaking. I love to be in the kitchen. It does not matter if it is trying new recipes, or making my own meals for the hundredth time. I really do enjoy it for a lot of reasons. However, I am a mom with two very busy little ones. What I need in this current season of life is to find the best way to maximize my time.
Meal prepping has saved my budget, my time, and my sanity. It also helps me to prevent food waste which is something I really appreciate. I use several different kitchen hacks to make my life easier. Freezer meals are one of my absolutely favorites. I also like to use my slow cooker or instant pot. I have learned that adding a side of fresh produce or brown rice will turn just about anything into full meals. But by far the easiest way I have found to serve healthy recipes every day of the week has been with meal planning.
Do not forget to download my free meal plan. It includes a menu for the whole week, easy recipes, and the shopping list.
What Are The 4 Steps To Meal Planning?
First, determine how many meals you will need for a week’s worth of meals. This does not take much time. I use my calendar to see who will be home when and therefore how many different meals I will need.
You already know to include the three main meals (breakfast, lunch, and dinner) but do not forget to include snack items. This is especially important if you have small kids. Learning how to meal plan with little ones absolutely must include snacks.
You can use cookbooks, Pinterest, personal recipes, or my free meal plan.
Be strategic when you are choosing meals. If you know that Tuesday is crazy busy at your house or that by Friday you are too tired to function then make sure the meals you plan for those days are easy. Save the more involved meals for days that you have the time and energy to be in the kitchen a little longer.
Yes! I have included a free templates at the bottom of this post that you can use. Writing out your menu is a great way to save sanity because when you reach Friday evening and all your brain power has poofed away you do not have to spare your last precious brain cell trying to remember what you were going to make for dinner.
Right now when you are creating your meal plan for the following week is the best time to prepare for your trip to the grocery store and make your list. You have your list of recipes in front of you with all of the ingredients that you need for the upcoming days of the week. Check the fridge and pantry to see what ingredients you already have so that you do not accidentally purchase duplicate items while you are grocery shopping.
What Are The 5 Basic Steps Of Meal Planning?
- Determine how many meals you need for the next week
- Decide what different meal you will make at each meal time
- Write out your menu
- Make a grocery list
- Implement the plan!
Number five on this list is the most crucial part. There could be a number of reasons why you are wanting to meal plan. For you it could be a healthier lifestyle with less unhealthy foods. Maybe you are interested in weight loss or your budget does not have any wiggle room for convenience foods like fast food.
But no matter your reasons the part where a lot of people go wrong is in having the discipline to see the plan through to the end.
That’s not going to be you! No way! I have total faith that you are going to crush this whole process. Your food budget is going to be so smooth! Before long creating healthy meal plans will be second nature to you. In fact, I bet you will try to convert everyone you know by sharing the benefits of meal prep. Or hey… you could just share this post instead.